Concourse Restaurante Modern
As I get older and we try more restaurants and more dishes, I think what I’m in search for are those wow moments. I love good experiences, outings where every dish is great, but what really sets a restaurant apart are those moments of shock and awe.
Concourse, ChoLon Concepts third restaurant, was the only restaurant that we tried in 2017 that provided that wow moment. It was named one of 5280’s 25 Best Restaurants in Denver, and rightfully so.
Situated in Denver’s newly hip Stapleton neighborhood*, Concourse visually impresses on entrance with it’s incredible wave shaped wooden ceiling, eliciting a feeling of movement.
I started off with a “Don’t Carrot All” cocktail, a medley of vodka, carrot juice, sage and lemon, while Topher went with a seasonal cranberry, gin and rosemary cocktail. It was easily the most enjoyable drink I tried all year.
We ordered the Bacon and Octopus Risotto Balls with Smoked Tomato Butter (which we may have licked the last remnants off of our fingers when the waitress wasn’t looking) and then at the last minute decided to order the Wagyu Beef Tataki (yes, we had to Google it discreetly under the table, too. Tataki means “seared briefly”).
The Tataki, incredibly thin slices of barely seared, very tender beef was served with smoked egg mayo, pickled veggies and potato chips. This was that wow moment I was referring too. I’ll admit, I was nervous to order a semi-rare beef dish that included “smoked egg mayo”, but the potato chips won me over.
As soon as I tried the dish, however, the potato chips were the last thing on my mind. The beef was so rich and incredibly tender. Strange as it might sound, the smoked egg lent the most incredible depth to the mayonnaise, pairing incredibly with the beef. The gently pickled mushrooms and onions gave each bite a hint of brightness and the thick, house made chips brought the whole thing together with a crunch. Two months later, we’re still raving about this dish. It was wild, yet familiar and oh so creative. We high-fived ourselves for not taking the safe-ordering route.
Already full from the appetizers, we braced ourselves for the main dishes we had ordered. Topher went with the Duroc Pork, served with black rice and a decadent celery root fondue. I ordered a squid ink pasta with scallop and shrimp that formed almost a sauce of their own. The dish was beautiful, all inky black.
While both were very good, we had to feel slightly let down after the Tataki experience. I might even go so far as to call it transcendent. It reminded me to take a risk when ordering now and again. Sometimes the dish you’ll order is as funky as it sounds, but sometimes your mind will be blown.
We’ll be back to Concourse just for the Tataki and cocktails, but the rest of their menu leaves more room for exploration.
*As a kid, it was a strictly lock your doors as you drive through type area, so it’s surreal to see THREE of the restaurant’s on 2017’s Best Of list in this neighborhood!