Second Home Kitchen + Bar: JW Marriott's local hot spot
Begin with creative comfort food in a stylishly inviting atmosphere augmented by an outdoor patio for fireside chats. Add a wine-centric bar that also serves up tasty adult beverages and accompanying patron eye-candy. Toss in a family Sunday brunch and innovative chef’s classes every month. It’s no wonder that guests and locals alike want to linger at Cherry Creek's JW Marriott, and make Second Home Kitchen + Bar their primary hangout.
This is no cookie-cutter hotel restaurant. While it's part of the JW Marriott family, each venue is tailored to its neighborhood. “We want this place to feel like a second home to come to several times a week,” says executive chef Jeff Bolton. “We appeal to everyone: sophisticated people, business people, families, 20’s and 30’s singles. The bar is a local hotspot for a lot of people in Cherry Creek.”
The menu? Soups, salads, sandwiches, pizzas and spruced-up, home-like entrees that might range from a grilled, smothered pork chop to Colorado rack of lamb. “We take modern American comfort food, make it our own—and make it delicious,” says executive chef Jeff Bolton. As the menu changes from season to season, popular staples remain. Look for year-round rotisserie chicken, a Colorado bird brined 24 hours, roasted and served with garlic spinach and lemon au jus. Everything is freshly made, and Bolton is committed to supporting local farmers and meat producers, buying their products whenever they're available. His "Lunch in a Second" special caters to time-crunched diners with an oven-baked sandwich, soup, salad and non-alcoholic beverage for $12.
“Sundays are all about families,” says Bolton. “The restaurant is decorated like home on a lazy Sunday afternoon, with sheets and pillows and the staff in pajamas.” Children 8 and under in pjs eat free off the kid's menu, and patrons also get in the spirit, wearing robes and bunny slippers. Youngsters have a dedicated room to watch Disney movies and can top their own pancakes with Gummi Bears, M&Ms and fruit. It's all staff supervised and gives adults a chance to enjoy the bloody-mary bar and unlimited mimosas, along with big-kid entrees such as eggs and duck hash.
Bolton's monthly chef demo, "Cheffin' It Up," easily is the city’s biggest entertainment bargain. For $10, participants sip a glass of wine and learn about a culinary topic such as Spanish tapas or how to brine a turkey. Everyone can nosh on samples and mingle afterward. The event is so popular that it's now limited to 90 people. Bolton also teaches foodie wannabes how to shop in yet another class, literally taking up to 10 people to a nearby market to choose fresh produce, spices, aged meats—whatever the students want to learn about. When the shopping cart is full, ingredients are cooked up and shared among participants back at the restaurant. A monthly virtual wine tour pairs selections with authentic foods of a specific region to create a sumptuous five-course dinner. (For more information about classes, call 303-253-3000.) Whatever the occasion, Bolton wants patrons to have a good time. “I’m a ham, and I love to talk about food,” he says.
Too much alcohol? Book a room and take the elevator “home.” Another bonus: Whether you stay the night or dine at the restaurant, valet parking is always free.
HelloDenver Tip: Arrive early for the monthly chef demo. Doors open promptly at 6pm and there can be a mini-stampede as guests rush to get a table up front.
Posted on April 28, 2010 by Lisa Perry