Amid all the hype surrounding Stoic & Genuine, it's worth pointing out that Jennifer Jasinski and Beth Gruitch's three other restaurants — Rioja, Euclid Hall and Bistro Vendôme — are still going strong just a few blocks away in Larimer Square. In fact, in some respects they may be better than ever. For instance, on a recent visit to Vendôme, we ordered up an old favorite, escargots, only to be presented with a jazzy new version we won't soon forget. Beneath a garnish of arugula salad, six plump, intensely earthy Burgundian snails arrived exactly as expected, soaking up a hazelnut-studded sauce of white wine and butter. But in the center of the dish awaited two more juicy morsels: chicken oysters. These jewels of dark meat, which flank the chicken's backbone, somehow proved even richer and juicier than the gastropods themselves. And it all paired beautifully with a glass of Lucien Albrecht Cremant d'Alsace Rosé, making for a late-summer treat we plan to repeat out on Vendôme's picture-perfect patio.
1420 Larimer St.; 303-825-3232