What to Eat at Boulder's New "Fine Diner," EllaBy Ruth Tobias | July 16, 2014 By Ruth Tobias | July 16, 2014
For Boulder restaurateur Edwin Zoe, comfort food is at once a family affair and a global adventure. That’s why he built beloved Pearl Street Mall nook Zoe Ma Ma around the dumplings, noodles and soups of his Taiwan-born mother turned chef a few years back — and it’s also why he’s relying on the input of everyone from his Hungarian mother-in-law to the Hispanic members of his kitchen crew as he perfects the repertoire at his month-old “fine diner,” Ella.
Zoe says that the charmingly eclectic menu “reflects the story of my life as an American.” But the truth of the matter is that it reflects the lives of most Americans, natives and immigrants alike. Zigzagging from French-inspired omelets and huevos rancheros to pizza and meatloaf, it’s a world map of homestyle cooking set against the cheeriest of backdrops. The former Radda Trattoria always looked a bit like a diner to us anyway, with its strip-mall setting and bright white-and-yellow tile work, so Zoe has smartly kept renovations of the space to a minimum in favor of "obsessing over roast chicken" or zipping through "probably 100 pounds of potatoes" to nail down his hash browns. And based on what we sampled for the slideshow below, we expect you’ll be too busy eating to notice the changes to your surroundings — except, perhaps, for the vibrant flower arrangements on the patio. Guess who’s in charge of those? That’s right, Zoe’s mama.
1265 Alpine Ave., Boulder; 303-442-6100