Session Kitchen, which officially opened on Friday, has already garnered a lot of attention. There are a multitude of reasons: The eatery sits in the old Izakaya Den space, it’s the newest concept from Breckenridge-Wynkoop holdings, executive chef Scott Parker (formerly of Table 6) mans the kitchen, and award-winning bartender and Bitter Bar alum Michael Cerretani heads up the beverage program. But the most arresting detail is that the restaurant acts as a showcase for 13 international artists. The airy space, which was overseen by director of concept design Lisa Ruskaup, frames the many commissioned pieces and blends mediums, including painting, photography, light art, mobiles, mosaic-like tile work (see if you can find the hidden word), graffiti, and sculpture. Session is a mishmash of beer, food, cocktails, wine, and high art…and, somehow, the concept feels seamless.
All of this is brought into focus with Parker’s menu, which plays to his ever-innovative, comfort-food style. Look for dishes such as the lamb collar (pictured) with ratatouille vegetables and house-made naan. Hearty and unctuous, this, like all of Session’s dishes, is designed to share. (Ask your server about the many portion options.) Other favorites include the bagel-and-lox inspired smoked Skuna Bay salmon, schmear, pickles, and everything plancha bread; the tangy persimmon-vinegar-hot-pepper slaw; and the goat milk sweet cream with conserves and graham crackers.
Sit here: Nab a seat at the 10- to 12-seat Session Bar for a bar-within-a-bar experience. Patrons have a dedicated bartender, can order off the full menu, and sit up high enough to see the main floor in its entirety. “It’s a play on theater-in-the-round,” Ruskaup says. Your clue is the Macbeth quote (“it provokes the desire, but it takes away the performance.”) welded on the stairs leading up to the space.
1518 S. Pearl St., 720-763-3387
—Photo by Rachel Nobrega