If there’s one thing that makes me feel like the holidays are around the corner (besides the twinkle lights strung up all over town and the never-ending Black Friday advertisements), it’s the annual unearthing of stained and bent recipe cards, with notes scribbled and scratched out on the edges of directions for cakes and brisket.
Jerrod Rosen probably understands that feeling: The owner of the forthcoming Rye Society (slated to open in RiNo in early 2018) is looking to family recipes for much of the contemporary Jewish deli’s menu. There will be matzoh ball soup based on what his great-grandmother used to make and pickles from a generations-old recipe. “There’s an emotional connection, I think, that people have with delis, and a community connection, and that kind of got lost through the years with mass-produced sandwiches. People need a good deli to go to,” says Rosen, a French Culinary Institute-trained chef whose impressive resumé includes Thomas Keller’s Per Se and Danny Meyer’s much-lauded, now-defunct Tabla Restaurant.
Rye Society may be Rosen’s first Denver restaurant—but he’s no newcomer. Rosen is a fourth-generation Coloradan who helped open Colt & Gray; his paternal grandparents owned Rosen’s Grocery in the 1930s, his great-grandmother operated Rosen’s Kosher Cafe, and his maternal grandfather owned the Oasis Drive-in.
Chef consultant Ryan Leinonen (of the now-closed Trillium) is helping with menu development. Breakfast will feature brioche egg sandwiches, lox, and cream cheese, build-your-own oatmeal, and house-made granola. Lunch offerings will include classic deli-style heaping sandwiches—pastrami and corned beef will be flown in from New York City’s Carnegie Deli, and rye bread will be baked in-house—and build-your-own salads and ancient grain bowls. Rosen plans to make all the condiments, butters, and cream cheeses in-house.
Rosen calls Rye Society a “new-school deli.” “It’s the deli with a twist, with a contemporary style of eating. Ingredients chosen with care. People caring about what’s going in, from the bread to the meat to the condiments,” Rosen says. “That’s what we’re trying to do.”
Located in the former Hutch & Spoon space at 3090 Larimer St., Rye Society will be open for breakfast, lunch, and brunch (Saturday and Sunday).