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Photo courtesy of Basta/ Jimena Zamora

Best Restaurants 2018: Basta

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It’s fair to say that Kelly Whitaker, Basta’s chef-owner, is obsessed with grains. Local heritage grains, that is, which he grows on-site at his Boulder restaurant, promotes through his nonprofit organization, the Noble Grain Alliance, and sprinkles across Basta’s menu in the form of wood-fired pizzas, hand-ground polenta, whole-grain crackers, breads, and even doughnuts. (Where are the noodles, you ask? At Whitaker’s one-month-old Sunnyside spot, the Wolf’s Tailor.) Basta’s cooks coax fantastic flavor and texture from more than just carbs, though; farm-fresh salads and roasted chicken were standouts during recent visits to this somewhat noisy, always congenial neighborhood eatery that’s on a mission to make grains matter again. $$$, 3601 Arapahoe Ave., Boulder, 303-997-8775

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