At Carmine’s on Penn, we pride ourselves on having the best staff in the business. That’s why we’re so thrilled to welcome a new head chef! Eric Seabolt joins the team as the master behind your favorite Carmine’s on Penn dishes. We asked him a few questions to get to know him a little better.
Carmine’s: You’re new to Carmine’s on Penn – welcome! What was your background before this?
Chef Eric: Most of my cooking background is in contemporary Mexican or Italian/American fine dining. I went to the Cooking and Hospitality Institute of Chicago. After Graduating in 2007 I spent some time in Alaska before returning home to Cincinnati where I worked for two and half years before I landed my first chef de cuisine job at a restaurant called Nada. During my time with Nada, I also spent time working at an Italian restaurant called Boca. After leaving Nada, I took a sous chef position at a contemporary American restaurant called Vida. Now, Carmine’s on Penn is my next adventure!
Carmine’s: What inspired you to become a chef?
Chef Eric: My grandparents were farmers, so they passed down a love and knowledge of food. I didn’t realize until college that I was so passionate about food. I also enjoy the atmosphere of restaurants. I love food and cooking because of the continuous learning and sharing parts of yourself with other people.
Carmine’s: There are so many menu options at Carmine’s on Penn. If you had to pick a favorite, what would it be?
Chef Eric: We do have a lot of dishes on the menu here at Carmine’s. I would say the Pasta Alla Carmine’s because of how simple but great it is.
Carmine’s: Carmine’s on Penn has a pretty extensive wine list. If it were in stock, which wine would you recommend to a customer?
Chef Eric: Tormaresco “Boca di Lupo” Aglianico, 2011 vintage from Campania. I love medium-heavy to heavy bodied red wines. This selection is a good price point and very similar to a California Cabernet.
Carmine’s: When you’re not cooking, what’s an activity you enjoy?
Chef Eric: My favorite off-day activity is either playing disc golf or hiking in a park.
Carmine’s: Last question and probably the most important: What do you love most about Carmine’s on Penn?
Chef Eric: I love the family atmosphere! Being at work really makes me feel like I am at home.
Since opening in 2013, not much has changed at the sister restaurant to Carmine’s on Penn – until now. Known for providing the Denver lunch crowd with made-to-order Italian sandwiches like Chicken Parmigiana and Spaghetti and Meatballs, Little Carmine’s has introduced an updated menu.
The new menu features four new sandwiches inspired by the Italian-American experience, including a Jersey Hoagie, NOLA Muffuletta, Chicago Beef and Pickled Veggie Hoagie – all served on freshly baked bread from the Carmine’s on Penn kitchen.
Brad Ritter, owner of Little Carmine’s and Carmine’s on Penn, has been developing and refining the new sandwiches for over a year, even traveling to Chicago’s Little Italy to seek out inspiration.
Ritter sees a growing demand for more fast-casual fare in the rapidly changing Speer neighborhood, saying, “We’ve been anticipating this growth for a while now, and we’re excited to provide our customers with more options, but still at a great value.”
Little Carmine’s sandwiches range from $6.95 to $13.95, with the option for half or full-size sandwiches. Salads and soups are also on the menu.
Little Carmine’s is located at 84 South Pennsylvania, adjacent to Carmine’s on Penn. Indoor and outdoor patio seating is available, and the restaurant also offers convenient online ordering for to-go orders at little.carminescolorado.com.
Our extensive wine list and a variety of premium cocktails have long been staples for Carmine’s on Penn. What you might not know is we also offer unique Italian liquors that are fun to taste and also create a nice finish to a big meal.
Similar to brandy, grappa is a byproduct of winemaking. After the grapes are pressed, the leftover skin, seeds and stems are distilled to make grappa. As with all alcohol, the flavor can vary depending on how long it’s been aged or what has been added.
Get to know the different categories and soon you’ll be ready to head to Carmine’s to try some for yourself!
Young – Bottled soon after production with no color as it is not stored or kept in barrels. Delicate aroma with a dry and clean taste.
Aged – Bottled after aging for many months in wooden barrels.
Riserva – Bottled after aging for over 18 months in wooden barrels. Has a darker color.
Aromatic – Grappa produced from aromatic grapes such as Moscato or Muscat.
Aromatized – At the end of distillation, this grappa is infused with aromatic essence or added liqueur.
Good grappa can be hard to find, but at Carmine’s, we serve only the best. On your next visit, be sure to ask your server for a taste. You can even go the traditional Italian route and add it to espresso, which is called a Caffè Corretto. Saluti!
Being a good neighbor doesn’t just mean serving up delicious, family-style Italian meals. It also means giving back to the local community. That’s why Carmine’s on Penn has been supporting Denver nonprofits for over 20 years through our Community Partners Program.
Most recently, Carmine’s reviewed submissions for a nonprofit event giveaway and selected Project PAVE to be the recipient of a complimentary event for 25 people, complete with food and wine.
The nonprofit giveaways don’t stop there. Carmine’s is now reaching out to the local community to vote for their favorite arts-related nonprofit to win a family-style dinner for 25 to be used for any purpose to benefit their cause. The voting runs from now until July 31, 2017 and the winner will be notified by August 14. Find out more about the four nonprofits in the running below:
Baroque Chamber Orchestra of Colorado – The Rocky Mountain Region’s only professional period-instrument orchestra, bringing Colorado audiences the musical riches and spirit of improvisation of the 17th and 18th centuries.
Colorado Children’s Chorale – Presents professional choral concerts and educational programs that entertain, inspire and bring joy to audiences and communities.
Colorado Youth Symphony Orchestra – Brings together Colorado youth of all ages to participate in orchestral ensembles that foster their musical understanding, social growth, self-esteem and a lifelong love of music.
Phamaly Theatre Company – Produces professional scale plays and musicals year-round throughout the Denver Metro region, cast entirely of performers with disabilities across the spectrum.
Now that you know a little bit about each nonprofit, make sure you get online and vote! A big thanks to 5280 Magazine for helping Carmine’s to promote our latest Nonprofit Event Giveaway on the Eat + Drink section of their website. Sign up for their newsletter and watch out for voting reminders from now through July.
We can’t wait to see who you select as the winner. Then the fun of helping them plan a fantastic event begins!
Earlier this month, Carmine’s Manager Stephen Kozicki took a break from Italian food to explore the world of Spanish food and wine during a surprise trip to Spain. He brought back some amazing photos and a wealth of knowledge. Take a look at some of the highlights!
These local beans, called maximo calibre (large beans), taste great cooked with suckling pork jus, chorizo, crackling and spices. Soak for 24 hours and cook for 3 ½ hours.
The 2-mile long town of Segovia has a rich history. It is home to the best preserved aqueduct in the world, which was built by the Romans over 20 centuries ago.
Stephen slices some Iberian Jamon before lunch at the winemaker’s home at Álvarez y Díez.
This cathedral took 160 years to build and is the last gothic style cathedral built in Spain.
The Ribera and Rueda region liaison, Phillipe, gives a presentation on the wine region of Rueda. Most wine produced there is white with verdejo, both oaked and unoaked, accounting for almost all of production. Unoaked is similar to a sauvignon blanc while the oaked has a richer, creamier flavor.
Stephen checking out the falcons at Bodegas Vidal Soblechero. They are trained to chase away rabbits, mice and pigeons that can harm the grape vines.
Bodegas Vidal Soblechero, a biodynamic winery, still uses horses to plow their vineyard. Biodynamics is the oldest, anti-chemical agricultural movement that predates the creation of organic farming by about twenty years.
A hot air balloon ride over the beautiful Ribera wine region.
Stephen says hello from the air!
Stephen signs off on a great trip at a winery in Ribera, which primarily produces Tempranillo. Wine barrels are only used for a few years, but the stave is saved and reused. Cheers to that!
Thank you to Wine & Spirits Magazine for allowing Stephen to explore Spanish culture on this trip of a lifetime. We can’t wait to see what new knowledge and expertise he brings to the Carmine’s team.
What happens when you take the time to fill out a 30-minute survey? Sometimes you win a trip to Spain! At least that was the case for Carmine’s on Penn Manager, Stephen Kozicki. After filling out a survey about Carmine’s wine program for Wine & Spirits magazine, Stephen was selected as one of the lucky winners. He’ll spend six days enjoying the best food and wine Spain has to offer. Check out his itinerary for a snapshot of what he’ll be up to:
Wine: Ribera del Duero tastings at Bodegas Arzuaga Navarro and Real Sitio de Ventosilla. Guests will also enjoy a vintage wine tasting from historical wineries in the region, with wine dating back to 1985.
Hot air balloon ride through the vineyards of “the Golden Mile” of Ribera del Duero.
Food: Guests can cook dinner with the winemakers at Bodegas Neo (the only winery in the world with a music studio) before enjoying music and a picnic dinner.
Carmine’s on Penn might offer an exclusive 100% Italian wine list, but here’s to tasting some Spanish wines too! We look forward to hearing all about Stephen’s experience when he gets back.
Make your reservations now! This year’s Denver Restaurant Week is February 24 – March 5 and we have a menu to excite every member of the family! Whether it’s a date night for two or a family affair, be sure to stop by Carmine’s on Penn to celebrate this local culinary tradition.
For $35.00 a person, restaurant patrons will be able to choose one dish from each category.
Ravioli alla Vodka
Tour of Italy
Seafood Fra Diavolo
Pasta alla Capo w/Shrimp
Ragu Con Funghi
Chicken alla Carmine’s
Veal alla Carmine’s
Three Layer Chocolate Cake
New York Style Cheesecake
Vegetarian and gluten free options are available! Don’t wait – give us a call today at 303-777-6443 and make your reservation!
We have always believed in being a good neighbor – not just by serving good food, but by giving back to organizations that make our community such a wonderful place to live.
Over the last 10 years, Carmine’s on Penn has contributed over $250,000 to local nonprofits. Some of our past nonprofit partners include The Delores Project, Warren Village, Project Angel Heart’s Dining Out for Life, The Denver Waldorf School, Project PAVE, Maria Droste Counseling Center, Montessori School of Washington Park, Platte Forum and Rocky Mountain Lab Rescue – the recipient of our first-ever Nonprofit Event Giveaway in partnership with 5280 Magazine.
As we reflect on a decade of supporting the charitable organizations in our community, we find ourselves wondering: How can we do more?
Beginning in 2017, we are excited to share a few changes to our current Community Partners Program that will hopefully result in a more robust financial impact to our nonprofit partners. Here’s what we have planned:
Donation-Based Menu Item – We will donate a percentage of every Family Size Caesar Salad purchased to The Delores Project – the largest single provider of shelter and services for unaccompanied women and transgender individuals in Denver.
Carmine’s Family Table – This monthly prix-fixe family-style dinner will benefit the single-parent families served by Warren Village. The dinner will be $40/person (Includes food and wine for adults over 21), with $5 from each meal to be donated to the organization. Our first Carmine’s Family Table dinner will be on Wednesday, February 1, 2017. We will cap reservations at 20 guests.
Free Private Dinner Event – We will invite local nonprofits to submit their ideas for a fundraising event hosted in our private dining room. The selected nonprofit will receive a dinner valued at $2,500 for up to 25 people. More information will be shared early next year.
5280 Nonprofit Event Giveaway – 5280 Magazine will invite readers to vote for their favorite Denver nonprofit to receive a free private dinner event at Carmine’s on Penn in 2018. Sign up for 5280’s Table Talk newsletter and keep an eye out for the announcement!
We will continue to keep you updated with news about these events and opportunities, so be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for the latest information.
It’s that time of year again! Lists are being made, parties are being planned, reservations are being reserved (pssst..early holiday reservations at Carmine’s are now available), and moments are being captured that will soon become favorite memories. Now is the time to start enjoying all of the holiday festivities and Carmine’s wants to be a part of it! We are proud to introduce a new cocktail collection that will soon become another holiday favorite. Enjoy an expertly handcrafted cocktail with one of our appetizers, family-style pasta dishes, or as a start to the night’s festivities.
Give us a call at 303-777-6443 to make your holiday reservations today!