1555 Blake St
Denver, CO 80202
June 15, 2011
$150 per person inclusive
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$140 per person inclusive
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HOST VENUE - ChoLon Bistro
ChoLon, which translates to "big market”, is named after the largest Chinese-influenced market in Saigon, Vietnam. In addition to lunch and dinner service, ChoLon will offer a small bites menu that will be available throughout the day. Symensma’s menu features inspired interpretations of traditional Asian dishes with presentations ideal for sharing. The bar and lounge will serve handcrafted, artisanal cocktails developed to enhance Symensma’s creations. The venue is also ideal for business meetings and presentations and features a large projection screen in the lounge area. “Many of my dishes are twists on classical Asian cuisine,” says Symensma. “I look forward to sharing my own personal perspective on the dynamic and vibrant flavors of Asia in order to create an experience that is both exciting and familiar.” ChoLon Bistro is located in Denver’s Historic LoDo District at 1555 Blake Street, on the corner of Blake and the 16th Street Mall. Learn more about Symensma’s travels and inspiration by visiting the restaurant.
GUEST CELEBRITY CHEF - Angelo Sosa
RESTAURANT - Sosa Consulting, New York City
“As a chef, my cuisine is an extension of who I am –I deeply respect the wisdom of tradition and I am inspired by adventure and new experiences.”
Angelo Sosa was the youngest of his siblings, born in Connecticut to a Dominican father and an Italian mother who believed meals were serious affairs. He graduated with High Honors from the Culinary Institute of America in 1997, after running the kitchen at the Escoffier Room, one of the institute’s highly acclaimed restaurants.
His next job paired him with Christian Bertrand, formerly of Lutèce, at the Four-Diamond, Stonehenge Restaurant & Inn. He then served as Bertrand’s Sous Chef when he opened Acqua in 1998. In 1999, Sosa was referred by Bertrand to work with his future mentor, Jean-Georges Vongerichten.
After two and a half years with Vongerichten, he left to take an Executive Sous Chef position at TanDa. A year later, Sosa returned to Vongerichten to work at the Ocean Club at Dune restaurant in the Bahamas. Next, he traveled back to New York to serve as Executive Sous Chef at Restaurant Jean Georges for another two years. He was then sent to open Jean-Georges’s highly notable and trend-setting Spice Market as Executive Sous Chef.
In spring 2005 Angelo became the Executive Chef at Yumcha in the West Village, where his interpretation of modern Chinese cuisine gained widespread acclaim.
In late fall of 2005, Angelo turned his attention to consulting, having amassed the experience of opening many restaurants in his career. His consulting work includes: restaurant Stephen Starr’s Buddakan, Asian-Mediterranean hot-spot LOFT, Morimoto, Alain Ducasse’s Spoon Food & Wine in Paris among others.
In the summer of 2009, Angelo launched his fast-casual restaurant, Xie Xie (shay-shay) in the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood of New York City, which won him StarChef’s New York’s Rising Star award for “Best New Restaurant Concept.”
In 2010, Angelo was cast as a Season 7 "Cheftestant" on Bravo's hit reality show, Top Chef. He was then invited to compete on "Top Chef All Stars" which is currently airing.
Angelo's most recent project is Social Eatz
where he's signed on Executive Chef and Owner, designing a menu that reinterprets NYC staples with flavors from across Asia.
HOST CELEBRITY CHEF - Lon Symensma
RESTAURANT - ChoLon, Denver
ChoLon is an extension of our home and values, offering old and new friends a place to gather while they enjoy an incredible dining experience. Lon Symensma and Alicia Pokoik Deters met in 2000 while they were both doing fellowships at The Culinary Institute of America in Escoffier, the Classical French restaurant at The Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York.
The next year, along with two other friends from the CIA, they shared an apartment in New York City and began professionally working in New York’s world class restaurant scene. In 2002, Alicia departed the Big Apple for the mountains of Colorado to complete her MBA and MS in Real Estate and Construction Management at DU while Lon decided to continue his culinary training and left NYC to travel throughout Europe and Asia. Lon spent a year working at two Michelin two-star restaurants in the south of France and apprenticing at the acclaimed Arzak restaurant in San Sebastian, Spain.
The following year Lon continued his travels throughout Southeast Asia and China under the guidance of mentors and renowned chefs Jean-Georges Vongerichten and Gray Kunz and was a part of the opening team at Jean Georges Shanghai. When Lon returned to New York City, he joined Jean-Georges at his iconic Southeast Asian inspired restaurant, Spice Market. Alicia completed her studies in Denver and married Jim Deters in 2004.
They decided that Denver was the perfect place to settle down and start a family, and have since had two children. All the while, Alicia and Lon kept in close contact and talked of one day opening a restaurant of their own. Fast-forward to 2010, with numerous culinary accolades and four years at Buddakan, which earned a coveted New York Times two star review and was named the fifth highest grossing restaurant in the United States, Lon and his fiancée, Noelle moved to Denver to join Alicia and Jim to make their dream a reality.
And if the celebration of a restaurant is not exciting enough, Alicia and Jim are expecting their third child just in time for the opening of ChoLon this October. Alicia, Jim, Lon and the ChoLon team are thrilled to join Denver’s thriving culinary scene. With access to local, sustainable agriculture and a community with an appetite for healthy living and inspired cuisine, the Mile High City is an ideal place to showcase Lon's talents in the kitchen.