When you think of The Kitchen you often think about the wonderful local ingredients they use in their bevy of breakfast, lunch and dinner plates.  We dug a little deeper and decided to focus on the beautiful local ingredients used in the delicious cocktails and drinks offered at the bar.  We sat down with head bartender Matt Tobeck and asked him a few questions about The Kitchen and their bar.

The Kitchen has multiple locations from Boulder to Denver to Chicago. They opened in June of 2014 here in Fort Collins and have quickly placed themselves comfortably in the local food scene.  The Kitchen is all about supporting the local community and using local ingredients, and natural flavors of the season.

Matt got his start bartending in Portland, Oregon.  It’s really the age old story of how I imagine most bartenders get their start, someone called in sick so Matt stepped behind the bar with really no bartending experience and quickly realized making a margarita isn’t as simple as you may think.  He quickly got his feet under him and turned this fateful day into a bustling career he could really sink his cocktail pick into to.

Coming in the spring to The Kitchen, and a must make refreshing cocktail (fruity and floral) for patio weather is the Springtheme.  He was kind enough to share his recipe with us:

1 oz Narrow Road Elevation 5003 vodka

1 oz Dollin Blanc

1 oz red grapefruit juice

½ a lime

4 or so mint leaves

Bar spoon of simple syrup

Muddle the mint with the sugar.  Add ingredients.  Shake with some ice.  Double strain so it’s almost the color of Rose Quartz into a rocks glass with block ice if possible.  Garnish with a mint leaf, slap it to get the oils activated.

Q.  What’s your favorite restaurant in town?

A. I really enjoy Music City Hot Chicken and The Tramp About food truck.

Q. If you were to go out for drinks (besides The Kitchen) where would you go?

A. I love Social.  Pour Brothers beer list rocks.  Locality has some good stuff and I also enjoy Equinox.

Q. What is your favorite meal and pairing at The Kitchen?

A. Our salmon dish.  You really get the flavors of the pernod, fennel and orange which are unique and Earthly.   This dish pairs well with Funkwerks Saison.

“I am really lucky to live in such a great food area, we have so much at our fingertips to create and experiment with.   Being a bartender in this town is fun and interesting.”

Must try:  We learned about the weekly small batch cello, which is a must try! The cocktail, NoCo Mule includes this cello and ginger beer.  We had the fennel cello and it was perfect with the ginger beer.