Local foodie Brett Shaheen got his start as a sous chef at Sambuca, then took at spot as chef de cuisine at local eatery Luca d'Italia before becoming executive chef at Osteria Marco. His business partner, Jane Duncan Knauf, followed a similar career trajectory, starting out as a server, then quickly blossoming into a general manager of Sambuca and director of food and beverage for The Magnolia, a downtown boutique hotel.
Their backgrounds help shape The Wooden Table into a classy Italian restaurant that combines attentive—not to mention friendly—service with a mouth-watering menu. And it's gotten them noticed, too—The Denver Post is just one outlet to herald their specialness as a suburban dining destination. What exactly do they offer? For starters, the Italian sausage is made in-house, and the hefty beef tenderloin entree is allowed to age for three weeks before chefs cook it. Elsewhere, team's beverage mixers invite diners to wash down entrees with wine or a specialty cocktail, such as the lavender lemon drop or the walnut Manhattan, made with walnut liqueur imported from the iconic waterfall in Times Square.
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After spending years working for Dominos Pizza, Vince Schmuhl decided that he could do a better job of preparing and delivering quality pies to people's homes. He challenged the nationwide chain's dominance in the region by founding the first Blackjack Pizza on June 29, 1983.
Although delivering oven-fresh pies within 30 minutes was still a major goal for Schmuhl, he emphasized the importance of quality ingredients using sauce made from freshly packed tomatoes as well as hand-tossed dough that never sees the inside of a freezer or cryogenic chamber. This dedication to quality and speedy service allowed Blackjack Pizza to not only survive, but also thrive over the decades. The chain now includes more than 40 stores operating in four different states.
In addition to offering seven signature pies, Blackjack Pizza also allows customers to build their own order from crust to toppings. A choice of up to four savory, tangy, and piquant sauces form the base, topped with any of the 3 available cheeses, 7 meats, and 10 freshly diced vegetables. Regardless of the toppings, Blackjack Pizza respects the potential danger of food allergies by ensuring that none of its pies ever contain traces of MSG, peanuts, or peanut oil.
Citysearchers give Romano's Italian Restaurant in Littleton a 4.5-star average, and Yelpers give the same location a four-star average. Four Yelpers give the Highlands Ranch location a 4.5-star average. Eighty-one percent of Urbanspooners like the Littleton location, and 70% of Urbanspooners like the Highlands Ranch location: