DU Alumni

Hotel and restaurant management grad opens meatball restaurant in the DU neighborhood

The latest fast-casual food concept to hit Denver comes courtesy of one of DU’s own: hotel and restaurant management graduate Alex Comisar (BSBA ’07). A former manager of downtown Denver hotspots such as TAG and Chloe, Comisar has enlisted partners—including former TAG sous chef Jensen Cummings—and will open Slotted Spoon Meatball Eatery Feb. 4 in a shopping center near South Colorado Boulevard and East Yale Avenue.

“I’m not sure if I’d want to go out and open another burger place; there’s a lot of competition. The burrito world has been done, breakfast places too—it just kind of caught our eyes that [meatballs were] either a really good idea or totally crazy,” Comisar says.

The inspiration for Slotted Spoon came from a visit Comisar made to New York three years ago. On a scouting trip for restaurant and bar concepts he could import to Colorado, Comisar came across the Meatball Shop, a Big Apple eatery known for its creative cuisine and choose-your-own adventure menu.

“I was looking for a singular food item concept that I could tweak, do something different with and bring to Denver,” Comisar says. “When I stumbled across the Meatball Shop, I was like, ‘Oh, this would be a really cool idea.’”

But the Meatball Shop wasn’t Comisar’s only inspiration. Taking a cue from homegrown chains like Chipotle and Noodles & Company, Slotted Spoon went the fast-casual route, offering an order-at-the-counter system for its six different varieties of meatballs—beef, chicken, pork, lamb and salmon, plus a black bean/quinoa concoction for the vegetarian crowd. Each can be ordered plain, in a sandwich, on pasta or on a salad, with a choice of hot or cold sauces like romesco, chili queso and garlic vinaigrette. And all are gluten free. The smaller menu, Comisar says, allows the restaurant to keep costs low and quality high.

“I didn’t want Slotted Spoon to be a restaurant with a huge menu,” he says. “There are some people who like that, but I think it gets too confusing. There’s a lot of cost control you have to start playing with, just because there’s so much product, and you can’t be as focused.

“That’s one of our goals; we want to be focused,” he continues. “I think a lot of places have a lot of options, but they do everything just OK. I’d rather take one thing and do it really, really well. That was our goal, to do one thing really well.”

The Slotted Spoon will be located at 2730 S. Colorado Blvd. Unit #19, near King Soopers. Visit www.slotted-spoon.com for more information.

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