Hone your Italian cooking skills with Executive Chef Elise Wiggins of Denver’s Best Italian restaurant (Westword 2011)

Those who know Denver restaurants know Panzano. Having received a score of accolades, including Best Italian restaurant by Westword in 2011, named Top 5 Denver Restaurant by the Rocky Mountain News, one of America’s Top Restaurants by Zagat Survey, given 4 Stars by 5280 Magazine and “To die for” in the Gabby Gourmet Restaurant Guide, Panzano has become one of the most well-known restaurants in all of Denver. We are pleased to announce that the chef behind that success, Chef Elise Wiggins, will be teaching our November cooking class on Wednesday, November 14th from 6-8pm at Café Options.

Chef Elise, who was awarded the enviable title of 2005 Colorado Chef of the Year and has been distinguished as a 2012 Outstanding Professional award recipient by the Colorado Restaurant Association, is known for her mastery of Northern Italian dishes like calamari, lasagna, and my personal favorite, gnocchi. But what makes her dishes so spectacular is the way she pairs them. Chef Elise says that she constantly thinks about how flavor profiles work and always tries to emphasize those using complements. Just take her gnocchi for example: instead of smothering it with marinara sauce, as some other Italian restaurants may do, Chef Elise serves sautéed gnocchi with rabbit confit, leeks, shallots, mushrooms, roasted tomatoes and gorgonzola cheese. Now that is a dish I would love to master!

If you are interested in learning about flavor profiles and complements, join Chef Elise and Work Options for Women on a culinary excursion to Northern Italy without ever leaving Denver. Purchase your tickets here!


2 thoughts on “Hone your Italian cooking skills with Executive Chef Elise Wiggins of Denver’s Best Italian restaurant (Westword 2011)

  1. Italian cuisine has developed over the centuries. Although the country known as Italy did not unite until the 19th century, the cuisine can claim traceable roots as far back as the 4th century BCE. Through the centuries, neighbouring regions, conquerors, high-profile chefs, political upheaval and the discovery of the New World have influenced its development.

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