Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Starkus

Chris Starkus

Executive Chef - Urban Farmer Denver, Sage Restaurant Group

Chris Starkus grew up in Santa Clarita, California, enjoying from-scratch family meals made with local produce (and love) by his Italian grandmother and great-grandmother. He jumped into the kitchen at 15 and worked his way up from dishwasher to expeditor.

As Executive Chef of Urban Farmer in Denver, Chef Starkus curates a locally focused, sustainably sourced steakhouse menu influenced by the bounty of Colorado. Chef Starkus highlights his seasonally-driven menu with nose-to-tail cuts of naturally-raised meat, executed with finely honed French techniques.

Overseeing the whole animal butchery in-house, charcuterie program, and more, he also enjoys tending to the restaurant's rooftop apiary and patio garden. Chef Starkus unites ingredients grown on-site with those harvested from closely regarded purveyors to offer preparations with bold, straightforward flavors.

Chef Starkus has achieved numerous local awards, including Best New Restaurant 2018 (303 Magazine) and Best Eco-Friendly Restaurants in America (opentable.com, April 2019). Colorado Biz Magazine named him one of 2019's Most Influential Young Professionals (Top 25 Under 40).

For Chef Starkus, sustainability is success and has developed programs for comprehensive recycling and composting and is tracking to be at zero waste. He started the rooftop apiary at the Oxford Hotel and with his wife of 15 years runs Lost Creek Micro farm in Lakewood, Colorado. He also has contributed essays and appearances on sustainable culinary lifestyle to 303 Magazine, Diningout.com, themoderneater.com, 5280 Magazine, Heritage Radio and Slow Food Nations.

Chef Starkus truly lives the modern sustainable lifestyle through his work bringing his whole community to the culture of transparency, eco-conscious eating and urban farming. Like his culinary style, the chef's approach to management favors authenticity and transparency.

Please visit http://www.sagerestaurantgroup.com for more information.

Mr. Starkus can be contacted at +1 303-262-6076 or chris.starkus@sagerestaurantgroup.com

Coming up in May 2020...

Eco-Friendly Practices: Creative Innovation

Being eco-friendly is no longer a fad. It is an urgent planetary need and hotels are actively doing their part to reduce their carbon footprint by implementing sustainable, green practices. In addition to the goodwill derived from doing the right thing, hotels are also realizing the benefits to their business. A large percentage of Millennials expect hotels to be eco-friendly and will only patronize those properties that are proudly conforming. Consequently, more hotels are realizing that sustainability is a key element in a successful branding strategy. In addition, going green can lead to a more profitable bottom line, as savings on electricity, water and cleaning materials can add up. Also, there are other advantages that come with being an eco-friendly business, such as government subsidies and tax and loan incentives. As a result, many hotels are finding innovative ways to integrate eco-friendly practices into their business. Geo-thermal energy systems, along with energy-from-waste systems, are being used to heat and cool the property. Passive solar panels, green roofs, natural lighting and natural ventilation strategies also assist in energy conservation. Low-flow water systems and plumbing fixtures make a contribution, as does eco-friendly hardwood flooring, and energy efficient televisions and appliances throughout the property. In addition, some hotels have implemented in-room recycling programs, and only provide all-natural, personal care items. One hotel has actually constructed a bee-keeping operation on their grounds. Not only is this good for the bees but the hotel also produces products from the operation which they sell. This kind of creative innovation also holds enormous appeal to guests. The May issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to integrate sustainable practices into their operations and how they are benefiting from them.