Olive & Finch is opening a second location as chef and owner Mary Nguyen has masterfully found the elusive balance between price, convenience and health. A convenient spot in Cherry Creek, the new location offers not only more space, but more food and catering offerings than their original uptown locale. They worked hard to keep prices low and quality high — all dishes are less than $15.

Casual elegance that’s affordable and quick isn’t as easy to cook up in today’s economy, but Nguyen’s background could be the secret ingredient. Years of experience in high finance have made her resourceful, detailed and profoundly pragmatic. Her husband hails from Europe and time there made her frustrated with how often Americans are forced to sacrifice time and money to get quality. Her response is the concept at the new Olive & Finch — a niche for affordable food that is loaded with health benefits and isn’t overbearing on your wallet.

The sangria ($3) and feta and kale ($3) are Mediterranean inspired favorites making the happy hour menu affordable and fun. For something hearty yet healthy try the polenta and eggs ($12.75). The eggs are 140 degree eggs — a difficult cooking method resulting in perfect texture and temperature for an egg on a winter day. House-made syrups give the Moscow mule ($6) an extra kick. Try the luca ($11.95) a sandwich that is drenched with distinct flavoring of salami and prosciutto combined with fresh-made bread to create an utterly irresistible sandwich. These plates along with just-made pastries, locally roasted coffees and house granola are just a few of the easy-to-grab options that intrigue palates without shattering the piggy bank.

If Olive & Finch has your heart wrapped, invite the team to cater your next event. The fact that they are chefs that cater as opposed to caterers that cook places them on the top shelf. Special requests and a multitude of cuisines are at your whim once you’ve selected Mary’s team for your next gathering.

The interior — like the menu — offers comfort and beauty. High ceilings meet wood grain and polished white tile to cap off the artisan’s approach to the entire experience. The patio is Cherry Creek’s largest, with 1,800 square feet of space cushioning your senses from the hustle of the street with shrubbery and a sit-friendly wall. The space rewards patrons morning, noon or night. This new locale is solidifying Mary’s position as a worthy conductor of Denver’s fast-moving food scene.

Olive & Finch is located at 3390 E. 1st Ave., Denver

All photography by Dallas Erwin

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