Last season, I had five prosperous kale plants in my garden. Many an early summer morning, I’d walk the dog the few blocks to our neighboring plot to harvest a handful of healthy leaves. Upon returning home, I’d sauté the greens with garlic, red pepper flakes, black pepper, and salt, and serve them slightly wilted with a runny egg or two. Or I’d save them for a quick lunch or dinner dish. While this abundance was by no means a bad thing, come August, my creativity was stretched a bit thin.

acorn, denver

Acorn. Photo by Roman Tafoya.

A recent lunch at Acorn revitalized my faith in the leafy green. While I can recall sampling the dish during previous visits, the simple kale and apple salad captured my attention that afternoon. Whether it was the clear-blue spring weather, or the excellent rosé pairing (when paired well, a high acidity rosé makes the salad shine), its intuitive combination of sweet (candied almonds), salt (parmesan), and spice (togarashi) was a perfect dish for the occasion.

Photo courtesy of Acorn.

Photo courtesy of Acorn.

While the dish is by no means revolutionary, crisp julienned apples and kale leaves rendered into a fine chiffonade reminded me exactly what Acorn has built its reputation on: execution and attention to detail. Go now, order the salad and a glass of rosé, and thank us later.

Suffice it to say that I’m looking forward to this season’s harvest.