It’s 7 a.m. and executive chef Cristino Griego and a duo of line cooks have already been in the SupperBell commissary kitchen for an hour prepping various meals that will be cooked, blast chilled, then delivered later in the evening. Griego portions out fresh salmon while another cook is working on four large pans of lasagna. On the other side of the spice rack, vegetables are being diced and chopped for another dish. This is just the beginning of a day in the life at SupperBell.
SupperBell got its start in Denver more than a year ago, but the wheels really started turning on the chef-driven dinner delivery service when chef and restaurateur Frank Bonanno came on board as culinary director. “I want it to be representative of my other restaurants and put out restaurant quality food,” said Bonanno. With SupperBell, Bonanno is able to share food that otherwise not make it on the menu at his numerous restaurants.
Unlike similar dinner deliveries such as Blue Apron or Green Chef, customers don’t do any of the cooking—the culinary team does it for you. All you have to do is follow the reheating instructions and enjoy. SupperBell isn’t subscription based, so you can order any weeknight you choose. You can also order single portions, family meals and desserts, with individual salads and soups priced as low as $6.95, entrees around $13 and family meals starting at $30.
At this point, you’re probably thinking this sounds like glorified TV dinners or that you might as well just get takeout from somewhere. You’re right and wrong in those presumptions. While takeout has its time and place, Bonanno says your food loses something with takeout. “By the time it gets to your house, it’s lukewarm and not how the restaurant probably meant for you to have it.” And simply microwaving food just isn’t the way to go, either. The food you get at a restaurant isn’t prepared that quickly, so it’s best not to reheat it. “Slow heat is better for your food,” said Bonanno.
So who uses SupperBell? And why? Since not everyone is able to throw together blackened catfish with dirty rice or crab and shrimp enchiladas (a few recent menu items), it’s for you. The busy family that wants restaurant-quality food at home. The couple who wants an effortless date night in. The bachelor who wants to impress with a “home-cooked” dinner. I tried SupperBell and was pleasantly surprised by the quality. A simple salad with steak, ripe tomatoes, blue cheese and a house-made champagne vinaigrette met me at the door and was ready to eat a short time later.
SupperBell is now sending out meals each day to Denver, Aurora, Englewood, Greenwood Village, Denver Tech Center, Southglenn, East Lowry, East Littleton, Sheridan and Bel Mar. You can order online or through their app Monday through Friday.
All photography by Justin De La Rosa.