Olde Town Arvada Has a New Fine Dining Spot That Features a Unique Handmade Touch

Stone Cellar Bistro

After Jordan Alley and Brandon Kerr found companionship behind the line at Z Cuisine, the two reconnected years later to build a restaurant from the ground up with nothing but their four hands. This quaint but elegant spot in Olde Town Arvada is now coined Stone Cellar Bistro and has become the homestead for fresh foods and relaxing ambiance.

Alley spent his childhood adventures in Arvada and always felt passionate about becoming a chef. After attending culinary school at Colorado Mountain College in Keystone, he moved to Vegas and worked at Bouchon at the Venetian for about a year. Colorado beckoned him back — as it does for most of us — and this is when Alley and Kerr’s destinies came to fruition.

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Kerr fell into the culinary industry at a young age when he started scrubbing dishes at 15. He went to culinary school in Florida and worked in a couple of restaurants down south before moving to Colorado. He then decided to relocate to Charleston, South Carolina after working with Alley at Z Cuisine. He spent his days cooking there until he got an unforeseen call. “I was looking for a restaurant space and called Brandon and I said, will you move back here if I buy a restaurant? And he said yes. And then he moved back here,” Alley remembered.

Although Olde Town Arvada continues to grow, Alley found an open lot by simply stumbling upon it — although it was not in the best shape at first. “My aunt and uncle were down here in Olde Town. There was a sign in the window that just said for lease, and they told me to go to the space. I said I don’t know — I know what this place looks like and it does not look good,” Alley continued. “It was super enclosed, there was another wall by the doorway and there was carpet everywhere. We spent the whole month in November pretty much just tearing this place out. I mean at one point in time I fell through the floor in the kitchen.”

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The dedication that these two brought to the space is rare but worth it. The fix-up took relatively six months of labor and elbow grease from purchase in November to its opening in June. Alley and Kerr were far from interior designers but took it upon themselves to create the bar top, shelving, each table and more with their united creativity and devotion. “There’s this whole concept around the things that we do. About things having their place and having a purpose. So it’s not necessarily that its minimalistic or anything like that, but it’s just that if it’s there, it needs to have a reason,” Kerr explained.

The space is transformative, but of course — so is the food. The two are focused on using the ingredients that are readily offered to them, concentrated on the freshness and locality of these foods. “It is also good for more independent businesses and small farms because they’re kind of coming out of their shell a little bit. A lot of people devote majority of their produce to CSA just to guarantee it’s sold, but whatever’s leftover is what we take. We literally buy everything from super local farmers,” Kerr said. “I constantly get texted ‘I have 20 pounds of kale, can you take 20 pounds of kale?’ I say not really but I guess I will. So now we have four things on the menu with kale,” he continued. Their menu constantly rotates based on what’s in season and what is available. With no constant staples, new choices are assembled almost daily and emit flavors that are found close to us — comfortable and nostalgic.

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August’s menu features summer flavors — fresh fruits, breads and authentic meats. It’s Cast Iron Seared Hangar Steak, complete with heirloom carrots, fennel and black garlic is one of the many dishes that exudes the savory tastes of our Colorado ranges. If you have more of a sweet tooth, choose their Palisade Peaches option embellished with Broadbent country ham, Bee Squared grilled honey and basil. We have yet to discover what the pair have in mind for September, but Stone Cellar Bistro’s menu can now act as Arvada’s guide to what foods are in season and most importantly — which ones are found in our front range.

Stone Cellar Bistro is located at 7605 Grandview Ave, Arvada. It is open Tuesday – Saturday 4-10 pm and closed on Sundays and Mondays. 

All photography by Roxanna Carrasco.

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