Saturday, March 22, 2008

Dinner at Sunflower in Boulder

Before last night's show we stopped for dinner at Sunflower.
I'd never been, but Jenny suggested it, and I also saw it got a good review from Claire at Culinary Colorado. We didn't have a reservation, but didn't have to wait more than five minutes to be seated.

Lovely crusty rolls covered with poppy and sesame seeds arrived promptly, along with a butternut squash puree to spread on them. Tasty, though I think butter would've been better.

We started with a cheese plate: manchego, Spanish bleu, goat cheese and a dauphine (I think). At the time I thought "I should write these down." But oh well.
It was all quite good, along with a red-onion jam, dried cranberries, apple slices, strawberries and walnuts. A few crostini, but we were also brought more soft rolls, which I preferred.

The same plate, after 20 minutes, was as empty as it could be.

For our entrees, Jenny chose the Sunflower Salad (field greens with carrots, cucumbers, sunflower sprouts, grape tomatoes) with chicken.
I was tempted by many things on the menu (the salad Nicoise, the venison tenderloin, the bamboo steamer of vegetables, noodles and chicken with coconut-peanut sauce), but the recitation of the specials distracted me. I opted for a bowl of Rhode Island seafood chowder (with bacon!) that was hearty and hot, and nicely spiced. On the peppery side, but not more than I could handle. Very filling.

To balance it, I had to have the salad of sliced pink lady apples with watercress, red currants and ginger dressing. I got the dressing on the side and I'm glad I did. The flavors of the fresh fruits and watercress were so bright and clean. A little dab of dressing was good, but I didn't use it with every bite.

Wow, that was a really good dinner. I had a glass of Spanish brut cava with it (I like bubbles), and Jenny chose a Carneros pinot noir (Mont Saint John).

We still felt full hours later. And I was glad there was water readily available at the concert, as that chowder and cheese left me with a powerful thirst. Small price to pay, though.

Speaking of prices, Sunflower is not cheap, but you get good value and service for what you pay. It's a good place for special dinners when you're willing to spend a bit more and take your time.

Sunflower Organic Dining
1701 Pearl St
Boulder, CO 80302
(303) 440-0220


  1. Oh that's good to hear! I haven't been since they changed owners. I used to love their salad bar for lunch. Must go again soon!

  2. I hope it's a sign of things to come - organic restaurants..the only one I know of here is vegetarian.. that chowder looks so incredible! and the salads look fabulous too..making my mouth water! Happy Easter..don't overdose on all those eggs LOL :O)

  3. Gorgeous images. I haven't been there for anything but happy hour in a long time, but it's time!

    Manisha, I believe they do still offer the salad bar at lunch.

    Gina, a lot of restaurants are using more and more natural and organic ingredients, even if they don't promote themselves as "organic." Another in Boulder that does is Organic Orbit, on North Broadway.

    Claire @

  4. Thanks, Claire. I also consider SoBo, but it struck me as too pricey (I didn't know Sunflower would be equally spendy).

    Gina, are folks not as crazy there yet for organic, local and seasonal foods? Here it's very trendy, though I hope it's not just a passing thing. And Boulder is one of those places that has always been into organic, love-the-Earth-type lifestyles. You're less likely to find so many such restaurants elsewhere.