The revamped Rotary Festival in the Park this weekend will bring new world-inspired food options from Polish pierogies to Asian-Latin-fused tacos and burritos to Summit County. The festival’s new format — it originally had a barbecue focus — has opened the door for some food-truckers to make the trek to the mountains and share their tasty wares.
Here are a few of the finger foods to try as you wander the fest.
The Pierogies Factory
Signature item: Colorado-style pierogies: traditional potato and cheese dumplings with green chili sauce
A few companies in Glenwood Springs currently sell Pierogies Factory products, but owner Cezary Grosfeld will be making his first personal trip to the mountains to sell his Polish dumplings at the festival. He said he often has to explain his products to customers at his home base in Denver, but a larger European population in the mountains might mean a good market for him.
“Eighty-five percent of my customers are American people from here, but they have had pierogies, in Chicago or on the east side in Pennsylvania or New Jersey,” he said. “I think I’ll have a decent crowd for my product.”
Grosfeld’s truck serves traditional Polish foods, including pierogies, golabki cabbage rolls, authentic Polish sausage, called kielbasa, and beef, onion and pepper goulash. Everything is homemade from Grosfeld’s family recipes, which he brought with him from Poland nine years ago, but the standout item is the pierogies.
“I’m going to serve three flavors: potato-cheese, the most traditional, made with farmers cheese, 100 percent authentic,” he said. “Also pork and the third flavor will be chef’s selection. For this event, I’m going to do feta and spinach and the customers can choose from those three flavors or they can mix them up.”
The pierogies are served in four ways, classic with caramelized onions and mushrooms, or topped with a choice of tomato sauce, mushroom-cheese sauce or Colorado style, with green chilies.
“People in Colorado love green chili,” Grosfeld said. “After the classic, most people buy the one with green chili on top.”
Bite Me Dawgs
Signature item: Whole Hog sandwich: jalapeno-cheddar bratwurst with pulled pork, pineapple habanero and bacon
The Bite Me food truck will be offering up a variety of sausages at the Festival in the Park, including wild boar topped with raspberry-chipotle sauce, jalapeno-cheddar with habanero-bacon sauce and Polish and beer brats, but the crowning achievement of this Denver eatery is a sandwich.
“I do a sandwich called the Whole Hog,” owner Susan Knappe said. “It’s a cheddar brat with pulled pork, pineapple habanero and bacon. And then I also do a Polish Rueben, with Swiss cheese, thousand island and sauerkraut.”
Knappe said she’s taken her truck over the pass to Alamosa and her trailer tows really well, so she’s not concerned about getting her provisions up here, despite other truck owners’ concerns and offers to trailer food trucks to the festival site. This will be Bite Me’s first time in Dillon, and Knappe said she’s excited for the exposure and the chance to share her all-natural, additive-free sausages and drum up some new repeat customers.
“We really enjoy being extremely busy and all the people,” she said. “It’s nice to be invited up. … I think it’ll be a lot fun — a lot of good music, a lot of good food.”
Signature item: Viking: apple-cinnamon skiveer
Katie Carney, with Skiveers in Frisco, said her company came up with a way to Americanize a Danish dish, taking traditional apple and cinnamon skiveers, or little pancake-like pastries, and stuffing them with sweet and savory fillings.
“Right now, I’m making some traditional applies and cinnamon, fresh strawberries and bananas and chocolate,” she said as she turned the dough. “We top it off with homemade butters; three delicious butters — cinnamon, honey and Nutella — are an extra treat to add to it.”
The truck also serves up spherical omelets, substituting eggs for the dough, with fillings from bacon and Gouda to smoked salmon and cream cheese.
Each batch of the skiveers is made to order, using the freshest fruits that are in season.
“We have blackberries and cherries right now,” Carney said. “And we have a gluten-free option to make it as healthy a treat as possible.”
The truck can usually be found on Main Street in Frisco, but Carney said she’s looking forward to sharing a new food concept with people in Summit County and encouraging them to “get out and about and put on a couple of pounds,” she said with a laugh.
“I think it’s an opportunity for people in the county who get wrapped up in their daily lives who don’t get to get out and travel and experience different foods,” she said. “People come by and say, ‘This is really cool,’ and we’re right here in the middle of town, have been here for two years. People get caught up and don’t realize what’s out there.”
Cream City Market
Signature item: Fresh cheese curds
Mark Albrecht, owner of Cream City Market, may not have a truck, but his tent will be a popular spot for anyone with a hankering for a Wisconsin delicacy this weekend: cheese curds.
“They are made in Wisconsin, and then we import them to Colorado and we sell at special events like this and farmers markets,” Albrecht said. “It’s direct to the consumer. The main thing about them is that they are super fresh. This kind of cheese is best when it’s brand new. And Wisconsin makes them amazing.”
Albrecht and his family moved to Colorado from a suburb of Milwaukee in January and brought their curds with them, first to Denver and then to the Dillon Farmers Market. A lot of people from the Midwest see the Cream City Market tent at the farmers market and are in complete disbelief, Albrecht said.
“Their first question for us is, ‘Do they squeak?’” he said, referring to the sound a fresh curd makes when you bite into it. “It’s turning out to be a fabulous place for us to be because there’s so many vacationers from the Midwest. They come up to the mountains, and they love that we’re there; you can’t find fresh curds in the mountains.”
The farmers market usually sees cheese curds in 1-pound packages, but Cream City Market will be bringing 5-ounce re-sealable packages to the Festival in the Park so they can be devoured right away. Albrecht said he was thrilled to bring his family and his delicious cheese curds to the Centennial State.
“We’re changing Colorado, one curd at a time,” Albrecht said.
Chuey Fu’s Latin-Asian Grub
Signature item: Korean pulled-pork sandwich with chipotle barbecue sauce
Chuey Fu’s Latin-Asian Grub spawned from owner Joe Knoblich’s love for both styles of food, with a menu that pairs chorizo with peanut sauce and cabbage or miso grilled tofu with chipotle aioli.
“It’s pretty unique, a little bit different,” he said. “Hopefully a lot of people come out and check it out. We’re going to be doing something special, a Korean pulled pork with chipotle barbecue sauce, and then we’re doing the pork tacos, Korean beef tacos and burritos.”
Knoblich said he tries to keep his food as healthy as possible, using minimal oil in his aiolis and only a touch of buttermilk in his wasabi, and he doesn’t do anything fried. He’s rented a condo in Summit County for his crew’s first adventure into the mountains and said he hopes they don’t run into any transportation issues.
“I’ve never taken the truck up there, so this is going to be as much of an adventure for us as it will be for people up there (trying our food),” he said. “That’s why I bought a diesel truck, to make these adventures up to the mountains.”