Blooming Beets – New Gluten-Free, Paleo Restaurant Comes to BoulderBy Evan Sandsmark -
Eating gluten-free in Boulder has never been easier, but this isn’t to say it is, objectively speaking, easy. It is certainly more convenient to not seek out menu items that are gluten-free, or to ask your server if adjustments can be made to a dish to render it GF. When Blooming Beets opens in Boulder this spring, you won’t have to ask if a dish is gluten-free or ask for modifications, as everything on the menu, being rooted in and inspired by the paleo diet, will be entirely free of gluten (and, for that matter, free of any grain, processed sugar, processed vegetable and seed oils, and virtually all dairy products.) What kind of gluten-free food will be available at Blooming Beets, “the healthiest restaurant in the country,” as it bills itself to investors, and what drove Iva Paleckova, the founder and chef of the new eatery, to start a gluten-free, dairy-free, and processed-food-free paleo restaurant?
Like many gluten-free enterprises we write about (e.g., Shine Restaurant and Gathering Place), Blooming Beets decision to completely forsake gluten is at least partially personal. Paleckova says that eating gluten-free and in accordance with the broader dictates of the paleo diet changed her life, and she is convinced the health benefits of her diet can extend to the future patrons of her restaurant. And when we say “convinced,” we mean it: Paleckova quit her corporate job, and the steady paycheck that came along with it, to invest her life savings into Blooming Beets. In short, Paleckova did the equivalent of going all-in on red; actually, it’s more like she went all-in on 32 red specifically, as the success rate of new restaurants is significantly lower than 47.37 percent (the odds of hitting red on an American roulette table).
However, Paleckova is perhaps more poised for success than most restaurant founders, as she has already experienced some success in the culinary world. Right after quitting her steady job, she set up a dietary program emphasizing clean eating that she sent out over five weeks via email. Nearly 800 people have benefited from that program, so Paleckova already has a culinary reputation of sorts and the beginnings of deep pool of customers. When you combine this with the fact that Boulder, where residents often confuse their diets with the meaning of life, is essentially tailor-made for a restaurant exactly like Blooming Beets, Paleckova’s odds of success start to look more favorable.
In any case, we hope she’s successful, as the sample menu on the Blooming Beets website looks amazing. This menu will change frequently, as it will be largely sourced from local farmers, but the basic “eating clean” philosophy that supports the menu will remain the same. Most near and dear to our hearts is that the menu will always be entirely gluten-free, but this is only the beginning. As we said above, the menu is consistent with the paleo diet, which is a “few steps deeper” than the gluten-free diet, as Paleckova put it, and Blooming Beets’ emphasis on health is evident after even a brief glance at the menu. The soups and purees are loaded with vegetables and are cooked with either coconut or olive oil (not “conventional inflammatory seed oil,” as the menu inflammatorily puts it), and the meats and fish (a big part of the paleo diet) on the menu are either grass-fed or wild-caught and are raised sustainably. Even the one dessert presently listed on the sample menu – a lemon curd tart – is free of flour and dairy and no sugar is added to make it sweeter. So, everything on the menu promotes healthy eating, even the dessert. (As a side note, we mentioned above that the menu is “virtually” dairy-free, and a lot of it is. The one exception to the prohibition of dairy is clarified butter, which is sometimes called “ghee.” This is the only dairy product that will be used on occasion in the restaurant.)
As for the precise opening of the restaurant, no exact date has been set, and this is largely thanks to the City of Boulder, which must issue a building permit to Paleckova, and at present this permit will be delayed by at least three weeks. Anticipating an exact launch date under these circumstances isn’t exactly easy. Just the same, Paleckova has set April 28th as the date of Blooming Beet’s tentative soft launch, and then a grand opening will follow shortly thereafter. We will inevitably check out the restaurant soon after it opens, and we encourage our readers to do the same. An entirely gluten-free restaurant is a welcome addition to the Boulder culinary scene, and we always try to support those who support us by shaping a menu with dietary restrictions in mind.
And finally, if you happen to have a restaurant background and are in need of a job, we should note that Blooming Beets is hiring for all positions. You can send your resume to iva [at] bloomingbeets [dot] com, or if you happen across this page after the restaurant’s opening, you can stop by in person at Blooming Beet’s location:
3303 30th Street
Boulder, CO 80301
(Exactly where Boom Frozen Yogurt Bar used to be.)
As always, if you would like us to review a particular restaurant with gluten-free options, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll try our best to check it out!Read Next Article » Crumb Bakery of Boulder and Their Gluten-Free Specialty Desserts
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