The mischievous chef

Jul 09, 2018 107

BY: Sarah Moyer

Elise Wiggins learned to butcher from a famous Italian master chef, just a few years ago in the Tuscany village of Panzano. She was already executive chef at Panzano’s in Denver, in the prime of a 12-year run when a less inquisitive soul may have been content to focus on preparing the meat as supplied. Not Wiggins, who says the weeks of training in 2012 “turned upside down” the way she views cuts of meat.

That only begins to explain why everyone wants to experience what Denver’s 2017 Chef of the Year brings to the table. That’s at her own Italian eatery, Cattivella, just opened last year as a reflection of her rising culinary force. It all began with her mother, Honor Wiggins, who proved many times that good food brings people joy. In that tradition, Chef Elise wants to make customers feel relaxed in her restaurant, as they might be welcomed into a happy home.

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