Culinary Creative has developed several critically acclaimed restaurants in Denver, CO, Aspen, CO, and New Orleans, LA under their own umbrella or through strategic partnerships. Our restaurants are known for their signature hospitality and commitment to exceptional service, using local, seasonal ingredients, and innovative designs. In addition to continuing to create our own restaurant concepts, we offer our expertise in conceptual design, menu development, and financial and operational management to restaurants across the country.
As an owner of several award-winning restaurants, Juan brings years of entrepreneurial, restaurant and business development experience to the Culinary Creative group. His breadth of expertise includes real-estate development restaurant management, relationship building, recruiting, resource management and negotiation. In 2010, Juan opened Highland Tap & Burger in Denver’s LoHi neighborhood and has gone on to open two additional Tap & Burger concepts with several more in the planning stages. Juan has strong ties in the local business and non-profit communities, including Water Is Life, Access Opportunity, and public education. Juan has a BA in history from the University of Massachusetts and a passion for creating jobs, investing in people, developing his staff and building businesses that truly impact communities.
A native of Arlington, VA, Katie graduated from the University of Vermont in 1998 with a BS in Business Administration and started her career as a research associate covering media, entertainment and hospitality stocks at an institutional investment firm in Boston, MA. After seven years in the financial industry, Katie changed course to pursue her love of mathematics and education. She taught high school mathematics for four years in Worcester, MA while earning an MLA in Mathematics for Secondary Education at Harvard University. In 2010, Katie and her partner and collaborator, Juan Padró relocated to Denver to follow their shared passion for food, drink, and great meals with friends by diving head first into the restaurant industry. With the opening of Tap & Burger, a new journey was begun and seven restaurants later, she continues to bring her passion and expertise to each new project.
Max has manned and directed kitchens in Colorado for the past 15 years. His years of studying technique and tradition in Italy combined with his in-depth knowledge of classical French cuisine have fueled his passion for creating truly memorable dining experiences. Max has created a loyal following through his past projects in Summit County and Denver, and has consistently earned accolades from the press, industry professionals and, most importantly, his peers. He joined forces with O’Shea and Padró to open Bar Dough in 2015 and the trio has gone on to open Senor Bear, Morin, and Ash’Kara as well as consult on the launch of 7908 Aspen, Sofia, Maine Shack, and the upcoming Mr. Oso, opening in Fall 2019.
The Culinary Creative group stands firm in the belief that our hospitality continues outside the walls of our restaurants to the communities in which we are lucky enough to live work and play. This commitment extends to our state, our country, and the world at large. The work these organizations do amazes and humbles us, so we do much more than simply donate a percentage of sales to support them; we raise money, we roll up our sleeves, we get to work.
Our goal is to make up the financial gap allowing schools to offer athletic, music, and art after-school programs.
Access Opportunity invests in high-potential, low-income students from high school through college, so that they can have impactful careers and lead change in the lives of individuals and communities
Currently, 1.8 billion global citizens lack access to clean water and 2.5 billion lack access to sanitation – 1 in 5 of those people die and 90% of them are under the age of 5. Water Is Life is committed to ending the world-wide water crisis.
Humanity & Hope is a non-profit working to assist underserved villages in remote parts of Honduras by partnering with the people of each village to achieve sustainable change.
The Third Wave is a movement of volunteerism that encourages and inspires people to give a little back to the world. To volunteer even for just an hour, whether it is helping inner city kids or the elderly lady living next door.