By Corey Dahl

Denver’s no Chicago or New York (thank goodness, amirite?), but its growing food scene is starting to rival anything you’d find in the Big Apple, the Windy City, or your average bustling metropolis. In fact, in 2015, Nerd Wallet ranked Denver the sixth best city for foodies, four spots ahead of NYC. In your face, foldable pizza slices.

Our foodie credentials are due in large part to the many creative chefs, mixologists, restauranteurs, and more who have chosen to set up shop in Denver. At this month’s Making the Mountain, we’ll highlight three of Denver’s talented foodies and sample some of their favorite eats and drinks. (Tickets are just $10; click here to get yours now.)

Ahead of the June 10 event, we asked the presenters to share a little bit about themselves. Meet Adrian Miller, Rob Corbari, and Shauna Lott:

Adrian Miller

adrianmillerAdrian is an attorney, certified barbecue judge and food writer living in Denver. He has practiced law and had an active career in politics, most notably serving as a special assistant to President Bill Clinton and senior policy analyst to Colorado Governor Bill Ritter. Adrian’s first book, Soul Food: The Surprising Story of an American Cuisine, One Plate at a Time won the 2014 James Beard Foundation Book Award for Outstanding Reference and Scholarship.

What’s a surprising piece of equipment that you use for your craft?

I used a voice recognition software program called DragonSpeak to help create my manuscript. It helped a lot when I had large blocks of quotes that I wanted to include. It also helped me create a manuscript where the reader would feel they were having a conversation with me.

Does your work affect your body in anyway? That is, could someone in your industry look at your hands and know you’re in the field? 

Affect my body? Look at all the weight I’ve gained. Believe or not, I actually lost weight while writing this book because I was mindful of what I was eating, worked on eating smaller portions and I exercised regularly. Now, people tell me that they can’t believe I don’t weigh more, or that I look thin. I take the compliment, but I tell them that they’re witnessing the miracle of over-sized clothing.

In one sentence, what do you love about your work? 

I love giving people an informative and entertaining look at an unfairly maligned cuisine and its creators.

Rob Corbari

robcorbariRob, a man who has worked at the darkest of dive bars and alongside the brightest of talent. A man who has respect for the chemistry of a “classic” cocktail. He tries to embrace the fun of hospitality and admires the craftsmen who showcase their passions for our “thirst.”  Rob currently resides behind the bar at The Populist and Bar Fausto.

What’s a surprising piece of equipment that you use for your craft?

I use a 660 mL Pyrex beaker. A good drink is just good chemistry.

Does your work affect your body in anyway? That is, could someone in your industry look at your hands and know you’re in the field?

I have lots of scars on my hand. I’ve been flayed by glass.

In one sentence, what do you love about your work? 

If someone tells you there’s a specific recipe to an Old-Fashioned, they’re an asshole.

Shauna Lott

shaunalottShauna Lott is the owner and founder of the Long I Pie Shop. A self-taught baker, she got into pie-making through social work. Her shop, on 24th and Curtis, has been featured in 5280‘s Top of the Town and Westword‘s Best of Denver. As a food truck, Long I Pie was one of Eater’s 5 Great Food Trucks to Try Now.

What’s a surprising piece of equipment that you use for your craft?

My hands. All the crust is made by hand.

Does your work affect your body in anyway? That is, could someone in your industry look at your hands and know you’re in the field? 

My wrist hurts a lot and my right arm goes numb.

In one sentence, what do you love about your work? 

I love giving a pie to someone and knowing that they’re going to share it with their friends and family around a dinner table.

Tickets for Making the Mountain are $10 and include food and drink samples from the presenters. Click here to sign up!