For 2014, a summer serving of Denver’s Restaurant Week

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DENVER — Denver’s popular Restaurant Week is expanding to offer a summer supplement in August.

The $52.80 price however is going away.

Organizers with VISIT DENVER, which created and organizes the DRW, announced the changes Tuesday.

Denver Restaurant Week will run, as it usually does, in February. This year it will be just seven days from the 22nd to the 28th.

In recent years the popularity of the program allowed organizers to expand DRW to two weeks, but VISIT DENVER President and CEO Richard Scharf said “14 continuous days of business is just too much of a strain, both for chefs and wait staffs.”

Instead, organizers moved the second week to August (23-29) so restaurants can showcase summer menus.

“A summer version of the event offers restaurants a lot of interesting serving and meal options,” said Scharf. “We anticipate that summer menus will be very different than the winter ones, and they will be able to showcase the farm-to-fork movement that is so popular in the state.”

This will be the 10th year for the DRW, which started with a collection of restaurants offering a special menu at a discounted price of $52.80 for two or $26.40 for one person.

This year, the 52.80 price has risen to $30 per person.

“We’ve held the same price for nine years, and while it’s hard to lose the fun of the $52.80 price point, it was necessary for the restaurants. The new price will allow chefs to get creative again and offer dishes and portions that better represent their normal fare,” Scharf said.

Restaurants whose average check was at or below the old price point, can get creative with beer and wine pairings and added specials.

In 2013, a record 355 participating restaurants served 436,650 meals.

“With our great weather, Denver has an unusually high number of outdoor patios and cafes, and we will be able to showcase that aspect of dining out in Denver with a summer version of DRW,” Scharf said. “The winter version will offer diners the same experience they’ve come to rely on during a time frame that is traditionally slow for restaurants, post-holiday and post-Valentine’s Day.”

Registration for the February week will begin in November.

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