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By Gwen Clayton

It’s a busy Friday night at the Pure Colorado Event Center on West Colfax with patrons bellying up to the bar for specialty cocktails based with a funky probiotic concoction called kombucha. It’s a fizzy, tart drink, but once mixed with some mint, cucumber muddle and rum, it ends up pairing quite well with the elegantly dressed cauliflower taco and grilled pineapple pico.

The menu was part of Nourish – an event organized by Soltribe Cuisine to promote organic, vegan, gluten-free dining in a fun, collaborative atmosphere. The inaugural feast was held Oct. 13 and a second one took place Nov. 2.

These events are known as pop-up dinners – temporary restaurants setup at private locations for special occasions.

The Nourish meals were the brainchild of Keshava Rossi, executive director of Soltribe Cuisine and son of the former owners of Govinda’s Garden Café, where he cut his teeth on the gastronomy of his parents’ Hare Krishna vegetarian lifestyle.

“My first goal was getting vegan food to people,” Rossi said. “Then, I wanted to link different circles of people who are influencers in the community, to get them networking together. Eating together breaks down barriers.”

The Nourish dinners are all six-course vegan dinners paired with alcohol and served at various locations throughout the Denver metro area. Events include live music from local bands and displays by local artists. One of the artists at the Nourish kickoff dinner was Chris Long of Gold Hill, who was proud to participate in the event.

“I eat a plant-based diet,” Long said. “The places where my art is seen is important to me. I want to connect with people on the same frequency that the art was made.”

The crowd seemed to enjoy the evening’s festivities as well as the menu.

“I think organic foods taste better,” said Libby Goines of Evergreen, one of the attendees of the October event. “Once you know the difference, there’s no going back.”

Goines chooses a mostly vegan diet to avoid animal cruelty and factory farming.

“Knowing what I know,” she said, “I don't want to eat that [factory-farmed foods].”

For more information on Soltribe Cuisine, visit www.soltribecuisine.com or Like their page on Facebook at @SoltribeCuisine.