Panzano's Wiggins to open Stapleton restaurant

Award-winning Denver chef Elise Wiggins is opening Cattivella, wood-fired Italian this fall as part of Eastbridge Town Center in the Stapleton neighborhood where she lives.

Cattivella, which translates to "naughty girl," will be located on the southwest corner of Martin Luther King Boulevard and Galena Street. It joins chef-driven restaurants from Troy Guard, Lon Symensma and the Kitchen Next Door in the Eastbridge project, which abuts the long-awaited King Soopers currently under construction.

"I can't believe I'm opening my own restaurant in my own neighborhood, just a few blocks from my own house," Wiggins said. "This project is a dream-come-true for this naughty chef."

Designed by Sarah Brown of Semple Brown Design, an exhibition kitchen will be the star of the show and focus all attention to a wood- burning pizza oven, a wood-burning grill and the dance of the Cattivella cooks. Guests also can sit overlooking the pastificio (pasta table) section of the chefs' counter, while others might sit with a view of the Butchers' Corner where the butchers work on beef, pork, lamb and other whole animals. The surrounding chefs' counter will seat 26, along with 74 additional interior seats and 100 seats on a wrap-around patio with mountain views. The open kitchen will provide an ideal setting for the cooking classes Wiggins will continue to offer.

Cattivella is expected to open by late fall or early winter 2016.

Wiggins brings decades of restaurant experience to her new venture, including a 12-year stint as executive chef of Panzano, named Best Italian Restaurant by Westword and winner of multiple awards for food and service from The Denver Post, 5280 magazine, The American Culinary Federation and The American Automobile Association.

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Margaret is a veteran Denver real estate reporter and can be contacted here.
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