“We serve healthier versions of foods you already love,” says Michael Friedberg, co-owner of Yellowbelly Chicken, opened Jan. 18 in the Stanley Marketplace.
Yellowbelly Chicken offers fried and rotisserie chicken that is GMO- and gluten-free, as well as salads and sides made with all-natural ingredients. “We’re passionate about getting people to eat better without drinking green smoothies three times a day,” Friedberg said. “Our food is food people crave, done better. The chicken is cooked in GMO-free rice bran oil. Our macaroni pie and smashed potato fries are favorites, as are our seasonal, locally sourced vegetables. Our roasted, marinated beets were a risk, but people love them. We serve a baby kale salad with grape-sweetened vinaigrette and coleslaw with raw Brussels sprouts.”
Yellowbelly started when three friends—Friedberg, Barry Davis and Eric Wuppermann—met in Vail and opened their first restaurant there in 2012. The restaurant expanded to Boulder in 2013. Yellowbelly’s head of operations is Joe Serafin, formerly the chief operations officer for Noodles & Company. “Joe is an expert in growth,” said Friedberg. “He took Noodles & Company from three stores to 110 stores. We hope to expand, since our mission is healthy food and we think every community should have that.”
Wuppermann is an internationally trained chef from Trinidad and Tobago; Barry Davis brings the influence of Southern-style cooking from his Kentucky roots.
Friedberg said the Stanley Marketplace is a great fit for the restaurant, occupying an 1,800-square-foot space on the south side, under the Stanley sign. “The Stanley has a bright, lively atmosphere that does our food justice. Over our first weekend we broke every record for our company. It was great to see so many families enjoying our shareable family meals.”
The restaurant celebrated its opening by donating 100 percent of sales to No Kid Hungry, an organization working to eliminate childhood hunger. “We raised $3,000, which is a lot considering every dollar buys 10 meals,” Friedberg said. “One in five kids in this country is food insecure; those of us in the culinary industry want to do our part to help.”
Friedberg is an elite athlete who was on the U.S. Ski Team and won a World Cup in 2001. He is an avid cyclist who races nearly every weekend and donates all of his prize money to No Kid Hungry. In May, he’ll ride the Chefs Cycle 300-mile endurance event to benefit No Kid Hungry. The third annual event, held in Santa Rosa, Calif., hopes to engage 250 chefs and raise $2 million.
Yellowbelly Chicken is open seven days a week from 11am to 9pm at 2501 Dallas St. For more information, see YellowbellyChicken.com or call 720.259.2393.