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February 6, 2016

Pasta Jay and the Broncos


Jay Elowsky, founder and owner of Pasta Jay’s, sits in his Boulder restaurant. Pasta Jay’s has catered Denver Broncos meals since the 2012-13 season. The team has a 16-0 record fueled by such meals, including recent playoff wins against Pittsburgh and New England. (Cliff Grassmick / Staff Photographer)
by: Carah Wertheimer

Jay Elowsky, founder and owner of Pasta Jay’s, sits in his Boulder restaurant. Pasta Jay’s has catered Denver Broncos meals since the 2012-13 season. The team has a 16-0 record fueled by such meals, including recent playoff wins against Pittsburgh and New England. (Cliff Grassmick / Staff Photographer)
Call it ancient Italian secrets, culinary lore or a local legend in the making — Boulder’s perennially popular West Pearl Street eatery Pasta Jay’s has earned a spot in football history.

Jay Elowsky, founder and owner of three metro-area Pasta Jay’s restaurants, has been feeding the Broncos lunch at Dove Valley, their Englewood headquarters, since the 2012-13 season.

“When they’ve been powered by Pasta Jay’s, they’ve never lost a game,” Elowsky said.

Erich Schubert, Denver Broncos senior manager of media relations, concurs with that assessment. “We are 16-0 the last 16 times we’ve played after a Pasta Jay’s meal.”

The Broncos feast on Pasta Jay’s homemade tortellini Alfredo, spaghetti and meatballs, steak bracciole, smashed sweet potatoes, salad, green beans, honey lime chicken breasts and Peyton Manning’s “taste so good” favorite: chicken parmesan. Oh, and of course, that staple of Italian cuisine, fudge brownies.

Variety takes a back seat to quality, and in this case, quantity matters, too.

“They always get the same thing. They’re very superstitious,” Elowsky says.

The big lunch is always on a Friday, two days before the game. “The fuel that you take in is used two days later. That’s a fact,” says Elowsky, adding that this has been standard practice in athletic nutrition for at least 25 years.


Nate Hohm, executive chef at Pasta Jay’s, insists there are no protein powders, vitamins, wheat grass juice or any other performance enhancers added to the cuisine, “just a little extra love.” Hohm also believes the food is a winner. “I think that the complex carbohydrates have a big role in what those guys have done, as far as giving them that extra boost to win games.”

The Broncos take it all pretty seriously. According to Elowsky, if the team loses following a meal, the caterer is not invited back. The Broncos do like to experience different chefs, however. Pasta Jay’s has been invited to serve three to four meals per season and has catered some playoff games.

Hard at work, Elowsky began earning his athletic-cuisine stripes long before Pasta Jay’s was serving the Broncos lunch. The restaurant cooked for the CU Buffs in various capacities since 1989, everything from daily meals to occasional fare, depending on the particular coach and policies of the day. They’ve been cooking for the hockey, soccer and basketball teams at the University of Denver for the past four years and cooked for the Colorado State University Rams in the 1990’s.

Elowsky’s involvement with the Broncos goes beyond complex carbs and plum tomatoes.

“They’re a great organization to work with. It’s really a family down there,” he said. “It’s fun, a lot of fun. It’s nice to feel like you contribute to part of their success.”

He doubts whether the Italian food in San Francisco will work the same magic for the Broncos when they play in the Super Bowl.

“I’ll fly to San Francisco and hand off all the chicken parmesan Peyton can eat,” he volunteers.

Elowsky wants the team to win, but what if they win without his food?

Sounds like somebody had better get packing.


mmmm that Pasta’s Good



Pasta Jay’s Fuel’s Broncos Wins in Colorado
by: Seth Walder

The Broncos may be missing the secret ingredient to winning Super Bowl 50. That would be some Italian fare from local Colorado joint Pasta Jay’s.

The restaurant often feeds the team two days before game days, with startling success.

The Broncos are 16-0 when eating Pasta Jay’s two days before a game in the five years since the restaurant began feeding them, according to the restaurant’s owner, Jay Elowsky.

The team confirmed the undefeated streak.

“When they use us, they win,” Elowsky said in a phone interview. “So we get to feed them like three or four times in a row.”

Unfortunately for the Broncos, there’s no Pasta Jay’s in San Francisco. So they must deal without their good-luck charm.

The Broncos don’t like to change things up when they go on a winning streak, Elowsky explained.

“They’re superstitious, not sure if it’s the staff or the coaches,” he said.

He added that team nutritionists like the players to indulge in complex carbohydrates two days before the game for an energy boost.

The team’s favorite dish shouldn’t be much of a surprise.

“Everybody loves the chicken parm,” Elowsky said, referring to the plate Peyton Manning gushes about in his Nationwide commericials.

Elowsky cited the tortellini alfredo, manicotti and spaghetti and meatballs as other popular menu items for the Broncos.

Pasta Jay’s brings the food from their restaurant in South Denver to the team’s facility in nearby Englewood.

Two years ago, the Broncos missed their pasta when they played in Super Bowl XLVIII and were blown out by the Seahawks.

That might be a bad omen but Elowsky isn’t worried.

Will they be able to overcome not having Pasta Jay’s before their next Super Bowl?

“Absolutely,” he said.


February 5, 2016

Pasta Jay’s Has Powered The Denver Broncos To A 16-0 Record

peyyton2 Chiefs Broncos Football

BOULDER – Since Pasta Jay’s, one of Boulder’s most popular Italian restaurants, has fed the Denver Broncos, the team has gone 16-0, including recent playoff wins against Pittsburgh and New England.

Call it coincidence if you like, but the last time Denver went to the Super Bowl, they skipped Pasta Jay’s and lost to Seattle 43-8.

The Broncos will again miss a Pasta Jay’s feed this Super Sunday. Perhaps that’s why the odds makers have picked The Carolina Panthers to win.

“I’m not saying we are responsible for the victories,” said Jay Elowsky, owner of Pasta Jay’s. “But you are what your record says you are. And when we feed the team, they win.”

The power of pasta has never been defeated, according to Elowsky, who has provided tortellini Alfredo, spaghetti and meatballs, steak bracciole, smashed sweet potatoes, green beans, honey lime chicken breasts and Peyton Manning’s “taste so good” favorite, chicken parmesan since the 2012.

The record speaks for itself.

“We always feed the team two days before game day,” Elowsky said. “We fed them four times during the 2012-13 season. And the Broncos beat The Chargers, Chiefs, Tampa Bay and the Raiders.”

They team ate Pasta Jay’s three times in 2013-14 and came away with wins against The Redskins, The Chargers and The Chiefs.

The streak lived on in 2014-15 with victories over Miami, The Chiefs, The Buffalo Bills, and The Chargers. It continued this season with wins over The Chargers, New England, and the Chicago Bears.

The magic of Jay’s meatballs worked yet again in the playoffs this year as the Steelers and the Patriots wilted like overcooked linguini.

“Nutrition is a vital part of success,” Elowsky said. “The food you take in two days before a game is what counts and you need those complex carbohydrates to perform at your peak.”

Scheduling issues and the frantic confusion of preparing for a Super Bowl game in San Francisco means The Broncos will face down the NFL’s top rated Carolina Panthers without benefit of Pasta Jay’s sauce.


“I am as superstitious as anyone,” Elowsky said. “All I know is we are 16 and 0 when we feed the team. We are proud to be part of the Bronco Nation and if need be, I’ll fly to San Francisco and hand off all the chicken parmesan Peyton can eat.”




For more information about the Power of Pasta Jay’s winning streak, call Jay Elowsky at 303 818 5827.



January 29, 2016

Pasta Jay Happy Hours

happy hour


A table with a view @Pasta Jay’s



the House Chianti




Pasta Jay and his children.

Lone Tree,news and reviews

Pasta Jay’s at Lone Tree (Colorado Critic)


Pasta Jay’s at Lone Tree

Beating the rush is an excellent endeavor, and generally well worth it! It’s a grueling pain to wait in line as your stomach rumbles and you see countless others eating away. We were thus so privileged when we arrived at Pasta Jay’s in Lone Tree. We arrived quarter after 5 to a “calm” Italian restaurant but left a bustling scene with a line of people waiting for food.

Another advantage of showing up early is their daily happy hour in which many of their scrumptious meals are half the price! Always a good thing. We sat down to a red and white checkered cloth and under an arch of brick, feeling as though we were no longer in a Denver suburb. Cups of water were brought along with a PITCHER of water. I always jump for joy when I discover another restaurant which brings me the pitcher. As an avid water drinker I have only found a few places that can keep my cup full, and a pitcher will definitely stay the drought.


Our waiter, Jordan, comes and tantalizes our taste buds as she describes the daily specials and lets us in on a little secret that is not on the menu. The description wins us over and Beth chooses the Jalapeno Stuffed Ravioli and I chose their Florentine Pizza.


The pizza is made with the traditional thin and crispy crust, an alfredo sauce, chicken, fresh baby spinach and black olives. I X’ed the black olives, because those do not taste good, and added some scrumptious roasted garlic. They readily accepted the change in menu and showed that they are flexible and an easy restaurant to eat at. The crust was a little too cooked on the outer edge, it being black, but surprisingly still tasted great. The pizza was good and I’m glad I got the lower price during happy hour.


The Stuffed Ravioli was exceptionally amazing. With the ravioli smothered in Pasta Jay’s famous marinara sauce, multiple types of cheese and the peppers being that perfect spice with out burning your mouth off, I endorse it. Worth going back at any time, even if those lines are long.

For our dessert we ordered Tiramisu and cannoli. And for once my order was better then Beth’s. I got the tiramisu which was good and light with a superb flavor. The chocolate dressing was at a slight variance to the flavor of the tiramisu but I just ate it without dip it in the excess dressing and was thoroughly “picked up”. The cannoli, Beth’s favorite, had an excellently deep fried crisp shell but the cream was a little too grainy due to the much added cinnamon.

desert2 desert1

Jordan, our waiter, was exceptional, truly the best of the whole lot at Pasta Jay’s in Lone Tree. She was truly honest! A great quality, one sometimes lacking in waiters.


January 21, 2016

Pasta Jay’s in Moab

Colorado University,you-tube

November 4, 2015

Champion’s Corner at Colorado University


New Pasta Jay’s in Hays, Kansas

Hays Post

Restaurateur “Pasta Jay” Elowsky – whose restaurant Pasta Jay’s will anchor a 12-storefront retail development at 43rd and Vine – is getting ready for his new location in Hays, set to occur mid-to-late spring.

Jay, daughter Josie, son Jay Wyatt.

The restaurant will offer a wide variety of Italian fare and will be the fourth location for the small chain, with others located in Moab, Utah; Boulder, Colo.; and Lone Tree, Colo.

While the model will be the same as the other locations, it will also be tailored to Hays, Elowskysaid.

“Steaks” came to mind, as he currently offers a 16-ounce New York strip and a 12-ounce baseball-cut sirloin in his Boulder location.

“I imagine those will be transferred down there,” he said.

But for Jay, his restaurants are more than a place for people to eat.


“We like to be involved in the community,” he said. “Customers and employees are like family.”

“Our best marketing tool is the food we service,” Jay said, noting his strong desire to make his restaurants “a place you can call home.”

The business is likely to create around 50 jobs and will be completely staffed locally after training by three or four people from outside locations, Elowsky said.

Developer Stephen Tebo of Tebo Properties is spearheading the development and originally reached out to Jay suggesting the Hays market would be a good fit for a new location.

For more on Pasta Jay’s, including company history and menus, click HERE.

RELATED: Architect says Tebo Village will be ‘a cut above.’ (Includes virtual tour of new retail shopping center.)

Boulder,Colorado University,news and reviews,Pictures

September 14, 2015

Jay Elowsky opens Champions Club restaurant at CU

photo:  Paul Aiken
by:  Jerd Smith

On a bright blue September morning, at the northwest corner of Folsom Street and Colorado Avenue, blaring construction alarms bleep relentlessly as bulldozers dodge cars, electricians, landscapers and drywallers.

Boulder restaurateur Jay Elowsky, founder of the venerable Pearl Street restaurant Pasta Jay’s, stands just outside CU’s newly constructed Champions Center, scanning the chaos, waiting for a visitor.

In a pale yellow Colorado Buffs polo shirt, jeans and cowboy boots, the man who has been feeding CU football players as a sideline for 26 years is almost ready to launch his most ambitious restaurant project to date, the cafe at CU’s new Champions Club.

It will operate from the third floor of the new center, and, in a first, will be open to the public, CU football players and other athletes, and on game day, season ticket holders.

The view from the dining room is a hallmark scene — the brilliant green football field below with the Flatirons etched above along the skyline.

Inside the new restaurant, chairs are still wrapped in plastic, espresso machines are being wired and tested, and then tested again. Massive dishwashers are installed and ready to go, but with just days before the Sept. 21 opening, there is plenty of work to be done before the new eatery is ready for action above the field.

Final menus are still in the works, but Elowsky, 56, has been providing sustenance for the young men who comprise the football team since 1989.

The average football player, he says, eats double the food a normal person would. Adding in the coaches and support staff brings the ratio down to about 1.7 times the amount of food he would plan to use in a normal restaurant.

Executive Chef Adam Merlino, a former cruise ship chef and director of nutrition for a K-12 school district, said he will prepare 100 pounds of eggs each morning for breakfast. For lunch, perhaps 160 pounds of apricot-bourbon chicken, and if roast beef is on the menu as well, he will order in 140 pounds of that for the midday meal.

Because the cafe will also serve visitors to the CU Sports Medicine Center, on the floor below, Merlino is working with medical pros to make sure nutritional needs of patients can be met.

That’s not unlike the work involved in helping individual players meet their goals. A running back needed to gain 25 pounds before the season started, Merlino said, “So we made him smoothies that were packed with peanut butter, avocado and olive oil,” which the player consumed throughout the day in addition to regularly scheduled meals.

Elowsky has won the university’s contract to cook the football team’s meals off and on since the early 1990s. But he first offered to feed the players one free meal in 1989 as thanks for all the business the team helped generate at his then-young downtown restaurant on game days.

The relationship blossomed over the years, and even when Elowsky lost a bid for a contract, he would eventually win a new round. The CU catering contract that he works under typically runs five years, with annual renewals.

This summer, when players were doing two-a-days, the grueling, super-intense morning and evening training sessions that occur each pre-season, Merlino and his crew were feeding 175 people four times a day. Another crew toiled through the night doing prep work.

“It was going all night,” he said.

At the new cafe, Elowsky said he expects to be feeding 300 to 350 athletes each day, with the public welcome to join them from 1 to 7 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. He calls it “eat like the athletes.”

The opening of the CU cafe marks the first step in a 24-month period that will bring two additional restaurants into Elowsky’s empire. He’s planning a new steak restaurant in Moab, Utah, where he’s operated a second Pasta Jay’s since 1992. A ground-breaking date hasn’t been set.

In addition, in a partnership with long-time Boulder real estate developer Steve Tebow, Elowsky will open a third Pasta Jay’s in Hays, Kan. next May.

If Elowsky has immersed himself in the inner workings of CU football, he’s spent an equal amount of time cooking for the Fairview and Boulder high school football teams, and time as well out of the limelight feeding the hungry and donating food or providing subsidized meals to local charities.

Through it all, Elowsky has survived in what most would describe as a brutal, highly competitive restaurant scene. Pasta Jay’s is one of the oldest restaurants still operating on Pearl Street, where space is breathtakingly expensive, diners choosy and celebrity chefs troll daily for customers.

Sean Maher, executive director of Downtown Boulder Inc. and a columnist for the Daily Camera, said Elowsky’s staying power rivals that of Old Chicago, the West End Tavern and Sushi Zan Mai.

“I’ve had restaurateurs say that what might be the best restaurant in another town would just be average here, and you can’t be average and survive. You’ve got to be at the top of your game,” Maher said.

Elowsky has also crafted a powerful network of friends and colleagues, from former CU football coach Bill McCartney, to Boulder developer Tebo, to his ex-uncle Ernesto “Sonny” Genovese, who taught him how to make pizza sauce and run a restaurant in San Clemente, Calif., when Elowsky was 20.

Though Genovese and Elowsky’s aunt divorced long ago, the two men still talk three or four times a week, Elowsky said.

Carly Porter, of Mortenson Construction, makes a phone call from the kitchen of Jay Elowsky’s new restaurant the Champions Club Cafe in Folsom Field on Wednesday. Elowsky is the owner of Pasta Jay’s restaurant in Boulder. (Paul Aiken / Staff Photographer)

As electricians test light bulbs in the new dining room at the Champions Club Cafe, football players, administrators and coaches pass Elowsky in the hallway. Head coach Mike MacIntyre, in grey athletic shorts and athletic shoes, strolls past, flashes a smile and ribs the restaurateur about an ancient encounter with former coach McCartney.

Then its back to the serious business of food. The menu at the new cafe is to be peppered with dishes named for some of the famous athletes who’ve come through CU’s program. Alfredo Williams, the classic creamy pasta dish, is named after Alfred Williams, a star line backer who played for CU during its championship years and went on to play for the Denver Broncos.

“We try to give every dish we name after someone an Italian twist,” Elowsky said, grinning.

For the famous and unknown players alike, the most sought-after dish Elowsky serves is chicken parmesan, known by the student athletes as “chik parm.”

In the last minutes of an intense pre-game practice, as dinner is being prepared inside, Elowsky has a habit of standing on the balcony of the stadium and yelling his final words of encouragement to the exhausted players. The cheer — “Do it for the chik parm.”

Jerd Smith: 303-473-1332,



read article here:


September 10, 2015


summer dining at Pasta Jay’s in Moab