There’s no denying that Will Frischkorn loves cheese.
As Frischkorn bustled around Cured, Boulder’s new specialty cheese shop, and prepared to open up his store for the day, his enthusiasm for artisan cheeses and meats was contagious. Frischkorn unwrapped salamis and laid out blocks of cheese, all with a smile on his face.
Frischkorn said he found a passion for healthy food and one-on-one customer service after spending a year and a half living in Spain. This passion gave birth to the concept for Cured, the business Frischkorn co-founded with Coral Ferguson.
In a world of Super Targets and 24-hour Walmarts, Ferguson and Frischkorn wanted to come back to a simpler time where consumers knew the source of their food.
“Cured is about connecting people with their food and their food purveyors, going back to that old-world style of shopping where you know your butcher, your baker, the woman who grows your vegetables and the chickens that lay your eggs,” Ferguson said.
Bringing this concept to Boulder was important to both Frischkorn and Ferguson.
“Boulder appreciates good food, but Boulder doesn’t have any stores that fit the small market concept,” Frischkorn said.
For the owners, Cured is the answer to this dilemma. By providing foods that are local in the “American sense”—as Frischkorn calls it—they give their customers the knowledge of where their food comes from.
The founders traveled the country and visited over 35 farmers in order to bring cheese that was previously not available in Colorado. Cured has a cellar full of spirits. Many are brewed in Colorado, and Frischkorn bakes fresh loaves of bread every afternoon and evening.
Cured is also filled with American goods that cover every aspect of traditional European snacks. Although some cheeses like Parmesan and epoisses come from international suppliers. Frischkorn said many of their 80 seasonal cheeses are American-made.
“America doesn’t have the history of Europe, but we have the same great products,” Frischkorn said.
Ferguson said their mostly-American supply chain is an important aspect to the store.
“The local movement that has happened across America in the last several years is an incredible revival and one that we encourage everyone to support,” she said.
As a major base for the local food movement, Boulder provided the perfect place for Frischkorn and Ferguson to launch their small market concept, and it didn’t hurt that Ferguson was born in Boulder.
“While I have temporarily lived in other parts of the country and world, I’ve always known Boulder was home,” she said.
To avoid the stigma of high prices in association with the words “specialty shop,” Cured tries to make their products affordable.
“People think artisan food is expensive or pretentious,” Frischkorn said. “But it’s just salami. It’s awesome.”
Although opening a new store in the current economic climate is a major risk for small business owners—especially specialty stores—Cured has done well since opening in August. The Denver Post featured Cured for its success as a specialty shop during the recession.
Frischkorn said he is grateful for the success the business has had so far.
“Opening at any time is scary, but we feel unbelievably lucky,” he said.
[Click on the first photo below to see a gallery of images from the shop.]
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Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Avalon Jacka at firstname.lastname@example.org.