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Nikki Guard Leads the Cost at Denver’s Guard and Grace

Within the coronary heart of downtown Denver’s enterprise heart stands Guard and Grace, a culinary gem that has been redefining the steakhouse expertise for practically a decade. On the helm is Nikki Guard, a seasoned veteran within the restaurant business and the co-owner and beverage director of TAG Restaurant Group, which she operates alongside her husband, co-owner and government chef Troy Guard.

Guard and Grace, named after chef Troy’s daughter, is a contemporary steakhouse that marries the normal allure of a steakhouse with a brilliant and ethereal playfulness. Boasting fiery grills, an oyster bar and a powerful walk-in wine cellar, this 9,000-square-foot area within the Brookfield constructing has earned accolades as a prime Denver steakhouse for 9 consecutive years. Not too long ago really useful by the Michelin Information, Guard and Grace continues to captivate diners with its prime, licensed Angus and native grass-fed and wagyu cuts, together with a various array of seafood, charcuterie, artisanal cheeses and a wide range of vegetarian choices.

Nikki Guard: A power behind the success

Nikki’s journey within the restaurant business started when she was 15, beginning at an expo throughout a summer season job. From there, she labored her approach as much as changing into a server, bartender and cocktail waitress in Las Vegas. Her dedication to studying the artwork of the commerce led her to prestigious sommelier programs and finally right into a managerial position.

Nikki’s 13-year tenure with TAG Restaurant Group is a testomony to the respect and recognition she has garnered throughout the group. Being a revered chief within the male-dominated culinary world isn’t just inspiring—it’s a testomony to her energy of ardour, laborious work and resilience.

Championing change at Guard and Grace

All through her profession, Nikki has confronted challenges widespread to many ladies within the business—mistreatment, sexual harassment and stereotypes about her capabilities. But, she credit these experiences with shaping her into the robust, resilient chief she is at present. She emphasizes the significance of empowering these round her and making a office the place everybody feels valued and succesful.

In reflecting on her intensive expertise, Nikki notes a major shift within the business’s tradition. The period of cooks and managers berating their employees is fading, changed by a extra collaborative and respectful strategy. Nikki additionally observes a change in beverage tendencies, with a shift towards recent elements and a concentrate on the artwork of crafting cocktails.

Right now, Nikki sees success within the restaurant enterprise as extra than simply monetary positive factors. A contented office, aligned with ardour, is the important thing to long-term success. Balancing work and life is the key sauce that ensures sustained achievement within the business.

Nikki Guard leads with function

As a feminine chief in a predominantly male business, Nikki Guard finds energy in her crew, a bunch of feminine managers within the entrance of the home alongside two male normal managers. Her aim isn’t just private success however fostering an surroundings the place her crew can thrive and develop. Nikki believes in empowering others, working laborious alongside them and expressing unwavering perception of their capabilities.

Wanting forward, Nikki envisions continued progress for TAG Restaurant Group. Nonetheless, her final measure of success lies within the happiness and progress of these working alongside her within the place she loves most.

This text initially appeared within the March/April 2024 problem of SUCCESS journal. Photograph courtesy of Guard and Grace/ Tag Restaurant Group.

Kerrie Lee Brown is a world journalist, writer and girls’s well being advocate. Through the years, she has written for greater than 150 publications worldwide and held quite a few government and senior editorial roles throughout Canada and the U.S. She has interviewed a plethora of Hollywood celebrities and among the most inspiring thought leaders across the globe. Right now, Kerrie Lee is the editor-in-chief of SUCCESS Enterprises’ spectacular journal portfolio and an advocate for genuine storytelling because the founding father of RedLilyLife.com.

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