About the Chef

Chef de Cuisine Jay Leandro

"Local, fresh fare paired with regional beverages is the true definition of new cuisine."
-Chef de Cuisine Jay Leandro, Pub 17 on Welton Street

Jay Leandro was born and raised in the cradle of fresh seafood, New Bedford, Massachusetts, on the Atlantic coast. This regional bounty was the source of inspiration for the young Leandro who learned to fish at his father's knee, pulling up a catch of the day for that night's family dinner, working his way up the hard-scrabble docks to become a fish monger.

It was a grassroots beginning. Leandro's culinary career took off when he was yet in high school. He was hired on in the kitchen at Morton Fork Catering and traveled the eastern seaboard holding culinary positions at such well-established restaurants as Clark Cook House in Newport, Rhode Island. He was drawn westward, joining the Grand Hyatt Denver banquet staff in 2008 while refining his technique as a student at the renowned Johnson & Wales University and earning his Bachelor in Food Service Management with an associate degree in Culinary Arts. Before long, Leandro became the lead cook at the hotel's 1876 Restaurant. In early 2012, he was appointed Chef de Cuisine of the heralded Pub 17 on Welton Street, scheduled to open Summer 2012.

Tasked with rebranding the 100-seat downtown Denver establishment, Leandro has already mentally paired his signature classic comfort food with the restaurant's robust selection of microbrews and wines, most of them native to Colorado. An appreciation for Denver's title, #1 Microbrew City in America by Travel and Leisure Magazine, Leandro plans a menu that resonates with the pairing of microbrews and macro flavors.

When not in the kitchen, Leandro and his wife Kelly, their daughter Emma, Bernese mountain dog Mel and basset hound George enjoy the occasional day on the river. For a coastal kid, there's nothing like fresh Rocky Mountain trout prepared over an open flame. Here's hoping that the recipe and Chef Jay's expertise with the fly, has found its way onto the Pub 17 menu.