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Chefs Serve Up Creative Fare at Wind Crest's Restaurants

By Michele Wojciechowski
October 14, 2022
Chefs Serve Up Creative Fare at Wind Crest's Restaurants

Wind Crest, the Erickson Senior Living community in Highlands Ranch, Colo., is well-known for its friendly atmosphere and worry-free lifestyle. A key element of that carefree environment is the outstanding cuisine available to residents at the community's eight on-site restaurants.

Thanks to Wind Crest's Signature Dining program, which emphasizes preparing high-quality, cooked-to-order dishes, residents enjoy delicious meals made with fresh ingredients and extraordinary service each time they dine.

Variety of choices

Director of Dining Nicole Norton notes that Wind Crest's restaurants offer a huge selection of entrées, with at least half of the menu rotating on a daily and monthly basis.

"You've got so many choices on the menus," agrees Nancy Conway, who has lived at Wind Crest with her husband Colin for nearly five years. Nancy serves as the dining liaison for the Resident Advisory Council, which fosters collaboration between community members and culinary staff. "That's how a lot of residents choose the restaurant they'll make reservations for--they'll go by the menu."

And previewing menu options is as easy as checking out My Erickson®, an app accessible to all community members on any smart device. Nancy says that residents use the app to see specials for the bistro and café, as well as making reservations at their favorite restaurant. The app also provides nutritional information about each entrée, so residents with dietary restrictions can choose the best meals for their unique lifestyle.

Norton says that the special brunch buffet held on Thanksgiving and Christmas is especially popular. "Residents will typically invite family members to come and have brunch on campus that day. It's great because family members don't have to cook, and they're getting a fantastic meal," says Norton.

Just a taste

"People are most impressed by the number of restaurants, as well as all the meal selections," says Sales Director Krista Wagner.

Interested in knowing exactly what delectable dishes are being served? Here is a quick sampling of some weekly specials that residents savored as of late. The Fly'n B Café offered French onion soup, veggie spaghetti and meatballs, teriyaki chicken salad, coq au vin, macaroni beef and tomato casserole, and a pork gouda sandwich.

The Fireside featured specials such as a pork carnitas burrito, kung pao cauliflower, chicken parmesan, jerk pork tenderloin with pineapple salsa, shepherd's pie, and vegetable mu shu crepes.

Taste of Wind Crest

For those who want to try it all, the Taste of Wind Crest is your best bet.

Taste of Wind Crest, a special event held twice a year, is modeled after Taste of Colorado, where people purchase a ticket to enjoy samplings from a selection of food vendors. At Wind Crest, instead of visiting outside vendors, residents can try different dishes made by the community's very own expert chefs and cooks.

Teams, made up of one chef and one cook from the Wind Crest culinary team, each have their own booth, where they carefully prepare both a sweet and a savory dish. Once the residents have visited every booth, they vote on a best sweet and best savory item of the day.

"The culinarians win a trophy and bragging rights, which is huge," Norton jokes. "Residents absolutely love it because they get to try something new and enjoy all sorts of delicious bites. The chefs and cooks love it because they are free to use their imaginations with the plates they create."

"The staff is superb--they know all of the residents," adds Wagner. "When you see the interactions, it reminds you just how community-centered our restaurants really are."

Food and friends

Of course, there's more to a dining experience than just food--it's also about the great people you can share a meal with.

Some residents ask the host or hostess if they can be seated with others who are new to the community or people they haven't met yet. Residents can also invite their families, grandkids, and friends to eat with them. "This is Wind Crest at its best--when residents are dining with friends," says Wagner.

Nancy agrees. "The most enjoyable thing about dining at Wind Crest is the people that you have dinner with. We have met the most wonderful, interesting people from not only all over the United States, but all over the world," she says.

Nancy enjoys dining with company the best, but there are three other factors she appreciates about Wind Crest restaurants: "One, I don't have to make up the menu. Two, I don't have to prepare it, and best of all, I don't have to clean it up," she says. "So, I enjoy every aspect of it."

Invest in your future at Wind Crest. From top-notch amenities and activities to affordable, maintenance-free apartment homes, you'll enjoy living your retirement to the fullest. Request more information today!