About First Bite: Boulder County Restaurant Week
For the past fifteen years, First Bite: Boulder County Restaurant Week has illuminated the Boulder County restaurant scene, becoming one of the most popular restaurant events in Colorado. Every November, over 10,000 diners come out to see what their favorite restaurant is serving up and to visit that new restaurant they’ve been dying to try. By featuring a myriad of restaurants – everything from best-kept secrets to fine dining stars – diners experience a celebration of the culinary creativity of the season’s best ingredients.
First Bite prioritizes strengthening the community, just as much as it prioritizes elevating the Boulder County restaurant scene. Our restaurants are an essential piece of the vitality of Boulder, and our diners know that the restaurants are one of the biggest supporters of the local schools, non-profits and events of all kinds. In 2019, a new program was launched to raise money and awareness for local non-profits with the support of local businesses and the restaurants. By bringing together 68 organizations, the First Bite program generated more support and deepened the connection locals have to their community.
With the pandemic ravaging our restaurant industry and knowing social distancing requirements won’t be changing anytime soon, First Bite will look quite different this year. Instead of packed dining rooms, First Bite will be promoting smaller virtual events through the participating restaurants on Nov. 12-15. Follow us on social media, and sign up for our newsletter to be the first to know about how we can keep supporting our restaurants and celebrating their incredible creativity. Food is Love – Now, more than ever, show the love.
In the Press
- DiningOut: First Bite: Boulder County Restaurant Week
- 5280: 38 Fantastic Foodie Events Coming to Colorado in November
- Times-Call: Nitro Fest and Other Longmont-Area Events Nov 9, 2019
- Denver7: Boulder County Restaurant Week starts today
- Boulder Weekly: Front Range events 2019-20
- Westword: The Seven Best Events on the Culinary Calendar This Weekend
- Daily Camera: First Bite turns 14, offers flexible pricing and fundraising
- Boulder Weekly: Restaurant week is a chance to find your next favorite eatery
- Denver Business Journal: Full Plate
- 303 Magazine: 28 Unique Things to do in Denver this Week
- KDVR Fox 31 News: First Bite Boulder County Restaurant Week Turns Up the Heat
- 303 Magazine: Denver Passport Winter Edition Launch Party and 18 Other Food & Drinks Events in Denver This Week
- Westword: The Eight Best Events on the Culinary Calendar This Week
- Westword: First Bite Brings New Deals for Boulder County’s Restaurant Week
- YellowScene: Boulder County First Bite Triple Punch: Delicious Dishes, Community, and Philanthropy
- CO Yoga + Life: First Bite Boulder November 8-16
- Chef or Death (Podcast) #85: First Bite Boulder – Jessica Benjamin & Eric Lee
- Boulder Lifestyle: October 2019 Issue
- 5280: First Bite: Boulder County Restaurant Week
- Boulder Weekly: Grain Bowl Game
- Westword: Hundreds of Things to Do This Fall in Colorado
- Boulder Weekly: Tomato Speed Dating
- Wine Business: First Bite: Boulder County Restaurant Week Has a Lot on its Plate for 2019
- Boulder Weekly: In with the New
- Denver Eater: Boulder’s First Bite Restaurant Week Adopts New Prices for Three-Course Menus
- Daily Camera: Foodies can get an early look at Boulder restaurant week with culinary tours
- Biz West: Boulder County Restaurant Week has new owner
- CO Yoga + Life page 92
- Daily Camera: Rights Sold for First Bite
- Longmont Times-Call: Events
- Boulder Patch: First Bite Boulder 2018 Begins This Weekend
- Boulder Weekly: Front Range Events
- Daily Camera: First Bite Boulder kicks off restaurant week, now with a cheaper option
- Boulder Weekly: Your first time: Boulder County’s restaurant week gets you to taste beyond your bubble
- KGNU: Radio Nibbles: First Bite and Feast
- Dining Out: 12 November Food and Drink Events to Add to your Calendar
- Denver Eater: A Grilled Cheese Festival Comes to Town | Plus, holiday markets, Boulder restaurant week, and more November food and drink events
- In Good Taste Denver: What’s in Good Taste in November
- Colorado Parent: Events Calendar
- 5280: Events Calendar
- Thrillist: Everything You Need to Do in Denver This Fall
- 303 Magazine: Dig Into November — What to Eat and Drink This Month
- Boulder Lifestyle: November 2018 Around Town
- Westword: First Bite Comes to Boulder with Restaurant Deals in November
- Boulder Weekly: Taste here now
- Boulder Weekly: Restaurants Band Together for First Bite Boulder
- Boulder Weekly: You Can Have It All
- Boulder Weekly: Local Food News
- Business Plus Spotlight
- Daily Camera: First Bite highlights restaurants in Boulder, Longmont
- Denver Eater: Where to Eat During Boulder Restaurant Week
- DiningOut: 10 Must Do Events in November
- The Know: First Bite Boulder the city’s restaurant week, starts next Friday
- In Good Taste Denver: What’s in Good Taste November 6-12
- Thrillist: Things to Do in the Fall in Denver 2017
- Westword: First Bite Boulder Showcases Boulder County’s Bounty
- 303 Magazine: You Can Eat Three Courses for $29 at 50+ Boulder Restaurants this Weekend
Jessica Benjamin Bio
For nearly two decades, First Bite Producer Jessica Benjamin has committed her time and energy to connecting her community to local food. From marketing one of Boulder’s most prominent restaurants to producing events with restaurants across Boulder County, to now taking one of Colorado’s most popular food events to the next level, Jessica is an important part of the fabric of the Boulder County restaurant scene.
After growing up in Colorado and receiving her degree from the University of Colorado, Jessica worked her way from hostess to managing the marketing for The Kitchen, where she coordinated their events as they were just opening up The Upstairs. She then shifted to Access Marketing & Events, a local small business producing large-scale corporate events, including global conferences and trade shows. As Director of Operations, she managed sponsorships from more than 300 businesses every year through six events worldwide.
In 2010, Jessica founded 1517 Events, first as a side-hustle and then in 2014, left the corporate world to dive in full time to craft world-class events to serve Boulder County. She has since designed and executed dozens of events in Boulder with non-profits and their established partners, including Jax Fish House, The Kitchen, Isabelle Farm, The Post Brewing Co., Corrida, Avery Brewing Co., Snooze an A.M. Eatery, and many others.
Throughout her time in Boulder, Jessica has collaborated and worked with area nonprofits, businesses, restaurants, the University of Colorado, and even as a Campaign Manager for her husband’s campaign in 2017. After experiencing Boulder’s growth and evolution for more than 15 years, Jessica invested even more into her community by purchasing First Bite: Boulder County Restaurant Week in March 2019. In her first year as Executive Producer, First Bite saw a more than 30% jump in diners, serving over 11,300 guests over the nine-day event. Through partnerships with over 68 restaurants, non-profits, local businesses and organizations, First Bite delivered over $542,000 economic impact to Boulder County.
With an intrinsic desire to deepen the connection between her community and the Boulder County food industry, extensive knowledge of the Boulder restaurant scene, invaluable long-term partnerships with area eateries, and an undeniable entrepreneurial spirit, Jessica is driven to build and connect First Bite’s guests to the Boulder County restaurant and food scene all year long.
In her free time, Jessica enjoys all Boulder has to offer with her husband and two small children. On the weekends, they often enjoy gardening, traveling, cooking and exploring Colorado’s outdoor wonders. She has worked with Garden to Table (Growe Foundation), both as a board member for four years, and as a volunteer for more than a decade, to support their efforts to improve nutrition at school, and enrich education experiences through school gardens and curriculum.