We had the good fortune of connecting with Jennifer Denman and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jennifer, what role has risk played in your life or career?
Risk is something I’ve thought a lot about lately. I heard someone describe an entrepreneur as someone who is willing to take a risk in hopes of his/her idea succeeding. I’ve never really thought of myself as a natural entrepreneur. It wasn’t something I set out to be or really thought about until I began my company. But I am a natural risk taker. Risk, giving something a try, going down a path just to see what happens…. has never scared me. So, I think i do agree with that definition. A business owner lives with risk everyday. Sometimes ideas work out and sometimes they don’t, But grit, determination and a strong will have always been a part of my natural disposition, and I think it is what helps me be a better business owner.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Becoming a pastry chef was such a thrill for me. It felt like the stars aligning and the world making sense. But being in the hospitality and food industry isn’t easy. It demands a lot from you- holidays, weekends, early mornings, late nights, family time, etc…. Sometimes I think we chefs must really have a screw loose! However, fellow artists will understand when I say that it calls to you. You must do it to feel fulfilled. That’s how I feel about working in my bakery. Just like a painter anguishes over their art, I too spend way too much time thinking about how flavors will taste together, how my customer will experience my product, will what i make with my hands bring value to someone’s day…etc. I think you have to be that passionate about what you do. Along the way, I’ve learned that not everyone will love what I make every time. And that’s ok. But working hard and having integrity are the two most important lessons I’ve learned owning my own business.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
This is a fun question!! (my secret desire for my second career is to be a tour guide!) The beauty and history here in COS is so fun to explore! And the ever growing restaurant scene is exciting! I tend to stay away from the more touristy destinations like Garden of the Gods. Local hiking does not disappoint- Red Rocks Open Space and Cheyenne Canon are awesome. Even the painted mines out east are worth the long drive across town. I also actually love the Monument Valley trail that goes the length of downtown! I recently heard that there is a great exhibit right now at the Pioneers museum, reflecting on the 150 years of Colorado Springs. I’m also anxious to go to the new Olympic Museum. There are also some great, smaller places to explore around Colorado College- the Van Briggle pottery exhibit & Colorad0 Springs Fine Arts Center. I have also been to a quaint orchestra concert on the CC campus that I thoroughly enjoyed. For eating and drinking, only local will do!! There is no reason to visit a chain in Colorado Springs! Coffee: Story Coffee and Building Three are my faves Drinks: Shuga’s and the Broadmoor never disappoint. (The history at the Broadmoor is also super interesting!) Beer: Goat Patch, Red Leg and Field House every time. Dining: Everything from Luigi’s family owned Italian to Cerberus- in my opinion one of the best menus in town! Places like COATI and Denver Biscuit Co. are fun new additions to the eating scene, as well as the old staples like Jack Quinns. There are also hidden gems like Sweet & Savory Pi Bar where they make from scratch, delicious pot pies. As you can see, I have so many opinions about what to do in the great city! 🙂
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
So many people deserve recognition in my story. I certainly wouldn’t even have a story, or a business for that matter, with my community. My CPA, my food rep, my banker, my community group, my church community, my family…. they ALL have been with me on this journey. When I say “with me”, i mean actually by my side, in it with me- not cheering from the side lines, but rather laboring, brain storming and listening to me every step of the way. They have balanced my books, bought my baked goods, shared about Snowberry on social media, made sure I could find the ingredients/resources I needed and have been there for the really hard times and the really fun times!