Brought to you by the team at Zia Taqueria, SAGE- Farm Fresh Eats is a new, fast-casual
concept, designed with local food systems and environmental sustainability in mind.
"We've long said we had big plans for the Old North location;' says owner and local
superstar, early Van Hof Thomson. "We are excited to finally launch SAGE in that glorious
space at 3101 Main Avenue where we built the original Zia, and where the community
supported us for the first fifteen years:'
SAGE is built on the same core principles that loyal Zia customers know and love: Buy local.
Support the community. Strive for environmental sustainability. Be kind. Pay a living wage.
The concept allows the team to take their commitment to local agriculture to a new level:
with a rotating menu of soups & salads (as well as sandwiches and grain bowls) that provide
an outlet for what our local farmers and ranchers grow best- sourcing grass-fed beef, and
only whole, humanely raised, all natural chicken.
One of the most important aspects of building a strong, local community is encouraging
local, independent businesses to support one another. When we keep our money
and resources circulatting locally, we amplify opportunities for our local producers,
manufacturers, entrepreneurs, and even employees. Not to mention, local produce is more
nutrient dense, utilizes less packaging, and requires minimal transport.
SAGE is a leading example of this core principle. Their growing list of local collaborators
include meats from Sunnyside Meats, beans from Adobe Mills, Ute Mountain yellow corn
meal from Bow & Arrow. They source Blue Bird flour from Cortez Milling, tempeh from
LuvBox, Colorado Sunflower Oil, and chips from their very own Zia Tortilla Company. SAGE
also partners with Beet Street Farm, Fields to Plate, and Twin Buttes for their assortment
of fresh produce. Not to mention our favorite local libations are sourced from Zuberfizz,
Solavita Kombucha, and Ska.
The menu features an assortment of chef-inspired classics (Broccoli Cheddar Soup, Ceasar
Salad), adventurous originals (Smoked Jerk Sweet Potato Stew, Steak & Mushroom Bowl),
and plenty of kid-friendly options (Pan-Fried PB&J, Classic Grilled Cheese & Tomato Soup)
- all at an affordable price point that reflects our commitment to local, high quality
ingredients and staying accessible for local families.
Deliciousness set aside, SAGE also has a firm commitment to environmental sustainability
-with a 15kW solar array to power the bulk of their energy needs. The team considers the
environmental impact of their operations in every decision they make.
"We are extremely careful and thoughtful in our procurement of take-out packaging, which
has a significant environmental impact;' says early. "We look at both front-line material
sourcing, and back-line waste disposal to consider what customers are likely to do with the
product after use (recycle, trash, etc). We don't have commercial composting available in
Durango, so we don't prioritize compostable plastics. When we use compostable plastics,
it is only because we have deemed t he front-line sourcing (corn starch, chalk) to be an
improved impact over petroleum, in cases where consumers are less likely to recycle:'
Although only a few weeks old, SAGE has already begun to leverage their local power by
signing on to the Local Movement and partnering with Local First programming. To support
the upcoming LPEA election, SAGE extended their support for Local First's Candidate
Forum, alongside eight other local businesses, to ensure our community's priority of local,
renewable energy stays at the forefront of this board election.
SAGE is also partnering with Local First, Thrive: Living Wage Coalition, and Good Business
Colorado's Resilient Restaurant program to convene local restaurant owners to discuss the
pandemic's impact on Durango's food industry and navigate the employment shortage
many are now facing.
We are lucky to welcome SAGE to the community! Stop by 31 01 Main Avenue (the old
North Zia location) to share your support and fill up on a delicious, locally-sourced meal.