A CSU grad spins travel and a food obsession into a burgeoning foodie empire.

THANKS TO A CHILDHOOD spent hanging out in his mom’s small town North Dakota diner, Iver Marjerison’s culinary curiosities perked early on. Once grown, wanderlust (and snowboarding) brought him to Colorado, where he worked toward a degree in agricultural sciences at CSU. During a bee-keeping internship in Jamaica, he was fascinated by how his host family grew and prepared all of their own food. It inspired him to tackle an MBA in sustainable food systems.

Now, when Marjerison travels, he doesn’t just tap locals for dinner recommendations. He digs in and unearths the tastiest margarita and the juiciest ribeye in town by asking, “Where do I go and what do I absolutely have to try there?” The answers netted the 28-year-old CSU alum the intel he eventually wove into a book, The Foodist Bucket List: Fort Collins, Colorado: 100 Must-Try Dining, Drinks, Restaurant, and Farm Adventures.

Published last year, the 150-page guide reveals 100 edible Fort Collins quests in Marjerison’s conversational, stream-of-consciousness style. “This is not a lifeless directory-style listing of the town’s ‘top’ restaurants,” he says. “Instead, each page features one specific item, a photo, and a hyperbolically romanticized celebration of why it’s so dang awesome.”

Marjerison interviewed local food-and-drink industry gurus to craft his must-do food adventure manifesto, building his dining and hands-on experience list to span everything from farmers markets and brewery tours to donuts and fine dining.

The book is hardly his only foodie manifesto. He’s also authored a Maui-focused foodie bucket list and a visitor’s guide to Williston, North Dakota. He dabbles in food writing, recipe development, traveling and working on farms and building his company, Food Flow, a platform for his passion projects that has evolved into blogs, videos, a podcast and an apparel line.

Next up: Marjerison is working on a book called The Oatmeal Revolution, a cookbook/storybook making the argument that oatmeal is an extremely versatile grain, like rice, but people only want to put apples and sugar in it. He’s also the host of the food-focused radio show “FoCo Food Flow” on KRFC Fort Collins 88.9 FM.

“I’m just a guy obsessed with uncovering each and every delicious opportunity that an area has to offer, and figured it would be fun to document my favorite discoveries for other food lovers,” Marjerison says.

focofoodist.com

Research + Recos

The author shares a few Foodist bucket-list hits:

Nyala Ethiopian Cuisine: “A lot of people don’t know about it; it’s very authentic.”

Doug’s Day Diner: “It has this burger that’s PB&J, chilies and cheese. It’s what the book is all about—finding these gems.”

Tony’s Bar & Rooftop: “This is where you go to shoot pool and drink Bud Light, but his wife makes this baklava, it’s extremely complex and traditionally prepared.”

Feisty Spirits: “Everyone at this local distillery is always really high-energy, they pour generous tastings, it’s a fun place to go and not a lot of people go there.”

Farm adventures: “Two things in Laporte: Howling Cow Café at [Morning Fresh Dairy]. Get the farm fresh latte there—the milk is from a cow that’s outside the window. Up the road is Ten Bears Winery. This guy is making wine with grapes he’s grown here, which is agriculturally bizarre to do in this climate.”

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