Ken and Sue Fusco moved to Durango, Colorado in February of 1998 from Boca Raton, Florida and opened 937 MAIN – Ken & Sue’s Place in April. Just off the ten-year training track of South Florida’s highly successful culinary entrepreneurs, Dennis Max and Burt Rapaport of the Unique Restaurant Group, they used their experience from Prezzo, Max’s Grille, and Dan Marino’s Town Tavern to create their own casual, comfortable dining experience based on culinary and service excellence. They hit the ground running and have been a local favorite ever since.
After three and a half years at their 937 Main location, a larger location with a beautiful 100-seat patio became available right down the street. They created a new menu with “Asian flair” and opened the doors to their second location in April of 2001, calling it 636 MAIN – Ken & Sue’s East. They finished out the remaining year and a half on the lease from their first location and then merged their two restaurants, taking the best from both, to create the now present Ken & Sue’s in 2003.
Ken is a 1989 graduate from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY—one of the finest culinary schools in the nation. His passion for food is highlighted in every dish on his menu, which he personally creates and prepares. Ken attributes his natural creativeness and ability to add “dimension” to his dishes to his Italian heritage which impacted him as a young child spending time with his grandparents, who were farmers in Long Island, NY. He thoroughly enjoys creating food that excites his guests and personally trains his entire staff to ensure each guest has a consistent, enjoyable dining experience each and every visit.
Sue has worked in customer relations throughout her career. Starting as a hostess with the Unique Restaurant Group, she quickly moved into management with her genuine desire for customer satisfaction—a key focus in the restaurant industry. Prior to her restaurant career, she was employed by one of the nation’s top builders with a reputation for superior guest satisfaction, Trammel Crow. She worked in their South Florida division as their Customer Relations Representative in the homebuilding division, and acted as the liaison between the builder and the homeowner.
Ken and Sue have combined their skills to create an inviting bistro atmosphere with a focus on great food and great service at a reasonable price. It’s not a “perfect world” in the restaurant industry, but anything below this expectation is handled with extreme care and concern. “We want our guests to be totally satisfied. If anything is unsatisfactory, we encourage them to let us know so we can remedy it immediately…while they are still dining with us. We aim to please! I want everybody to enjoy what we do as much as we do,” says Sue.
Ken & Sue’s has become a staple to the town of Durango, enjoyed by both locals and visitors. And with three children to raise also, they look forward to continuing in their downtown location on Main Avenue. They attribute part of their success to having an extensive, diverse menu which offers “something for everyone.” A number of “signature” dishes have remained on their menu for their full ten years of operation, with personal phone calls to them when they’ve tried to remove them. Ken implements two seasonal menu changes per year in the menu and in the daily and nightly specials. Although they have over sixty items to choose from, they still have “regulars” who have only ever ordered their “favorites” in their ten years of patronage!
The staff is trained by Ken and Sue personally to treat the guest “as if they were coming to your home.” Each new team member must try every item on the menu and all the wines by the glass in a four-day training class, which they personally lead. Then, their new hires work with senior staff on two shifts where they follow that team member around and two shifts where they lead that team member, before they ever take the floor. Not everyone graduates from training, but the best-of-the-best make it. They typically hire once a year in April, which is rarely heard of in the industry.
We are sure you will have a great dining experience at Ken & Sue’s…whether an occasion, stopping in for a quick bite, or just looking for somewhere to unwind for the evening. Please ask for Ken or Sue during your visit—typically you’ll find one or the other right on hand. “Be Our Guest”, Disney’s motto, is one that we embrace every day at Ken & Sue’s… we think your dining experience should be memorable.