Five best soul-food restaurants in Denver

The spread at Kirk's Soul Kitchen.
The spread at Kirk's Soul Kitchen.
Danielle Lirette

Growing up in the suburbs of Denver, Adrian Miller didn't see a lot of soul food at nearby restaurants -- but he did see it on his family's table every holiday. His culinary obsession, though, was barbecue (he's a certified judge) until he stumbled across John Egerton's book Southern Food: At Home, on the Road, in History and learned from the author that "the comprehensive history of black achievement in American cookery still waits to be written." Now it has been -- at least when it comes to soul food, thanks to Soul Food: The Surprising Story of an American Cuisine: One Plate at a Time. Miller will be celebrating the publication of that book tomorrow at the Blair-Caldwell African-American Research Library and again at a signing on August 27 at the Tattered Cover on Colfax. In advance of those appearances, we asked him for a list of the five best places for soul food in Denver today. (The list is his, the descriptions ours.) See also: - Adrian Miller wrote the book on soul food -- one plate at a time - What's the difference between Southern and soul food? Ask Adrian Miller - Country Time BBQ is one of Adrian Miller's favorites

Inside Coleman's Taste of Detroit.
Inside Coleman's Taste of Detroit.
Danielle Lirette

5. Coleman's Taste of Detroit 2622 Welton Street

Henry Coleman knows from Detroit soul food, Detroit comfort food, Detroit's streetside, slapdash, eat-while-walking cuisine. From behind the rail of his kitchen at Coleman's (in the former home of Ethel's House of Soul), he knocks up specials (roasted barbecued chicken breast with greens and rice and gravy, if you're lucky), bakes the cornbread, slow-cooks his brisket and hot links, and fries up an good fried chicken.

Henry Coleman inside Coleman's Taste of Detroit.
Henry Coleman inside Coleman's Taste of Detroit.
Danielle Lirette
Flava! brought a new soul-food option to Aurora.
Flava! brought a new soul-food option to Aurora.

4. Flava! 15343 East Sixth Avenue, Aurora

The flavors are big at Flava!, a spacious, if bare-bones restaurant that opened in 2011 in Aurora. You'll find all the Southern classics here -- including fried chicken, collard greens and sweet potato pie -- but the best way to sample the fare may be the $8 soul-food plate.

The food at Flava! has plenty of flavor.
The food at Flava! has plenty of flavor.

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