Mouthing Off

Good morning, Denver: Okay, where should you go for a good sit-down, cooked breakfast that's available weekdays? Dixons Downtown Grill (1610 16th Street) does great egg dishes, many with a Southwestern bent and all reasonably priced and filling. If you're starving, though, head over to Hotcakes (1400 East 18th Avenue) for huge, fabulous pancakes or to The Original Pancake House (5900 South University Boulevard) in Littleton, which serves decadent Swedish 'cakes with an incredible lingonberry sauce.

If you're with your mother, take her to Pour La France!, at 730 South University, for real hollandaise on the smoked-salmon eggs Bennie, as well as expertly brewed coffee and cappuccino. The best eggs Benedict in town, however, are cooked up at McCormick's Fish House & Bar (1659 Wazee Street). Zaidy's (121 Adams Street) does breakfast Jewish-style, with lox and bagels, blintzes, chopped liver, latkes and killer coffee cakes. Diced Onions (609 Corona Street) makes all of its breads, including the raisin-walnut, which it uses for a white-chocolate-covered French toast; it does a superb corned-beef hash, too. Excellent hash browns can be had at Racines (850 Bannock Street), which offers good skillet breakfasts, too. And cinnamon-roll fans will love the pecan-studded ones at Sunrise, Sunset (1424 South Wadsworth Boulevard in Lakewood).

Giving thanks: While we're all stuffing our turkeys and our faces next week, some families will sit down to a meal of grilled cheese and applesauce--or nothing at all. Once again, several places around town are trying to make sure that doesn't happen. The Aguirre family will be hosting their thirteenth annual free feed at their restaurant, Rosa Linda's Mexican Cafe, at 2005 West 33rd Avenue, on Thanksgiving day; hours are 11 a.m.-3 p.m., and the menu includes shredded turkey, green chile, beans, rice or stuffing, and dessert. Last year the family fed 1,500 people. Volunteers and donations are more than welcome; call 455-0608. The Daddy Bruce Thanksgiving organization is also looking for funds: A $13.75 donation is all it takes to provide a family with a turkey, potatoes, sweet potatoes, vegetables, cornbread, cake mix and icing, Kool-Aid, a loaf of bread and cranberry sauce. Send contributions to "Daddy Bruce Thanksgiving" in care of Mountain States Bank, 1635 East Colfax Avenue, Denver 80218. The food will be distributed on November 22. Also on that day, and again on November 23 and 24, the Colorado AIDS Project's food bank will be giving turkey dinners to people with AIDS. For more information, call Dennis Morris at 837-0166.

If you can afford your own meal but don't want to cook it, several restaurants offer Thanksgiving options. The Westin Hotel at the Tabor Center has cooked up a "Feast to Go": $350 buys a meal for twelve, complete with a 22-pound tom with dressing, salad, a relish platter, fruit salad, stuffing, red cabbage, mashed potatoes, acorn squash, pearl onions and peas, cornbread, dinner rolls, pumpkin pie and chocolate macadamia nut torte, as well as a warm and fuzzy feeling, since this benefits the Cancer League of Colorado (call 572-7249). The Augusta in the Westin will be open, too, serving Thanksgiving dinner for $21.95 ($10.95 for kids, under six free). McCormick's, in the Oxford Hotel (825-1107), offers a traditional roast turkey dinner for $15.95 (it's $7.95 for kids)--and, of course, other menu items are available, too. Jus Cookin's (10600 East Iliff Avenue, Aurora) has the whole shebang for $10.95 ($4.95 for kids). For buffet buffs, there's the Legacy Grill (10801 Legacy Ridge Parkway in Westminster), with three seatings and a $16.95 price tag (438-8524); El Rancho (29260 U.S. Highway 40) also features an in-house Thanksgiving buffet for $19.95 ($9.95 for kids, under three free) and a turkey-to-go deal for $35.95 (call 526-0661).

Maverick's (4851 East Virginia Avenue, 780-0007) is hosting a buffet with all the trimmings, at $16.95 for adults, half that for kids, and under six free. But it's who's doing the cooking that's the big news: Jim Begbie, of the late Anastasia Vieux Carre, is Maverick's new executive chef. Now, there's a real reason to give thanks .



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