Sometimes it seems like you need to eat a small meal before braving the wait list at some brunch establishments around Denver. If your tastebuds have ever been treated to brunch at Devil’s Food Bakery & Cookery, you know just how long the wait can be on the weekend, even with a pot of French-press coffee to hold you over. But on an impromptu lunch jaunt last week to meet a friend passing through town, we were pleasantly surprised to walk in, sit right down and find the full breakfast menu still available. Wait, we can have Benedicts every day?
To my delight, the cozy establishment offers breakfast until 3 p.m. Monday through Friday and a very similar brunch menu on the weekends. That means if you’re not an early riser, or if you just like eating breakfast foods for meals other than breakfast on days other than Saturday and Sunday, you’re in luck. With ample veggie options from which to choose, I will definitely be back to try them all. This excursion called for the seasonal veggie and poached eggs bowl — a breakfast dish that is savory, filling, and far more rousing than any veggie omelet you can find.
A bed of cheesy polenta grits are topped with stewed veggies and drowned in a flavorful vegetable stock. Two poached eggs dusted with grated cheese delicately top the dish, and a piece of toast hangs out on the side, waiting for its cue to become another vehicle for the broth and grits. The vegetables were a blend of cauliflower, asparagus, red bell peppers and kale, all cooked just past al dente, but not to the point of becoming mushy. Grits take on the flavors of their surrounding ingredients, so when cooked with cheese, well: cheesy grits — a top-notch breakfast carb. Eat them on their own, with some veggies, or break open those poached eggs to create an emulsified delight. No matter how you consume this dish, there is no wrong way.
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A veteran in the brunch world, Devil’s Food has been around since before Denver became such a brunch-crazed city. A constantly rotating menu of fresh baked goods and local coffee keeps the walk-up counter busy while waiters run around the charming dining area and back patio, serving up breakfast, lunch and supper. The restaurant tries to be a cell-phone-free environment, as politely requested on the menu, so you’ll have to be sneaky with your Instagram pictures — or just forget the photos and enjoy the presence of the company you’re with in such a pleasant environment.