Drag performances and breakfast don't sound like two things that mesh well, but Ad Hominem defies standard brunch conventions when it hosts "Drag Me to Brunch" on the third Sunday of every month. We like to think of it as glam and eggs.
The show starts at 11:30 a.m., but get there a little earlier so you can grab a table and get set up with a drink. Ad Hominem's house cocktails follow the colors of the rainbow; I can personally vouch for the Red, made with vodka, strawberry and basil. My only problem with the drink was that it went down too quickly, so I switched to $15 bottomless mimosas for the rest of the show. The bar will also make you a bartender’s choice cocktail if you explain your preference of spirit and flavors, and they might even go as far as asking your favorite music genre, best memory and other personal details to create your drink.
Ad Hominem feels casual on a weekend morning, but I could see the place feeling a little more classy with the lights turned low at dinnertime. The service ware is particularly notable, with handmade plates in earthy tones and simple but beautiful patterns. Chef/owner Julian Kurz explains that the dishes were designed and created by a potter in New Jersey. "I love to have unique pieces, and I want everything here to be original," he says.
I snacked on some biscuits while I waited for the show to begin, and while I wouldn’t call them biscuits, they were definitely some flaky pastries. These were thinner than typical biscuits, so they didn’t have a fluffy center, but carried a rich, buttery flavor and came with whipped butter and housemade apple butter that had just the right amount of sweetness.
The two breakfast dishes we ordered, a tasso ham-and-egg skillet and a breakfast casserole, turned out to be rather similar, although both were good. Each came with scrambled eggs and a potato ingredient, the skillet with home fries along with cheddar cheese, peppers and ham, and the casserole with tots — a huge win — and mushrooms and scallions.
The drag show definitely upstaged the food, though. Starting with "Walking on Sunshine," the show also covered a spunky Ashlee Simpson number straight out of 2005, and a beautiful rendition of "Bohemian Rhapsody," which started with a serenade and morphed into something more outrageous when the artist tore off her wig and the bottom half of her dress, all of which kept us entertained.
After the show, Ad Hominem's host said goodbye to all the guests at the door, presenting everyone with little Mason jars filled with sour cherry pistachio granola, complete with a recipe to make more at home. The sweet and crunchy treat was a great way to take home a little piece of the restaurant. "I want people to have something at home that reminds them of the fun and creativity that Ad Hominem represents," Kurz explains, stating that everything is made from scratch and "the only thing we buy from Sysco is salt."
Ad Hominem opened last spring with a mission to be "by the people and for the people." Kurz adds that he and his team built the restaurant in less than sixty days after taking over the space that was previously Charcoal. “The front of house and back of house came together and used their combined skills to create this restaurant out of thin air,” he notes.
Ad Hominem is located at 43 West Ninth Avenue. Visit the restaurant's website or call 303-454-0000 for more information. Hot tip: Bring cash for brunch, because the queens walk around selling Jell-O shots! While drag brunch has been a once-a-month affair, beginning this Sunday, November 4, Ad Hominem is reintroducing its regular weekly brunch.
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