Best of Denver

Denver's ten best brunches

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10. Snooze When Snooze first hit the Ballpark neighborhood five years ago, it revolutionized breakfast in the Mile High City. The most important meal of the day became one of the most creative meals of the day, with flights of pancakes, re-imagined omelets and Benedicts, and a morning-themed alcoholic beverage list. Snooze nicely filled a niche that Denver hadn't even recognized existed at the time, and the niche keeps growing, as evidenced by Snooze's expansions into other parts of this city and beyond, where the restaurant continues to draw huge crowds willing to endure monstrous waits. 9. Gaia Bistro Located in a quirky bungalow with a stunning patio on Old South Pearl, this charming spot floats a raft of breakfast and lunch options that change with the seasons, incorporating produce from Gaia's own garden when available. We adore the Benedicts, baked eggs and quiches, but we're especially enamored of the crepes, both sweet and savory. As a bonus, Gaia landed a liquor license this year, which means you can pair your choices with a Bloody Mary AND a French press of coffee. 8. Jelly You'll fight hordes of Capitol Hill hipsters to land a table at Jelly, which has boasted a weekend wait time of at least a half an hour since the place opened in early 2011. But once you make it through the crush and get a table, you'll forget your wait woes as you savor donut bites injected with housemade jam, Bhakti chai French toast, salmon Benedict and creative twists on biscuits and gravy. And don't miss the homemade drop biscuits -- just the thing to slather with Jelly's housemade seasonal jelly. A side of thick bacon is recommended, too. Still have jittery nerves? Calm 'em with booze in your coffee or a red beer.
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Laura Shunk was Westword's restaurant critic from 2010 to 2012; she's also been food editor at the Village Voice and a dining columnist in Beijing. Her toughest assignment had her drinking ten martinis and eating ten Caesar salads over the course of 48 hours. She still drinks martinis, but remains lukewarm on Caesar salads.
Contact: Laura Shunk