First Look

First Look: Honor Society Handcrafted Eatery to Open in August

With the success of LoHi pork palace Old Major, the focus on chef-owner Justin Brunson's career of late has been on his haute cuisine, so much so that it's easy to forget his Denver debut as a restaurateur: a humble, counter-service sandwich shop called Masterpiece Delicatessen. There are two of those now, quietly chugging along and serving some of Denver's best lunchtime bites on bread while Old Major hogs the prime-time spotlight. But Brunson's not content to rest easy with three eateries; he's been busy this summer, and the result, Honor Society Handcrafted Eatery, will combine the best of the chef's two worlds: impeccably sourced, farm-fresh ingredients worthy of Old Major's kitchen, and a quick-service model that captures the deli's laid-back vibe. Honor Society is expected to open in mid-August in the warren of new office buildings that have mushroomed up between Union Station and the Millennium Bridge.

Honor Society is the result of a partnership between Brunson, Jonas Tempel, Rob Alvarado and Ian Smith, who all have extensive restaurant and brand-management experience. The resulting collaboration is a sleek yet comfortable space with a high-tech ordering system and fast-casual counter service supplemented by a full-service bar and softened by rustic textures and upcycled elements.

Brunson calls the concept "fast fine" and says it will feature high-quality meats and seasonal produce sourced with the same rigor as it is at Old Major. He also points out that nutritional breakdowns will be available for all menu items, as the focus will be on healthy eating, with dishes like cedar-plank salmon, grilled flank steak and gluten-free fried chicken with a chia-seed crust for dinner, and acai bowls, organic yogurt parfaits and fruit smoothies for breakfast. Flatbreads and sandwiches will round out the lunch and dinner offerings.

Honor Society will be open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner, with hours from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. and menu items priced at $8 to $14. Keep reading for more food and interior photos.

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Mark Antonation is the former Westword Food & Drink Editor. In 2018, he was named Outstanding Media Professional by the Colorado Restaurant Association; he's now with the Colorado Restaurant Foundation.
Contact: Mark Antonation