Last Friday, after months of delays (read: back-and-forth with the city about this, that and the other), Rod Dupen and his business partner John Power, opened their third Waffle Brothers in Uptown. And unlike the Waffle Brothers in Alamo Placita, or their kiosk in Boulder, this third waffle incarnation, which they're calling Waffle Brothers Pub Style, has a wine-and-beer license and a huge, foliage-flush beer garden in which to knock back a brew from a proper list that includes Left Hand Milk Stout, Glider cider, Prost kilsh and Dale's Pale Ale.
The 49-seat, two-level space, bedecked with creaky hardwood floors, large windows that peer over the shaded patio and furnishings that you'd expect to find in a stately Victorian, is comprised of four separate rooms, including a lounge area, but the garden, says Dupen, is what sold him and Power. "We've always wanted to do a beer garden, and we put a lot of time into the landscaping, which is shaping up to be a beautiful place to drink a beer and have some really good food," says Dupen, who hired Anton Montgomery, a former catering pro, to oversee the menu, which now includes buttermilk-fried chicken and waffles, chicken wings, burgers and Australian meat pies, a Monday-only special that's representative of Dupen's Australian upbringing.
"We want to bring the food up to another level, and we wanted someone with a creative mind, so while the Australian meat pies are all mine, Anton is the kitchen guy, and we're leaving it up to him to put his own touches on the menu," says Dupen, noting that Montgomery is the kind of chef who "can innovative elements to the menu that supersede us."
For his part, Montgomery, who worked at Gourmet Fine Catering and Three Tomatoes, admits that he's enamored with the concept. "I love the waffles here, and I love that everything is so simple and straightforward," he says. "These are the real deal -- authentic Belgian waffles -- and my idea is to build around those waffles," he notes, revealing that he'll add things like green chile waffle "bites" in the future, a nod to his New Mexico roots. "There are a million things you can do with the waffle -- they're the ideal vessel for everything -- and while I don't want to reinvent the wheel, I'm going to play around a little bit and do some more savory dishes, especially at dinner."
Waffle Brothers Pub Style is open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday and from 7 a.m. to midnight Thursday through Saturday. And if you're one of those zealots who's obsessed with chicken and waffles, I highly recommend that you reserve storage space in your gut for these; they're excellent.
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