The space, a former dry cleaners, was scooped up by Josh Epps and Christina Smith, life and business partners from San Francisco who relocated to Denver eight years ago, only to encounter a dearth of morning glory grub. "When we moved here, we were really disappointed with the lack of breakfast joints in our neighborhood. The first Snooze was opening up right around that time, and WaterCourse was close to where we lived, but there wasn't much else, so we started thinking about opening our own place," explains Epps, a former jeweler.
Smith, on the other hand, has roots in the restaurant business. "I was a line cook in high school and college, but Christina's parents have a restaurant in California, just outside Fresno, so she really brings the background," says Epps, adding that he and Christina searched for a year and half to find the the ideal address. "We drove by this space, which had been abandoned, and jumped on it, because it's in a really up-and-coming neighborhood."
The menu, notes Epps, will lean toward contemporary comfort food, taking homespun breakfast staples and giving them refined twists. "We're going after a California cuisine concept, whereby everything is fresh, scratch-made as much as possible and seasonal," says Epps. "We're making all of our own jellies, smoking all of our own meats, including the corned beef for the hash and turkey for the lunch sandwiches, and even making our peanut butter in house."
And, if that weren't enough, Epps and Smith are also baking pies, doing doughnuts to order and erecting both a cold cereal bar -- and a cereal shrine. "It's kind of goofy, but I've been collecting cereal boxes for years, and they're still intact, so we're framing them in Plexiglas and putting them on the walls," says Epps, who's got a stash of boxes, some full, that includes everything from the Gremlins and Terry the Tiger to Mr. T.
Jelly will open at 6:30 a.m. on New Year's Day and every day thereafter, serving breakfast and lunch and pouring Blood Mary's and mimosas daily until 3 p.m. "We're really excited, and so far, there's been great buzz in the neighborhood, with people poking their heads into the restaurant to find out when we're opening," says Epps.
Not soon enough.
For additional info, call 303-831-6301.