The Southern inspiration at Julep comes from a big swath of the U.S., from the Mid-Atlantic to the Mississippi Delta. Among other regions, Cajun and Creole influences have appeared on chef/owner Kyle Foster's dinner menu, and now he's serving lunch New Orleans-style, too.
The new lunch menu, served from 11 a.m. until the sandwiches run out every Wednesday through Friday, even has its own name: Pirate Alley Po' Boys, named for a narrow passageway in the Big Easy's French Quarter. The roster is simple — just three po' boys built on crusty bread from City Bakery and filled with either shrimp, smoked turkey or roast beef debris (a classic, gravy-laden New Orleans sandwich filling); an entree-sized salad with shaved root vegetables; and a deep-fried hand pie that Foster calls the Pirate Pocket.
The Pirate Pocket is the result of Foster's travels in the South as well as in Japan, where he encountered kare pan, a deep-fried hand pie coated in breadcrumbs and filled with curry. The chef replaces curry with Julep's house gumbo — rich with tasso ham and pork trotter — and uses enough panko breadcrumbs to form a solid, crunchy shell around the soft bread-dough pocket. A side of pickled green beans adds a tangy, garlicky punch.
Each table is set with a roll of paper towels (that Pirate Pocket can get a little messy), a bottle of Crystal hot sauce and a shaker of "sandwich sprinkles," a blend of benne seeds, Korean chile flakes and nutritional yeast. Sweet tea and Kool-Aid are available to drink, and the bar is open during lunch for beers and cocktails. In fact, customers who order a lunchtime cocktail can plunder a miniature pirate's chest for a take-home trinket.
Julep's bar is now set up so that customers can order and pay for lunch, take a number and grab a table or a bar stool. Once warm weather returns, you'll be able to order directly through the roll-up window on the patio. Julep is located at 3250 Larimer Street. For more details, call 303-295-8977 or visit the restaurant's website.
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