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Zaidy’s Deli

Before they got smart and brought Zaidy's back downtown -- the original deli had opened on 14th Street almost two decades ago before hightailing it to Cherry Creek in 1992 -- the owners filled this space in Writer Square with Max Burgerworks, an upscale, overpriced burger joint that was out of date even before it opened. But as a second outlet for Zaidy's, it's exactly the sort of spot I'm thinking of when I wonder why anyone would go to Snooze (see review) for a weekday breakfast or lunch when so many other options abound. As a matter of fact, Zaidy's is where I ended up two weeks ago, when, due to the crush of youthful and vigorous early-morning drinkers crowding Snooze's front door, I could barely negotiate the sidewalk, let alone squeeze inside. Nine blocks away at Zaidy's, though, I was able to settle behind a big plate of potato latkes, a pot of coffee and a knish and get down to the very serious business of having breakfast. The menu here is the same as at the Cherry Creek location, and the service of a similarly friendly, patient and slightly flustered style. But in this joint on the edge of LoDo, you can eat your Nova lox and capers, your kippers and eggs, your salami, egg and onion pancake in a subterranean space the color of fruit sherbet, in a deep, comfortable booth with a view, mostly, of sidewalk. I've never loved the meatloaf at either Zaidy's (too much onion) and I've had mixed luck with the blintzes, but that still leaves fifty or more menu items that this kitchen does very well. And that's more than enough for me.

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