Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Denver Trip Report: Part 2

After touching down in Denver, looking at the spooky mural, and hooking up with John and Nancy (see Part 1) it was now time to move on to the important task at hand. Finding breakfast. Especially considering it was now around 11 AM, I'd been up since 2 AM, and my stomach was full of nothing but coffee, Fig Newtons and stale airplane air.

Over the years John and I have had some great eating experiences together, whether we're talking cheap grub at Don's House of Polish Sausage in Tulsa (sadly, no more), a truly great steak at The Rusty Barrell (sic) in their hometown of Ponca City (OK), the heaping Farmhouse Omelet at The New Englander Diner in Danbury (CT), or the award-winning BBQ from Head Country, also in Ponca City. So I knew that despite the unfamiliar setting and his recent surgery, they'd already have the lay of the land and know a place or two for some good eats.

I was not disappointed by Le Peep, which despite its borderline-too-cutesy Frenchie name serves up a mean breakfast. Forewarned that it was a chain, I was surprised to see how far-reaching Le Peep's coverage was... predominantly located in the midwest they also have establishments in Florida, North Carolina and New Jersey (good to note for future road trips). With a menu that sticks to breakfast, brunch and lunch, Le Peep knows what it does well and stays the course.

After browsing the hefty, multi-page menu featuring a handful of insufferable puns ("Get Benaddicted" screamed one headline, "The Great 'Lite' Way" another suggested as a destination) I was able to narrow my choices down to a handful of colorfully-named dishes: the Drifter (potatoes, veggies, 'shrooms, onions, cheese, eggs); Gypsy (ham, onions, 'shrooms, cheese & eggs); or, Desperado (potatoes, chorizo, green chilies, onions, salsa, combo cheese and something called "basted eggs" which turned out to be like poached eggs).

With names like that and Hobo (a Drifter, hold everything but the onions, presumably because hoboes have less money than drifters) I half expected to see NBC's Chris Hanson picture on the menu touting the all-new Predator featuring Virgin-ia baked ham.

While I pondered those real – and imaginary – choices I also pinpointed something I knew I would not be having: The Philly, a lunch sandwich featuring lean roast beef, sauteed mushrooms, onions and bell peppers, melted mozzarella cheese and grilled Panini flat bread. While the menu proclaimed it to be "A real Philly treat!" I have a long-standing rule about such sandwiches. If you're not within 30 miles of William Penn's hat atop City Hall do not order anything with the words "Philly" or "Steak Sandwich" in it. Especially if it features roast beef.

While that rule would be put to the test later that day (see Part 3 coming tomorrow), I decided on the Desperado (seen above... Ole!), JT went with the ethnically-oriented Blarney Skillet (potatoes, corned beef, bell peppers, onions, rosemary & Hollandaise!), and Nancy stayed true red-white-and-blue by having the Lumberjack, a heaping helping of eggs, bacon, sausage, potatoes and pancakes.

Hungry as I was I'm guessing almost anything would have hit the spot, but I was actually quite pleased with the Desperado, thanks to a nice kick courtesy of the chorizo, chilies and salsa. It was just what I needed to fill me up and snap me out of the air travel-induced haze that had settled in during our ride from the airport to breakfast.

With breakfast in our rearview mirror and a destination dinner in our future, it was the perfect time to head to the condo and take a load off.


1 comment:

JT said...

Since your trip, we've discovered the real jewel of Denver breakfast: Pete's. Pete's Greek is about as close to a Jersey diner as you'll find without the big hair and 15 year old Firebirds in the employee parking. We've only hit one of his four locations so far, but suffice to say there wasn't a bit of hyperbole in the name "Super Breakfast Burrito". Even sis-in-law Dana, notorious for splitting her meal into a to-go box upon delivery to the table, wolfed down the huge helping of thick cut bacon, eggs, manhole cover sized panckes, and hash browns to bring a tear to your eye. Pete's has been voted "Best Breakfast" in the area numerous times, and it only takes one visit to see why.