What: An upscale restaurant without upscale prices that offers a Swedish spin on brunch
Where: The Golden Triangle, 43 W Ninth Avenue, between Acoma and Broadway
When: Saturday-Sunday 9am-2pm
You’ve Got to Try: The five-course tasting menu for $15 filled with a varying selection of brunch favorites like French Toast as well as traditional Swedish items like Potato Pancakes served with House Smoked Salmon.
Charcoal is bringing something different to the Denver dining scene, and their surprisingly crowd-free brunch is a great way to get acquainted with this European-influenced eatery. From the smokeless charcoal used in their custom-made Bincho grill to their rooftop garden filled with fresh ingredients and the impressive wine case separating the open dining room from the bar, Charcoal is innovative and elegant. The brunch menu is filled with traditional Swedish dishes as well as the usual brunch suspects all created by Swedish-born Executive Chef Patrik Landberg. To ease the decision-making, go for the brunch tasting menu. For $15 you get to sample five courses (offerings change daily).
Tucked away off busy Broadway, Charcoal’s front patio is a great spot to relax, or snag one of the comfy booths window-side where you can soak in the summer sun in the comfort of air conditioning. The servers at Charcoal are excited to share about what makes this cuisine special, so get the rundown on the tasting menu and don’t be afraid to take drink recommendations. The Colorado Coffee spiked with chipotle-infused vodka packed a caffeinated kick and the chipotle gave it a savory quality that pairs perfectly with the food.
The highlight of Charcoal’s brunch is the Swedish selections. Each dish is something unique and not available at most of Denver’s brunch spots. The Potato Pancakes were a trip back to my childhood. Light and crispy, they paired perfectly with the flaky House-Smoked Salmon served alongside. Traditional hash is elevated with the Short Rib Hash featuring oh-so-tender short ribs and potatoes in a flavorful gravy with pickled beets on the side for an acidic bite. The light and airy Swedish Pancakes served with tangy lingonberry preserve are a great option for those who like subtle sweetness.
One stand-out dish was the Open Face Beef Sliders. Juicy beef patties are served on flaky brioche with a creamy, subtle mustard sauce and caramelized onions and finished with perfectly over-easy eggs perched atop. The home fries served alongside come with zucchini, onions and peppers, or try the decadent Duck Fat Fries instead. Classic brunch favorites are also available, like the Eggs Benedict served with Canadian bacon, smooth hollandaise and shaved asparagus. The Summer Waffles are a treat with strawberry couli, a divine white chocolate and espresso mousse and chocolate pieces for an extra sweet finish.
If you’re like me and you find yourself craving more after brunch, Charcoal also has their own restaurant week planned for August 5-11. For $29 per person, diners can enjoy a three course dinner filled with gourmet European selections. An upscale restaurant without any pretention, Charcoal is a great brunch spot for food made with care, attentive service, and a classy yet relaxed experience without the crowds.