The art of fine food fast begins and ends with the deli. This concept is being constantly challenged, innovated and evolved. From hot dogs to hamburgers to tortas, tuna poke and cold cuts, quality food quick has taken many forms in the past—at the turn of the century the gourmet deli is at its peak. We like the idea behind quality food quick because it offers all the makings of a sit down restaurant at the speed of our busy lives. Delicatessen and the concept of the gourmet food fast isn’t exactly an entirely new concept, Masterpiece Deli in LoHi and Backcountry Delicatessen in LoDo have been serving up high quality subs for years, but there is a new kid on the block.
LoHi is home to Brider — the younger sister of the neighboring Acorn at the restaurant conglomerate The Source, as well as Oak restaurant in Boulder. The name Brider comes from a French word meaning “to truss” or to bind meat using string or twine. The establishment sports a Rotisol rotisserie pit imported from France which is geared to roast up to 36 full sized chickens at once. Although the restaurant offers other rotisserie options — including porchetta and lamb leg — the herbed chicken really hits a high note. Brider’s infamous bird is available in several preparations on the restaurant’s core menu and it frequently makes appearances on the blackboard specials list in the evening.
Bone-in herb rubbed half-chicken ($18) showcases the concept behind Brider bite by bite in the flavors are well developed and reflect the time, love and thoughtfulness spent on preparation. The bird is moist and tender in body and crisp and golden in presentation. My go-to style is the lemon and chili wilted kale. In this variation the dish comes served with roasted fingerling potatoes and a chicken jus. The chicken jus is a rendered thick chicken sauce that makes an already juicy chicken dish that much more mouth watering. To complete the look the 1/2 chicken comes garnished with colorful watermelon radishes that really make the food jump off the plate.
The roasted chicken bahn mi ($13) is the sandwich to have. The same rotisserie style chicken is hand shredded and arranged between a hoagie roll baked by Grateful Bread Company. The flakey crunch of the bread is accompanied by a lively snap of pickled carrots and cucumbers which gives great textural balance to the dish. A generous amount of pâté aïoli adds a rich dimension to the chicken that pairs fantastically with the ornamental tonic ($10). This asian inspired gin and tonic fuses five spice and yuzu to create an interesting spin on a classic. This tangy cocktail pairs wonderfully with the acidic fatty flavors of the roasted chicken and pâté aïoli.
Brider is serving fine foods at a fast pace but with finite attention to detail. The rotisserie chicken makes for a great lunch or dinner but the menu has much more to boast about. Well executed breakfast, soups and salads supplement the rotisserie options at this LoHi gem. Partners Steve Redzikowski and Bryan Dayton have designed a food and beverage menu that is accessible, quick and delicious with the thoughtfulness and attention to detail that is found at high end diners like The Acorn.
Brider Rotisserie Kitchen. 1644 Platte St., Denver, Open 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily
All photography by Andrew Horton.