Many were saddened by what seemed like a fairly abrupt closure of the popular South Broadway breakfast joint Morning Collective. This Thursday, May 9, owner Zach Stock and head of operations Cherish Devereaux — the same people behind the a.m. eatery — are resurrecting a new restaurant inside the same space. A taco joint. The taco joint will take much of what made the now-departed eatery great, raising each existing endeavor to new heights.
Dubbed Huevos Tacos, the new concept takes full advantage of the small kitchen, relying on a prep-heavy menu designed with convenience in mind. The comfortable seating, elaborately carved bull skulls and flashes of exposed brick nicely transform the old space into a rustic-chic dining room fit for the new cuisine. Bolstered by reinterpretations of favorites from the old menu, Devreaux has created something truly compelling in a town where great tacos are not hard to find.
The name, originating from Stock’s innocent desire to support a breakfast-heavy menu, only morphed into the current tongue-in-cheek version after the graphic designer — boasting a greater knowledge of Spanish slang — presented the logo. The upscale, fast-casual counter service is augmented by delivery through GrubHub, furthering the place’s ease of use to an almost reckless degree.
The tacos are not cheap, but the colossal, generously laden fried flour tortillas are not much smaller than the average adult’s face. Celebrating the restaurant’s name, the Rocky Mountain Oyster taco ($6.95) is fried strips of cojones, fried pickles, charred slaw and ancho aioli. While the taco favors the bold, it might be one of the more gentle and tastier introductions to the prairie delicacy. Most of the menu is not nearly so outlandish — several steak and chicken options, brisket, pulled pork, shrimp, veggie and short rib are all given an elegant treatment. Thankfully, Morning Collective’s famous tots are revived both as an individual side ($5.95), and totchchos ($8.95) — a robust plate of the crispy spuds covered with pork green chili, queso, candied jalapenos and scallions. A breakfast version ($7.95) topped with a fried egg is equally delightful.
The menu features a whopping 10 different breakfast tacos, all of which incorporate the same decadent attention to detail Devereaux brought to Morning Collective. The bacon taco ($4.95) comes with egg, cheese and a three-pepper jam that magnifies the strips’ already splendid sweetness. Standard breakfast meats are all in attendance, with short rib, pulled pork, brisket and veggie rounding out the available options. A variety of hearty benedicts solidify the breakfast menu. All the tacos — both breakfast and otherwise — are available gluten-free, with quinoa and green salad both present for a small upcharge.
The compact list of drink options is equally bold despite its simplicity. The blackberry sage marg ($10) is Sauza Blue Reposado, muddled blackberries, fresh sage, house sour mix and blackberry ice cubes. The Sobo ($13) is Milagro silver tequila, Mentelobos mezcal, cucumber, jalapeno and tomatillo. Favorites from the former menu including the hard horchata iced latte ($8) fill out the breakfast cocktail and agave-heavy list.
For anyone disappointed by Morning Collective’s sudden disappearance, don’t fret. Huevos Tacos outshines its predecessor — proving Devereaux’s versatility and sophistication across cuisines.
2160 South Broadway, Denver. It is open Sunday through Thursday 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Friday and Saturday 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., with the possibility of staying open later each night if the place remains crowded.
All photography by Alden Bonecutter.