Ophelia’s was the last of the restaurants from the Edible Beats Group that we had yet to try. And now we have completed the L.O.V.E.R.’s list of five, at least Janet, Bob, Larry and I have. A Trip To Linger; The Birthday Party Mike, Lauren, Marc and Wendy all have some catching up to do. We have all volunteered to help them along on their journey too. 🙂

The L.O.V.E.R.’s restaurants are:

L – Linger – formerly Olinger’s Mortuary

O – Ophelia’s – former brothel

V – Vital Root – vegetarian restaurant with plants growing on the walls

E – El Five – you have to take the elevator to the 5th floor to get to the restaurant

R – Root Down – former gas station

Each of these restaurants is truly unique. Their buildings all have an interesting story too. Ophelia’s has always had a colorful past, once being a brothel in 1894. Then it was turned into a peepshow place, and then an adult video library. Today it is a restaurant, bar and entertainment venue. Today it is known as a restaurant with delicious food and a sexy vibe. It is also still operating as a hostel and a hotel on the upper floors.

Larry and I had visited Ophelia’s before, as part of Open Doors Denver, that is a walking tour of interesting and unique buildings in Denver, but we had never eaten there before, until now.

We went in celebration of both Bob and Wendy’s birthdays and Mother’s Day. There were eight of us who were enjoying this unique dining experience together – Marc, Wendy, Mike, Lauren, Bob, Janet and Larry and I.

As you would expect with a restaurant with such a colorful past, the decor inside was just as colorful and unique. Because this is a family friendly post, there are some pictures that I can’t share, but the displays of it’s wild past are still present today too. The bathrooms were all decorated with old, colorful yard sticks. I just love how creatively repurposed everything is. It just goes to show that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.

As always, when we get a big group together, we sampled many delicious and interesting dishes. We started off with a variety of different appetizers that we all took a few bites of as they were passed around the table. We all nibbled on the fried cornbread with marmalade,

grilled plantains with cilantro pesto,

giant pretzels with cheese sauce,

and cheese curds with fried pickles.

There was just enough for all of us to try a little bit of everything, without filling up too much before our entrees came. Which was a good thing, because the portions are huge.

Janet and I each had a tropical drink made with blue curacao.

After the nibblies, it was time for the main courses to come. They were just as varied as the appetizers.

We had two kinds of pizza,

a risotto salad,

a snow salad,

chicken fried chicken topped with a fried egg,

and some crispy chicken sandwiches scattered around the table.

As you can see, the portions are large, but when everyone is sharing little bits of this and that, and food is being passed around the table, it all disappears quickly. We were all having a good time, swapping fun stories and lots of laughs too.

You would think with all this good food we would be totally full. And we were too, but that didn’t stop us from getting a couple of desserts as well. We were, after all, celebrating. The desserts too were passed around, so no one was eating them all by themselves. We enjoyed the churros with caramel sauce and the apple pie ice cream cookie.

At the end of the evening we were all very full and very satisfied. We all shared a lot of good food, a lot of good laughs and a lot of fun friendships and love. It was definitely a fun evening.

Ophelia’s is located at 1215 20th Street, Denver, CO. I would definitely call for reservations, either for dinner, especially if in a group, or for the entertainment. Their number is (303) 993-8023. You will definitely be in for a truly unique evening, filled with all kinds of unexpected pleasures.

Life is always lived best when shared with friends. Stay safe and stay well. ‘Til next time.


Author: ajeanneinthekitchen

I have worked in the restaurant and catering industry for over 35 years. I attended 2 culinary schools in Southern California, and have a degree in culinary arts from the Southern California School of Culinary Arts, as well as a few other degrees in other areas. I love to cook and I love to feed people.

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