City, O' City is a community café serving vegetarian and vegan fare, much of it local, for friends and family around downtown Denver. Commence morning mealtime with a cup of Pablo's on 6th coffee and a fried banana-bread PB&J ($4.25), which, like a denim skort, incorporates two independently enticing entities into one awesome conglomeration. The appetizer menu features favorites such as meat-free seitan wings ($8) and a Mediterranean pesto plate, a hodge-podge of hummus, basil pesto, olives, pepperoncini, marinated eggplant, french fries, and flat bread ($12). City, O' City is lauded for its pizzas, which can be made gluten-free and vegan upon request. The Florentine ($10 for 10", $22 for 18") is a classic mixture of olive oil, spinach, mushrooms, roma tomatoes, fresh rosemary, and three cheeses and is so delicious that it may inspire diners to don their finest Dante mask and script an epic poem about the human soul struggling to ascend circle after circle of cheese and sauce.
Colorado Ballet's production of Peter Pan jolts J.M. Barrie's beloved tale to life with a dazzling celebration of childhood imagination. During each performance, members of the Colorado Children's Chorale unify their voices with the show's original orchestral score, accompanying Peter, Tinker Bell, and the rest of the cherished gang as they perform spellbinding aerial feats and complete their tax returns while dangling from wires. Elegant costumes and elaborate backdrops work with the story's imaginative choreography to further captivate theatergoers, who absorb the on-stage rebellion against gravity, as well as an air of grandeur inside the Ellie Caulkins Opera House, which was reopened in 2005 after extensive remodeling. At 2.5 hours in length, Peter Pan productions will also feature two 20-minute intermissions apiece, and can be enjoyed by any child capable of appreciating full-length films or prolonged jury deliberations.
At Beauty Bar, purple-and-white checkered floors, a disco ball, and other retro-themed decor transports cocktail hour back to the ’70s. While guests sip on martinis and other cocktails, glamour technicians beautify nails with express manicures, topping nails with long-lasting polish instead of melted-down fishing lures. The vintage saloon stays open until 2 a.m., allowing guests to flaunt their freshly dazzling nails on the dance floor during DJ nights like the hip-hop ladies night or Friday dance parties.
With owners transplanted from the Emerald Isle, Katie Mullen's Irish Restaurant and Bar is riddled with authentic Irish flourishes. The furniture, for example, was all imported from Nugent and Gibney Ltd in Ireland. Up to 500 people gather around the hand-carved tables, feasting on Icelandic cod battered with Harp Lager and burgers crowned with corned beef. Kathleen St. John of the Denver Post notes that the selection of food stands out among a sea of Irish pubs: “Katie Mullen's menu is intensely Irish, but that doesn't mean bland corned beef and cabbage.” In the kitchen, chefs combine diced lamb, veal demi-glace, and fresh herbs in slowly roiling pots of irish stew.
The fare fills the 11,500-square-foot interior with revelry, the clatter of silverware reverberating through four themed rooms: the Victorian bar, the Shop bar, the Pharmacy bar, and the Gaelic bar. Lights dangle from marbled and copper-paneled ceilings, and dark-wood and stone accents surround diners in each room. The same stonework, along with curlicues of wrought iron, warms in the sun around the large outdoor patio. On the weekends, live musicians strum their guitars and rock through ballads about how many pairs of sunglasses you should be wearing.
Scriprov sends two venerable comedic traditions colliding together in shows that catch the cast off guard as much as the audience. In each vignette, a cadre of actors runs straight through a scene before substituting one of their own with an improviser who hasn't seen the script, forcing the new arrival to hold his or her own with spur-of-the-moment dialogue and the constantly repeated mantra that this is not just a terrifying dream. Denver-based Dishwater Blondes supplies the evening’s ad-libbers while a collection of Avenue-affiliated actors play the scenes’ straight men. Conceived by erstwhile street performer Dave Shirley, Rattlebrain has been characterized as "ridiculous, inventive and yet oddly old-school fun" by the Denver Post. Combining the veteran funnyman’s myriad oddball talents, the show segues effortlessly from shadow puppetry to juggling to deliberately awkward bits of music and ventriloquism.