You may remember in my last post that my hopes of a Friday night out on the town in Denver with my husband had been dashed by a blizzard named Virgil.
Instead of dining at one of the area’s many vegan-friendly restaurants, we were eating nachos on paper plates and watching television.
The next morning a peek out the window revealed Virgil was still giving us the cold, icy shoulder. The parking lot and roads were covered in heaps of snow. On television they were talking about road closures and flight cancellations.
We’d planned on traveling to Boulder that day, but instead we knew we’d need to stay close to the hotel.
Fortuitously, the hotel had a hot tub and pool. There was a movie theatre just next door, and there was a grocery store down the street, where we’d gone the night before.
When lunchtime hit, we plodded through the snow to the car. David scraped at the windows until the scraper broke. It was no match for the thick sheet of ice covering them.
As we ventured down the hill to the Sprouts parking lot, we realized there were more options in the area than we’d been able to see through the sleet and snow the night before.
Just a few doors down from Sprouts in the same parking lot was Modmarket, a fast casual eatery.
The restaurant is of the order-at-the-counter variety. But the options are far better than your typical fast food fare with brick oven pizzas, salads, sandwiches, and soups.
All of the vegan items on the menu were marked with a V. Additionally, at the counter they have a book of all of the menu items and their ingredients to double-check on any animal products.
On their website, they also list the components in each item, which are clickable for further clarification. (Note that not all of the vegan options are listed in the “vegan” tab.)
The restaurant was brightly lit, airy, and clean. The atmosphere was relaxed.
Almost immediately we decided that if we enjoyed lunch, we’d be back again for dinner that night (assuming that the weather hadn’t improved by then).
We both ordered a Crimini Kale pizza, which is vegan by default. No need to order it cheeseless. It already comes that way.
(Be aware that the gluten-free crust is not vegan.)
I added avocado to my pie, and when it arrived, we were both blown away. The pizzas were littered in copious amounts of fresh kale, which had not been sautéed ahead of time, but was instead slightly crisp from its turn in the brick oven.
Like a bed of crispy kale chips on a pizza, it was then topped with roasted crimini mushrooms and onions on a red sauce.
The thick edge of the crust was soft and pillowy with a charred top, and the inside was thin, similar to a New York-style pizza.
At the soda station (where they serve only natural, non-HFCS sodas ), they also had a variety of hot sauces.
Hot sauce is my condiment of choice. (Here are my three top hot sauces.) I eagerly put dollops onto each bite of avocado and kale, pinching the thin pizza like New Yorkers always do in movies.
Because the crust was on the thin side, I was amazed when we both polished off our pizzas, one eager bite at a time.
We grabbed a menu to plot our dinner foray and headed to the movie theatre to watch Oz The Great and Powerful. After some 3D adventures and a dip in the hot tub, we checked out the weather report. It was still advising not traveling if possible.
So we headed back down to Modmarket for a relaxed dinner.
We both ordered the organic tofu, which came with a choice of sides. For sides, the smashed potatoes, brown rice pilaf, and salad are all vegan.
At the time of our visit, the roasted vegetable option, broccoli, was also vegan. But they said that option changes throughout the season, and that the roasted asparagus is served with parmesan.
The local organic tofu was seasoned with black pepper and spices and seared. The tofu was softer and wetter than I prefer. It could have been improved by a good pressing and/or using extra firm tofu.
Otherwise, the coating of spices on the exterior was a delightfully different touch.
I had the smashed potatoes and roasted broccoli.
The potatoes were rustic with chunks of potato amidst creamier portions. The potatoes and broccoli were oilier and saltier than I’d typically prefer. But honestly, on this frigid night, I was feeling blessed by my wealth choices!
(By the way, there’s also a curry split pea soup on the menu, which is vegan. It sounds like a good option if you should ever be snow-bound in the area as well!)
The prices were incredibly reasonable, especially for the quality of food. I would happily eat at Modmarket again, even if there was no snow on the ground!
And man, I wish I had easy access to one of their kale pizzas in my town! I’d be there every week.
There are several Modmarket locations throughout the state, as well as one at the Denver Airport.