The motto for the city of Denver should be: Come to Denver for our Seitan Wings! Vegan wings—be them seitan, mock chicken or cauliflower—have come a long long way these past few years. Through those years I’ve made the pleasant effort to consume as many as possible. I’m thrilled to say that the Seitan Wings ($10 / $5 Happy Hour) at City, O City are THE BEST I’ve ever had up to this point. A heaping slab—I’d say at least a pound—of chewy house-made setian is sliced and fried in a crisp batter creating ‘wings’ with a gristly interior and crackling-like exterior. The texture even holds true after a night in the fridge… yes, they are still crispy the next day. They come slathered in a choice of BBQ or Buffalo Sauce. While I normally order buffalo anything, on this occasion I gave in to my BF’s pleas for BBQ after nearly burned his face off with Buffalo Tigers at Vertical Diner. He was a fan of the sauce. I found the BBQ overly sweet and less smokey than I prefer, but there is nothing inherently wrong with that. No matter what I thought of the sauce, it could not mask the perfect execution of these seitan wings.
The service at City, O City feels slow. But sitting at the kitchen bar we could see the action never let up. Pans were flash flying, tickets were printing and the mellow dude at the salad/waffle station never broke a beat. Watching him jump back and forth between stainless steel bowls and waffle iron, it was hard to choose which station I wanted him to jump on for me. I almost ordered the Chilled Rice Noodle Salad (seen being made here) except that day’s special waffle had my name all over it: Yes, my name is Nacho Waffle ($12)! This is part of the W.O.W series, an ever changing delight of unexpected Waffle Of the Week. The gluten free Black Bean Waffle comes topped with Vegan Cheese Sauce, Pico de Gallo, Chili Tortilla Strips and Coconut Cilantro Sour Cream. Conceptually, I loved it. Consuming it, I found myself wishing for a contracting texture—such as jalapenos, olives or radishes—to cut through the similar sour cream and cheese sauces. The Kimchi and “Sausage” Torta ($12 / $5 Happy Hour) sounded amazing: Fig/apricot/barley patty with pickle relish, mayo and house-made kimchi. What I got was a un-fruity black patty, finely chopped mild pickles and a generic sandwich roll saturated with too much mayo. Although we arrive around 2pm on a weekday, presumably after the lunch rush, City, O City was packed. This also put us into Happy Hour (2pm-6pm and 11pm-close, 7 Days a week) where popular items are only $5 for full sized portions. But all hours at City, O City appear to be happy. We chilled by to this nifty window planter for 20 minutes waiting of a table—any wait for those Seitan Wings is happy indeed.
City O’ City
206 East 13th Avenue
Denver, CO 80203