Welton Street Café is a light, spacious, casual restaurant, with lace curtains on the windows and art on the walls and tomatoes growing in the window box outside the Five Points Plaza side of the building. It is located right next to northbound light rail and specializes in southern and Caribbean cooking. When I stopped there for lunch a couple of weeks ago, after a visit to the Black American West Museum, three tables were full.
I sat down and read the menu and took pictures of it, which startled the staff a little, but they were nice about it after I explained I wanted to upload the menu to Urbanspoon’s Denver website.
I’ll bet the café fills up for lunch Wednesday through Friday for the lunch specials at the top of the menu: oxtails, ribs, brisket, curried chicken, shrimp Creole, smothered red steak, and liver and onions.
But I was there on Tuesday and decided to have a pate (described to me as a Caribbean pizza pocket) and a side of macaroni and cheese. (When the waitress brought it, she asked, “Are you going to take a picture of this too?” I said I was, and as you can see, I did.) The chicken pate was stuffed with sautéed chicken, broccoli, and cabbage. Although the pastry was a bit doughy on the inside, the pate was hot and the broccoli crisp all the way through. Toward the middle, I began to notice a little spice on the chicken pieces; the cabbage, which I think had been boiled or sautéed with onion beforehand, had a good firm texture.
But it was the macaroni and cheese I loved: it was blessedly simple. No mixture of strong cheeses here: as far as I could tell, it was a white sauce with cheddar, and maybe some Velveeta. (D Bar Desserts puts Velveeta in its mac, along with several other cheeses.)
There are 7 types of pate, from broccoli and cheese to beef and cheese to seafood. You can also order frybread for less than a dollar.
The sides include some southern staples such as fried okra and black-eyed peas and hush puppies, as well as black beans or red beans and rice, greens, onion rings, and coleslaw, all priced for less than $4. I was tempted by the peach cobbler, rum cake, and sweet potato pie (about $3 each), but they will have to wait until next time.