EAT // Summer 2019

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an epicurean experience - s u m m e r 2019 -

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EDITOR’S LETTER

VAIL DAILY PUBLISHER Mark Wurzer | mwurzer@vaildaily.com

EDITOR Wren Bova | wren@vaildaily.com

At the Table

ART DIRECTION & DESIGN Carly Arnold Creative | hello@carlyarnold.com

DINING HAS ALWAYS BEEN PART ENTERTAINMENT,

part sustenance. How easily dinner and a show can become, simply, dinner. And for some, we don’t just eat it. We read about it, think about it — getting as excited about the ideas as the flavors. Loving food is in my genes, so putting together EAT each season is both a joy and a torment. For weeks I look at largerthan-life delicacies on my computer monitor, read about our local chefs’ newest creations, and try to endure my cravings. It’s a job I’m very lucky to be able to do. Summer came late this year, but it finally arrived. There’s a palpable sense of joy on local menus as fresh fruits and veggies are, once again, abundant. We are still trending toward even more local products, with many chefs keeping their own gardens for their restaurant’s use. It’s an exciting time to be eating in the Vail Valley. Our mission at EAT is to capture the essence of a restaurant much like an illustrator does with a caricature. The restaurant owners ask us to come in and we do. We taste things, talk to the chef and then try to capture it in writing and photography. We do this every season, so that the information in these pages is as current as possible, reflecting today’s menus and inspirations. So read on and see what Eagle County’s considerable culinary talent is fired up about right now.

PHOTO EDITOR Dominique Taylor | taylordmedia@icloud.com

FOUNDER Mark Bricklin | brickvail@gmail.com

ADVERTISING SALES COORDINATOR Chelsea Rosenthal | crosenthal@vaildaily.com

ACCOUNT MANAGERS Sandie Aveil | saveil@vaildaily.com Carole Bukovich | cbukovich@vaildaily.com Danielle Chelette | dchelette@vaildaily.com Patrick Connolly | pconnolly@vaildaily.com Graham Danzoll | gdanzoll@vaildaily.com Meghan Scallen | mscallen@vaildaily.com Jennifer Wuebbolt | jwuebbolt@vaildaily.com

CONTRIBUTORS Kristin Anderson, Charles Townsend Bessent, Will Brendza, Katie Coakley, Krista Driscoll, Christopher Dillmann, Kim Fuller, Brenda Himelfarb, Heather Hower, Amy Kisielica, Traci J. Macnamara, Justin Q. McCarty, Kari Mohr, Kimberly Nicoletti, Melanie Smith, Melanie Wong

DESIGN MANAGER Afton Pospíšilová | apospisilova@cmnm.org

Happy EATing,

ADVERTISING DESIGN TEAM Carl Chiocca, Jordan Lugibihl, Madelyn Lybarger, Malisa Samsel

Wren Bova EDITOR

CIRCULATION MANAGER David Hakes | dhakes@vaildaily.com

SWIFT COMMUNICATIONS PRESIDENT Bob Brown | rbrown@swiftcom.com

COLORADO MOUNTAIN NEWS MEDIA GM Jim Morgan | jmorgan@cmnm.org

CMNM EAST ASSOCIATE GM Meg Boyer | mboyer@summitdaily.com

ON THE COVER: PHOTO BY KRISTIN ANDERSON An assortment of first courses at Vista at Arrowhead. From bottom left are tortillacrusted fried green tomatoes, beet salad, smoked artichoke salad, Colorado braised beef short rib and sesame tuna poke.

SWIFT MAGAZINE DIRECTOR Susan Ludlow | sludlow@swiftcom.com

COLORADO MOUNTAIN NEWS MEDIA PRODUCTION DIRECTOR Bill Walker | bwalker@cmnm.org The Vail Daily is a wholly owned subsidiary of COLORADO MOUNTAIN NEWS MEDIA 200 Lindbergh Drive | P.O. Box 1500 Gypsum, Colorado 81637 p. 970.328.6333 | f. 970.328.6409 Copyright ©2019 Colorado Mountain News Media. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is strictly prohibited.


Representing Vail’s Most Luxurious Properties... 454 Beaver Dam Road Located 50 steps off the slopes, this authentic European Chalet offers six bedrooms, nine bathrooms, family room, media room, office and ski-room. Expansive outdoor living areas include fabulous spa grotto with fireplace and is just a short walk to the heart of the Village.

315 Forest Road Nestled amongst mature pines and just a short walk to Vail Village is the perfect Forest Road retreat. This is the perfect home for entertaining guests with four bedrooms, six bathrooms, spacious kitchen, separate media room, and beautiful outdoor balconies.

82 W. Meadow Drive Ideally located on the banks of Gore Creek in Vail Village, this five-bedroom, seven-bathroom residence boasts location, views and luxury. Four Seasons Gold Membership included.

WWW.RONBYRNE.COM

285 Bridge Street Vail, Colorado 81657 970/476.1987


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PHOTO EDITOR’S LETTER I BELIEVE THAT IT ’S TRUE WE E AT WITH OUR EYES FIRST, which is why

our mission for EAT is to take photos that make you crave both the dishes on our pages and the experiences they bring. A photo of a burrata salad on a sunny patio with a delicious cocktail should make you salivate for the burrata, thirst for the cocktail and yearn for the sun on your back as you take in stunning mountain views. Summer was only beginning to roll through the Eagle Valley this year as my photography team and I kick-started our summer EAT mission. A record winter ski season meant that there was still plenty of snow as we began to create images of Vail’s edible summer adventures. Yet, in spite of winter holding on a little longer than usual, local restaurants proved they could create the feeling of summer on a plate and in a glass using fresh seasonal ingredients and plenty of creativity. Spring garlic soup with Maine scallops or a Vietnamese Bahn Mi sandwich full of crisp produce with blue skies above can take your imagination straight to the start of summer flavors. Seafood, whether in a fresh salad, delicious tacos or lightly battered with slaw can conjure up the feeling of hot days by the water, while ice cream sundaes and seasonal cocktails like Strawberries and Cream or an Aperol Spritzer remind us of the best ways to stay cool in the sun. Our goal for EAT this season is to be the start of your summer fun in the valley before you even step outside. We hope to tempt you with imagery of unique local flavors and the experiences that promise to come with them. Let the summer feasting (with your eyes) begin! Dominique Taylor PHOTO EDITOR

Zoe Larese, 11, dips into the perfect outdoor summer dining experience with Fondue at Home. Melted cheese, beef broth and melted chocolate stay hot as the sun goes down.


Luxuriously Appointed With Spectacular Views... 796 Forest Road Located in the coveted Forest Road neighborhood, this 5,056 square foot home includes five bedrooms and six bathrooms. Boasting high ceilings, elevator, outdoor heated patios with fire pit and hot tub, ski-room, media room, chef’s kitchen and Lutron integration throughout.

798 Forest Road Impressive views will captivate you from this four bedroom, five bathroom Forest Road home. 3,366 square feet of living space with vaulted ceilings and ample natural light. Extensive patio space lets you revel in the privacy of the secluded Jacuzzi or sit out on the heated patios and enjoy the beautiful mountain views.

WWW.RONBYRNE.COM

285 Bridge Street Vail, Colorado 81657 970/476.1987


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PHOTO GALLERY Beautiful creations from talented chefs. BY KRISTIN ANDERSON, DOMINIQUE TAYLOR AND CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT

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THE EAT COMPENDIUM Snapshot views of the county's best restaurants. BY EAT STAFF

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SIP, SIP, HOORAY! ROSE IS HERE TO STAY Everything’s coming up pink for summer’s wine scene. BY AMY KISIELICA

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HIGH RISE

ALPHA & OMEGA

Beating the odds, these local shops have no problem baking at altitude

Racy Beginnings and sweet endings

BY AMY KISIELICA

BY DOMINIQUE TAYLOR AND CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT


Development Opportunities... 816 & 826 Forest Road The most spectacular development lots on Forest Road. Ski-in directly from Simba Ski Run. Magnificent views of the Gore Range and Red Sandstone mountain. Both lots are zoned primary/secondary and can be two residences or one single-family with over 10,000 square feet. One of the last development sites on Forest Road.

1326 Spraddle Creek Road, Lot 14 The largest, most exclusive piece of property in Vail. With over six acres of expansive natural beauty your family can create one of the largest estates in Vail. Bordered by National Forest Service Land, enjoy unlimited hiking and exploring.

1028 Riva Glen, Lot 1 Two acres in Vail’s only private gated community. Delight in the first rays of sun at dawn, breathtaking mountain vistas, and awe-inspiring sunsets. Enjoy the luxury amenities and services that are exclusive to Spraddle Creek and a membership in the coveted Passport Club for direct access to Vail Mountain.

WWW.RONBYRNE.COM

285 Bridge Street Vail, Colorado 81657 970/476.1987


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EAT HERE NOW AT LARGE

EAGLEVAIL

26 Fondue at Home 27 Red Maple Catering

48 Rocky Mountain Taco

BEAVER CREEK

VAIL

39 El Sabor 40 Garfinkel’s 41 Tavern on the Square

49 The 10th 50 Almresi 51 Alpenrose 52 Bistro Fourteen 53 Bōl 54 Elway’s Vail 55 Fall Line Kitchen & Cocktails 56 The Fitz Bar & Restaurant 57 Game Creek Restaurant 58 Grill on the Gore 59 La Tour 60 Leonora Restaurant 48 Loaded Joe's 61 Los Amigos 62 Ludwig's Breakfast at the Sonnenalp 63 Matsuhisa Vail 64 Pepi’s Bar and Restaurant 65 The Remedy Bar at Four Seasons Vail 66 Russell's 75 Sundae 67 Terra Bistro 68 White Bison

AVON

EDWARDS

42 44 45 46 47 48 48

69 70 71 72 73 74 74 75 75

28 8100 Mountainside Bar & Grill 29 Dusty Boot Roadhouse 30 Hooked 31 The Met Kitchen 32 Mirabelle 33 Revolution 34 The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch WYLD 35 The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch Buffalos 36 The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch Fireside Bar 37 Splendido at the Chateau 38 Toscanini Ristorante

LIONSHEAD

Beaver Liquors Blue Plate Maya Modern Mexican Kitchen and Tequilería Sauce on the Creek Vin48 Loaded Joe’s Rocky Mountain Taco

The Bookworm of Edwards Gore Range Brewery The Rose Vista at Arrowhead Zino Ristorante Lauren’s Kitchen Marko’s Pizza Sundae Village Bagel


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artisan cheeses, assorted hand sliced charcuterie, candied almonds, seasonal preserves, lavash, chocolate truffles

miso red bird chicken sandwich, pickled summer vegetables, tsume aioli

taboleah quinoa, baby kale, heirloom tomato, pickled carrots, citrus emulsion

local brat, house beer mustard, fresh sauerkraut


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CONTRIBUTORS

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DOMINIQUE TAYLOR Photo editor Herb or spice you're craving lately Mint. Go-to summer picnic Rotisserie chicken, a baguette and brie cheese. What's on the grill? Venison burgers. Summer playlist for a dinner party? Good jazz. Food you're tired of Average bread. Series you like where food is a central theme Street Food series on Netflix. Best hand-held food Steamed buns.

HEATHER HOWER Writer Herb or spice you're craving lately Basil — bountiful, sweet-smelling basil. Go-to summer picnic A smorgasbord of yumminess (hummus, veggies, fresh bread, big salad and sauvignon blanc at summer concerts). What's on the grill? Everything! Marinated eggplant, chicken, brats, jalapeño hamburgers, roasted peppers, steaks, spareribs. No oven all summer. Summer playlist for a dinner party Whatever is cued up on Pandora. Food you're tired of Anything I have to prepare. Upgrade you'd like to make to your kitchen A whole-new kitchen layout please! Or a mini-chop chop to replace my ancient and gargantuan food processor. Best hand-held food Corn on the cob. Summer in my hand.

KRISTIN ANDERSON Photographer What's on the grill? Slow cooked, juicy ribs, made by my husband.

Food you're tired of? Chicken. Artwork you like where food is a central theme Photography in EAT magazine. Upgrade you'd like Espresso machine. Best hand-held food Tacos.

KIMBERLY NICOLETTI Writer Go-to summer picnic Top of the mountain, tucked into a forest, away from everyone but us. What's on the grill? Chicken & zucchini. Book you like where food is a central theme: Eat, Pray, Love Upgrade you'd like to make to your kitchen Even more cabinets for one of my passions: Varieties of dishes — fish dishes, VW van dishes, floral dishes, snowmen dishes, China of all kinds... (And I REALLY want dishes with skis and poles prominently displayed on them). Best hand-held food Cannoli.

CARLY ARNOLD Art director and illustrator Herb or spice you're craving lately Mint. Go-to summer picnic Charcuterie and cheese board. What's on the grill? Veggies – corn, zucchini & squash. Painting you like where food is a central theme Van Gogh’s still-life paintings. Best hand-held food Bao buns

KARI MOHR Writer Herb or spice you're craving lately Fresh mint! It grows prolifically around the valley in summer and I'm the unabashed weirdo that grabs a leaf to rub between my fingers to activate that

invigorating scent. It always puts me in the mood for some Turkish mint tea or a mojito. Go-to summer picnic Everything from our community garden plot in EagleVail. My kids will eat anything they help to grow, which is a wonderfully sneaky (albeit labor intensive) way to get them to eat their vegetables. Summer playlist for a dinner party? Kishi Bashi. The 7" Singles EP and his latest album, Summer of '42, pair perfectly with a glass of wine at twilight. Culinary figure you're jazzed about I will happily consume anything Samin Nosrat puts out in the world. Her curiosity and joy around food and the people who make it are infectious. Best hand-held food Spanikopita triangles.

TRACI J. MACNAMARA Writer Herb or spice you're craving lately Garden-fresh Thai basil. Go-to summer picnic Snack and salad spread for Bravo! Vail. What's on the grill? Kebabs and colorful grilled veggies. Food you're tired of Brussels sprouts. Upgrade you'd like to make to your kitchen New kitchen island for food prep and social seating. Best hand-held food Street tacos.

KRISTA DRISCOLL Writer Herb or spice you're craving lately Everything curry, from peanut curry stir fry to the curryhoney-mayo-and-lemon sauce I put on chicken salad. Go-to summer picnic Anything eaten on the river. Lately that's been walnutcurry-stuffed pork tenderloin wraps with goat cheese, mustard greens and Dr. Pete's praline mustard. Food you're tired of Mac and cheese. It's

everywhere, and it's just too rich and heavy for summer. Book you like where food is a central theme I just read Jim Gaffigan's book Food: A Love Story, and it was a delightfully irreverent look at everything from fivestar dining to Hot Pockets. Upgrade you'd like to make to your kitchen I'd love a big ol' Le Creuset Dutch oven for making short ribs and stews.

KIM FULLER Writer Herb or spice you're craving lately Dill. Go-to summer picnic Cheese, charcuterie & vino! What's on the grill? Asparagus with lemon, olive oil, salt & pepper. Food you're tired of Short ribs. Culinary figure you're jazzed about Cory Melanson at Splendido. Upgrade you'd like to make to your kitchen New kitchen island and countertops!

WREN BOVA Editor Herb or spice you're craving lately Shiso and curry leaves — both are so easy to grow in a pot, too. Go-to summer picnic Bread, butter and wine — and everything else. What's on the grill? Though grilled fish and some sort of cutting board salsa is a summertime staple, I’ve been particularly excited at how pre-salting chicken thighs by 12-24 hours makes them completely impossible to mess up. Culinary figure you're jazzed about Samin Nosrat (Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat), Nik Sharma (Season) and the whole Milk Street magazine crew. Book you like where food is a central theme Crescent, by Diana Abu Jaber, fiction, combines

a love of storytelling with an immigrant’s longing and amazing descriptions of Middle Eastern food. I was smitten. Best hand-held food Tacos or bao buns — really hard to choose.

KATIE COAKLEY Writer Herb or spice you're craving lately Zhoug sauce — a spicy cilantro sauce from Yemen. Go-to summer picnic Chicken salad, deviled eggs and watermelon for dessert. Food you're tired of Brussels sprouts. At one point they were the ugly duckling at the dance — now they’re the super obnoxious homecoming queen. I’m over them. Book you like where food is a central theme Charlie and the Chocolate Factory — book, not movie. Best hand-held food Corn dogs.

CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT Photographer Herb or spice you're craving lately Curry, always curry. Food you're tired of Peanut butter. Upgrade you'd like Gas cooktop. Best hand-held food Burritos make my world go round.

JUSTIN MCCARTY Photographer Herb or spice you're craving lately Island Sweet Skunk. Go-to summer picnic Gravlax. What's on the grill? King crab legs. Summer playlist for a dinner party? Damian "Jr. Gong" Marley — Medication ft. Stephen Marley. Food you're tired of Beer nuts.


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Leonora’s coconut lobster ceviche with mangoes, watermelon radishes and red onions. PHOTO BY KRISTIN ANDERSON


At Splendido at the Chateau, Colorado rack of lamb with carrots, yogurt, kale, quinoa, lemon and vadouvan. PHOTO BY DOMINIQUE TAYLOR


The Lavender Jones at La Tour includes hemp seed-infused vodka, genepy, lavender vermouth, dragonfruit cordial and CBD oil tincture. PHOTO BY CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT


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Dusty Boot Roadhouse's tuna poke bowl with sushi-grade tuna, avocado, citrus, sambal, green onion, sesame seeds and wonton chips. PHOTO BY CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT


Vegan cheesecake with berries and cookie crisps from Tavern on the Square. PHOTO BY CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT


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PRICE

Starting at $38 per adult and $24 per child •••

AMBIANCE

Your own home, without any fuss •••

SIGNATURE EXPERIENCE

3-Fondue/4-Course Meal

FONDUE AT HOME by BRENDA HIMELFARB photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

I

t’s always fun to get cheesy. Don’t ya think? And with lots of friends present to share the experience it’s even more exciting. You laugh a lot, drink a lot and share some great stories. Certainly, one of the easiest ways of bringing people together is to have a delicious, mouthwatering fondue party, as it will do just that: make for a joyous evening — in any season. Fondue, a warm cheese dish, originated in Switzerland — and more specifically in the Canton of Neuchâtel,

AT LARGE

26

1.844.4FONDUE FONDUEATHOME.COM

where it was “discovered” by a famed French attorney and famed gastronome, Brillat-Savarin. The dish dates back to the 18th century when both cheese and wine were important industries in Switzerland. The simple-to-prepare meal utilized ingredients that were found in most average homes. Like Brillat-Savarin, Fondue at Home prepares the meal with the unique flair of the Swiss, utilizing elegant ingredients to satisfy the most discriminating. And, they bring it all it all to your home — from the food and fondue spears to the pots and the burners. “We prepare the entire party in our commercial kitchen,” says Derek

George, owner of Fondue at Home. “Everything is prepared ahead of time. Then the chef arrives, sets out a whole fondue party, gets the party going and, then, leaves. When the party is over, everything goes back in a kit, a container we’ve provided, and we come back and pick it up the next morning. If a client wants a catered fondue party, we offer that as well. The chef will stick around, facilitate the party and clean everything up.” George began Fondue at Home in 2014 and has an array of repeat clients including locals, as well as visitors. “It all began when I was just thinking about this valley,” says George, “and how so many people arrive here and stay in a large home with their entire family. Sometimes they just want to hang out and not have to deal with ‘weather,’ as we locals call it. They don’t want to deal with the snow. I thought how cool it would be to bring an entire fondue party to someone’s home.” And so Fondue at Home began. For its traditional Swiss fondue, Fondue at Home offers a special blend of Gruyère and Emmentaler Swiss cheeses, melted into dry white wine and spiced with nutmeg and Kirschwasser cherry brandy. It’s served with chunks of French baguette, cubed imported French ham, broccoli, apples, cocktail onions and cornichon gherkin pickles. The steak fondue chinoise includes prime Black Angus steak and mushrooms heated in beef bone broth and served with original

dipping sauces. Lobster tail, shrimp and salad and even gluten-free bread can be included. And, of course, the meal is not complete without a chocolate fondue dessert, served with organic fruit. “I look at a fondue party as an ‘experience,’” says George. “It’s not just dining. It’s a way to create memories with your friends and family. The whole nature of fondue is communal where people can share stories over a fondue pot. I think that’s one of the things that draws people to it. It’s more than just cheeseburgers and fries or a pizza dinner. Kids like to eat that way, too, and it gets them involved. It’s family oriented, a memory-making experience. That’s really what I love about fondue.” • top Swiss cheese fondue, simmering steak fondue chinoise and decadent chocolate fondue for dessert. above Fresh nutmeg adds a touch of tradition to the cheese fondue. left Chocolate fondue is a sweeting ending to the meal.


v a i l d a i l y

by KATIE COAKLEY photos by CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT

I

n the kitchen of Red Maple Catering in Gypsum, the team was prepping for an evening event: dishes were packed; incredible smells wafted through the air and the atmosphere was charged with purpose. The conversations between Jason Harrison and Fletcher Harrison, co-owners, were quick and concise — the operation runs incredibly smoothly to create eye-popping and mouthwatering cuisine and cocktails for oh-so-happy clientele. Red Maple Catering creates experiences for all sizes of groups for all occasions, but Fletcher said that most of their business is focused on private chef events and large, opulent weddings. They’ve perfected the art of creating “weddings in a field,” partnering with both Eaton and Knapp Ranches to create luxury events for “I do”s. Though they make it look easy, the professionals at Red Maple Catering truly bring restaurant-level quality to all of their events, drawing on years of experience from establishments like Sweet Basil in Vail to the Bellagio in Las Vegas. Red Maple Catering is happy to create unforgettable dining experiences in almost any locale. In addition to wide-open spaces, they’ll bring fivestar dining to private residences and even private jets. “We’ve done five-course dinners on airplanes,” Fletcher explains. If the idea of feasting on a golden beet salad with fava beans, first snow chevre, Cara Cara orange, crispy quinoa and a smashed blackberry dressing, followed by a Colorado lamb duo with a pretzel-crusted rack and loin carpaccio paired with Olathe corn pudding, heirloom carrots and fennel,

AMBIANCE

Comfortably gourmet •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Entirely customized menus

makes the thought of flying back to real life a bit more palatable, Red Maple Catering can make it happen. Menus are customized for each client with impeccable detail, paying homage to local produce and products. “Our clients are coming to a place where, within 150 miles, we have some of the best game, beef, pork and poultry in the country, as well as artisan cheesemakers and amazing heirloom organic produce growers,” Jason says.

Red Maple Catering even has its own small garden next to their kitchen. Much of the final touches for dishes — pea tendrils for a salad, mint for a cocktail — comes from these beds, picked fresh on the way to the next event. And when it comes to the libations for these meals, Red Maple has its clients covered. Fletcher has been a sommelier for 15 years and revels in creating customcrafted cocktails. For clients who have their own wine cellars, it’s not unusual for the chefs at Red Maple Catering to create a menu specifically designed to pair well with the client’s wine — Fletcher described a recent dinner where they paired 30 different wines with 15 courses. It’s this creativity and the opportunity

to design the perfect dining experience for clients that truly sets Red Maple apart. But it’s what they enjoy, too. “I think that’s part of what we love about this business,” Fletcher says. “It’s not the same old, same old. We don’t have to do the same menu every night — we get to change everything every day. We like to be kept on our toes." • top Grilled Wagyu Marrow Bones with Palisade peaches, carrot greens, beef fat granola crisp and harissa vinaigrette. above Fresh Palisade Cherries with vanilla bean angel food cake and lime curd sorbet. left Colorado Lamb Duo: pretzel-crusted rack and loin carpaccio, Olathe corn pudding, heirloom carrots and mustard jus.

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RED MAPLE CATERING

LOCATED WHEREVER YOU’D LIKE 970.401.1769 | REDMAPLECATERING.COM

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8100

MOUNTAINSIDE BAR & GRILL

by HEATHER HOWER photos by JUSTIN Q. McCARTY

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he Park Hyatt at Beaver Creek knows how to welcome guests from the around the world and its signature restaurant, 8100 Mountainside Bar & Grill, is the epitome of hospitality. With its extensive menu curated with locally sourced foods (think elk, beef or trout) and sumptuous summer-worthy cocktails, huge windows that bring the outdoors in — it’s easy to spend an evening as the sun drops behind the mighty mountains. It’s often cool enough here even in the middle of summer to enjoy a break in front of the roaring dual-sided fireplace. The warm smokiness permeates… but more on that later. The restaurant faces the mountain, so as you settle in for drink, you’ll see bikers wending their way down the singletrack and hikers amidst the flowers. Sit back with a craft brew from anywhere in our great state: Durango, Fort Collins, Boulder, Golden. Tour the state via hops and malt. You’ll know your favorite when you sip upon it. More of a fan of wine? You’re in luck with the long wine menu: juicy reds, clean whites, fruity rosés. Settle back with your cocktail of choice and dive into the creative menu, which proves that delicious doesn’t mean stuffy or overdone. The Summer Bruschetta is bright with color and bold with flavor: hummus, juicy heirloom

PRICE

Appetizers from $14-$18 (large seafood tower); Entrées from $28-$40, a ten-bone rack of lamb •••

AMBIANCE

Upscale family and finedining experience •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Rocky Mountain Trout

cherry tomatoes on focaccia and a balsamic reduction. It’s big enough to share but you may not want to. Or go for something heartier with the Katahidin lamb sausage starter: the sausage is a bit spicy and satisfying while the smoked lemon yogurt is a cool accompaniment and palate pleaser. The grill is the true centerpiece of the open kitchen. Mouths will water as the aromas spill forth from the woodfired grill in the kitchen that blesses everything with its smokiness. This, ultimately, only makes the choices a little more difficult. Dry-aged, primegrade steaks are the highlight, but the seafood, too, lets you get a sense of the grill’s smoky goodness. Any of the pristine fish take on the grill’s essence.

50 WEST THOMAS PLACE | PARK HYATT BEAVER CREEK 970.827.6600 | HYATT.COM/GALLERY/BEAVE8100

Veggie lovers might opt for the cauliflower steak, hearty and so tasty with Marcona almond romesco, garlicky chickpeas and house-made chimichurri. Or opt for the 28 Day Dry Aged Bone-in New York with Lyonnaise potato, bacon lardon, classic grilled mushrooms, caramelized onions and truffles. Already a top cut of meat, the dry aging concentrates the flavor, making a great steak even better. That’s what dining at 8100 is all about, says Executive Chef

Wade Eybel: “Really, really simple cooking techniques, straightforward ingredients, elements of smoke and fire, family-style and shareable.” • Start the evening with a handcrafted cocktail. top right Red miso-roasted Norwegian salmon with edamame puree, wild mushrooms, tobiko and crispy wakame seaweed salad. below Katahidin lamb sausage with Colorado lamb, falafel, herbs, peach wood-smoked lemon yogurt and Colorado feta cheese. top left


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DUSTY BOOT ROADHOUSE by KRISTA DRISCOLL photos by CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT

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hroughout the snowy winter, Beaver Creek regulars are drawn to the warmth and familiarity of the Dusty Boot Roadhouse’s long, elbow-loved bar. But though the restaurant also reigns as a summertime hub for the village’s casual socialites, when the thermometer finally creeps upward, blue skies and sunshine beckon. A row of high-top tables along the railing overlooking the village has always been the salve for this warmweather wanderlust, but this season, the Boot has taken another step to bring its relaxed, inviting atmosphere to its

sunny spaces with the addition of new lounge-style outdoor seating: a low table surrounded by cushioned spots to sit that invites customers to settle in. “We wanted to re-up the space, make it super comfy, a place to meet up with friends,” says General Manager Wally Walling. “That’s what Colorado is all about.” While the updated patio configuration pulls the restaurant’s charismatic vibe outdoors, the Boot’s summer menu harnesses the brilliant color palette and energy of the Rocky Mountains and brings it into the kitchen. A striking example is the tuna poke bowl, a wildflower-inspired array of vibrant-red, sushi-grade ahi tuna; fresh jalapeño, avocado, cilantro and

210 OFFERSON ROAD | BEAVER CREEK PLAZA 970.748.1146 | DUSTYBOOTBEAVERCREEK.COM

edamame in shades of green; and touches of yellow-orange, sweet mango drizzled with a sambal-orange champagne vinaigrette, accompanied by crunchy wonton chips. The bowl is one of a trio of light but hearty “power bowls” that combine protein and grains to propel you through hiking, biking and other calorie-thirsty activities. Post-pursuit, refuel with a superfood salad: kale, blueberries, dried cherries, red grapes, feta, sunflower seeds, sliced almonds, farro and edamame topped with homemade goddess dressing and Greek yogurt and paired with a New Belgium Passion Fruit Kolsch. The beer is part of a rotating Colorado tap lineup that also features the Great Divide Roadie Grapefruit Radler, a great complement to the citrus-mint pesto, tangy goat cheese and arugula that brighten the earthy roasted golden and red beet salad. Both the beer list and the extensive selection of Colorado-made craft spirits allow visitors to experience what the state has to offer, Walling says. For those whose taste buds like to wander off-trail, he adds, the Dusty Boot Roadhouse also offers a daily, everchanging, chef-inspired lunch special. Call ahead or stop by the restaurant to learn what’s available that day. These menu updates and specials are a reflection of the staff listening to feedback and giving customers what they crave, Walling says. But despite the new additions, some things will never change — namely the Boot’s commitment

PRICE

Snacks, appetizers, salads and power bowls $6-$20; Burgers, sandwiches and steaks $13-$39 •••

AMBIANCE

Saloon-style casual •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Chipotle, braised short rib or tuna poke power bowls; hormone-free, grass-fed beef burgers and steaks

to serving up comfort, from the summertime fried chicken sandwich with Swiss, bacon, slaw and pickles to the all-Colorado, grass-fed, hormone-free hand-cut steaks and gourmet burgers. “We want the best quality of product for our guests,” Walling says. • Roasted beet salad with goat cheese, arugula, shaved radish, farro and citrus-mint pesto. top right Fat Burger, featuring Coloradoraised, hormone-free beef, onion rings, apple wood smoked bacon, blue cheese crumbles and barbecue sauce. left The Dusty Boot feels like a cozy, upscale saloon. top left

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PRICE

Dinner appetizers: $8-$28; Signature Sushi Rolls: $17-$24; Entrées: $22-$60; Whole fish preparation: Market Price •••

AMBIANCE

Fresh seafood and fish house in the center of Beaver Creek village •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Half raw and half cooked whole fish preparation

HOOKED

122 THE PLAZA | BEAVER CREEK 970.949.4321 | HOOKEDBC.COM

by KIM FULLER photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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ooked is a delicious reminder that fresh ocean flavor really can be found in the Colorado mountains. This seafood and fish house in Beaver Creek receives the best-ofthe-best sushi-grade fish from Japan, Hawaii, California, New Zealand, Spain and beyond. Guests can order appetizers like Oysters, Ceviche De Hoy or Dynamite Tacos, and for the turf lovers, Korean BBQ 7x Short Ribs. Entrée offerings of Shrimp Scampi and Fish N’ Chips are available too, but don’t miss the signature dining experience at Hooked: whole fish preparation. Pick a fish for your table, like a New Zealand Tai, and

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the chefs will prepare it in a variety of raw and cooked renditions. Start with the chef’s variation of your raw fish, like a sashimi preparation, ceviche or sushi roll. Choose between a variety of cooked techniques for your table fish as well, like pan seared or steamed, flame broiled or flash fried. Purists will like it served simply with extra virgin olive oil, charred lemon and sea salt. Most fish are served on the bone, so you can pull off the tender pieces yourself. Alongside a glass of sake or Chablis, let each unique preparation please your palate in a new way. Order “Omakase” to simply say in Japanese: ”I'll leave it up to the chef.” Thank local owner and chef, Riley Romanin, for the special experience

he has created at Hooked. He’s teamed up with General Manager and resident Fish Monger Joel Campbell, along with Chef Brandon Woodhall, to make every meal at Hooked delicious, fun and fresh. “We’re really just hitting it on all points here,” Woodhall shares, “with every preparation, from the whole fish to hot appetizer preparations and large plates. It’s really exciting for all of us as a team to come together and collaborate with the Omakase ideas because there’s so much happening already here, it’s just natural for it to keep evolving.” Seafood lovers can of course enjoy ocean specialties of oysters, king crab

legs or a steamed lobster. Check the chalkboards to see what in-season specials are in house for the evening. And for dessert, make it mochi … red velvet or triple chocolate; lychee or pistachio. Or if you’re still feeling thirsty, the Shisho Whiskey Sour made with Sensei Japanese Whiskey has an apple simple syrup and light dash of lemon that makes for a truly sweet ending. • top Alfonsino prepared two ways: cooked with sweet miso glaze, and also seared and served sushi style, both as nigiri and in a roll, on a hot salt rock. above The fish selection changes daily. left Korean BBQ 7x short ribs.


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210 OFFERSON ROAD | BEAVER CREEK PLAZA 970.748.3123 | THEMETKITCHEN.COM by TRACI J. MACNAMARA photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR PRICE

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et out to explore the full kitchen renovation and revamped concept this summer at The Met Kitchen, a social dining scene in Beaver Creek with small plates for sharing and entrées to be enjoyed in the good company of family and friends. Whether you’re finishing up an afternoon hike on the mountain or setting off to an evening show at the Vilar Performing Arts Center, The Met Kitchen is a place where you’ll want to mind the motto: “Eat. Drink. Repeat.” The Met Kitchen keeps a focus on Colorado-sourced ingredients and spirits while offering a variety of new flavors from Colorado and far beyond. The updated space’s open kitchen makes diners feel like they’re a part of the action while cozy seating nooks let small groups sit elbow-to-elbow for more intimate dining and snacking. Kick off your experience with a glass of wine from the enomatic wine dispenser, a cool contraption that lets you taste to your heart’s content before honing in on a favorite. Pair wine selections, specialty cocktails or pints of beer with small plates and shared plates including the lip-smacking Korean barbecue ribs or the pan-seared crab cakes. For a truly refreshing taste of summer, try the watermelon salad that

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THE MET KITCHEN

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$10-$30 for small plates and entrées •••

AMBIANCE

Relaxed, social setting for small plates and entrées

brings together spinach, blue cheese crumbles, candied walnuts and sweet chunks of watermelon. This salad’s vinaigrette dressing makes the combination burst with flavor and fresh vibes. The lobster tacos have been a favorite throughout The Met Kitchen’s evolution, and they’re not going anywhere but on your plate this summer. These colorful beauties fold pink butter-poached Maine lobster, bright green avocado, pico de gallo and chipotle crema into two satisfying corn tortillas. Even though many of the small plates like this one are big on taste, the new space’s large tables create a family-style dining feel where guests can linger over larger plates, too, such as the juicy, slow-roasted beef short rib entrée that’s plated with grilled asparagus and garlic mashed potatoes. “We’re proud of our work in reintroducing The Met Kitchen as a

place where people can find great joy in good wine, good cocktails, and good food all year long,” says General Manager Thayer Stevens. “We’re also excited about partnering with the Vilar Performing Arts Center and offering specials before shows to celebrate what makes Beaver Creek especially lively in the summer season.” The Met Kitchen’s open floor plan makes it an excellent choice for parties and special events. Be on the lookout for unique pairing dinners and events

that feature Colorado whiskies and bourbons, local beers and fun wines paired with the best, fresh food that the summer season has to offer. • top Butter-poached Maine lobster tacos with pico de gallo, fresh avocado and house-made chipotle crema. above Watermelon salad with mixed greens, red onion, goat cheese and citrus vinaigrette, finished with a balsamic reduction. left Jumbo lump crab cakes with mixed vegetable salad, finished with chipotle aioli.

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MIRABELLE

55 VILLAGE ROAD | BEAVER CREEK | 970.949.7728 | MIRABELLE1.COM

by MELANIE SMITH photos by CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT

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aybe it’s Mirabelle’s ambiance that is so successful at welcoming guests in to relax and feel at home. After all, the dining room is actually set in a historic farmhouse — one of the oldest in the Vail Valley, in fact. Or it could be the knowledge that many of the micro greens, salad greens and other fresh ingredients are grown on-site in the greenhouse directly behind the restaurant. It could be the attentive service or the expertise of the staff, mixing the perfect balance of approachable and professional. Whatever it is, Mirabelle’s got it. Mirabelle stands out in its reluctance to be smoothly categorized. A fine-dining restaurant without the fuss of valet service, it mixes urban culinary trends and innovative appeal with traditional European technique and true backyard farm-to-table produce. Mirabelle is as a charming, romantic experience that is both timeless and au courant. In the dining room, which is located on the ground floor of Mirabelle’s historic farmhouse, guests are invited to sit back and enjoy the meal experience in its entirety. With an extensive wine list and knowledgeable waitstaff, there’s something for all tastes. Chef-Owner Daniel Joly and his wife Nathalie have succeeded in establishing and maintaining Mirabelle’s highly

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revered dining experience at the base of Beaver Creek. The menu celebrates the seasons, offering an array of petite entrees in the summertime — the lobster a la plancha is a must-try, and the halibut with little neck clams, corn and tomatoes is the epitome of the summer months. Each dish highlights the freshest produce of the season simply and magically, drawing out flavors to leave you satisfied but not stuffed. From the decadent-yet-restrained hot foie gras, with its multi-layered play on textures, to the amazingly fresh edamame-basil ravioli, gingerlaced and brightly flavored, the menu is as creative as it is varied. The care with which the dishes are crafted invites guests to slow down and savor each bite, and the utterly manageable portions encourage the acceptance of dessert. And it’s a good thing too — Chef Joly is not just an expert at all things savory, but a pastry chef as well. Both the Diva Chocolate and raspberry cheesecake desserts are not to be missed. Mirabelle isn’t stuffy or presumptuous; it might be a bit on the classy side for the average date night or dinner out, but if there’s any reason to celebrate, doing so at Mirabelle will make the evening a memorable one indeed. • Owner Daniel Joly is a Master Belgian Chef. top right Dishes such as salmon carpaccio are often embellished with herbs grown on-site. left Raspberry cheesecake with berry ice cream. top left

PRICE

Prix fixe four-course dinner, changes nightly: $75 per person; Appetizers: $10-$19; Entrées: $21-$45 •••

AMBIANCE

Belgian American in a historic setting •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Any dish with seared foie gras, classic chocolate soufflé for dessert


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BEAVER CREEK

REVOLUTION by KIM FULLER photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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here are few things that might excite a chef more than top quality ingredients and exploring the perfect way to prepare them. This summer, enthusiasm and passion are shining through Chef Brandon Woodhall and Chef de Cuisine Isaiah Bonillas at Revolution in Beaver Creek. Created by Chef-Owner Riley Romanin, the restaurant was named for its revolutionary approach to

26 AVONDALE LANE | INSIDE THE BEAVER CREEK LODGE | BEAVER CREEK 970.845.1730 | REVOLUTIONDINING.COM

preparing food, but equally for the revolving action, or revolutions, that take place with the rotisserie. “We’re a local steakhouse that utilizes the highest quality Colorado ingredients,” Woodhall says. “We offer really bright and bold flavors that aren’t over-complicated but are really true to the food that we’re preparing because we are sourcing such beautiful ingredients.” The team is now showcasing beef and microgreens from the restaurant’s very own farm in Eagle. Romanin, who is also the owner of Hooked and Trax

in Beaver Creek, has cultivated a way to source local products from his 18acre farm to his tables. Start the evening at Revolution with a homemade cocktail like the Tequila Mockingbird, a nicely balanced blend of house-infused serrano tequila, mango puree, agave and lemon. Bread service goes above and beyond here, with homemade naan bread and tortillas served with a selection of Revolution’s signature sauces. Once your taste buds are warmed up, a cup of chicken-and-wild rice soup is a comforting start, or spice it up a bit with the shrimp and avocado salad, served with serrano aioli and red pepper threads. Sommelier and Wine Director Jay Lavis can provide fun pairings throughout your meal, offering unique pours like a dry and crisp French pear cider, or more traditional tastes of Italian pinot grigio or California pinot noir. Revolution’s signature dinners are a primary focus this summer. One dinner will be showcased every day of the week, with options like Pork Dinner with porchetta, potato gratin, brobrucau and mustard yogurt, and Spaghetti Dinner with meatballs and marinara. The restaurant will also stick to its roots as a rotisserie steakhouse. Bonillas says “connoisseur meat” is the star of the show here, and homemade sauces the ensemble. Order an 8-ounce Wagyu filet mignon or 8-ounce NY Strip with red wine demi or

PRICE

Starters: $12 - $25; Soups & Salads: $7 - $16; Entrées: $28 - $38 •••

AMBIANCE

A lively and modern rotisserie steakhouse that’s great for families, dates or friends •••

SIGNATURE DISH

8-ounce Colorado Wagyu Steak served with hand-cut fries and béarnaise

béarnaise, and choose your own side of hash gratin, rotisserie portobello mushrooms, brobrucau or rice pilaf. Lavis will pair the meat right with something special like a 2012 Rioja. For the final course, enjoy a petite dessert of bite-sized Key lime pie or a red velvet macaroon, and wash it all down with sweet sips of Tokaj. • 8-ounce Wagyu New York Strip with a twice baked potato. top right Peruvian Crunch Chicken Salad with sweet potato, crispy onions, Peruvian sweet chili and Thai tahini sauce. left Shrimp and Avocado Salad with serrano aioli, agave and red pepper threads. top left


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PRICE

Appetizers: $16-$27; Entrées: $23-$78; Earth to Table experience: $65 •••

AMBIANCE

Elevated dining experience in an upscale, mountain modern atmosphere •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Baby beet salad; wild salmon with asparagus, chanterelle mushrooms and truffle vinaigrette

THE RITZ-CARLTON, BACHELOR GULCH

WYLD

0130 DAYBREAK RIDGE | 970.343.1555 RITZCARLTON.COM/BACHELORGULCH

by KATIE COAKLEY photos by JUSTIN Q. McCARTY

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f you think Beaver Creek is all escalators and high-end art galleries, think again — there’s a wild side to this luxurious resort and it’s hiding in plain sight at The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch. WYLD, the fine dining restaurant helmed by Executive Chef Jasper Schneider and Chef de Cuisine Manuel Gutierrez, resides on the “edge of wild” and dining here is nowhere near tame. Creating plates that toe the line between fine art and fine dining, Schneider and his crew enjoy presenting food as art in dishes that taste as good as they look. Focusing on fresh, local and seasonal ingredients, it’s possible to visit regularly and enjoy new variations on salmon, duck, beef and tuna, based on seasonal sides. “In spring and summer, it’s the English peas, the fava beans, the yellow wax, the haricot verts, the broccolini,” Chef Schneider extolls. “We're super excited for the wider range of veggies for the

wider presentations of food.” And while the focus on Colorado game remains, Chef Schneider’s aquatic roots are evident: “It's interesting when people go, ‘Oh my God, there's a lot of seafood,’ but it's working well.” After all, when a land-locked state can procure fresh fish daily, why not? In addition to regular dinner service at WYLD, Chef Schneider is also introducing a new “Earth to Table” dinner on Wednesday nights. Served family style with one seating, the menu changes weekly, allowing Chef Schneider and his culinary crew to highlight what’s super seasonal and hyper-local for a fixed price. The plan is for three salads, seasonal veggies, proteins with sides and seasonal fruit for dessert. For example, the inaugural dinner included a summer bean salad with yellow wax, Haricot Verts, pea shoots and an apple ponzu; a fennel pollen wood-roasted salmon, with a pickled fennel radish salad and an apricot tartan, among the other options. WYLD has truly established itself as a dining destination in Beaver Creek,

enticing guests with its obsession with ingredients, flavors and presentation. So don’t wait — take a journey to WYLD often. It’s guaranteed to surprise you. • Fermented Carrots Fennel with tahini, seeds, soil and dill. above Beans Apple with wax beans, snap peas, pea tendrils and apple ponzu. above


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THE RITZ-CARLTON, BACHELOR GULCH

BEAVER CREEK

BUFFALOS

0130 DAYBREAK RIDGE | 970.748.6200 RITZCARLTON.COM/BACHELORGULCH

by KATIE COAKLEY photos by JUSTIN Q. McCARTY PRICE

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he “wild” vibe continues in The Ritz-Carlton Bachelor Gulch’s other dining options, like Buffalos. Inside, warm leather serves as a cozy contrast to the stone features (like the eye-catching bar); outside, the expansive patio seating allows guests to savor the golden sunshine for lunch or soak in the last rays as the sun goes down. Whatever your seating preference, the gastropub menu has a little something for everyone with culinary contrasts between light and hearty; classic and contemporary; local and global. First, determine your hunger level. For those whose appetites are a bit more bird-like, pick a few “things to snack on.” Sparrows may enjoy the grilled broccolini, accented with pecorino and lemon, elevated with Calabrian chili. The roasted cauliflower is a deceptive dish: Yes, it’s a vegetable, but as a whole head of cauliflower is presented — with black beans, salsa verde and cotija cheese — the resulting dish is much more substantial. For those with more

Appetizers: $14-$26; Entrées: $18-$48 •••

AMBIANCE

Elevated lodge with elemental accents •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Marcos’ tacos, cast iron nachos

bear-like appetites, the cast iron nachos (think Mama’s skillet versus a petite portion) and duck confit poutine are both excellent options for growling tummies. The “farm stand” provides veggieforward dishes like a Greek salad and a grain bowl with kale, farro, shaved radish and spouts — add chicken, shrimp, salmon or skirt steak for a protein kick. The “finger foods” section is comprised of hand-held options: beef, bison and vegetarian burgers and the famous Buffalos tacos hold court in this section.

Chef Schneider is also planning a backyard barbecue series on Thursday nights. The menu will also focus on seasonal vegetables but brings a primal flavor to the menu: Baby back

ribs, pork belly, brisket and chicken will emerge from the smoker while hamburgers, hot dogs and corn will rise from the grill. The dinner menu also features “supper time” with entrées like steak frites, butter chicken, seared trout and — for the carnivore within — Pork Heaven. “It (Pork Heaven) is pork shank, smoked bacon, andouille sausage, sauerkraut and mustard,” says Chef Jasper Schneider. “We’re just having fun with it.” Of course, no trip to the wild side is complete without liquid accompaniment. Buffalos has an impressive draft beer list with 12 rotating taps: Try a flight of beer to see what pairs best with angelic pork. Bourbon is also a favorite at this bar, fulfilling the warm and toasty feeling that the décor evokes. Try a classic Old Fashioned or go local and try The Rose Bowl, featuring 10th Mountain Rye Whiskey served on the rocks with muddled fresh rosemary, fresh lime, a dash of honey and a rosemary sprig for garnish. • Pork Heaven, featuring a pork shank, smoked bacon, sausage and sauerkraut. left Chickpea Falafel, accompanied by tzatziki sauce, radishes and sprouts. above


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THE RITZ-CARLTON, BACHELOR GULCH

FIRESIDE BAR

by KATIE COAKLEY photos by JUSTIN Q. McCARTY

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erhaps the most primal aspect of the wild is fire. And though perching alongside the three-story stone, wood-burning fireplace in the Great Room at The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch, is a great way to enjoy this urge during the winter, the summer season demands that you take it outside. New this summer, the Fireside Bar allows guests to gaze into dancing flames while soaking up the sun thanks to outdoor seating, fire pits and a truly mesmerizing fire table. The menu is curated with a hint of WYLD. The partnership with local purveyors is illustrated in the Knapp Ranch Mixed Greens salad — the Edwards-based farm is providing as many fresh veggies that they can grow to Chef de Cuisine Manuel Gutierrez and Chef

0130 DAYBREAK RIDGE | 970.748.6200 RITZCARLTON.COM/BACHELORGULCH

Jasper Schneider and his crew. The Palisade tomato gazpacho is another example of the commitment to local ingredients, providing the taste of the sun-kissed Western Slope in a bowl. And though the focus is certainly on fresh and seasonal, Chef Schneider allows his global inspiration to run rampant. The chop chicken salad is treated to an Asian expression with carrots, cabbage, mandarin oranges, sesame and crispy rice noodles along with a peanut butter dressing. The tuna ceviche is transported to Thailand with the addition of coconut milk to the traditional South American acidity — the flavor is light but indulgent, causing a brief crispy jicama battle to claim the last morsel. Heading back to Mexico (one of Chef Schneider’s earliest culinary influences), the shrimp aguachile is another riff on ceviche: The shrimp is submerged in a concoction of chili peppers, lime juice, salt, cilantro, slices of cucumber and red onion.

PRICE

$18-$28 •••

AMBIANCE

Après nirvana •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Cucumber jalapeño marg

“We’re focusing on lighter, more refreshing dishes,” Chef Schneider says. “A lot of veggies and fish. You know, me and fish, in the mountains. Go figure.” The classic lunch fare is elevated, too: A double patty burger with cheddar is given a kick with jalapeño aioli; the classic Reuben is constructed with turkey and homemade thousand island

dressing for a hiking-friendly flavor. And for those who savor breakfast all day? Avocado toast on brioche with radishes, puffed quinoa and pickled Fresno chilis. But really — after a long day on the mountain, perhaps liquid refreshment is more apropos. The Fireside Bar lives up to its name with a multitude of libations including beer, wine, cocktails, draft cocktails (like regular cocktails but delivered more quickly), Belvederes (just ask your waiter), frozen indulgences (Bellinis, piña coladas, daiquiris, margaritas and the new kid on the block, Frosé) and the pièce de résistance: Moët & Chandon Champagne with the option to add a frozen ice pop — c’est magnifique! • From left, Key Lime Cooler with vanilla vodka and a graham cracker rim; Frosé with sparkling rosé and St. Germain; and a Mountainside Sangria with Grand Marnier, strawberries and a rose float.

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17 CHATEAU LANE | BEAVER CREEK | 970.845.8808 | SPLENDIDORESTAURANT.COM by KIM FULLER photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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ast November Cory Melanson planted garlic at Local 41 Farm, his farm 40 minutes west of Beaver Creek. This spring, as Splendido’s Chef de Cuisine, Melanson harvested the green garlic to create one of the best soups to have graced the menu at this fine dining restaurant. Emerald in complexion with the most lovely silk texture, the Green Garlic Soup is served with a crostini topped with succulent pieces of Maine scallops. “We are able to highlight the plants themselves and what the earth is giving us,” shares Melanson. “It’s still a classic soup, but the flavors really come through because I harvested the green garlic two days ago.” Melanson spent half a decade working as a farmer and chef in Oregon, and now he’s brought that passion and expertise to both the Colorado land and Splendido’s kitchen. Paired with the talents of Chef-Owner Brian Ackerman and Dining Room Manager Matthew McConnell, it is a wonderful time to dine at Beaver Creek’s most elegant and inviting restaurant. “Splendido is always special, but in the summer it’s a little extra special,” says McConnell. “The doors open up to our beautiful patio with overflowing flower boxes, and the energy in here is so light and vibrant. Really what chefs Brian, Cory and Sebastien are putting on the table and the service and the team and how we are all growing

together is what I’m so excited to share with all of our guests.” Have McConnell provide a courseby-course pairing for the most complete dining experience. He’s put together an impressive wine list that matches the splendor coming from the kitchen, pouring perfection like a

Sancerre with Spanish octopus and a Burgundy with Alaskan halibut. Inspired by harvests from Local 41 Farm, which Splendido supports, Chef Ackerman will change the menu throughout each season. From a Prime New York Strip with morel, ramp, hazelnut and chive, and Hay Smoked Local 41 Pork Tenderloin with lentils, turnip and soy sherry, his entrées highlight each ingredient on the plate in a unique way. Pastry Chef Sebastien Schmitt has become known for his creativity and playful renditions of desserts. Guests have enjoyed his sweet platings of the moon, a frozen lake, a mushroom and a snowman, to name a few. This summer his menu still offers great classics, like his lemon dessert with fennel and olive oil, and the famous Splendido Souffle. Guests can also try Schmitt’s Chocolate Log with rhubarb and cocoa nibs or his Apricot Egg made with white chocolate, rosemary, yogurt and goat cheese. Like Melanson and Ackerman, Schmitt dials in great flavor and texture and creates unique presentations, all while keeping the recipes relatively simple. This summer at Splendido, let’s celebrate the chefs. •

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SPLENDIDO AT THE CHATEAU

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Appetizers: $17-$29; Entrées: $38-$53 •••

AMBIANCE

Elegant, mountainside kitchen serving choice New American fare in an upscale chateau with live piano music •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Colorado rack of lamb with carrot, yogurt, kale, quinoa, lemon and vadouvan.

Green garlic soup, Maine sea scallop, shungiku. left Cherry, balsamic, white chocolate semi fredo and tarragon. page 22 Colorado rack of lamb. above

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TOSCANINI RISTORANTE

by KATIE COAKLEY photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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t Toscanini Ristorante, innovative Italian cuisine complements its chic Beaver Creek Village atmosphere. Outside, Toscanini provides casual outdoor dining under large umbrella tables sitting adjacent to the ice rink. Inside, colorful artwork, soft amber lights, rich wood tables, walls of wine bottles and huge windows offer a sophisticated alcove amid village activity. Chef John Zavoral creates unique and savory appetizers and entrées, ensuring each flavor melds with, and

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elevates, each ingredient. Growing up on a farm in Minnesota has inspired him to select high-quality, local products and make as much in-house as possible. “It’s all about balance,” Zavoral says. “We use local food when quality is there, but still use amazing products if something just can’t be found locally. It’s important to find something that enhances the dish visually, while also enhancing the dish’s taste.” He keeps his summer menu fresh and light and makes the majority of his pastas in house, including ravioli, tagliatelle, cavatelle and gnocchi. “Caprese salad and the Capellini pasta are great examples of summer

60 AVONDALE LANE | BEAVER CREEK PLAZA BEAVER CREEK | 970.754.5590 TOSCANINIBEAVERCREEK.COM

menu items with fresh local tomatoes and basil, and these are very traditional Italian dishes,” he says. Just like the dinner menu, Toscanini’s cocktail menu embraces lighter options. Fresh fruit and herb drinks stand out with ingredients such as strawberries, peaches, oranges, basil and mint combined with house-made infusions. About half of the cocktail menu features Italian-inspired cocktails, as Italians love refreshing prosecco and gin mixes, Zavoral says. The rest of the cocktail list involves fun twists on classics named after Beaver Creek Ski Resort’s trails. Toscanini acts as an all-inclusive meeting place. “Our location naturally lends itself to a family-friendly restaurant,” says Courtney Southern, general manager of Toscanini. “Our patio is welcoming and inviting, and a great home base for time spent in the village.” In addition to its gluten-free options, Toscanini offers an extensive kids’ menu and hands out coloring books for younger kids. “Whether it’s a family's first day in Beaver Creek and they stumble upon Toscanini with very hungry kids, or they have been coming here for years…we celebrate it all, from parents that need to unwind on the patio with a glass of Italian wine while their kids ice skate, or a recently engaged couple enjoying a night out — we are happy to be a part of everyone’s experience,” Southern says. “We love to be the place where parents

PRICE

Apps: $12-$24 Entrées: $23-$44 •••

AMBIANCE

Upscale, modern, innovative Italian •••

SIGNATURE DISHES

The Gazpacho (vegan) and the Tagliatelle

feel comfortable bringing their kids or where they get a babysitter and enjoy an adults-only meal.” Toscanini also prides itself on the connections employees make with guests. “Toscanini is where guests are treated like family as they gather rinkside for timeless Italian cuisine and our award-winning all-Italian wine list,” Southern says. “Italian food is comfort food, and we do comfort food well!” • Chocolate panna cotta, raspberry gelee and mixed berries. top right Heirloom tomato gazpacho, avocado, cucumber, fresh tomato and basil oil. left Burrata-filled ravioli, basil pistou, tomato sugo and balsamic reduction. top left


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AMBIANCE

Slopeside Latin American & American eatery and tequila bar with great views and a sun-facing deck •••

SIGNATURE DISH

El Diablo burger with five pepper relish, bacon, asadero cheese and roja aioli

EL SABOR by HEATHER HOWER photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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here’s a gem hidden in plain sight — a place, once found, you will want to return to again and again for the laid-back vibe, stunning views and, of course, amazing food. El Sabor is just that place: a Latin American restaurant that promises heritageinspired dishes from Mexico, South America, Central America and Spain. The food and drinks are all house made and it shows with zings of freshness and bold brightness. Think freshsqueezed mixers for every cocktail; hand-made happy hour tacos and even an authentic Cuban sandwich. Where is this slice of heaven? Right near the skier bridge in Lionshead in the Lion Square Lodge. It features a deck with views overlooking the Gore, Mountain and Gore Creek. Obviously, we all love a mountain view, but the food is the reason you will keep coming back. And for those sad sacks who don’t like Mexican? No worries, the owners have created a menu so friends can fiesta together. The creative kitchen staff knows how to make a mean burger and tasty chicken sandwich but the real magic

660 LIONSHEAD PLACE | LIONSQUARE LODGE | VAIL 970.477.4410 | ELSABORVAIL.COM

comes when they channel their energy into Latin American flavors. The tacos are raised to an art form with a variety to choose from: the Sabor with pickled onion, roja aioli, cilantro, cotija cheese and cabbage; Mahi Mahi, served with guacamole, asadero cheese, slaw and lime crema; Al Pastor with slaw, cotija cheese, pineapple and onion or the Barbacoa, which is perfectly seasoned shredded beef, cabbage, salsa verde, pickled onion, cilantro and cotija cheese. Miguel’s chicken enchiladas and rellenos are also hot-ticket items. For those who want to play it safe check out the fried chicken sandwich. It lets folks be conservative while living on the edge — just a little bit. It comes with a sweet-and-sticky agave glaze, habanero slaw and roja aioli — a classic chicken sandwich amped up enough to be worthy of this fantastic deck. See, we can all just get along. After an active day on the mountain or hiking the trails, continue the wanderlust for Happy Hour: tacos, margaritas and beer specials. It’s the best way to be in the middle of everything but still off the beaten path. Watch the world (and bikers, walkers, hikers, climbers and kids) go by as you sample the summer tiki cocktail or live like a local and reach for the lip-smacking jalapeño

cilantro marg with Tanteo jalapeño tequila, cilantro for an unexpected bit of brightness, orange liquor and Hellfire bitters. Absolutely delicious. Remember, all the mixers are hand made and freshly squeezed. You can tell they are made with some love and deliver a punch. So, set a goal for yourself. Leave your comfort zone. Go exploring and find this hidden deck for a true summer

experience. Then tell your friends — just because you don’t want them to be left out. • above Al Pastor tacos with slaw, cotija cheese, pineapple and onion, served with corn salad and an Aperol Spritz. below Fried chicken sandwich with agave glaze, habanero slaw and roja aioli served with fried Brussels sprouts and a Gin and Juice cocktail.

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Appetizers, Salads and Tacos: $8-$17; Burgers and Large Plates: $12-$28

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GARFINKEL’S 536 EAST LIONSHEAD CIRCLE | ACROSS FROM EAGLE BAHN GONDOLA 970.476.3789 | GARFSVAIL.COM

by HEATHER HOWER photos by CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT

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inally! A family-friendly place where kids can play, have a favorite meal and the adults can relax and have their own slice of heaven. This is not a new place; it’s Garfinkel’s. You know, the place that was rowdy with après revelers 20 years ago. Now it’s a family-friendly place with expanded menu but the same tasty cocktails, usual faves and that expansive deck overlooking Lionshead that simply beckons. Garfinkel’s, or Garf’s as it’s known in these here parts, is a hot bed of action but especially comes to life once the sun comes out, the flowers explode with color and the mountain blooms with possibility. While the top sellers and favorites will always be the somewhat usual: nachos, chicken fingers, wings, burgers and French dips; there is nothing usual about them

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at Garf’s. The food is handmade and the portions are more than generous. Arrive with an appetite. The crew at Garf’s made a vow years ago and they dare to be different. Alongside hamburgers and chicken wings are new options to tempt any taste bud. The poke bowl with chilled rice, seaweed salad, Sriracha mayo for spice, wonton crumble for crunch, avocado and house-made kimchi pairs perfectly with any of their expansive beer selection. How about cucumber salad as a side for a fresh summer taste bud experience? They also have several fresh garden salads and light fare to choose from. Unlike other area restaurants, Garfinkel’s prides itself on good food at good prices. Check out the steak (hand-cut) dinner that comes in under 25 dollars in conjunction with offering solid prices every day of the week. Garfinkel’s has also added to its gluten-free offerings. Start with a happy ending — the key lime pie, a bit

of Key West right in sunny Vail, is to die for. Speaking of the deck… it’s nearly impossible to sit under the blaze of the Colorado blue sky and not want to sip something delicious. Sure, Garf’s has a slew of craft beers as well as the lighter options. But give something new a try. The Patio Punch is aptly named as it feels like everyone on the deck is enjoying one. Its few ingredients come together to quench a thirst and pack a punch. Warning: its deliciousness goes down easily. Or try a European inspired Aperol spritz. One of the beautiful aspects of Garf’s deck is the conviviality it creates. This isn’t a time to be austere and sourfaced (and it would be hard to be so when there’s so much activity to watch and the joy is almost palpably floating through the air). Remember sunscreen because it’s easy to set foot on the deck for “just an hour” and suddenly most of the afternoon has passed you by and the sun is setting. One thing’s for sure — you’ll leave satiated and content. • top

Pork belly steamed buns. Cheese tortellini.

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PRICE

Starters and Shared Plates: $7-$15; Dinner Entrées: $17-$23 •••

AMBIANCE

Lively slopeside watering hole serving lunch, après-ski and dinner •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Hand-cut steaks served with sauteed vegetables and choice of baked potato or fries


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TAVERN ON THE SQUARE LIONSHEAD VILLAGE | 970.754.7704 | THEVAILCOLLECTION.COM/TAVERN-ON-THE-SQUARE

by HEATHER HOWER menu with sophisticated elements but photos by CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT keeps it easy on the palate — it has an upscale feel but is warm and welcoming, and KRISTIN ANDERSON

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favorite saying of many locals is that they came to Vail for the winter but stayed for the summer. Lounging on the sunny deck of Tavern on the Square at the base of the Eagle Bahn Gondola, it’s easy to see that truer words may never have been spoken. Tavern on the Square is part of the lovely Arrabelle but welcomes everyone to join for breakfast, lunch or dinner. The restaurant, run by renowned Executive Chef Paul Wade is part of the Vail Resorts collection of restaurants. He, along with Chef Nick Steger, infuses the

whether you’re dressed for the symphony or finishing a trail run. Snag a table on the patio where you can gaze up the mountain: the bright green meets the blaze of blue sky. Start your meal with one of the team’s signature summer cocktails. The bartenders thrive on creating innovative cocktails that feel at once fresh and new but with roots in the classics. The lavender-infused Collins, with its fresh mint sprig and lavender stalk, feels, and looks, like the taste of summer. The Fernet cocktail, served in a snifter, is herbaciously hearty. New this summer is Sunday Brunch, with Chef Wade’s one-of-a-kind answer

to the common brunch: a paella bar. Select from a bounty of ingredients and the chef will whip it up as you wait. The buffet area positively overflows with seafood and breakfast items, pastries, delicacies and the coveted Bloody Mary bar to start your morning off right. This mighty marriage of flavors will have you relaxing for most the day. When in Vail — eat like the uber-healthy locals with the Super Food Salad that pairs nicely with a flavorful and healthful (seeming) cocktail. Antioxidants never tasted so good: The salad can definitely be a meal in itself with kale, Brussels sprouts, cabbage and broccoli, “quinoa tabbouleh,” toasted almonds and the most delightful artichoke heart artfully displayed on top of the phenomenal salad. Many need more than a salad, and after a serious workout, it’s imperative to get the calories back in. Welcome the veal marsala, set atop a bed of salty, slightly crunchy and 100 percent delicious spetzl with foraged mushrooms that add a touch of the wild to the dish. Or slide toward the decadent side with bucatini. The big, juicy noodles are paired with julienned zucchini, diced pancetta (salty! crunchy!) in a garlic-lemon-anchovy sauce that is out of this world. For goodness sake, save room for dessert. It’s not so easy to be polite if sharing Tavern’s version of a banana split. Pastry Chef Jenn Davis came up with something that knocks the socks off the

PRICE

Breakfast Buffet: $34 per person; Starters and Shared Plates: $16-$28; Flatbreads, Salads and Sandwiches: $13-$24; Large Plates: $25-$44 •••

AMBIANCE

Slopeside restaurant serving breakfast, lunch, après and dinner in an inviting, lively and upscale atmosphere •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Noodle Bowl with choice of meat or tofu, pea shoots, farm egg, shiitake mushrooms, scallions, jalapeño, roasted vegetable broth and a crispy nori cloud

original. The double chocolate chip cookie (served warm, naturally), topped with three flavors of homemade ice cream — roasted banana, strawberry swirl and caramel swirl. It’s all topped with a drizzle of chocolate sauce, a few dried banana chips, to-die-for homemade whipped cream, and, of course, a cherry on top. Which is just how life should be lived: deliciously sweet, a little crunchy, somewhat unexpected and always with a cherry on top. Get to Tavern on the Square to celebrate summer in style. • Superfood salad with a lavenderinfused Collins. top right Mahi Banh Mi sandwich. left Veal marsala with a branca punch cocktail. page 25 Vegan cheesecake. top left

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BEAVER LIQUORS

by KATIE COAKLEY photos by JUSTIN Q. McCARTY

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hat makes an amazing liquor store? Is it the selection? The expertise of employees and their willingness to assist? The existence of a wine cellar located 14 feet underground, guaranteed to make wine taste better? Is it a combination of all of the above? If you’re looking for a location to purchase beer, wine and spirits for a special occasion or to stock your cellar, head to Beaver Liquors in Avon. For 40

110 EAST BEAVER CREEK BLVD | AVON 970.949.5040 | BEAVERLIQUORS.COM

years, this family-owned establishment has been quenching the thirst of imbibers with what is the largest wine and liquor store in the Vail Valley. Wander amongst the selection of craft beer, particularly the Colorado-based options; stroll amongst the spirits and choose your new favorite bourbon or gin. But whatever you do — don’t skip the cellar. Situated at the aforementioned 14 feet below ground, the wine cellar is a beneficial location to store wine as it keeps it naturally cool. “Wine is made from fruit and if you put a stock of grapes in the heat and

the sun and you keep one in a nice, cool area, after a week, you know what's going to happen in the one that's in the sun,” Beaver Liquors Owner David Courtney says. “It’s why we have a huge advantage over everyone.” But storing the wine in the cellar is not only beneficial for the wine he has — it’s also a selling point for the wine he wants to get. “In the wine business there is a lot of wine that is very, very limited,” Courtney explains. “And winemakers, they baby their wine from the vineyards to the barrel to the bottle to the truck. So when they come in

and visit our valley (which a lot of them do), and they see that we have a wine cellar, they see that as a sign of respect and they're comfortable with sending their wine to a place like ours. As a result, we are able to procure wines that other stores can't.” Of course, these wines are in are in great demand and Courtney may only receive a case or half case of the coveted vino; he was reluctant to disclose explicit examples. But rest assured — with such an extensive cellar, the experts at Beaver Liquor are happy to help you find your perfect wine. In some cases, you may be pairing


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with a dish; in others, you may be pairing with an activity or planning for après after an activity. If you’re searching for something refreshing after fly-fishing on the Gore or “something to drink after my hike up to Gore Lake,” consider picking up a bottle or two of rosé. Rosé wines started their meteoric rise as a favored style of summer a few years ago and Courtney says that it’s still the style of choice for summer — morning, afternoon or evening. “Rosés have been so popular in the last five years and (initially) people did stick to the French rosé, specifically from Provence,” Courtney says. “But now that they’re used to it, they’re drinking it all the time now and branching out: They want Italian or Spanish rosés, or rosés from California or Oregon. Ten years ago, we used to have 12 rosés in the summer. This year, we’ll have more than 60 different rosés on the shelves.” If the idea of choosing from that large of a selection is daunting, have no fear. Beaver Liquors employs three sommeliers so there’s always someone on hand to not only help you pick the best bottle, but also perhaps offer options you hadn’t considered. One of Courtney’s favorite things to do is point out vintners, styles or production areas that may not be as well-known but provide great value. Another opportunity is to attend one of the special tasting events that Beaver Liquor hosts with Vin48 in Avon. Known as “Vinsdays,” these special events are themed and include sampling various wines paired with cuisine from Vin48. Though the pairings are still being solidified, Courtney

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— Beaver Liquors employs three sommeliers so there’s always someone on hand to not only help you pick the best bottle, but also perhaps offer options you hadn’t considered.

says that the rosé tasting (which will include about 30 different rosés) will kick off the summer and the popular “Pigs and Pinot” will also definitely take place. Past themes have included a selection of volcanic wines and a head-to-head blind tasting of wines from Italy, France, South America and the U.S. Priced at around $40 for the tasting, Vinsdays are possibly the best value for vino in the valley.

So whether you have something specific in mind or simply want to wander through the racks for wine, beer or spirits, a trip to Beaver Liquors is bound to be fruitful. • Beaver Liquors has a walk-in cellar 14 feet underground, which keeps the wine naturally cool. above and left The store's top floor includes a large variety of beer and spirits. opposite and top

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BLUE PLATE

48 EAST BEAVER CREEK BLVD | AVON 970.845.2252 | BLUEPLATEAVONCOM

by WREN BOVA photos by CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT

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ou can call Blue Plate global, or eclectic, or international — it all amounts to the same thing to Chef-Owner Adam Roustom, and he has a different word for it: Americana. “Almost all the foods that are ‘classic American’ came from someplace else,” he says. “America is a melting pot, and that’s what we are. Blue Plate is Americana.” And it starts with the chef and his wife, Elli, who manages the front of the house. He spent his childhood in Syria until moving to the East Coast in grade school. Elli hales from Austria. The pair met in Vail, had a brief and feisty courtship, then married and opened up Blue Plate a dozen years ago. And though the concept today is basically what they started with, every year they add a little more, do a little more. Blue Plate is practically a lifestyle. Summer is a special time at Blue Plate for a lot of reasons — especially the patio seating off of one of the eatery’s two dining rooms. "It's the only place in the valley where you can sit under an apple canopy or order from an outside bar." Inside or out, it’s a great time to sample one of Elli’s refreshing teas or lemonades — made fresh daily with all-natural ingredients, including blue butterfly pea flower tea, which brings a vivid hue. Or go for a fruit-forward summer cocktail created by Bar Manager Alex Siles.

And they’ve just opened their gondola seating: cozy up in the newly refurbished Hansel or Gretel cars and enjoy the entirely customized Chef’s Tasting Menu or the Traditional Alpine Menu. With beautiful interior woodwork and seamless service, the gondola cars seat a foursome comfortably, and offer a magical experience that takes you outside of time.

But you don’t have to sit in a gondola car to experience Chef Adam’s culinary chops. Whether you’re heading in for lunch, Happy Hour or dinner, there’s a solid backbone of Blue Plate’s triedand-trues, embellished with enough new items to keep the chef jazzed. For a place that has developed a cult following for both meatloaf and schnitzel, there sure are a lot of inventive vegan options “just because.” Case in point, the red lentil Kibbe Nayeh served with fresh mint, chili and onion, the classic set-up for Middle Eastern raw lamb kibbe. “It makes it pop, and the lentils are really reminiscent of raw lamb — it rocks,” enthuses Adam. Or go for his spin on Papas Bravas: “Instead of potatoes we’re using sweet potato tater tots — for me, a tater tot is the epitome of Americana, I fell in love with them in 5th grade when we moved to America.” Doused with a chipotle sauce and served with an almond “vegannaise” instead of the normal aioli, it’s a fun little tapa. Other newbies to the menu include Asian Pork Osso Bucco — braised shanks, panang (red) curry sauce, Asian broccoli and mango — as well as shrimp and scallop ceviche tostadas, topped with guava foam, and Adam’s own take on liver and onions a la the

PRICE

Lunch: $8-$14 Tapas: $8-$14 Dinner: $14-$34 •••

AMBIANCE

Friendly, eclectic neighborhood restaurant •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Veal or pork schnitzel, meatloaf

Ottomans, with crispy veal liver, hummus, Syrian cabbage and sumac onions. The menu is truly a wild ride through Adam’s own interests and influences. With his flavors and execution, and Elli’s attention to the details of consistency and hospitality, they’ve cultivated a clientele that will happily follow along. • Dine in one of Blue Plate's two new gondola cars, Hansel and Gretel. left Blue butterfly pea flower tea. above


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MAYA MODERN MEXICAN KITCHEN & TEQUILERÍA 126 RIVERFRONT LANE, WESTIN RIVERFRONT RESORT & SPA | AVON | 970.790.5500 | RICHARDSANDOVAL.COM/MAYA-BC/ by BRENDA HIMELFARB photos by JUSTIN Q. McCARTY PRICE

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f you want a little panache with your pico de gallo, then just enter the world of Chef Richard Sandoval. Considered to be the “Father of Modern Mexican Cuisine,” Sandoval’s creations are a highlight of Maya Restaurant at The Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa. In fact, The Michelin Guide said of the restaurant, “Maya’s menu reads like a love letter to Mexico.” Sandoval’s philosophy was to create an “interactive” dining experience. “Before, people had an appetizer, entrée and dessert and dinner was over,” he told USA Today. “I like to take people on a journey that’s more ambitious. I recommend two to three plates per person and sharing an entrée. “Now the experience becomes an interactive tasting. You’re passing the plates around, talking about the ingredients and the tastes.” And so it is at Maya. The food is spectacular across the board. It’s rooted in tradition and, it must be said, intriguing. Nothing tastes as you might expect: It’s better than that. And it begins with an assortment of more than 100 tequila drinks, inspired by local tequileirias in Mexico. They are refreshingly laced with an assortment of flavors that keep you guessing. One favorite is the Perfect Patrón Skinny Margarita, with Patrón silver, pineapple citronge lime and agave nectar.

Starters and Small Plates: $10-$17; Entrées: $14-$38 •••

AMBIANCE

Hip, modern Mexican kitchen & tequileria •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Carne asada

Another — the Canela Anejo, with Roca Patrón añejo tequila, blood orange and cinnamon. Both drinks make the perfect beginning to an exciting evening of flavors. And that evening should begin with Maya’s Classic Guacamole. However, adding raw tuna to this dish will leave you wanting more — even after you, perhaps, ordered the Adobo Crusted Shrimp and Calmari with citrus cabbage slaw, as well. It’s a toss up between these two starters. Totally different tastes — both wonderful. “Chef Sandoval created a standard of how the plates should look,” says Executive Chef Angel Munoz who works closely with Chef Veronica Morales. “From there we can play with ingredients and method of cooking and that’s what engages us. Like adding tuna to the guacamole.”

Morales and Munoz have a very warm working relationship. “This is how we work,” says Munoz, with a laugh. “I’ll say, ‘We need to use this ingredient.’ And she’ll say, ‘Okay, we can do this and this.’ She puts techniques in practice and I’m the one who says ‘We have to use this, I want this.’ Veronica gives soul to our menu”. And that “soul” shows up in every dish. Take the tacos and enchiladas, for instance. Like everything on the menu, they’re authentic, freshly made and outrageously delicious. Favorites include the Adobo Brisket Tacos and the Tex Mex Chicken Enchiladas; however, the Blue Crab and Shrimp Enchiladas, with salsa verde and spinach, is a must. The array of flavors will leave you quiet, intent upon eating every last bite. Feel free to wander beyond the tacos and enchiladas, though, to the menu’s

appealing Chef’s Table choices. Carne Asada, with fire-grilled vegetables, is served within a fanned circle of black been purée and Coriander Tuna, is seared rare. It’s really hard to choose only one. An evening at Maya is incredibly delicious and always intriguing. What’s more, you’ll leave wanting more. Chef Munoz says that this summer’s FAC (Friday Afternoon Club) will be filled with an array of new dishes that he and Chef Morales are busily creating. Guacamole served with warm chips and a Prickly Pear cocktail. top right Shrimp and calamari, citrus cabbage slaw, sweet sambal sauce and an Avocado Margarita. below Coriander-crusted tuna, seared rare, with sweet potato, house chorizo, chayote squash, mango slaw and avocado. top left

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SAUCE ON THE CREEK

TRAER CREEK | 101 FAWCETT ROAD | AVON 970.949.3291 | SAUCEONTHECREEK.COM

by KATIE COAKLEY photos by CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT

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ummer is fleeting and the opportunities for al fresco dining are limited: Eke out every sip of sunshine at Sauce on the Creek in Avon. A truly family-friendly establishment, Sauce on the Creek has an expansive patio with spectacular views of Beaver Creek mountain that welcomes active children and can arrange tables to fit your 22-person family. And the food? Family style: Hearty enough to satiate your bottomless-pit nephew and diverse enough to accommodate your allergicto-everything aunt. Featuring “New England Style Italian” food, the menu is diverse with a wide variety of appetizers (the Brussels sprouts are perhaps the most popular); soups and salads; fromscratch pizza that is also available on gluten-free crust; hearty pasta (with gluten-free and veggie options, too) and elegant entrées. However, it’s not enough to just look at the menu — you have to hear the specials. “The thing that sets up apart from the other restaurants in the valley is that our chef, Mike Irwin, is creating great specials nightly that are constantly changing,” explains General Manager Ross Cohen. “We always have some kind of meat special, some kind of fish special every evening; sometimes we have a salad special. That's really what sets us apart.”

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PRICE

Appetizers $10-$20; Soup and Salads $5-$20 (family size); Pizza, Pasta and Entrées: $11-$32 for single, $14-$49 for family size •••

AMBIANCE

Modern family vibes •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Rigatoni with sausage

These daily specials allow Chef Irwin to be creative with his cuisine, focusing on certain in-season ingredients or utilizing styles and flavors that might depart from Sauce’s roots. It’s a thrill simply to see what he’s created on that particular day. Though Sauce on the Creek certainly has an affinity for its various edible sauces, there’s another sauce that is front and center at the eyecatching and beguiling bar. Sauce is known for its extensive wine list and its owners’ affinity for whiskey: It’s home to one of the most expansive whiskey selections in the valley. Though guests are encouraged to whet their whistle on any day of the week, the advent of Whiskey

Wednesdays will bring a new level of cheer to hump day. Every Wednesday, everything whiskey is discounted 25%, which gives patrons the opportunity to sample some of the pricier options — like the normally $100 pour of Pappy Van Winkle. But Sauce has another attractive option for sampling: half pours. At .75 ounces, half pours are perfect for creating your own whiskey flight. “The whole point of the half pours is to give people the opportunity to try something they might not normally try at a more affordable rate,” Cohen says. Combining half pours and Whiskey Wednesdays sounds like a reason to celebrate mid-week.

For those living for the weekend, Sauce is hosting three special “Saucy Sundays” focusing on brunch, bourbon and beats. On June 23, July 4 and Aug. 11 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., a DJ will be spinning tunes, a special brunch menu will make its debut and the patio will be the place to soak up the sun and have fun with the family. So grab friends, family or that coworker you’ve been meaning to connect with and head to Sauce on the Creek. The patio is waiting — and so is the whiskey. • Rigatoni with sausage. Freshly seared fish with sauteed vegetables and a creative sauce is often a daily special. above left


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VIN48

48 E. BEAVER CREEK BLVD. | AVON 970.748.WINE | VIN48.COM

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$8-$38 •••

by WREN BOVA photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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hether you call it a wine bar or a community center, Vin48 is essential to the local landscape of terrific food, exciting wines and convivial hospitality. With a robust Happy Hour that has locals leaving work just a touch early to secure a seat, and a chef who regularly creates specials that might run out after a dozen orders, it’s a hotspot that celebrates the earnest efforts of farmers, winemakers and even guests. But summer kicks it into overdrive. The dining room’s 35-foot-long wall of windows suddenly disappears, opening up the space to the airy patio

that, depending on your seat, sports views of Beaver Creek Mountain, a lovely green area and Chef Charles Hays’ wood-fired grill. The restaurant’s raspberry bushes and chives grow just around the corner, and a busy kitchen can be heard in the distance. “The best ingredients are usually what you have locally, things that don’t have to travel hundreds of miles. And summer is the most exciting time of year for food,” admits Greg Eynon, who owns and operates Vin48 with Collin Baugh and Chef Hays. Eynon is the “wine guy,” and usually has 40 to 50 wines by the glass on the menu, in addition to bottles. He’s excited to open up his list and invite in fresher, lighter — he would say, even “crunchier” — wines

to play alongside the seasonal flavors that are coming out of the Vin kitchen. And though his list makes a big change by the season — think seafoodfriendly reds from fishing communities, slightly effervescent whites from warmer climes — it’s a year-round effort. From the food on the table to the wines that are poured, Vin48 operates according to its values, namely, make things from scratch with people you like. He likes to buy wine from people who do it like they do at Vin: inventively, passionately, with available resources. Vin48 has developed a backbone of menu favorites that beckon — the Mountain View pork meatballs are little flavor bombs, the mussels with house-made chorizo leave you sopping up every last bit of juice, and the El Regalo Ranch goat tacos are both racy and demure. But there’s a lot to be said for what’s new. An occasional special, fettuccini carbonara, includes the crown jewel of a fresh duck egg from Edwards — the ducks determine how many orders they can offer in a night. The brined pork chop has been wildly popular, served with horseradish mashed potatoes, roasted baby carrots and a sexy little apple-pork demi. And though Baugh cites the halibut with forbidden rice, coconut-clam broth and sautéed veggies as a bit of a slam-dunk, he’s in love with the deep sea red crab fettuccine. “There are only five ingredients in it, but it’s awesome,” he says, including

AMBIANCE

Modern mountain setting serving seasonal, Colorado cuisine •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Classic steamed mussels with house-made chorizo and oven-dried tomatoes

the house-made fettuccini as a single ingredient. “We use a really nice olive oil, the way the Italians do it. It’s so delicious.” Though the food and wine are the lifeblood of Vin48, perhaps the real secret of success is the long-term staff that seems invested in the overall success of both the restaurant and their guests’ experience. “It is such a personal experience, taking care of your guests,” agrees Baugh. “It’s like inviting someone into your home. You want to empower your staff, and be kind to them.” It’s working. • top left Fettuccini carbonara with Blue Sky

Farms duck egg, Nueske’s bacon and chive flowers. top right Elevation pilsner-battered Maryland soft-shell crab and carrot slaw. left Pan-fried Spanish baby octopus with housemade Italian sausage, cucumber and panzanella.

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LOADED JOE'S

82 EAST BEAVER CREEK BLVD #104 | AVON | 970.748.1480 227 BRIDGE STREET, SUITE C | VAIL | 970.479.2883 | LOADEDJOES.COM

Story and photos by CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT

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few boxes need to be checked to ensure the success of a restaurant in the Vail Valley: proximity to community centers, consistent quality and service and killer atmosphere. Loaded Joe’s scores 100 points here and the extra credit goes to the fact that they ARE one of those community centers. I find myself arriving early for coffee and breakfast, staying around for lunch and then passing back through in the evening for a beer and a bite, lingering even longer to catch anything from trivia to open mic night and a game of pool in the evenings. Theoretically there are only 5 hours in a day that cannot be spent inside Loaded Joe’s, seven days a week. The cuisine is created with locally sourced ingredients, chosen with intention. Breakfast favorites include their Colorado Lamb Scramble and the truly magnificent lemon ricotta pancakes served with crème fraiche

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Breakfast: $8.50-$11 Lunch: $8-$13.50 •••

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Friendly neighborhood coffee house with a full bar •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Rococo coffee and anything with Tender Belly bacon

and seasonal berries. Add the awardwinning Tender Belly bacon to anything and call it a win. For lunch or a relaxed dinner, try the Castro sandwich — think Tender Belly ham, whole-grain mustard, pickles and whole-grain bread — or the thinly sliced rib-eye French dip. Make sure to check out the Vail

“grab and go” location (underneath 10th Mountain Whiskey on Bridge Street) for a pre-hike coffee and breakfast sandwich, or to grab a pastry to stick in your jacket and then circle back for the whiskey-shot dance party. When in doubt about where to hang or dine, just look for a swarm of locals — I assure you plenty will be at Loaded Joe’s. •

ROCKY MOUNTAIN TACO

The community hotspot is busy all day long, starting with the breakfast crowd and morphing into a place for business meetings, socializing and late-night entertainment. top right Despite a full bar and breakfast, lunch and dinner, the heart of Loaded Joe's is still a superior cup of coffee. top left

41290 US-6 | EAGLEVAIL 970.401.4443 | ROCKYMOUNTAINTACO.COM

by KRISTA DRISCOLL photos by JUSTIN Q. McCARTY PRICE

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his summer, you can get “the world’s most best taco” in two locations: the original Rocky Mountain Taco truck parked in EagleVail outside Vail Brewing Co. or a second food trailer in Avon sandwiched between the Westin Riverfront and Wyndham resorts. Food service begins in Avon at 10:30 a.m. each day, an hour earlier than the EagleVail location, with the option to add eggs to any of the menu items for a quick grab-and-go breakfast. Or lounge at one of the outdoor tables and soak up some Colorado sunshine. “This last winter we had an amazing season and it really blew up,” says Coowner Dan Purtell of the Avon location. “We just put out a couple of tables and chairs in the last week, and it’s been super popular so far.” Both locations sling tacos, burritos, quesadillas and torta sandwiches,

Two tacos for $5, or a burrito, quesadilla or torta for $8 •••

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Food truck with al fresco dining or grab-and-go options •••

with options including the Alambre, with grilled steak, bacon, chorizo, bell peppers, onion and avocado, or the White Chick, with grilled chicken, poblano and Anaheim peppers and a creamy, alfredo-esque sauce. Everything at Rocky Mountain Taco is made from scratch with no preservatives, from the marinade for the carne asada to the signature red and green salsas and habanero, chipotle and jalapeño cremas, and it’s served fresh each day until it runs out.

Customers dig the food and the vibe, awarding Rocky Mountain Taco with a half-dozen "Best of Vail" honors last year, from best Mexican food to best worker’s lunch. “The love we’ve been shown is insane,” Purtell says. “People are down for us, and it’s so cool; we never saw that coming.” • above Tacos, tortas and quesadillas come with

a choice of protein, including grilled chicken, pork carnitas; Hippie Crack — red potatoes, peppers and onions.

SIGNATURE DISH

Add steak or pork carnitas to the Hippie Crack burrito, with red potatoes, grilled poblano, Anaheim and red bell peppers, onion, and avocado spread topped with pico de gallo, cheese and crema


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A modern Alpine dining destination •••

SIGNATURE DISH

French Onion Wild Mushroom soup with tableside presentation

THE 10th by KATIE COAKLEY photos by CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT

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hen is lunch more than just a means to settle the savage growling on the stomach, more than just a refueling before the next adventure? When is lunch a time to linger rather than bolt? At The 10th, situated at the heart of Vail Mountain overlooking the expansive Gore Range, lunch is elevated to an occasion that rivals even the most memorable meal. Set aside some time — you’ll want to savor this. Hike, bike or ride Gondola One to mid-Vail and The 10th awaits, beckoning diners with a large and spacious deck for al fresco dining and a contemporary dining room for more sheltered service. Here, you’ll enjoy modern alpine cuisine that can be perfectly paired with a Wine Spectator award-winning wine list or a kicky cocktail like the Running with Bubbles, made with Dobel Tequila, grapefruit juice and cava. Peruse the menu and the fun begins: Start with the truffle fries with housemade truffle aioli to prime the pump as choices are made. Savvy selectors will inform the group to order a myriad

TOP OF GONDOLA ONE | MID-VAIL | 970.754.1010 | THE10THVAIL.COM

of items to best sample the menu. The charcuterie platter, featuring Parma ham, finocchiona, bresaola, cambozola, grana, ciabatta, pickled vegetables and olives, is another stellar option for sharing, preferably while sipping wine and sinking into the view. Soups and salads are given alpine flair at The 10th with wild mushrooms added to an updated twist on French onion soup; an alpine salad with shaved fennel and pumpkin seeds and a Lyonnaise salad that brings a bit of the Rhône-Alps to Vail. Don’t leave France after the salads: “The Croque Monsieur flatbread was a big hit addition to our winter menu and will maintain its place on the menu this summer,” says Kyle Banchero, general manager at The 10th. “It is a play on the famous French sandwich and features Jambon de Paris, one of the finest ham products in the market, as well as grilled onion, Dijon-scented béchamel, Comté, parmesan and chives.” Then there’s The 10th’s burger made with 100% Wagyu beef from Colorado's Western Slope. The house-made brioche bun gently holds the burger along with Tender Belly bacon, mixed greens, house pickles, cheddar and chipotle aioli.

“This will be one of, if not the best, burger you have ever had,” Banchero claims. If, after surveying the carnage of a lunch well enjoyed, you feel as if you’d like to linger, take your time. “The dining experience at The 10th is truly defined by the guest,” Banchero says. “Whether the guest is just looking for a

quick bite to eat during a day out on the mountain biking or hiking or if they are looking for a leisurely, well-rounded dining experience they can find it at The 10th.” • top The 10th boasts some of the best views in the valley. above Al fresco family friendly dining.

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Apps: $14-24; Entrées: $20-30

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ALMRESI RESTAURANT

298 HANSON RANCH ROAD, TOP OF BRIDGE STREET 970.470.4174 | ALMRESI-VAIL.COM

by KATIE COAKLEY photos courtesy ALMRESI

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journey of a thousand miles begins with one step; a trip to the heart of the Black Forest begins with a flight of stairs. Almresi, located at the top of Bridge Street, seems to contain a portal to a cabin nestled in the woods of Bavaria. Here, surrounded by reclaimed German barn wood, cozy woolen throws and enough cow bell to satisfy Christopher Walken, guests gather with family and friends for a dining experience that feeds the heart, soul and stomach. Make your plans in advance (dinner reservations fill up quickly) and make sure to wear loose clothing so as to fully indulge in German, Austrian and Swiss dishes like Schweinelendchen, pork loin with spaetzle, mushroom sauce and red cabbage; schweizer rösti, a Swiss rösti with homemade farmers cheese, fresh herbs and smoked salmon or the alpen gnocchi, filled with chestnut truffle and topped with a tomato-gorgonzola cream sauce. “I think the only thing we really kept from the winter menu that we didn't have last summer was the alpen gnocchi, the truffle gnocchi, because people loved it so much,” Alyssa Thoma says. Lighter options include the Happy Creek Trout Salad with seasonal mixed greens, red beets and orange slices with smoked trout fillet and horseradish cream and soups like Backerbsensuppe, a boullion with fried butterpearls and scallions. But perhaps the most iconic dish is an Austrian original, the hutessen or “Eat your hat.” On this hot, iron hat, guests cook their beef to their own specifications. It’s served with salad, potatoes and various dipping sauces

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$9-$44 •••

AMBIANCE

An enchanted forest cabin (with nary an elf in sight) •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Hut Essen, "eat your hat"

and is guaranteed to have you tipping your own hat to the chefs. And even if you think you can’t fit another morsel, be sure to peruse the desserts. Apfelstrudel is a classic, as is the original Austrian Kaiserschmarr: a fluffy pancake, ripped into little pieces, with caramelized, powdered sugar on top and a cherry compote on the side. “Every great dinner should end with a little dessert,” Alyssa says. If waiting until dinner for your Austrian fix is not an option, head to Almresi for “breakfast,” served from 12 to 3 p.m. in July and August. In addition to the regular menu, a few specials are on offer like Weisswurst, which translates to white sausage. A traditional Bavarian sausage, “you have to peel the skin off to get to the really good stuff and then you have a sweet mustard and a pretzel on the side,” Alyssa explains. This special meal time, whether you call it breakfast or brunch, is another

opportunity to gather together and enjoy Almresi’s unforgettable food… and perhaps a German or Austrian beer or schnapps. After all, it’s summer and these long, bucolic days are made for indulging. •

Family-style dinner at Almresi. Happy Creek trout salad. left The pork shank is both tender and massive. top

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ALPENROSE by KATIE COAKLEY photos courtesy ALPENROSE

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or more than 40 years, Alpenrose has presided like a grand dame over Meadow Drive. Now, with a brand-new lease on life provided by the Thomas (who also own Alrmresi), Alpenrose is once again luring guests into leisurely lunches and decadent dinners thanks to its rustic chic décor and the siren-call of its patio.

100 EAST MEADOW DRIVE #25 | VAIL | 970.476.8899

Ah, the patio. Arrive early to secure a seat at a table or on a vintage chair lift and enjoy some of Vail’s best people watching as you sip on a Bavarian beer and split Herzhaftes Kasefondue, a hearty cheese fondue served in a bread bowl. The Schweizer Mountainsalat is a lighter option for lunch or indulge in the classic German pork schnitzel with farmers salad with chopped potatoes, egg and mixed greens. For a taste of the traditional, order the new vegetarian Flammkuchen with apples and brie.

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“People love it,” says Alyssa Thoma. But don’t miss dinner at Alpenrose. As the sun sets, move inside to the bright and airy dining room designed by Diana Thoma. With décor procured in Germany and Austria, the fresh white walls complement the cozy wood seating and touches of shearling, antlers and iron. Here, you can choose between family-style seating or more intimate tables (including the “First Date Chair”), perfect for sharing a Walliser Tomaten-Kasefondue, Valais tomato cheese fondue Zermatt with tomato cubes, small potatoes, white bread cubes and a small house salad or Raucherlachs & Rosti: smoked salmon with Swiss potato pancakes, arugula and horseradish cream. Adding a few Italian dishes to the German, Austrian and Swiss favorites, the cuisine is authentic and flavorful, evoking the warmth and love you’d get from an oma in every bite. In addition to the daily lunch and dinner menus, this summer, Fridays are coming up rose-colored at Alpenrose. “We have one special evening here: Every Friday it's a Rose Friday,” Alyssa explains. “Every lady gets a rose and it’s a rose-themed evening with dinner and drink specials.” Not that an excuse is needed but these weekly specials are a

Lunch: $9-$34; Dinner: $9-$44 •••

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Refreshed rustic with a homey feel •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Schnitzel “Wiener Art”

reason to make plans to celebrate friends and family at Alpenrose. But whenever you decide to dine, be sure to save room for dessert. Available for both dine-in and carry out, the Thomas are maintaining the sweet treats that fans seek out at Alpenrose. In addition to homemade Black Forest Cake, the display case is full of ever-changing treats and indulgences with even more to come, due to repeated requests from guests. Whether you’re soaking up the sun on the patio or cozying up for a cocktail or Kaiserchmarrn, don’t miss an opportunity to dine at Alpenrose — it’s sure to become your new favorite tradition. • top left

Alpenrose interior.

top right Traditional German apple strudel. left

Valais tomato cheese fondue.

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BISTRO FOURTEEN

EAGLES NEST VIA EAGLE BAHN GONDOLA | VAIL MOUNTAIN 970.754.4530 | VAIL.COM

PRICE

Appetizers, Soups & Salads: $10-$23; Entrées: $22-$28 •••

AMBIANCE

Mountaintop bistro that celebrates Colorado cuisine with an amazing view •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Wild Game Gnocchi Bolognese with sautéed wild mushrooms and shaved parmesan

by KIM FULLER photos by KRISTIN ANDERSON

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een from the windows of Bistro Fourteen on top of Vail Mountain, Mount of the Holy Cross stands tallest amongst its neighboring summits, reminding onlookers why Colorado’s “Fourteeners” are iconic in their dominance — each standing at least 14,000 feet above sea level. Named after these prized peaks, Bistro Fourteen offers its own alpine experience. The restaurant has an extraordinary location, accessible to anyone who could use a breath of fresh mountain air. Get there from an Eagle Bahn Gondola ride, or take on a more rigorous approach and climb up Vail Mountain on bike or on foot. This family-friendly spot is perfect for a full meal or just a round of appetizers. The cuisine of mountain comfort serves of classic pub food classed up with Colorado twists that include wild game meats and local cheeses and fruits. “We make our menu accessible to families and friends with favorites such as wings, flatbreads, a wide array

of salads and burgers. All of this is accentuated by the amazing views from 10,200 feet,” explains Restaurant Manager Joe Mullins. “We are also a great place to catch an afternoon cocktail and enjoy the sunset on weekends, as the restaurant is only open for dinner Friday and Saturday.” Start with an order of the Bison Carpaccio, served with arugula, roasted pistachio crumbles, a citrus dressing and house-made potato chips. For a little appetizer decadence, the Blue Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms hit the spot with a bright addition of lemon truffle aioli. The Superfood and Grain Salad is stacked with goodness, from kale and quinoa and buckwheat, to green onions, bell peppers, heirloom cherry tomatoes and fresh mozzarella. Larger appetites will enjoy the Bistro Burger

made from a house ground brisket patty, or the Wild Game Gnocchi Bolognese that’s prepared with wild mushrooms and topped with shaved parmesan. Or maybe it’s just a dessert that brings you up to this special restaurant

on top of Vail Mountain. Whatever your appetite, a visit to Bistro Fourteen is always worth the trip. • Smoked bison French dip with a Bistro Bloody Mary. below Seared tuna poke bowl. above


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Buzzy, stylish bowling alley, bar and restaurant great for families and big groups •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Menu created around shareable dishes

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141 EAST MEADOW DRIVE #113 | SOLARIS | VAIL 970.476.5300 | BOLVAIL.COM

by KARI MOHR photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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ince first coming onto the scene a decade ago, Bōl’s chic yet fun approach to fine dining and entertainment have made it the lively heart of Vail’s social scene. By day, passersby are naturally drawn to its wide green lawn in Solaris plaza, which Bōl enlivens with games like corn hole, ping pong and space enough to kick around a soccer ball. Their lawn-side Grab-n-Go serves up delicious offerings like a Sicilian pizza as well as a bar, which parents will especially appreciate as they sit back and watch the kids play. At 3 p.m., the main restaurant, bar

and bowling alley opens its doors for the evening. And it’s a stunning entrance. The long arc of the whitetopped bar leads guests inside, and is usually populated with a Coloradoapproved mix of those just in from a day on the mountain and those dressed to impress for a night on the town. Executive Chef Paula Turner, a resident of the Vail Valley for 20-plus years, approaches the fine dine offerings with a healthy dose of light-hearted wit. “We are a bowling alley after all,” she says with a grin. With that in mind, the menu features a robust selection of shareables that are familiar and yet a far cry from your father’s bowling league fare. From Lamb Lollipops and Crispy Confit Chicken wings, to the Tennessee Hot Sliders

and the Fungus Among Us Flat Bread, these mouthwatering dishes are easy to eat between turns bowling or at a lively table in the main restaurant. One of the most popular main dishes is the Whole Pan-Roasted Branzino, which premiered on the menu this last winter. Served with the full table-side deboning treatment, in summer the fish is stuffed with local herbs and a colorful side of seasonal veggies and a wilted spinach salad. Keep an eye out for the beef dishes on the menu, with meat sourced from Eaton Ranch just down the road in Edwards. The ranch is a part of the storied history of the Vail Valley, run by the family of Vail cofounder Earl Eaton. Save room for dessert because you don’t want to miss one of Pastry Chef Ryan Walker’s brilliant creations. Born and bred in the Vail Valley, Walker worked in renowned restaurants like Nomad in New York City and in kitchens across Europe before making his way back home to put his immense talents to work at Bōl. His Chocolate Sphere Bōling Ball is a show-stopping standout. The hollow dark chocolate sphere is filled with chocolate cake, candied walnuts, pastry cream and raspberries then doused with hot caramel sauce at your table in a decadent revelation. At Bōl you can’t help but get swept up in the delightful dichotomies: elegant yet approachable, high-end yet fun. It’s a can’t-miss stop for any visit to Vail. •

top Whole pan-roasted branzino with wilted spinach salad and grilled summer veggies and Elotes: grilled corn on the cob, chipolte aioli, lime butter, crumbled cotija and cilantro. above Burrata and garlic toast with marinated divina and cherry tomatoes. left Strawberries and chevre, cucumbers, butter lettuce, almonds, garden mint and honey vinaigrette.

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Appetizers: $9-$29 Entrées: $11-$68 •••

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Casual, yet upscale, fine steakhouse dining •••

SIGNATURE DISHES

Lamb Chop Fondue, Alaskan Halibut, Bone-in Ribeye

ELWAY’S VAIL 174 EAST GORE CREEK DRIVE | LODGE AT VAIL | VAIL 970.754.7818 | ELWAYS.COM/VAIL by ASHLEE BRATTON photos by SOUDERS STUDIOS

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o say that Elway’s in Vail Village is known for its steaks is like saying John Elway played a little football. Precision, practice and perfection are part of the nightly play-by-play action that makes this steakhouse popular among both locals and tourists alike. USDA prime hand-cut beef is the star at Elway’s of Vail, whether a diner’s palate preference is a thick NY strip, tender filet or juicy ribeye. To find this upscale eatery and be an active participant in the Elway legacy, stroll over the bridge and head towards the Lodge at Vail where a spectacular menu awaits. The sleek wooden beams nestled among modern stonework and crisp white linens beckon guests to enjoy the action of the main dining area, the privacy of the rounded atrium, or the crisp mountain air on the private patio.

Executive Chef Ray Trujillo has crafted a terrific menu that includes old favorites and exciting new options. When asked the secret to their success, Trujillo pointed directly to using “the finest hand-cut quality Prime beef combined with Elway’s famous steak seasoning.” But simplicity can be found in pristine ingredients, such as the signature steaks that have delighted so many diners. From a demure 8-ounce filet to the succulent ribeyes, part of the fun is choosing one of the sauces — chimichurri, peppercorn, blue cheese and more. But the seafood list is just as deep: Maine lobster with drawn butter, Alaskan halibut, Vancouver Island salmon and much more. STARTERS AND RIDE-ALONGS But don’t dive right into the main course. Starter menu all-stars include the must-have lamb chop fondue that is so tender Trujillo boasts, “It can almost be eaten like a lollipop.” Also lining the A-list are the West Coast Goose Point

oysters (seasonal) that are smooth enough for oyster newbies, followed by a touch of briny hurricane harbors that connoisseurs will love. On the Elway’s team is longtime sommelier Dana Smith who is more than willing to be the coordinator for any one of the 350 options on their wine list. From deep reds to light whites, there’s a perfect match for the steak

and seafood that Elway's specializes in. The final play of the evening should be a move towards the baked-to-order Chocolate Chip Cookies, served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. They are guaranteed to entertain the senses and warm the soul. • top

Bone-in filet and shrimp cocktail. John Elway, owner.

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KITCHEN & COCKTAILS 232 BRIDGE STREET | VAIL | 970.470.4803 | FALLLINEVAIL.COM

by KIM FULLER photos by CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT

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well-composed craft cocktail starts with quality ingredients, continues with an inspired mix of them and finishes with a unique and memorable twist. That play on flavor and art, detail and presentation come together in all the elements of Fall Line Kitchen & Cocktails, from the restaurant’s lively atmosphere and Chef Shawn Miller’s spirited menu, to each creative and delicious libation designed by Bar Manager Michael Bolding. Located on Bridge Street in Vail Village, Fall Line Kitchen & Cocktails is fun and fresh, perfect for anyone looking to grab a noodle bowl or burger, sandwich or salad, a thirst-quenching mixed drink, glass of wine or a shot and a beer. The atmosphere at Fall Line invites you to stay awhile, from the vintage ski town photographs on the wall to classic hits turned up on the speakers. “We want our guests to walk away having experienced awesome food and a great atmosphere,” says General Manager Ben Wanner, “while at the same time feeling that the level of service here is on par with anything you’d expect in any major city in the world.” For a taste of Rocky Mountain summer, start your meal with one of Fall

PRICE

Range: Small Plates: $9-$18; Large Plates: $29-$39; Noodles, Sandwiches & Pizza: $16-$26 •••

AMBIANCE

Lively and inviting mountain ambiance with a moderncontemporary menu •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Porcini and chili-crusted ahi with baby bok choy, king trumpet mushrooms, orange-coconut cream, pineapple soy reduction and sesame jasmine rice

Line’s most celebrated cocktails: Uncle Buck’s Punch. The balanced and bright whiskey drink is the perfect segue into evening from a full day of activities. Miller continues to evolve the menu this summer season with new appetizer items like a chilled mushroom salad, coconut-corn soup and chicken yakitori, and large plates like mouthwatering steak frites or a filet of grilled salmon. Miller’s porcini and chili-crusted ahi is

a standout, served with baby bok choy, king trumpet mushrooms, orangecoconut cream, pineapple soy reduction and sesame jasmine rice. For an ethnic fix, try the shrimp pad Thai which has just the right amount of Thai chili alongside the dish’s savory and crunchy peanuts, or keep it simple with The Burger — an all-American Black Angus double stack with balsamic red onion, pickles, gem lettuce, tomato and American cheese. Finish your meal with a touch of gin

and lavender in the Unicorn Chaser cocktail, or order up a cookie pie or fried Twinkie shortcake with strawberries and a festive glass of bubbles. • top Seared chicken breast with onion, bell pepper, bok choy and sesame-jasmine rice, served with lemongrass-peanut sauce. above A classic margarita with Pueblo Viejo blanco tequila. left Pork ramen featuring chili-roasted pork, poached egg, shoyu shiitakes and radish sprouts.


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THE FITZ BAR & RESTAURANT MANOR VAIL LODGE | 595 EAST VAIL VALLEY DRIVE | VAIL | 970.476.4959 | THEFITZVAIL.COM by KRISTA DRISCOLL photos by JUSTIN Q. McCARTY

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breeze stirs above the tumbling, cool waters of Gore Creek, hopscotching along currentworn rocks and climbing the sloping riverbank before tickling the leaves of fragrant basil, mint, lemon balm and sage and deftly threading its fingers through a patch of colorful violets, pansies and nasturtiums in purple, yellow and deep fuchsia. Flowers and herbs plucked from this small garden are destined for the kitchen of The Fitz Bar & Restaurant at Manor Vail Lodge, mere steps away, where they will be enthroned upon one of the fresh new choices that pepper Executive Chef Ken Butler and Chef de Cuisine Courtney Manaligod’s summer menu. Butler says the idea was to “play off dishes we’ve done, creating elevated, approachable comfort food.” The bright, flavorful courses draw together elements of the Four Corners area of the Southwest, from the green chili of New Mexico to Colorado-raised proteins, with a hint of coastal influence from Butler’s years in Maui. The menu begins with the tuna tartare nachos: layers of crisp wonton skins with ruby-red tuna, diced jalapeño and cucumber, red onion and avocado drizzled with a balsamic reduction and topped with microgreens. The dish is resplendent with a magenta-hued Trail

Head cocktail that combines housemade jalapeño-blackberry simple syrup, blanco tequila and a hint of lime. Food and Beverage Director Aaron Piatkowski has pulled together spirits from distilleries across the Front Range and High Rockies region for The Fitz’s handcrafted cocktails, which stand alongside a frequently rotating selection of Colorado craft beers. From the wine list, sips of chilled rosé harmonize with the creamy and crunchy textures of the burrata watermelon salad, a still life-worthy collection of jalapeño, tomato, hunks of velvety mozzarella and a drizzle of balsamic atop a bed of frisee punctuated with tri-colored pansies. Dry-aged beef, brined chicken or plant-based Impossible patty sandwiches with selectable toppings and a handful of creative entrées round out the menu. The chipotle-miso sablefish is Manaligod’s design, a succulent, flaky filet served with sautéed corn salad, roasted poblano grits and pickled onions. Finish out the meal with a s’mores mousse cheesecake accompanied by fresh strawberries and blueberries and a berry coulis. The light and playful food pairs perfectly with the “calm but chill and trendy” vibe of The Fitz patio, which Manaligod says reminds her of Chicago’s rooftop bar scene. The large, sweeping deck is dressed in upscale mountain garb, a mix of dining room and comfortably cushioned settees

surrounding flame-topped tables to fight back the summer evening chill, all hedged by the creek and the tiny corner garden below. • Tuna tartare nachos with red onion, preserved lemon, cucumber, miso ponzu, avocado and jalapeño. top right Chipotle miso sable fish with sautéed corn salad, roasted poblano grits and pickled onions. below Burrata watermelon salad with jalapeño, tomatoes and balsamic. top left

PRICE

Starters and Salads: $13-$24, Sandwiches and Entrées: $18-$33, Signature Cocktails: $14 •••

AMBIANCE

Upscale casual with views of Gore Creek •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Burrata watermelon salad or chipotle miso sable fish


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GAME CREEK RESTAURANT by KATIE COAKLEY Photos by JACK AFFLECK and RIC STOVALL / VAIL RESORTS

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or almost 25 years, Game Creek Restaurant has shone as a beacon of refined, elegant mountain chalet dining. Situated just below Eagle's Nest and just above the Game Creek chair lift, Game Creek’s unique on-mountain location allows the journey to truly be part of the five-star dining experience. And the views? They’re the only thing that might outshine the cuisine, service and overall experience — but it’s a tough call. Modeled after the classic mountain chateaux in the Alps, Game Creek was the dream of Vail’s founders, Earl Eaton and Pete Siebert. They envisioned

a place where guests would enjoy rarefied fare in the rarefied air; the feeling of escaping to another time and place only enhances the experience. “We stand apart from every other restaurant in Vail, not only because of our extraordinary location and classic alpine decor but also because of our talented chef team and wonderful, seasonally inspired and locally sourced menus,” says Michael Grant, restaurant general manager at Game Creek. “Game Creek Restaurant is the only Forbes Four Star and AAA Four Diamond rated restaurant in the Vail Valley and adheres to the highest of standards set by both of these programs.” Part of the enchantment at Game Creek is that everything is taken care of — guests can leave their worries and stress down at the base of the mountain.

The hardest choice? Deciding between four or five courses of Chef Dan Maguire’s modern, fine-dining cuisine featuring local and artisanal ingredients. The four-course prix-fixe menu offers tantalizing options like bison tartare, a twist on the beef classic topped with shallots, an herb vinaigrette, parmesan and a quail egg; the agnolotti with sweet corn, creamy Madeira, asparagus, pine nuts and prosciutto is a perfect pasta for a summer’s evening. And that’s just the starters — entrées include halibut with summer hash, fava beans and pancetta, finished with lemon oil and pea tendrils, and the classic Colorado lamb, served with carrots, patty pan squash, swiss chard and bacon, topped with a huckleberry demi glaze. If it’s too difficult to decide, opt for the five-course Chef’s Table menu. Enjoy the delightful creations of Chef Maguire and his culinary team in a process that’s known as being “chef-ed out.” It’s the ultimate opportunity to sit back, relax and simply enjoy what happens next. Dinner is not the only opportunity to experience the magic of Game Creek Restaurant — Sunday Brunch is a decadent secret hiding in plain sight in Vail. This summer’s selection of enticing options promises to be even bigger and better than before with chilled seafood, fresh fruit smoothies, a bagel bar with bagels from Village Bagel in Edwards and brunch options, breakfast breads and pastries for every palate. For

PRICE

Chef’s Five Course Menu: $135, Classic Four Course Menu: $115, Children’s Three Course Menu: $45 •••

AMBIANCE

Regal mountain lodge •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Bison tartar; Colorado lamb

those who prefer their cocktails lit by alpenglow, don’t miss après on Game Creek’s deck — light appetizers and cocktails are available from 5:30 to 7 p.m. So whether you choose to indulge for brunch, après or dinner, enjoy the journey to Game Creek Restaurant and prepare to be swept away for an unforgettable experience. Game Creek is open to the public Thursday through Saturday nights for dinner and après and every Sunday for the magnificent brunch buffet through September 1. • top Game Creek Restaurant was modeled on the classic mountain chateaux of the Alps. left With views of Game Creek bowl outside, the setting is as important as the delicious cuisine.

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GAME CREEK BOWL | VAIL MOUNTAIN | ACCESSIBLE VIA GONDOLA & SHUTTLE FROM EAGLES NEST 970.754.4275 | GAMECREEKVAIL.COM

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GRILL ON THE GORE VAIL GOLF CLUB | 1775 SUNBURST DRIVE | VAIL 970.477.5277 | GRILLONTHEGORE.COM

by KARI MOHR photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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hen you hear that there’s a restaurant at the Vail Golf Club, you might assume it’s exclusive, maybe even a little pretentious. But much like the public golf course itself, the stunning setting is paired with a laid back, welcoming atmosphere that does what they do exceptionally well, without pretense. Executive Chef David Sanchez, who thrives in the recently built clubhouse's expansive grounds, is a veteran of the Vail restaurant scene. He’s one of those chefs that could very well have traded their chef coat for a lab coat, a tinkerer at heart whose passion for Old World techniques and quality ingredients make every element of a dish count. When we met with Sanchez on a beautiful spring afternoon, some of the first golfers of the season were coming off the 18th hole and straight onto Grill on Gore’s expansive patio. The restaurant claims to have the best views of any restaurant in Vail, and it’s hard to argue. The greens stretch as far as the eye can see, surrounded by steep aspen-covered peaks and ending with the

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PRICE

Appetizers: start at $9 Sandwiches: $14-$17 Salads: start at $12 •••

AMBIANCE

Modern mountain clubhouse •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Fish tacos

dramatic crests of the Gore Range. Evenings here are a nightly spectacle as the darkened valley is offset by the brilliant sunset reflected on the Gore. It’s a patio that invites you to linger, both with its incomparable views and 90” TV — perfect for catching a game and chatting with friends. Wander beyond the patio and you’ll discover Grill on Gore’s extensive gardens, which Chef Sanchez carefully plotted and

maintains to take full advantage of East Vail’s finicky sunlight. What Sanchez can’t grow himself he works to source locally wherever possible and with the highest standards. “One of the things that makes Grill on Gore unique is our focus on local ingredients,” he says, “Colorado made, Colorado grown, Colorado produced.” From cheese produced in Buena Vista, to Colorado-focused beers, to chips

made in Crested Butte, even seemingly simple garnishes have been selected with the utmost care. “The other thing we do here is we double smoke our own foods,” Sanchez says, adding a piece of Palisade peach wood to the smoker. “We smoke pork belly, pork shoulder, chicken wings, beef rib eyes, ribs, even some vegetables,” he says, then smiles, “we have some fun with this.” All that time and effort is used to great effect, bringing unexpected depth to familiar dishes like the Smoked Pork Belly BLT. And that’s just what Sanchez wants. The menu items are familiar, but the way that Grill on Gore constructs them makes them un-missable. “What we do is we elevate,” says Sanchez, “so take something as simple as a burger. We’re going to give you the best, straightforward burger we can and we do that by working with our distributors to customize exactly what we want from each building block — the best meat, the best bun. Tomatoes, pickles, onions, they’re all cut fresh and seasoned to order.” So whether you drive, bike, or take the free Town of Vail bus to Grill on Gore, settle in for a wholly satisfying meal served with genuine passion and a view that will take your breath away. • Smoked Veggie Tartine with garden ratatouille, local goat ricotta, sage pesto and cauliflower points. left Crispy Avocado Crab with pankocrusted avocado, crab salad and mesquite lemon caper tartar sauce. above


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SUMMER WINE DINNER SERIES

August 29: Obscure, Rare and Underappreciated Five unique wines you’ve never heard of served with groundbreaking food you’ve never seen. September 26: Power to the Pinot Five different expressions of the pinot grape.

LA TOUR by WREN BOVA photos by JUSTIN Q. McCARTY and CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT

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hat is La Tour? It depends on who you ask. From a big night out to the best Sunday brunch in town, the Vail Village eatery regularly delivers some of the tastiest, most consistent experiences around — and has done so for the 20-plus years that Paul and Lourdes Ferzacca have owned it. Like any icon with lasting power, it’s had various personalities and influences over the years. Today? “We’re moving in a modern direction,” says Executive Chef Sammy Shipman. “I want to show the brighter, fresher Colorado side of what we can do.” Shipman is a North Carolina transplant, and so he sneaks in various Southern flavors that meld beautifully with the local products he procures. Case in point: the heirloom tomato salad with charred corn and savory granola, and the composed steak dish with Colorado prime beef, smoked tomatoes, pickled mustard seeds and creamed kale. Even the oysters — pristine expressions of the sea, and celebrated with daily Oyster Happy Hour — come with a wee shaker of Tabasco along with the traditional sauce mignonette. La Tour classics remain on the menu — lobster bisque, Colorado lamb, chicken paillard — but an a la carte steak section is new. Order for yourself or split amongst a table with mix-and-match sides. And as always, the chefs remain incredibly flexible with vegan, dairy-free and gluten-free options in abundance.

122 EAST MEADOW DRIVE | VAIL | 970.476.4403 | LATOUR-VAIL.COM

PRICE

Appetizers: $10-$20, Entrées: $29-$39 •••

AMBIANCE

Warm, friendly and fun •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Dover sole meuniere served in brown butter sauce with haricots verts

“We’re lightening up our tasting menu this year,” Shipman says, referring to the revolving chef’s fourand five-course options that highlight Colorado-grown products. The options change weekly, and can be ordered with or without wine pairings. Beverage Director Kai Guerin has invigorated the wine program at La Tour with his seemingly boundless enthusiasm. He’s that friend with a knack for turning a get-together into a party. This summer he’s hosting daily educational wine tastings for what amounts to a Happy Hour pre-game at La Tour: $25, five pours of five wines, complete with tasting notes and discussion (if wanted) from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. He’s also mapped out his wine dinner series for the summer — the last Thursday of each month will have a different theme, from obscure wines to a particular grape.

And in addition to a list loaded with cool, summery cocktails, he’s offering CBD oil cocktails for those who want to try it, and boozy popsicles served alongside champagne. “I love how passionate Kai and Sammy are,” Ferzacca says about his executive chef and beverage director. “They’re always looking for new items to use,

and they actually go out and eat around, travel and bring cool things back to us. They love to work and love being at La Tour. We’re really lucky to have them.” • USDA Prime hand-cut 12-ounce NY strip with compound butter. below Premium market oysters on the half shell. page 23 Summer cocktail. above

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July 25: Awesome America Four American wines paired with a dish from each corner of the country.

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PRICE

Small Plates: $3-$18 Plates: $12-$60 •••

AMBIANCE

Sophisticated, social setting •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Octopus Asador with new potatoes, garlic and chorizo

LEONORA by BRENDA HIMELFARB photos by KRISTIN ANDERSON

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e prepared for a unique dining experience from the moment you enter Leonora. The ceiling-high column of 1,000 wine bottles in the center of the restaurant, the circular cushy booths and the chic décor is simply a milieu for the exceptional fare you will savor — which, from beginning to end, will surprise and delight. Executive Chef Tyson Peterson has created delicious, innovative and mouthwatering tapas to be shared amongst a group of friends or eaten solo. And the food menu is bolstered by Peterson’s ability to fuse a plethora of elements from his experience with French, Spanish and Japanese techniques, to name a few — all fresh, and in Chef’s word, “simple.” “We want to show color and liveliness,” Peterson says. “The old saying is true, ‘You don’t just eat with you mouth, you eat with your eyes as well.’ We want our customers to be excited when they see their food delivered to the table — making it more fun for everyone at the table to talk about it. The place is very lively, people always have fun and we want to have fun with the menu as well.” This is one restaurant where you can’t order just one plate or two — or even three: each one enticing, drawing you in.

THE SEBASTIAN – VAIL | 16 VAIL ROAD | VAIL 970.306.4612 | THESEBASTIANVAIL.COM/DINE

Call it unforgettable mixing and matching. For starters, try the yuzu kosho “peel n’ eat” Key West pink shrimp, doused with a fermented paste made from chili peppers, yuzu peel and salt. It will awaken your taste buds with its curious tang, and makes an excellent foil for its counterpart, the Old Bay “peel n’ eat” Key West pink shrimp: all robust and bursting with flavor. Then, watermelon, heirloom tomato and feta cheese, splashed with balsamic dressing, can serve as an intermezzo, before you move on to the next course — perhaps edamame hummus with strawberry and sunflower seeds. This incredibly creative dish, served with pita bread, is a wonderful surprise and meltin-your-mouth light and delightful. Other must-try dishes include mussels a la chalaca, a traditional marine dish of the Peruvian coast. Simply steamed mussels are covered with a vegetable medley and pico de gallo. Served in mussel shells, this dish will surprise. And there’s no more colorful option than the outrageously delicious coconut lobster ceviche with mango and watermelon radishes. If you want to venture out of the ocean, look no further than Chef Tyson’s Fried Chicken — clearly one of Vail’s best-kept secrets. Seasoned with barrel-aged fresno hot sauce and served with the chef’s layered poblano bacon biscuit and whiskey barrel-aged honey butter, this dish is to-die-for. (And it’s the restaurant’s

“go-to” Sunday night $9 special.) Chef Peterson keeps things fresh by starting with the best products he can find. He has seafood shipped in almost daily: lobsters, mussels and scallops from Maine, shrimp from Key West, and fresh fish overnighted from Hawaii. His produce is grown in Colorado with micro-greens from Knapp Ranch and Palisade farmers who, each Monday, send him a list of available produce for the week. Leonora is one of those places where you can sit for hours and not even notice

the time pass you by. It is also one of those places to which you will want to return — again and again and again. • top Yuzu kosho peel n’ eat Key West pink shrimp, left, mussels a la chalaca with pico de gallo, Old Bay peel n’ eat Key West pink shrimp with cocktails, from left, Aperol Bel, Valoma, and Pamplemousse and Circumstance. above Edamame hummus with strawberries and sunflower seeds. page 21 Coconut lobster ceviche with mango and watermelon radishes.


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LOS AMIGOS by MELANIE WONG photos by JUSTIN Q. McCARTY

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o experience Bridge Street like a true local, head to Los Amigos, a restaurant nearly as old as Vail Village itself. In the winter, its location — just steps from Gondola One in Mountain Plaza — makes Los Amigos a great place to watch skiers scream down the frontside of the mountain. During the summer, the long, sunny deck invites diners to bask in the sun with a margarita in hand as hikers, bikers and tourists file past. It’s a quirky, welcoming place that’s equally great as a spot to grab a quick bite to eat, to bring the family for dinner or to belly up to the bar and people watch. As one of the few truly casual restaurants in Vail Village with prices to match, Los Amigos can be a refreshing alternative to the town’s many upscale dining options. As an institution, Los Amigos has been in Vail for more than 40 years. When current owners Michael Staughton and Ron Riley bought and rebuilt the property in 1995, the restaurant stayed, with Executive Chef

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400 BRIDGE STREET | VAIL 970.476.5847 | LOSAMIGOSVAIL.COM

Todd Purse at the helm. Purse has now been at Los Amigos for nearly 20 years, making the small, colorful restaurant with the million-dollar view into a Bridge Street staple. “It’s a beautiful view, and everyone loves to hang out on the deck,” says Purse. “I like to think it’s the food, but we’ve gotten quite a following over the years.” With the help and expertise of his kitchen staff, Purse and company have come up with a winning menu filled with fresh, Mexican favorites such as steak street tacos and cheesy enchiladas, complete with all the satisfying fixings. However, they stretch their creative wings with a constant rotation of specials that often feature seafood-focused entrées and creative combinations. One special that has become a diner favorite is Los Amigos’ rendition of lobster tacos, with the shellfish deep fried, served with a spiced mayo saucer and topped with a refreshing cabbage slaw. A side of squash blossom rellenos hit the spot fried into gooey cheese. Want a bit of everything? Try the Three Amigos, a combination plate that

includes two mini tacos, a chimichanga and a jalapeño shrimp popper. The latter is generously portioned and packs a spicy punch that nicely complements the juicy shrimp. More favorites include the chicken mini tacos, proof that simple ingredients can create an exceptional meal. The meat on these hand-sized tacos is tender, and each taco is topped with a housemade mango salsa that first sizzles sweet, then spicy on the tongue. The secret to Los Amigos’ success, says Purse, lies in fresh ingredients, a menu almost completely made from scratch, and a seasoned staff that has been churning out Los Amigos hits for years. Purse often works hand in hand with his longtime sous chef, who brings expertise from his Mexican heritage, to create and tweak new recipes. “Everything is fresh, and it’s authentic,” Purse says. “We always use dried or fresh chilies, we cut our own meats and all our salsas and sauces are made in house.” •

PRICE

$5-$20 •••

AMBIANCE

Energetic bar and taqueria in the heart of Vail Village •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Lobster tacos

top Sliders with buffalo, bacon, jalapeño and cheddar cheese. above Mini Tacos: beef in white corn tortillas with cheese mango salsa and lime coleslaw paired with cups of black bean and chili verde soups left Lobster tacos are a summer-only special.

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LUDWIG'S BREAKFAST

AT THE SONNENALP

20 VAIL ROAD | VAIL | 970.479.5429 | SONNENALP.COM

by TRACI J. MACNAMARA photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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on’t wait for a special occasion to spend a summer morning at Ludwig’s, where Vail’s best Bavarian-style breakfast is served every day of the week in a setting that sings with the sounds of summer. The melody of chirping birds and Gore Creek’s rustling current rise up as background music that floats into the Ludwig’s dining area, an energizing solarium tucked

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within the Sonnenalp Hotel. Floor-toceiling terrace doors open up to patio tables set outside beneath aspen leaves fluttering in the cool morning breeze. Such natural beauty complements the main attraction at Ludwig’s: a breakfast spread like no other. Expansive and appealing to all tastes, the Ludwig’s breakfast buffet might seem mindboggling at first with so many options: pastries, fresh breads, smoked salmon, housemade muesli, charcuterie, waffles and pancakes, cereals, fruit and made-to-order omelets and eggs

— for starters. But tidy stations add organization and invite exploration. Begin the Ludwig’s breakfast experience with a steaming cup of coffee that’s served in hand-painted tableware from Germany, or sip from a fresh squeezed juice, smoothie or mimosa. Next, grab a plate and begin exploring, or choose from menu favorites that can be ordered à la carte. Here’s your chance to eat breakfast in courses with an appetizer of herbed goat cheese and crudité followed by a main-course omelet filled with your favorite toppings — and then a cheese blintz smothered in fresh fruit compote for a final sweet bite. The combinations are infinite and can be as light or as hearty or as flat-out decadent as you’d like. “Our approach to dining is to keep our food and menu items as authentic as possible by using the proper ingredients and recipes that you’d find in Bavaria,” says Sonnenalp owner Johannes Faessler. “And the entire dining experience at Ludwig’s has an authentically European feel. We used the same interior architect here that we used at our sister property in Germany — and even imported wood boards from an old smokehouse in the German Alps to make sure we got everything just right.” With its bountiful breakfast and other-worldly setting, Ludwig’s is a place, indeed, where everything feels just right. Above all, Ludwig’s makes it possible to experience something special in the everyday, whether it’s the

PRICE

Full Breakfast $28-38; à la carte menu prices vary •••

AMBIANCE

Energizing terrace dining infused with old-world charm •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Your choice from the bountiful breakfast spread

simple, savory delight of thick-cut bacon or the indulgence of a mini chocolate Bundt cake topped with icing and colorful sprinkles. But for truly special occasions, Ludwig’s also hosts private parties and gatherings in its Stüberl, an intimate setting where family members and friends can revel in the authentically European feel for which the Sonnenalp is best known. • above House-made muesli, fresh fruit and a pastry selection. left The buffet at Ludwig's offers everything from fresh and healthy breakfast options to traditional European breads, pastries, meats and cheeses to American favorites like like made-to-order omelets, bacon pancakes and waffles.


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141 EAST MEADOW DRIVE | SOLARIS | VAIL 970.476.6628 | MASTUHISAVAIL.COM

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by KIM FULLER photos by JUSTIN Q. McCARTY

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tunning mountain days that soften into lovely summer evenings are ideally spent from a place where you can soak it all in. Sit on the open-air patio at Matsuhisa Vail and relish the expansive views of the village and all the mountainous terrain beyond it. For a special date night or family outing, the refined service and hospitality at Matsuhisa turn any evening into a sweet occasion. Order a Gardener cocktail to start — for a fun change, ask for tequila instead of gin for a unique play on the cocktail that combines spirit with serrano pepper, cilantro, ginger and lime. Chef Nobuyuki "Nobu" Matsuhisa has been recognized internationally for his fusion cuisine blending traditional Japanese dishes with Peruvian ingredients, and Matsuhisa Vail General Manager Jordan Harrill says Nobu is cultivating a lot of his recent inspiration from vegetables.

“Our kitchen continues to stay inspired every season,” Harrill enthuses. “We’re working with local farms and creating great relationships to share these incredible ingredients with our guests.” Shishito peppers and toro tartare are wonderful starters this summer, and definitely don’t miss the heirloom tomato salad, complete with a cilantro-mint vinaigrette and topped with flakes of black Cyprus sea salt. It’s always a treat to let the Matsuhisa team guide you through their menu. From the kitchen to the bar and dining room, this staff knows what they’re serving you and why, so it can be as much of a learning experience as it is a truly enjoyable meal. They may recommend a perfect piece of tuna or Scottish salmon on a crisp lotus root chip, or help you fulfill a sushi roll craving with a Tiradito Roll topped with a luscious white fish and filled with tempura-fried shishito pepper, avocado and creamy spicy sauce. A festive evening carries on seamlessly with a bamboo carafe of the TK40, a silky yet defined rendition of Nobu’s exclusive Hokusetsu sake. Every sip exhibits the perfect balance of vanilla and fruit and provides a delectable pairing with, say, king crab tempura atop sweet ponzu.

PRICE

Starters, Sushi & Sashimi: $5-$34; Entrées: $17-$42 •••

AMBIANCE

Upscale and grandiose dining room, outdoor patio and sushi bar with a contemporary menu and mountain-modern aesthetic •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Chilean Sea Bass with black truffles

For a main dish, black truffles are quite the treat on a filet of Chilean sea bass, especially alongside a glass of French chardonnay. New this summer, a homemade coconut rice pudding with a flavor and texture so lovely it reminds us why to never skip the sweetest course. • Combination Sushi Dinner and Ceviche with mixed seafood, pictured with cocktails. left Salmon chips with spicy miso. above

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PEPI’S BAR AND RESTAURANT

231 EAST GORE CREEK DRIVE 970.476.5626 | PEPIS.COM

by KIMBERLY NICOLETTI photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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mmerse yourself in European charm as you relax on Pepi’s wraparound deck, set against the green terrain of Vail Mountain; sip on a light hibiscus and rose-infused mule or knock back a spicy, house-infused Bloody Mary as you listen to live music in Pepi’s open-air bar; or settle into a cozy dinner featuring traditional Weinerschnitzel or trendy salads inside Pepi’s warm, Austrian-themed dining room. However you choose to experience Pepi’s Bar & Restaurant, you’re sure to create lasting memories in Vail’s iconic restaurant. Pepi’s retains a certain allure, which echoes back to Vail’s authentic roots, when Austrian ski racer Pepi Gramshammer fell in love with the budding mountain town and got married to Sheika. The couple opened their European-inspired hotel and restaurant in 1964. Since then, Pepi and Sheika have been infusing their restaurant with a welcoming Austrian spirit and homemade international cuisine. While long-time chefs Helmut Kaschitz (executive) and Richard Fraser (sous) will always keep traditional European favorites like the veal and pork bratwurst, beef stroganoff, jägerschnitzel with wild

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PRICE

Appetizers: $18 Dinner Entrées: $22-$42 •••

AMBIANCE

Bavarian charm and spirit •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Weinerschnitzel and Jägerschnintzel

mushroom sauce and wienerschnitzel with braised red cabbage on the menu, they’re also rolling out lighter salads and gluten-free entrées. Eight fresh lunch salads include the favorite Israel couscous with salmon, the rich heirloom tomato with burrata cheese and the hugely popular cobb salad with chicken, while house-made trout tacos, crab cakes, burgers and sandwiches like Pepi’s twist on the Reuben (made with pastrami) round out the menu. Dinner features soups and salads, as well as boneless trout in a lemon

caper butter sauce; pan-seared salmon served with a flavorful quinoa, butternut squash, spinach and walnut blend; short-braised ribs with a creamy Yukon Gold potato puree; and free-range chicken Florentine with couscous, mint and Feta cheese. And, for even heartier appetites: the rack of caribou or pepper steak Madagascar. This summer, Chef Richard focuses on fish dishes, like bass, as well as modern, sear-blistered vegetables, sauces full of fresh herbs and appetizers that “keep it simple,” from Bünder Teller (air-dried, raw sirloin steak, traditionally eaten with rye bread), crispy, coconutcurry crab cakes and escargot. Pepi’s bar comes alive with bands every day from 4 to 6 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. The bar is known for its great German (and domestic) beers and its top-notch spirits, wines and infused cocktails. And don’t forget dessert: Helmut

takes pride in the traditional apple strudel, served as a modern art piece upon the plate, with vanilla custard and ice cream. Then there’s the crème brulée, Black Forest berry cake, chocolate mousse, and, Sheika’s favorite: Heisse Liebe (meaning “hot love” in German and comprised of ice cream and a berry sauce). With Pepi’s rich ambience, varied cuisine, international drinks, live entertainment and Bavarian-dressed, friendly wait staff, it’s no wonder the establishment has thrived for over 40 years in a village where others come and go. • above Pan-roasted free-range chicken, herbed Isreali couscous salad and marsala jus. left Heirloom tomato salad with burrata cheese, marinated tomato wedges, spiced sunflower seeds, baby arugula and broken vinaigrette.


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THE REMEDY BAR by TRACI J. MACNAMARA photos by KRISTIN ANDERSON and DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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ith its floor-to-ceiling windows and an always-fun vibe, The Remedy Bar is the place to warm up during the lunch hour or linger on to watch alpenglow bathe the hills. At this hip lounge and dining area within the Four Seasons Resort and Residences Vail, you can snack, drink and dine to the sounds of live music five nights a week or unwind while watching the sun slowly set beyond the well-appointed patio. And all who gather here love choosing from a playful menu that embraces the theme of food and drink as remedies for whatever the day may hold. The Remedy Bar is well known for its innovative beverage program, which makes it a not-to-miss destination for fresh food and drink pairings. “We create all of our own juices and shrubs in house for a refreshing taste in our fruit-based drinks,” says Bar Manager Aaron Ritrovato. A shrub in this context is a fruit-based cocktail ingredient that creates a pleasantly balanced taste rather than a sugary or syrupy sweetness. Try out this smooth-sipping addition in the colorful V, a vodka cocktail that includes the

ONE VAIL ROAD | FOUR SEASONS RESORT AND RESIDENCES VAIL FOURSEASONS.COM/VAIL/DINING/LOUNGES/THE_REMEDY_BAR/ 970.477.8600

housemade blueberry and rosemary shrub, St-Germain, citrus, and the bubbly goodness of Veuve. While the V is just one example of The Remedy Bar’s creative originals, new takes on classic cocktails are also done well here. Some unorthodox muddling and shaking — along with a Remedy select bourbon — makes the Remedy Old Fashioned an easydrinking version that pales others in comparison. Whether you’re snacking or dining at The Remedy Bar, options range from a colossal kalbi beef rib to the tortilla soup, complete with avocado, cotija cheese and crispy tortilla. Settle in with a gourmet pizza or something to share, such as the Pretzel Charcuterie, which includes il porcellino salumi, house-made pickles, Bavarian pretzel and house mustards. The signature Remedy Burger is also a hit, with 7x Ranch wagyu beef, grilled red onions, lettuce, tomato, pickle, cure-all sauce, cheddar cheese and fries. Sports enthusiasts, especially, will appreciate The Remedy Bar lounge’s wall-sized television and multiple screens, which can show up to 10 games simultaneously for the ultimate sports-viewing experience. The fun continues into the weekend with a make-your-own Bloody Mary bar that features an extraordinary mix

PRICE

Appetizers: $10-$24; Small plates, Entrées: $16-$52 •••

AMBIANCE

Hip bar and lounge with upscale bites •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Elk Red Chili

of ingredients and toppings. With a full schedule of other activities and entertainment planned for the winter season, you can count on the atmosphere at The Remedy Bar to be fresh, interesting, and — above all — fun. • top A spread of Remedy's offerings, including Bi Bim Bap, Spicy Tuna Bowl, Pretzel Charcuterie, Bison Flatbread Pizza, Truffled Goat Cheese Flatbread Pizza, and the V and Old Fashioned cocktails. above Beverage Director Steven Teaver mixes up his version of an Old Fashioned.


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RUSSELL’S

228 BRIDGE STREET | VAIL | 970.476.6700 | RUSSELLSVAIL.COM

by KIM FULLER photos by JUSTIN Q. McCARTY

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n a world in which reinvention and stretching the boundaries are revered, there’s something to be said for dependability, for being a bedrock in a sea of change. In Vail, that cornerstone is Russell’s. For almost 30 years, this steakhouse, located on the southeast side of the Covered Bridge, has been serving up steaks and seafood in an inclusive atmosphere where, even if it’s your first time, you feel as if everybody knows your name. It’s more than just the convivial staff which puts you at ease almost immediately. Perhaps it’s the “strangers are just friends you haven’t met yet” vibe that is almost palpable. “It gets loud,” explains Manager Michael Scola. “But we’re Vail’s cozy steakhouse. We play our own music, march to the beat of our own drum.” It’s a beat that brings people in, again and again. “We have families come in that come here every year and they’ll dine with us four out of seven nights of their vacation,” says Kent, who has been a waiter at Russell’s for 11 years. “They’ll start with the crab legs and order the ribs. Every single night.” It’s hard to argue with that level of dedication. But just because some folks have favorites, that doesn’t mean that you can’t branch out. For those who have trouble with commitment, try the half-and-half salad. Half tomato basil salad, garnished with blue

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cheese, pine nuts, onions and dressed with a basil vinaigrette, and half classic Caesar salad, it’s the perfect antidote to indecisive ordering. Or perhaps just put a new spin on an old favorite. There’s no such thing as a bad steak at Russell’s — this is where the experience of the long-tenured kitchen shines through. it’s perfectly cooked to your desired temperature (even going so far as executing a

“medium rare +”), has impeccable grill marks and a flavor that makes you want to do a happy little chair dance. It’s a carnivore’s version of nirvana. It doesn’t really need sauce; adding it is just gilding the lily. However, don’t be afraid of a bit of allegorical gold leaf. Though the 8-ounce filet mignon, Russell’s Steak Diane and 12-ounce New York strip are all served with different sauces (Béarnaise; shallot, mustard and brandy cream; peppercorn, respectively), feel free to ask for a side of each and enjoy playing musical steak with your options. That’s the beauty of dining at Russell’s. Yes, it’s classic, but there are opportunities to play if you’d like — or simply enjoy the artists at work. So the next time you want an evening that is both familiar and yet surprising, sit by the window and watch the colorful multitudes go by, secure in the knowledge that though everything changes, Russell’s is a tangible pulse in the heart of Vail. •

PRICE

Appetizers and salads $10-$22; Entrées: $28-$83 •••

AMBIANCE

Warm and welcoming with the comforting veneer of history •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Surf & Turf with Alaskan King Crab and an 8-ounce filet

Alaskan King Crab Legs, steamed and cracked, served with drawn butter and Russell's Steak Diane, the house specialty, includes a grilled filet served with a mild brandy-cream sauce with shallots and mustard. left Tuna Sashimi, lightly blackened, with marinated cabbage, ginger and wasabi. above


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Starters and Salads $11-$16, Main Courses $25-$49; Happy Hour $7-$9 Small Plates, $8 Glasses of Wine, $3-$5 Beer, $11 Specialty Cocktails •••

AMBIANCE

Globally inspired multicultural cuisine in a mountain casual setting •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Lobster tagliatelle with jalapeño-basil butter or Wagyu “buttersteak” with shallot confit, Yukon gold potatoes and grilled broccolini

TERRA BISTRO by KRISTA DRISCOLL photos by BRENT BINGHAM

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hef-owner Kevin Nelson has been with Terra Bistro in the Vail Mountain Lodge in Vail Village since 1993, when he started as a chef’s apprentice. His more than two and a half decades at the helm provide a consistency of quality not found in many other restaurants. The focus of Nelson’s summer menu is lighter fare, with an emphasis on seafood and a broad range of gardengrown herbs, greens and vegetables. “A chef-owner cares a bit more about the food and experience,” Executive Manager Katie Fiedler Anderson says, pointing to Terra Bistro’s dedication to high-quality, locally sourced ingredients and the impeccable service of its wait staff. The restaurant also happily adapts to gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan and allergy-restricted diets. The menu begins with a slew of starters that run the gamut from fried goat cheese with vanilla honey, roasted beets, pine nuts and watercress to sushi-grade ahi poke tuna with fried rice “tots,” sesame-Sriracha dressing and yuzu aioli.

352 EAST MEADOW DRIVE | VAIL MOUNTAIN LODGE | VAIL 970.476.6836 | TERRABISTROVAIL.COM

The standout is the Wagyu tartare, mini bites of surf and turf built from Idaho-raised beef with an oyster emulsion, accented by lemon oil, capers and pickled mustard seeds and served with gaufrette potato chips for scooping. The idea, Fiedler Anderson says, is to take a central ingredient and prepare it in a surprising way. Another prime example of this is the creamy basil carrot salad: roasted carrots crowning crisp harvest greens, herbs and crunchy pumpkin seeds all tossed in a vivid yellow, peppery basil-carrot dressing. The main course selections allow the restaurant’s focus on globally inspired, multicultural cuisine to really shine. If you’re craving seafood, the lobster tagliatelle combines Maine lobster claw meat with an aromatic mirepoix, mild jalapeño-basil butter and pine nuts, or choose the new Icelandic cod with marrow beans, bacon broth and black garlic-apricot preserves. Terra Bistro boasts one of the best happy hours in town from 5 to 6 p.m. daily, with $3 Coors and Coors Light, $8 glasses of select wines and $11 specialty cocktails featuring spirits sourced from across the state. Small plates range from $7 to $9 and include tastes from the starters and salads

sections of the dinner menu, plus a few unique choices such as the corn soup with coconut, basil and Old Bay spice or the beef skewers with socarrat, pineapple and coconut cream. Wine and food pairings are expertly crafted by Terra Bistro’s in-house sommelier from an extensive list of glasses and bottles, and chocolate

molten or dense, sweet tres leches cake provides a sweet conclusion to the meal. • above Clockwise from top left Ahi tuna poke and rice "tots," fried goat cheese, Berkshire pork chop and corn soup. below Lobster tagliatelle with jalapeñobasil butter.

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PRICE

Starters: $12-$20; Entrées: $33-$58 •••

AMBIANCE

Creekside mountain grill with a menu filled with Colorado and seasonal cuisine •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Colorado Lamb Chops with roasted eggplant caponata, pine nuts and red wine gastrique

WHITE BISON by KIM FULLER photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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et on Gore Creek, this contemporary mountain grill makes it easy for guests to settle into an essential Colorado experience. With Steve Maline as the new chef of White Bison, the kitchen is putting even more emphasis on local ingredients to celebrate Rocky Mountain flavor. “We are highlighting Colorado cuisine to showcase the area’s identity and why people love it here,” says Maline. “We are using as many products as we can

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223 GORE CREEK DRIVE | VAIL | 970.763.5470 | WHITEBISONVAIL.COM

that represent not only the valley but Colorado itself.” The menu will change often, he adds, depending on the availability of local ingredients, offering hearty flavors but not gluttonous portions. Maline’s play on pork, for example, stands up a beautiful shank in the center of the plate atop a bed of polenta, covered in fresh greens and herbs. This dish will satiate the more ravenous guest, but each bite stays light with the fresh complements of citrus and fennel. Decadent appetites will swoon over the True Buffalo Mozzarella salad, along with the Roasted Bison Bone Marrow served beside 7x beef. More exotic options are available too — those looking for a taste of something more sea-inspired can enjoy fresh oysters on the half shell or a fun play on shrimp cocktail. Many appetizers on the menu are great for sharing, like the Colorado Ricotta Crostini with toasted macadamia nuts and honeycomb and the Crispy Pork Wings served with Sriracha aoli. Lighter options are available as well, namely the Green Salad that is 25 green ingredients strong, from the toasted pistachios and

green goddess dressing to olives and fennel and asparagus. Get a buzz on with some nutrients with the carrot-inspired rum cocktail, Velveteen Wabbit, or set it up a notch and enjoy gin with a blackberry shrub in the Broken Record. Let Wine Director Ian Gray guide your drink selections for the evening and he will only steer you right. The by-theglass list Gray has curated is a reflection of good taste with broad appeal. And here is the locals' secret: an afternoon or evening on the White Bison patio is not complete without a glass of

their famous frozen rosé, an oh-sodelicious and refreshing “frosé” that always calls for another round. • top Slow Cooked Duroc Pork Shank with mascarpone polenta and shaved fennel agrumi, and a Blue Note cocktail. above Buffalo Mozzarella: the set changes with the seasonality, photographed with heirloom tomatoes, true buffalo mozzarella and young beets. left Strawberries and Cream cocktail, with orange curaçao, strawberry simple syrup, honey, lemon, banana liquor and fresh cracked pepper.


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OF EDWARDS

295 MAIN STREET C101 | RIVERWALK | EDWARDS 970.926.7323 | BOOKWORMOFEDWARDS.COM

by BRENDA HIMELFARB photo by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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ou might wonder what a bookstore can possibly bring to a menu. Great food and care, for starters. And The Bookworm delivers that in spades — and has since 2007, when they first introduced crepes, which are still the core of the bookstore’s varied menu. The idea of a cafe within a bookstore is aimed specifically to integrate food for the mind and the body — a union of food and books that invites people to come and hang out. The books themselves are very much a part of the room. In fact, all of the café’s food items are named after books or authors; one of the most well-known, the Julia Child crepe, includes Nutella, powdered sugar and strawberries or bananas. The Bel Canto salad, too, is a favorite. Who can resist prosciutto, figs, pears, blue cheese and organic mixed greens topped with balsamic vinaigrette?

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Vegetarian and vegan options abound like gluten-free vegan crepes, made with an almond flour base that makes for a crispy crepe with just a bit of sweetness. And there’s the Giving Tree — avocado toast made with local micro greens — and the Rainbow Fish — wild smoked salmon on toasted pumpernickel bread. “We’re always focused on community,” says Nicole Magistro, The Bookworm’s owner. “Community with authors and food vendors. Knowing where every ingredient comes from so we can feel good about everything prepared in our cafe.” Best of all, The Bookworm, with its sunny patio, is adjacent to the bike path, making it very easy for you to eat and run — or eat and ride. • Julia Child Crepe: Nutella with powdered sugar and strawberries, and a latte. below House-made tomato basil soup with the Bel Canto salad: proscuitto, figs, pears, blue cheese, organic mixed greens and balsamic vinaigrette

right

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Crepes: $5-$10, Toasts: $7-$12, Salads: $13 •••

AMBIANCE

Lively community cafe and bookstore •••

SIGNATURE DISH

The Julia Child crepe

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GORE RANGE BREWERY

0105 EDWARDS VILLAGE BLVD | EDWARDS 970.926.BREW (2739) | GORERANGEBREWERY.COM

by HEATHER HOWER photos by JUSTIN Q. McCARTY

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our first hint that you are in for something delicious is the aroma floating through the air. You know right from the start that the Gore Range Brewery is more than your typical brewery. Owner and chef Pascal Courdouy made sure of it when he bought the restaurant eight years ago. Here, the simple, fresh food is the star and the beer is a lovely supporting accompaniment. Locals know the place well — it is, after all, the original brewery in the Vail Valley. Courdouy has a host of accolades and awards, stars and Zagat ratings, to his name. None of the pomp matters, though, when you settle in for what is sure to be a meal that completes the day. You’re happy to be one of the many who have found their way to this spacious restaurant and surprisingly sunny deck, in the company of a chef who loves to create. Settle back and listen to the alwayschanging list of specials, decide on a craft brew (or go for a sampler) and let the day take its course. Pascal and brewing partner Richard Carnes craft the beers to pair with the food; and like the food, it seems every local has a favorite. The French Rose Wheat goes down easily, perhaps a little too easily: fruity and not too sweet and oh so thirst quenching. Great Sex Honey Lager. It feels naughty to order it but

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the laid-back flavor has earned favorite status for a reason. Start off with the ahi tuna tacos — thin slices of rare ahi in a wonton, topped with a salty seaweed salad, a bit of brightness from the mango and barely kissed by wasabi mayo. Courdouy explains that the locals

know what they like and have come to expect certain menu staples: fish-nchips, wood-fired pizza or the brisket sandwich. It’s easy to see why one wouldn’t deviate from delicious; the brisket, on a homemade, just-saltyenough pretzel bun, a light layer of slaw and salty, smoky meat with a peppy, surprising zing. When Chef Pascal doesn’t know what to eat, he chooses the brisket. The Seasonal Salad is — surprise — another favorite. The menu description really doesn’t do the salad justice. It’s when its delivered with bold bursts of color laid out like an artist’s palette with the deep maroon of beets juxtaposed to slender stalks of spring green asparagus, sitting along side the healthy the quinoa salad, that it becomes clear: Chef Courdouy knows how to create what we want to eat. The specials, the answer to Pascal’s penchant for creativity. This chef who worked in fine dining much of his life melds gourmet with simple and fresh for a menu that goes well beyond typical pub fare. Courdouy, originally from France, came to Vail via Manhattan. Somewhere between working 18hour days, being on TV shows with the likes of Robin Leech, of Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous fame, a

PRICE

Apps: $6-$18; Entrées: $14-$26 •••

AMBIANCE

Relaxed game-day and date-night scene •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Smoked brisket dip sandwich

celebrity chef on cooking programs and running fine dining kitchens in New York, it stopped being fun. This is one of Courdouy’s tenets — stop when it stops being fun. Eagle County locals lucked out because he brought his passion, his inspiration and his creativity to us. Gore Range Brewery is a welcome respite for visitors, but it’s a second home to locals. • Chicken flatbread with bacon, brie, ranch, guacamole and greens, naan bread. left Ahi tuna taco with seared tuna, seaweed salad, mango and wasabi mayonnaise. above


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THE ROSE by KARI MOHR photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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ou don’t so much walk into The Rose as much as you’re transported. From the exposed brick and eclectic art to the mounted elk heads sporting custom-knit Coogiinspired sweaters, the space hums with vitality and creativity. This has everything to do with husband and wife owners Bryan and Jessica Redniss’s roots in the arts and vision for a collaborative space where talented bartenders and cooks are free to create. The result is food and drinks that are just as bewitching as the decor. Originally conceived as a cocktail bar,

97 MAIN STREET | RIVERWALK | EDWARDS 970.855.0141 | THEROSEEDWARDS.COM The Rose serves up what many avid fans herald as the best cocktails in the Vail Valley. Head bartender Mark Summers and Bryan met back in the late ‘90s as snowboard instructors at Vail and Beaver Creek, and their friendship and respect for one another can be felt in the interplay between the drinks and food. “Mark’s been with me since day one,” says Bryan, “he’s been the whole driving force behind my creativity with food.” One standout on the cocktail menu this summer is the Spearmint Limo, which utilizes an aloe liqueur with a hint of mint. “It’s really cool because you think it’s going to be sweet but it’s not,” says Summers. “It’s got that spearmint there but it’s not a sweet spearmint. I smelled that liqueur and knew I wanted to use it.”

The result is a bright yet smooth drink that incorporates Raicilla, citrus and lime, a perfect ending to a warm summer day. The bar itself is eclectic and welcoming, with shelving made from heavy beams of wood sourced from a farmhouse that was torn down in 1910. Bryan did the work of building out The Rose’s space himself, and his dedication to using sustainably sourced materials with style and a sense of humor carries over into his and Jessica’s approach with food. This summer’s menu is all about mixing up beloved Rose standards like avocado fries and the ramen bowl with creative new dishes that pair the familiar with layers of sophisticated flavor — along with tongue-in-cheek names that dare you not to crack a smile. The Animal Style Tater Tot features a potato cake at its center with crisp outside and tender inside topped by salmon roe, Knapp Ranch micro greens and a dill crème fraîche that takes 72 hours to create. The edge of the plate is encircled by chive oil and dots of black garlic molasses that are a far cry from your usual tater tot condiments. The Basic Wedge is anything but, with iceberg lettuce providing a crispy, light canvas for vegan ranch dressing, king oyster bacon, lime zest, candied pumpkin seeds. Another delicious new favorite is the Duck in the Box, and not just for the opportunity to reference the subversive SNL sketch. The flavor journey continues into the desserts, which extend well beyond

PRICE

Apps: $7-$15; Salads: $12; Entrées: $12-$18 •••

AMBIANCE

Cozy and creative bistro serving fresh, locally sourced food and artesian cocktails •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Avocado fries, Piggie Smalls — pork belly bites with scallion oil, ponzu, pickled ginger crumble and plantain curls

the wide selection of macrons that The Rose is known for. Original pastry chef Olivier Campe is making a celebrated return, so look out for his creations alongside Jessica’s deceptively indulgent-tasting raw and vegan treats. The Rose is a full sensory experience that invites you to take part in the fun, a totally unique space in the Vail Valley that will keep you coming back for more. • Animal Style Tater Tot with St. Angel triple cream, salmon katsoubushi and roe, and a Beet Street Boogie with beetinfused gin, lemon and chili syrup. top right Spearmint Limousine with Raicilla, aloe liqueur, apricot brandy, lime and simple bitters. left Duck in a Box: Koji serrano sauce, ginger puffed rice and scallion. top left

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VISTA AT ARROWHEAD

by TRACI J. MACNAMARA photos by KRISTIN ANDERSON

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ith wraparound patio seating and wide windows in the dining area that frame sprawling mountain views, Vista at Arrowhead lives up to its name. Here’s a place where mountain lovers can bask in the glory of summer sunsets, where golf lovers can unwind after a day on the course. Located within the Country Club of the Rockies in Arrowhead, Vista’s location and cuisine make a perfect pairing.

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Live music every night of the week keeps the vibe at Vista social and fun, so settle in early on with a refreshing cocktail like the Blood Orange Cellotini, a zesty summer favorite that includes housemade blood orangecello, or choose from among five different takes on the classic Moscow Mule, each served up in a cool tin cup. Sit back and sip from a drink menu that also includes specialty cocktails, beer and wine while listening to the lighthearted tunes of legendary piano man Micky Poage on Monday through Friday evenings — or a rotating lineup of guest musicians who set the scene on Saturday and Sunday nights.

676 SAWATCH DRIVE | ARROWHEAD | EDWARDS 970.926.2111 | VISTA-ARROWHEAD.COM

While taking in the music and the beauty of the evening’s shifting light, order a few small plates. The sesame tuna poke is a standout first course that owes its mingling of sweet and spicy flavors to peaches and Sriracha in the mix. Among salads, the beet and burrata salad is a luscious combination of flavor-bursting beets sliced paperthin and splayed out on a plate that also includes peppery arugula, pickled red onion, grapefruit and a generous portion of creamy burrata, all drizzled with a honey-lemon vinaigrette and dotted with pistachios. Flexibility is a highlight of Vista’s menu, which is organized in sections to make it easy for diners to create a plate of favorites or select from chef-composed options. Choose your own meat, sauce, sides or vegetarian option — or pick from entrées that include the pan-seared Alaskan halibut served with grilled asparagus, sweet pea ravioli and a blood orange sauce that brings sweet, citrusy flavors into each bite. Yes: the beloved grilled Rocky Mountain ruby red trout piccata remains on the menu — and for good reason. “One of the most exciting things about the summer for me is the chance to feature more fresh, local ingredients,” says Executive Chef David Collins, who co-owns Vista with Daryl DeYoung. “We feature Colorado products and spirits all year long, but summertime is the time to get creative with local produce and anything that’s in season,” Collins adds.

PRICE

First courses: $9-$18; Entrées: $23-$45 •••

AMBIANCE

Upscale dining scene featuring live music and mountain views •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Flexible menu lets you compose your favorite dish

Purple shadows stretch out across the golf course by dessert time, but that’s no reason to go just yet. You’ll want to stick around for a taste of the crustless mascarpone cheesecake that’s topped with blueberry compote, or the beyond-the-norm coconut crème brûlée. Both of these desserts capture a just-right level of sweetness to leave you with a sense of final delight. • Beet salad with burrata, brioche, arugula, pickled red onion, pistachios, grapefruit and a honey-lemon vinaigrette. top right Pan-seared Alaskan halibut with sweet pea ravioli, grilled asparagus, pea tendrils and blood orange sauce. left Sesame tuna poke with spicy peaches and taro chips. cover An assortment of appetizers. top left


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ZINO RISTORANTE by KIM FULLER photos by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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omething special emerges when talent and passion meet in the kitchen. At Zino Ristorante in Edwards, it’s the gift of homemade pasta and hand-tossed pizza. This feel-good community hub is known for a casual elegance that delivers pleasure in rich Italian flavor, curated

27 MAIN STREET | RIVERWALK, EDWARDS 970.926.0777 | ZINORISTORANTE.COM

by General Manager Giuseppe Bosco and Executive Chef Nick Haley, both partners in the delicious venture. After descending down Zino’s beautiful stairs into the warm and inviting dining room, start your evening with the Antipasti Misti, a lovely medley of meat, cheese and accoutrements that pairs like a dream with Italian rosé. Any of the hand-tossed, brick oven-baked pizzas at Zino are worth a try, especially since the dough is

prepared in house, then rotated and stretched with clenched fists, then topped and slid into the wood-fire oven. Haley’s pizza dough recipe is a more traditional Neapolitan method, and he’s nailed the flavors and textures. In the true Neapolitan way, no rolling pin is used to shape the crusts, using 100-percent Italian wheat flour. “A lot of other Italian flours you can buy are just milled in Italy, but they are getting the wheat from other places,” Haley explains. “What we are using here is not as bleached, so you can actually see a lot of the texture and there is a lot more color to it when you’re making your dough.” New this summer is the Melanzane Pizze, made with roasted eggplant, fontina cheese, basil panko, parmigiano and marinara. Like the peak of a show’s crescendo, the pasta course at Zino is the main event. The Pappardelle staple with veal meatballs has always been a crowd favorite, and the Tagliolini that Haley introduced this summer will certainly raise some approving eyebrows. This thin ribbon pasta dish is adorned with Manila clams, red pepperoncini, shiso butter, garlic and cherry tomatoes. Don’t forget about the secondi piatti — the main course — of your meal. Dishes highlighting roasted chicken, pork, veal or scallops each interact with a unique setting, like the Pork Chop Milanese with whole grain

PRICE

Antipasti: $11-$18 Insalata & Pizza: $13-$19 Pasta & Secondi Piatti: $25-$36 •••

AMBIANCE

Neighborhood bar and bistro serving contemporary Italian cuisine •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Pappardelle with veal meatballs, house ricotta, frico chip and marinara

mustard, pear chutney and summer cabbage salad, or Diver Scallops over sweet corn risotto, pancetta and lobster butter. For dessert, go for one more taste of Italy with the authentic and delightful Tiramisu. And maybe an espresso, too. • Antipasti Misti, a changing mix of cured meats, aged cheese and accoutrements. top right Tagliolini with Manila clams, red pepperoncini, shiso butter, garlic and cherry tomatoes. left Melanzane Pizze with fresh basil. top left


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LAUREN’S KITCHEN

275 MAIN STREET, C106 | RIVERWALK | EDWARDS 970.446.6917 | NEWAMERICANFOODS.COM/LAURENSKITCHEN

by KARI MOHR photo by KRISTIN ANDERSON

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auren’s Kitchen offers a totally unique approach to feeding the Vail Valley’s hungry and healthconscious clientele, and that’s just the way Chef Lauren McElroy likes it. “I enjoy coming to work,” says McElroy, who starts each morning at the Edwards Riverwalk restaurant by putting together the day’s offerings from scratch. The meals are designed for grab-n-go but customers can also choose to dine in the welcoming bistro setting. Lauren’s Kitchen only uses fresh seasonal ingredients, which means the menu of entrées, sides, salads, and soups changes daily. Comfort food with a healthy twist, McElroy’s love of Italian, Mexican and Southwestern flavor profiles culminate in dishes like chicken parmesan, a vegan Buddha Bowl, her signature pecan crusted chicken and green chili mac n cheese. There are also daily gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian, dairy-free options. “My approach is that if I wouldn’t eat it,

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Entrées: $9-13 (2-servings), Sides: $5, Salads: $8-9, Soups: $6 •••

Hours are 11am-7pm Mon-Fri, Sat 12-5, Closed Sundays. •••

Recycling program for entrée and side containers: bring back clean for 5% off next purchase

I won’t serve it,” says McElroy, who found her passion for cooking in her grandmothers’ kitchens as a kid in Texas. Armed with a culinary degree, she launched her local catering business, New American Foods, in 2013 and still offers customizable menus and food for special gatherings to her Lauren’s Kitchen clientele. Lauren’s Kitchen only opened in November 2018, but it’s already amassed

a dedicated following. “Once people get the grab-n-go concept, they keep coming back for more,” the vivacious chef says with a grin, before jumping up to guide a customer through the day’s menu. •

From bottom left, Greek salad; pecancrusted chicken and grilled vegetables; spring pea and zucchini soup; Bolognese-stuffed zucchini; and green chili mac and cheese.

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MARKO’S PIZZA 57 EDWARDS ACCESS ROAD #7 | EDWARDS 970.926.7003 | MARKOSPIZZA.COM by WILL BRENDZA photos by CHRISTOPHER DILLMANN

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stablished in 1994, Marko’s Pizza has been keeping Edwards — and beyond — in pizza, pasta and good times for the past 25 years. The cozy, lively space is perfect for a casual dinner with friends and family. One of Marko’s trademark specialties is the first item you’ll encounter on the menu: house garlic knots. Made from Marko’s signature dough and kissed with garlic, they are a mouthwatering treat — and the perfect tidbit to satiate your appetite just until the main course. Their “old school pasta” is a buildyour-own adventure. You can combine your choice of pasta (from spaghetti to fettucini, ziti to tri-colored spiral pasta) with marinara, meat sauce, alfredo or the classic “fatt butt” sauce.

PRICE

Starters: $5.99-14.99; Pasta: $12.99-$14.99; Pizza $7.99-$17.99 •••

AMBIANCE

Local, family-style pizzeria •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Pizza and pasta

If you’re trying to keep things easy, though, check out the Marko’s-style baked pasta dishes — that’s where you’ll find old favorites like chicken parmesan, lasagna and ravioli. But, the star of the Marko’s Pizza

menu is, naturally, their pizza. Hand tossed, garnished with fresh toppings, beautifully oven-blistered and bubbling with cheesy glory, their pizzas are something to behold. Try any number of their house specialty pizzas, like the Supreme, the Popeye Pie or their delicious Greek pizza — a spectacle of olives, artichokes and spinach piled

high and generously peppered with olive oil, feta and mozzarella cheeses. Or, build a custom pizza crafted to fit your palate like a savory slipper. Choose your sauce, choose your toppings and bueno appetito. • above Greek pizza with olives, artichoke hearts, spinach, feta and mozzarella.


v a i l d a i l y

c o m

242 EAST MEADOW DRIVE | VAIL | 970.479.1705 | SUNDAEICECREAM.COM 56 EDWARDS VILLAGE BLVD | EDWARDS | 970.766.7522

VAIL VILLAGE & EDWARDS CORNER

SUNDAE

.

by TRACI J. MACNAMARA photo by DOMINIQUE TAYLOR PRICE

S

ummertime’s ice cream season, and there’s no better way to celebrate sun-filled days than with scoops, cones and cool treats from Sundae, a cheerful modern ice cream shop with locations in Vail Village and Edwards Corner. At Sundae, you’ll always find ice cream made fresh on site in small batches, and from the best ingredients. But you won’t find artificial colors or flavorings — and you won’t miss them one bit. Open since the fall of 2016, Sundae is now into its third summer of delivering on its motto: “Sharing joy, one scoop at a time.” To that end, Sundae serves 18–24 joy-filled flavors of ice cream and sorbet, with at least one dairy-free choice, one vegan option and rotating flavors of the month like chocolate raspberry Sriracha, black licorice — or breakfast, a combination of maple ice cream, bacon pieces and waffle cone chunks. “Our flavor of the month lets people go wild and try new things,” says

$3 kid scoop - $8 sundae •••

AMBIANCE

Bright and cheerful ice cream heaven •••

SIGNATURE DISH

Ice cream customized with mix-ins of your choosing

Sundae General Manager Ashlyn Streetz. “And we also see a crazy amount of creativity when people build their own concoctions with our mix-ins and waffle cones.” Opportunities to improvise are infinite with Sundae’s seven varieties of dipped cones and a mix-in counter that’s bursting with nuts, candies, berries and toppings. Espresso drinks, milkshakes, sundaes, ice cream cakes, pints to-go and catered

VILLAGE BAGEL

events are also in the Sundae mix — and be on the lookout for Sundae’s new ice cream cart spreading joyful scoops at several mountain markets this summer, including the Minturn Market. •

above Assorted ice creams and toppings ready for mixing at Sundae. page 84 Various ice creams in hand-dipped waffle cones.

34500 US-6 B7 | EDWARDS 970.855.2940 | VILLAGEBAGEL.CO

by BRENDA HIMELFARB photo by KRISTIN ANDERSON

T

•••

AMBIANCE

Hopping bagel joint with great goods, a liquor license and lively local crowd •••

SIGNATURE DISH

EDWARDS

hough some folks think baking at altitude is impossible, Connie Leaf and Anthony Mazza at Village Bagel have proven them wrong. The owners of the Edwards-based bagel shop delightful bagels with a crisp exterior and a soft, chewy center — the telltale sign of boiled bagels or, as some would say, simply bagels “done right.” Each bagel is made from scratch and hand-rolled with no preservatives or additives. And unlike other bagels which are seeded on only one side, Village Bagel hand-presses seeds on both sides of the “roll” during preparation. A garlic bagel is Leaf’s favorite, though all the options have a following: blueberry, pumpernickel, sesame and more. They even have bagels for vegans. The store’s tagline is “shmearing happiness one hand-rolled bagel at a time,” but they also make Sicilian-style pizza, with dough made over a three-day process. And if

PRICE

Bagels $2-$13, various shmears and toppings; Lunch $6-$11

Bagel and shmear, with coffee, Bloody Mary or beer

you can’t make to the shop, you can pick up their “take ‘n bake pizza” at Village Market. Want catering? From kid-friendly platters to caviar and smoked fish with all the accoutrements, Village Bagel

does it all. And, if you want to skip the line at the shop, go to villagebagel.co. • above The NYC Upgrade with lox, capers, onions, tomatoes and scallion shmear.

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B Y A M Y K I S I E L I C A • I L L U S T R A T I O N S B Y C A R LY A R N O L D

R O S É L OV E R S R E J O I C E ! Rosé has finally earned a well-deserved respect alongside red, white and sparkling wines. It wasn’t long ago any pink wine was only spoken in a hushed, apologetic voice. But no longer. The Instagram darling, summer’s must-have sociable elixir has not only overcome an erroneous association with the taboo sweet and cheap white zinfandel, it has exploded into the American fine wine scene and popular culture alike. With the exponential growth and demand for this refreshing, versatile and sometimes-effervescent wine, experts say educating the market on this popular varietal is key. The wine distributors, sommeliers, retailers and vineyards that participated in the 2019 Taste of Vail Debut of Rosé this past April agree that rosé is not just a trend but rather the introduction of a new style. The wine industry professionals were tickled pink to share their knowledge with the hundreds of guests looking to taste those first sips of summer.


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B E S T WAY TO S E RV E R O S É ? Serve the wines chilled to about 50°F by taking the wines out of your refrigerator and letting them sit on the kitchen counter for about 10 minutes. W H AT I S T H E B E S T G L A S S TO E N J OY R O S É ? Serve the wine in a glass that is somewhere between a standard white and red wine glass size. If you don’t have a glass and need a pool sipper or patio pounder, consider the canned rosé. The special liner takes away the tin and provides easy to drink, pink deliciousness. With over 100 rosés on display, Taste of Vail hosted the country’s first tasting of the 2018 vintage. Sean Razee, Master Sommelier and Director of Fine Wine for Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits of Colorado, explains the basics of rosé: The popular pink wine usually has a crisp fruity taste, is low in tannins and is very approachable for new or hesitant wine drinkers. “Rosé has a history that dates to at least the Roman era, but it’s unlikely that they produced the rosé as we know it today,” says Razee. “In ancient times, the wines were often rose in color due to the general production methods of most red-skinned grapes. The dark, opaque wines popular in many regions today were virtually unknown in those times.” To achieve that magical pink tone that social media and advertising campaigns love, Razee explains that rosé, like red wine, gets its color from the grape skins. Rosé is generally made in two distinct ways with two distinct end-products. The first way rosé is made is called saignée in French, translated roughly as bleeding. The second method of rosé production is to remove all the juice from contact with the skins either through directly pressing the grapes, or a short skin contact time (maybe 2 to 20 hours) resulting in a light pink color to the wine. In this method, the intention is to produce solely the highest quality rosé wine. Recently, the global love for any type of rosé has developed to such a degree that its growth is astronomical. In a report published by Wine Access, an online wine retailer, only one of every 510 bottles of wine sold on their site back in 2015 was rosé. Fast forward to today, and one in every 36 bottles sold on the website is rosé. Rosé is now sold year-round,

and peaks during summer months. With this passion for rosé, one might wonder, when is rosé most drinkable? “Most rosé is released in the spring following the year of harvest and consumed within the first year after release when it’s at its optimal drinkability,” explains Razee. “American consumers used to just lump sweet blush wines and dry rosé wines together,” says Cary Hogan, wine buyer at Avon Liqour. “They considered rosé pedestrian, at best, and not as fashionable as reds or white.” Fortunately, Hogan says, “In the last decade or two, the appreciation for dry rosé has been renewed in the United Sates. Today’s huge range of rosés can be made still, semi-sparkling or sparkling with a wide range of sweetness levels from bonedry to very sweet. “The mouth feel and texture of rosé is unique yet easy to understand,” Hogan continues. “It usually starts off crisp and clean. Much like a white grape. Once it hits the mid-palate, the grape from which rosé is generally made starts to shine through. It results in a nice cross between red and white wine that is effortless to enjoy.” From perfume-like bottles and colorful to classic labels, rosé is alluring yet affordable. And let’s not forget tasty! Refreshing, easy going, uncomplicated and unpretentious, rosé is the friend that everyone wants to be around. •

W H AT A R E G O O D F O O D PA I R I N G S ? The real beauty of rosé is that the wines can transcend a lot of boundaries for food and wine pairing. The most classic pairings are Provençal dishes featuring light fish, shellfish and chicken with wine sauce and southern French herbs. Outside the traditional and classic pairings, rosé can go with just about everything including those hard to pair foods like Thai and other spicy foods. W H AT A R E T H E F L AVO R P R O F I L E S G E N E R A L LY F O U N D IN ROSÉ? The answer to this question lies very much in the grape variety that forms the base of the wine. Most rosé aficionados say you’ll find strawberry blossoms, red cherries, sweet orange citrus and cassis. W H I C H CO U N T RY MAKES THE BEST ROSÉ? Most people associate rosé with the Provence region of France. But really, many countries make rosé. After France, the leaders in production are Spain and Italy. It’s really no surprise since the Mediterranean countries began the love affair with rosé eons ago.


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HIGH RISE

Beating the odds, these local shops have no problem baking at altitude


By Amy Kisielica Photos by Charles Townsend Bessent

M

any small town, mountain residents and visitors love to indulge in delicious bagels, bread and donuts. Just like, insert big city you’re from, makes. Thankfully, you can get high-quality, nostalgic baked goods above sea level. Even though the atmospheric pressure at altitude makes cooking with yeast tricky, you can still find just what you’re craving here in the mountains. Here are three outstanding options right here in the valley that will satisfy even the most demanding carb connoisseur.

Northside Kitchen

N O RTH S I D E KI TC H E N

20 Nottingham Rd, Avon 970.949.1423 thenorthsidekitchen.com

Jim Pavelich’s roll of the dice on Northside is our good fortune. After converting a dated Pizza Hut into a restaurant space on the north side of I-70 across the parking lot from a 7-11 and a gas station, all the naysayers told him the location would never work for a restaurant. So he went and opened one himself. And eight years later, the home of the valley’s most desired donut had to expand its parking and opened two other locations to serve hordes of happy, hungry costumers. Northside Café makes thousands of donuts every day. Pavelich says, ”Great donuts, like all great food, starts with high-quality ingredients. When we first opened, we had a baker who had experience working at a well-known bakery in upstate New York, so she just cranked out donuts while we all sampled them. After some misses and lots of hits, our mountain town donut recipe was set.” The donuts are made from scratch daily at their 1600-square-foot bakery on Metcalf Road, just down the street from Northside, by chef Jaime Ceballos. Their tasty breakfast treats include their best-

selling cronut, maple bacon, chocolate chocolate chip, apple fritter, sour cream, glazed, chocolate and vanilla long johns, and cake donuts with frosting and sprinkles. All are sure to make your toes curl and your teeth tingle. Come to Northside Kitchen any day of the week and locals, guests and people just passing through line the colorful display cases of mouthwatering donuts. “Our following is so strong,” Pavelich says. “We have customers driving up and down I-70 from DIA to other Colorado tourist towns and stop by just for a box of donuts all year long. These are the kind that are worth going out of the way for.” And locals agree. “Donuts are easy like Sunday morning at our house,” says Edwards resident Jen B. “It’s the way I grew up in Michigan. The excitement of picking out a hot donut motivates me, my kids and anyone else who needs a sweet bribe.” In addition to the main restaurant in Avon, feel free to swing by Northside Grab and Go in Vail or Southside Benderz in Avon for the same quality donuts as the original location — because these are donuts you can really dunk in your coffee.

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Village Bagel

You know the bagels are special when the owners are bold enough to name their restaurant simply Village Bagel. The newest addition to the mountain food scene by Connie Leaf and her business partner Anthony Mazza just celebrated its first anniversary in February 2019. Connie Leaf’s bagels are formed by hand, boiled and baked daily using a 25-gallon kettle and a custom oven made in New York. The result is a hard exterior, a soft chewy center and a truly crave-worthy, kettle-boiled bagel. Leaf and Mazza, the co-owners of Village Bagel, are both East Coasters and knew there was a need and want for a consistently delicious and an easilyaccessible bagel. That idea was followed by months of experimenting in their bagel laboratory and serving the results to local friends. Neither of the owners were experienced bakers but had restaurant and cooking experience. Leaf spent years behind the bar at Sweet Basil and Mazza is a longtime presence in the culinary scene, but crafting bagels was not their expertise. “The challenge of creating an oldfashioned New York-style bagel in the mountains never concerned us,” says Leaf. “We knew the taste and texture we needed, so after a lot of trial and error, we

found exactly what we remembered from the bakeries of our childhood. After weeks of bad bagels, we finally found the right ratio of ingredients and the right amount of time to develop the true classic bagel we’d been yearning for here in the mountains.” The bagel shop’s tag line is fitting: a neighborhood bagel shop, shmearing happiness one hand-rolled bagel at a time. “Our neighbors and valley community pushed us to greatness,” Leaf says. “Their feedback and enthusiasm for what we were creating pushed us to take a huge risk. And it’s paid off beyond what I could have imagined a few years ago.” “The vibe in the open kitchen — it just feels like a real New York City bagel shop disguised in an Edwards strip mall. The taste is tried and true,” says Edwards resident Tom J. Chewy, malty deliciousness topped with the traditional whipped plain, veggie and chive spread are elevated even further with shmears like honey and rosemary, Hatch green chile and bacon. Now this is what breakfast dreams are made of. Egg sandwiches on fresh or toasted bagels are the ultimate grab-and-go breakfast any day of the week. And if the bagels aren’t enough, grab a bagel pizza for dinner (and a drink) until you can come back tomorrow for another freshly made bagel.

VI LLA GE BA GE L 34500 US-6 B7, Edwards 970.855.2940, villagebagel.co


Avon Bakery & Deli

A VON BA KE R Y & D E LI 25 Hurd Ln, Avon 970.949.3354, avonbakerydeli.com

This 19-year-old bakery is a veteran in the valley and serves up organic, artisan breads, pastries, desserts and deli sandwiches. When co-owner and Boston native Dan Trush opened the doors to his shop in 2000, his plan was to be the best bakery in the valley. A loyal following of townies, transplants and tourists proves the product is a good as promised. Trush studied hotel and restaurant management at Boston University and spent many years in the Boston restaurant scene. Trush worked as a chef at the chic Hamersley Bistro, working for celebrity clients including culinary icon Julia Child. After moving to the mountains following a ski trip in the early ‘90s, he saw a need for not just good bread but for a fullservice deli. “When we first opened, we all had restaurant experience, and mostly in fine dining. When it came to a deli and bakery in a mountain town, we just learned to bake at altitude and create sandwich recipes through a lot of experimentation. Our first bread starter was created with a 12 pack of beer, a few gallons of water, a couple bags of flour and some grape skins for the yeast,” Trush says with a laugh. And

in case you’re wondering, the beer simply provided the owners with some inspiration. Trush continues, “None of our bread is machine made. Its all about time, temperature and technique. That’s the secret. There is a lot of science behind baking that just becomes second nature. Like adapting to our dry climate. Creating artisan bread in a place with low humidity just takes more patience in the mountains. But we think it’s worth it.” Their most popular breads are their sourdough, ciabatta and seeded baguette. During their busy season, they bake up to 50 different varieties of bread that almost always sell out. Avon Bakery even creates signature breads for local restaurants like Almresi and Alpenrose, both in Vail, plus providing bread service to many of the valley’s most notable restaurants. “Coming from Denver, fresh bread was so hard to find unless you went to a fine-dining restaurant,” says Emily D. “Just walking into Avon Bakery, it smells warm. Smells the way a bakery and deli should.” Avon Bakery prides itself on attention to detail plus a high quality, made-fromscratch menu. Next time you’ve got a craving for a handcrafted sandwich like the Triple Decker BLT or need a fresh, flavorful loaf of Kalamata olive rosemary bread Avon Bakery and Deli has got you covered. • 81


B L U E P L AT E

S P L E N D I D O AT T H E C H AT E A U

BISTRO FOURTEEN

Alpha & Omega RACY BEGINNINGS AND SWEET ENDINGS

— PHOTOS BY DOMINIQUE TAYLOR & CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT

FALL LI N E

MIRABELLE


earn your appetite

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PARTING SHOT

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Paint the Town Sprinkled Hand-dipped waffle cones support an array of flavors from Sundae, located in Vail Village and Edwards Corner. PHOTO BY DOMINIQUE TAYLOR

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1183 Cabin Circle

Impressive views will captivate you as you walk into this Vail Golf Course home with perfect Gore Range views from the living room, dining room, kitchen and outdoor patio. Nano doors open the main living area to the tranquil courtyard complete with two water features. Spectacular stone and woodwork showcase the high level of craftsmanship. Chef’s kitchen with petrified wood and marble island, butler’s pantry, guest wing, media/game room with bar, gym, Jacuzzi and fire pit with Gore Range views make this home truly one-of-a-kind.

WWW.RONBYRNE.COM

285 Bridge Street Vail, Colorado 81657 970/476.1987


OWN THE VIEW

Vail Village’s newest development in over ten years. Offering Fifteen luxury residences each with magnificent views of Vail Mountain. Two, Three, Four, and Five bedrooms available. To sign up for the exclusive VIP program go to www.altusvail.com

WWW.RONBYRNE.COM

285 Bridge Street Vail, Colorado 81657 970/476.1987