When you think of Aspen and Snowmass Village, you probably envision the breathtaking beauty of the Rockies and world-class skiing. But beyond the snow-covered slopes and scenic landscapes, these charming destinations offer a thriving culinary scene as exhilarating as the outdoor adventures. From cozy eateries to high-end restaurants, there’s something to please every palate in Aspen. In this ultimate food and drink guide, we’ll take you on a delectable journey through the culinary gems of Aspen, helping you discover where to eat and drink while you savor the mountain magic.
Dining Delights in Aspen
1. Chefs Club Aspen
Experience culinary artistry at its finest at Chefs Club Aspen. This upscale restaurant is known for its ever-evolving menu, which changes daily based on what’s fresh and available. The talented chefs are passionate about their craft, and it shows in the inventive dishes that grace your table. Be prepared for an unforgettable culinary journey where each visit is a unique experience.
2. Element 47
Nestled within the Aspen Mountain Gondola, Element 47 provides exquisite meals and stunning vistas of the surrounding mountains. The menu at Element 47 focuses on modern American cuisine, emphasizing local and seasonal ingredients. This is where culinary creativity meets breathtaking beauty.
For lovers of sushi and sashimi, Matsuhisa is an absolute must-visit. This world-renowned restaurant boasts an omakase menu featuring a variety of sushi and sashimi dishes, all meticulously prepared by the chef. The fish is consistently fresh and of the highest quality, ensuring an unforgettable dining experience.
4. Clark’s Oyster Bar
When you’re craving seafood and oysters, Clark’s Oyster Bar is the place to be. This casual eatery offers a delectable selection of fresh seafood alongside mouthwatering dishes like burgers, sandwiches, and salads. Whether you’re a seafood lover or just looking for a relaxed, tasty meal, Clark’s has you covered.
A true Aspen institution, Jimmy’s has gained legendary status for its classic burgers and perfectly cooked fries. The burgers are crafted from fresh, high-quality beef, and the fries are cooked perfectly. It’s a no-fuss, must-visit spot for burger lovers.
5. Little Annie’s Eating House
For over 40 years, Little Annie’s Eating House has been serving up classic American comfort food. The menu is a delightful array of breakfast favorites like pancakes and omelets and heartier options such as burgers and steaks. It’s a family-owned gem with a welcoming, timeless charm.
7. The Creperie
Step into French cuisine at The Creperie, where you can enjoy quick and delicious meals made fresh to order. Their mouthwatering crepes come in sweet and savory varieties, ensuring a delightful culinary experience that will transport you to the streets of Paris.
8. The Aspen Bakery
Remember to satisfy your sweet tooth at The Aspen Bakery. Known for its fresh bread, pastries, and sandwiches, this bakery also serves exceptional coffee. It’s the ideal spot to grab a morning treat or an afternoon pick-me-up.
Sipping Elegance in Aspen
1. Ajax Tavern
After an exhilarating day on the slopes, head to Ajax Tavern, situated at the base of Aspen Mountain. This cozy tavern offers a wide selection of beers on tap and a full bar to quench your thirst. Ajax Tavern has everything, whether you prefer a local craft beer or a classic cocktail.
2. The J Bar
The J Bar is located in the Aspen Highlands Hotel and offers more than just your average bar experience. With breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains as your backdrop, you can enjoy a wide selection of cocktails and a full bar menu. It’s the perfect place to unwind after a day of exploring.
3. The Limelight Lounge
If you’re looking for live music along with your drinks, The Limelight Lounge in the Limelight Hotel Aspen is the place to be. With an extensive cocktail menu and an impressive selection of beers on tap, you can enjoy the soothing sounds of live music as you relax in this inviting lounge.
5. The Aspen Brewing Company
If you’re a craft beer enthusiast, you should attend The Aspen Brewing Company. Located in downtown Aspen, this brewery offers a variety of craft beers on tap alongside a full bar and a menu of delectable bites. It’s a fantastic place to discover some local flavors.
6. The Woody Creek Tavern
Just a short drive outside Aspen, The Woody Creek Tavern offers a welcoming atmosphere where you can enjoy a drink and indulge in a delicious meal. It’s a local favorite with a wide selection of beers on tap, a full bar, and a menu filled with mouthwatering options.
Tips for Enjoying Aspen’s Culinary Scene
As you embark on your culinary journey through Aspen, keep these tips in mind:
1. Make Reservations
Many of Aspen’s most popular restaurants tend to fill up quickly, so it’s wise to make reservations in advance to secure your dining spot.
2. Dress to Impress
Aspen is a fashionable town where dressing to impress is part of the experience, especially at upscale restaurants. Be sure to pack some elegant attire for your visit.
3. Be Prepared to Spend
Aspen is a high-end resort town, so it’s important to know that the food and drinks can be pricier. Consider it an investment in a memorable dining experience.
4. Try Something New
Aspen’s culinary scene is diverse and adventurous. Don’t hesitate to step out of your comfort zone and try something new. You might discover a new favorite dish or cuisine.
5. Enjoy the View
Last but not least, remember to savor the stunning scenery that Aspen is famous for. Whether dining in a mountaintop restaurant or enjoying drinks with a view, make the most of the beautiful surroundings that enhance your dining experience.
In Aspen, the food and drink scene is as much a part of the adventure as the skiing and the mountain vistas. Whether you’re savoring innovative cuisine at Chefs Club Aspen, enjoying the classic charm of Jimmy’s, or sipping cocktails with mountain views at The J Bar, Aspen’s culinary offerings are sure to leave your taste buds and your heart satisfied. So, pack your appetite, an appreciation for culinary excellence, and a sense of adventure, and explore the ultimate food and drink scene in the heart of the Rockies.