VAIL - From the creators of Sweet Basil in Vail comes a new restaurant scheduled to open in December 2012. For 35 years Sweet Basil has created a standard for mountain dining and the new restaurant Mountain Standard will take from that tradition and create its own niche with a rustic, relaxed tavern atmosphere.
Mountain Standard will primarily feature a cooking method that has been around for tens of thousands of years - cooking over an open fire. A wood burning grill and rotisserie will be the centerpieces of the new restaurant. The menu will feature rustic, bold flavors using ingredients from the Rocky Mountain region and beyond.
"Dining, as a whole, has become more casual," said Kevin Clair, co-owner. "We wanted to capitalized on the success of Sweet Basil but provide our guests with a more casual atmosphere and dining experience with Mountain Standard. We believe the two restaurants will be a great compliment to one another."
The new restaurant is located in the heart of Vail Village along East Gore Creek Drive just steps away from the Gore Creek and around the corner from Sweet Basil. Mountain Standard is located in the spaces formerly occupied by Blu's restaurant and a fly fishing shop next door. The decor will mirror the menu, with reclaimed woods, oak floors mixed with contemporary rusted steel.
As guests walk into Mountain Standard they will be greeted with the fresh aroma of a wood burning fire. The most primal and ancient form of cooking, the live fire is the ultimate flavor enhancer that has chefs all over the world swapping traditional appliances for wood burning units. The restaurant plans to use locally sourced fruitwood from the Western Slope of Colorado.
Sweet Basil's Executive Chef Paul Anders has been promoted to oversee the menu and execution at both restaurants with Chef de Cuisine Brian Brouillard shifting roles to head up the kitchen at Mountain Standard.
"You get pure flavor when cooking over fire," Brouillard said. "We plan to offer menu selections that are simply prepared - sometimes with only three or four ingredients. We plan to keep the menu simple and straight forward, which is really the way Ilove to cook."
The Mountain Standard team is currently working on the menu, however guests can expect to see selections such as apple-wood grilled steaks, fish and vegetables. One of the signature dishes Brouillard plans to serve is a rotisserie chicken with creamy wild rice, coal roasted root vegetables and lemon herb gravy.
First course selections at Mountain Standard will range from $5 to $15, lunch entrees from $12 to $20 and dinner entrees ranging from $18 to $35.
The restaurant also plans to offer a unique cocktail and beer program served from a 20-seat bar. Mountain Standard's wine list will include 150 wines, mainly from American producers and most under $100. For the more discerning wine aficionado, a reserve list also will be available upon request.
The restaurant will offer lunch, apres and dinner serving straight through from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Reservations will be taken starting Nov. 1 by calling 970-476-0123 or via the restaurant's Web site at www.mtnstandard.com.