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Warren Miller movie premiere, restaurant deals, art programs and more: Tricia’s weekend picks 11/13/20

America Recycles Day

America Recycles Day is Nov. 15 and Eagle County wants to help you understand the best ways to recycle every day of the year. According to the lovevail.org website, the current national recycling rate is 35% while the state of Colorado’s rate is 16%. The town of Vail recycling rate is 27%, just shy of the Eagle County rate of 28%.

Are you confused about what can and can’t be recycled? If the answer is yes, download the free Eagle County Waste Wizard app. The Recycling Guide will give you and your family the answers to all your recycling questions at your fingertips.

Walking Mountains Science Center has been counting down to America Recycles Day by offering tips and tricks to help you recycle right and manage your waste more sustainably. New tips are posted daily to its Sustainability Facebook page and Instagram stories (search for @walkingmtns). You can also send in your questions to @walkingmtns or tag #recycleright and the Walking Mountains Zero Waste team will answer your questions.  

If you want to ditch the single-use plastics, head over to Fill & Refill, a store in Edwards that is dedicated to reducing single-use plastic by selling many household items like shampoo and laundry detergent that are unpackaged. Simply bring in your own containers or purchase reusable containers at Fill & Refill and break the cycle of contributing to more plastic waste. More info can be found at fillandrefill.com.

On Friday, the town of Vail had planned to host a recycling event for paper shredding and electronic waste. Due to the rising COVID-19 cases in Eagle County, the town of Vail is postponing the event and it will be rescheduled when the COVID-19 case numbers have been lowered.

As an alternative, Eagle County residents can take electronics waste to the Eagle County Household Hazardous Waste facility in Wolcott. The facility is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. There is a small charge for electronics and Eagle County residents can deposit up to 20 items of household hazardous waste, such as paint, free of charge per visit.

Second Friday ARTwalk on Broadway

This weekend marks the second anniversary of the Second Friday ARTwalk, a monthly event held in downtown Eagle. The milestone won’t be marked by any grand celebrations due to COVID-19 restrictions, but you are still invited to stop by and support local artists and shops on Broadway and beyond on Friday from 5 to 8 p.m. by ordering takeout, getting gift cards and doing a quick shopping trip in the shops and galleries.

Founder and event organizer Tara Novak, owner of ARTSPaCE workshop and gallery, has been working hard throughout the pandemic to support local artists and small businesses that are a part of the Eagle community. Novak is currently working on uploading items by local artists for holiday gift ideas on artspaceworkshop.com to provide a resource for those looking to shop local this holiday season.  

The Vail Valley Art Guild will be holding a member exhibit on Friday from 5 to 7 p.m. Visitors will be allowed to choose two free holiday greetings cards designed by artist Beth Levine. The Vail Valley Art Guild’s Gallery is located at 108 Second Street in Eagle.  

Even though the Broadway Promenade in downtown Eagle won’t be bustling with exhibitor tents and food trucks like it has in the past, browse the art galleries and stop by the restaurants for a quick bite or takeout or buy a gift card and support those places as well:

  • Bonfire Brewery’s 10th Anniversary Celebration – new chalk art reveal by Natalia Gray, live music with The Evolution from 6 to 9 p.m.
  • Katch of the Day Wine Bar – Frida Kahlo, Picasso, other assorted vintage art and wine specials
  • Owashi Sushi Kitchen – fine art exhibit and dining specials
  • Chics Couture – fall sale, local artisan jewelry
  • Everyday Outfitters – fall sale, home holiday decor and art prints

71st annual Warren Miller Movie Premier

Even though we are in the middle of a pandemic, it’s still stoke season and the 71st annual Warren Miller movie, “Future Retro,” is the official flick that kicks it off.

You read that correctly, 71 years of Warren Miller films. These films about winter skiing and snowboarding attract die-hard enthusiasts, aspiring wanna-be pro athletes and even those who may never step foot on the slopes this winter. The footage, music and commentary are that entertaining and iconic. And although you can’t watch this year’s movie on the big screen like in the past, you’ll still see the beautiful scenery, amazing athleticism and hear some of Warren’s famous quotes.

“Future Retro” features a cast of nearly two dozen of today’s most talented skiers and snowboarders that will take you to the slopes of Utah, Vermont, Montana and Alaska. International destinations include Switzerland, Iceland and Antarctica. For those of you missing the Birds of Prey World Cup Races at Beaver Creek this year, there is a segment from last year’s women’s World Cup race in Killington, VT.

Due to the pandemic, “Future Retro” is being premiered in locations across the U.S. over a three-week period via a streaming platform. Last Saturday, the East Coast got to view “Future Retro,” This Saturday, the Rocky Mountain Region can view it at 6 p.m. MST and next Saturday the West Coast will be able to see the film.

A ticket for the movie premiere costs $30 and that will accommodate one to four people on a single device. This ticket gives you and your three guests access to door prizes like ski gear, coupon codes and other swag. Have more than four who want access to the goods? Simply purchase more tickets to accommodate your viewers. You will have access to the event for up to 48 hours in case you can’t watch it Saturday or want to watch it again.

Olympian and long-time Warren Miller films narrator Jonny Moseley reprises his role in this year’s film and will kick it off with a virtual red carpet experience. Get your living room ready for the 71st annual Warren Miller movie with popcorn, “free” drinks from your own fridge and a comfortable couch. To purchase tickets or watch the movie trailer go to warrenmiller.com.

Cupcakes and Clay

Instead of Cupcakes and Canvas, Alpine Arts Center is hosting its Cupcakes and Clay event this Sunday from 3 to 4:30 p.m. Enjoy delicious cupcakes while creating a lasting piece of functional art. This week, the class will be creating platters for serving or as a decorative piece to display.

During the class, you will be provided with all the art materials to make the platter and the instruction and assistance you’ll need throughout your artistic journey. Start with a ball of clay and shape it into the desired platter you envision. This is the family-friendly version of Cocktails and Canvas, but those over 21 are allowed to purchase beer, wine or champagne from the Alpine Art Center for $6 each.

Go to alpineartscenter.org to make a reservation for the class. Tickets are $35 and include the cupcakes and all the art supplies. You can do the class virtually for $25, which doesn’t include the art materials, but you can buy art class kits online as well.

You may have seen information about the Social Arts Programs that the Alpine Arts Center is doing for the town of Vail this season. These are discounted classes for $20 due to support from the town of Vail, Alpine Bank, Holy Cross Energy and Vail Daily. This Friday’s trail map painting class is already sold out but inquire about a virtual class. More information can be found at alpineartscenter.org.

Off season deals

There are a few restaurants doing deals this time of year. Take advantage of the savings and treat yourself to a nice meal before the ski season starts and support local restaurants:

Northside Coffee & Kitchen:

  • All entrées $20
  • Specialty entrées:
  • Filet mignon, rib eye or prime rib $24
  • Lobster shrimp risotto $27
  • Thenorthsidekitchen.com

Hooked:

  • 20% off all appetizers and sushi
  • 20% off all whole fish and wine over $100
  • Available Sunday – Thursday
  • Must mention ad to receive the discount, dine-in only
  • Hookedbc.com

Route 6 Cafe and Bar:

  • Three courses for $21
  • First course: soup, chili, house or Caesar salad
  • Second course: choice of any entrée
  • Third course: chocolate brownie or apple tort a la mode
  • Open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily
  • Routesixcafe.com

16 restaurants with great patios and outdoor dining options in the Vail Valley

Outdoor seating is one of the best parts of summertime dining even when the world isn’t in a global pandemic, but now that we are, outdoor seating is practically a godsend. Tables are more readily available outdoors, plus they offer some peace of mind when it comes to safe restaurant outings.

Be sure to check with restaurants directly for the most up-to-date COVID-19 and social distancing policies. I recommend calling restaurants: some spots are reserving patio seating to first-come-first-serve diners, while others have tightly-booked reservation schedules.

If your favorite isn’t listed or your top choice is full, many restaurants in Vail Village, Avon, Beaver Creek and Edwards offer outdoor seating. The ones listed here are some of the Vail Valley’s classic favorites, opinions shared by locals and visitors alike. Some restaurants have even added patios where they didn’t previously have one. Call ahead to be sure. Takeout, delivery and curbside pickup are still being offered at most places, and you could easily bring dinner home or take it to Ford Park for an evening picnic.

Beaver Creek Chophouse

Location: Beaver Creek, Avon

Vibe: Classic Steakhouse

The patio directly faces the Centennial Express lift, and location can’t get much better than that.

970-845-0555

beavercreekchophouse.com

Blue Plate

Blue Plate converted two gondola cars into dining cars on their patio in Avon this past summer.
Special to the Daily

Location: Avon

Vibe: Modern European

Make your outdoor dining experience extra special with Blue Plate’s gondola car seating, decked out with sunflowers and a full chef’s tasting menu. There are only two cars, so reserve early.

970-845-2252

blueplateavon.com

Ein Prosit

Prosit also has locations in Summit County and Denver.
Chris Dillmann | cdillmann@vaildaily.com |

Location: Avon

Vibe: Modern Bavarian

The small German beer hall has plenty of outdoor tables and a wide selection of imported brews. Order a pint and pair with a soft pretzel.

970-949-7730

einprosit.net

El Segundo

Murals from Denver-based Pedro Barrios and Jaime Molina decorate the walls at El Segundo. The art duo painted on the Lionshead Parking Structure last summer as part of the Art in Public Places Initiative.
Dominique Taylor | Special to the Daily

Location: Vail

Vibe: Modern Mexican

One of Vail’s newest restaurants overlooks Gore Creek, and it’s great for apps and drinks or a full meal. Enjoy the creek sounds with my personal favorite: the Kiss from a Rosé white sangria.

970-763-5470

elsegundovail.com

Hovey & Harrison

Location: Edwards

Vibe: Bougie (in a good way) Bakery

Hovey & Harrison is most known for its bread, but it has a full coffee and lunch menu, with plenty of vegetarian, vegan, gluten- and dairy-free options. Best for a treat-yourself but still healthy lunch.

970-446-6830

hoveyandharrison.com

Garfinkel’s

Location: Vail

Vibe: Classic American

Garf’s, as it’s affectionately known by locals, is a great spot for drinks with friends or a casual dinner with family. The deck is pretty large and overlooks the Born Free gondola in Lionshead.

970-476-3789

garfsvail.com

La Bottega

Grilled Spanish octopus, fingerling potatoes, argula Chimichurri with tomato was on the La Bottega menu in January 2019.
Dominique Taylor | Special to the Daily

Location: Vail

Vibe: Upscale Italian

The patio at La Bottega overlooks East Meadow Drive for some of the best people watching in all of the Vail Valley. Grab a plate of pasta and a Pinot Noir while you’re at it.

970-476-0280

labottegavail.com

Loaded Joe’s

Location: Avon

Vibe: Classic bar, but updated

Grabbing a few drniks with friends couldn’t be more convenient at Loaded Joe’s deck. Prices are reasonable and your view is one of the best: the slopes at Beaver Creek.

970-748-1480

loadedjoes.com

Maya

Maya at The Westin Riverfront is known for its wide variety of specialty tequilas, including its favorite reserve blanco, repasado and anejo tequilas.
Marc Piscotty | Special to the Daily

Location: Avon

Vibe: Upscale Mexican

The deck here at the Westin Riverfront hotel is huge, with plenty of space to spread out over margaritas. Maya also has an extensive tequila list, if you’re into that sort of thing.

970-790-5500

richardsandoval.com

Minturn Saloon

Minturn Saloon’s patio overlooks the Eagle River.
Special to the Daily

Location: Minturn

Vibe: Classic local’s spot

Minturn Saloon, while beloved by locals for its Halloween Party each year, also offers a spacious deck overlooking the Eagle River. Plus, its setting in the quirky small town that’s given the pub its name means its farther away from traffic noise and pedestrian congestion.

Pepi’s Restaurant and Bar

Pepi’s Deck is one of the most popular spots in the summer and winter to enjoy food and drink.
Photo courtesy of Pepi’s Restaurant

Location: Vail

Vibe: Classic Bavarian

Pepi’s, the word “deck” and those orange umbrellas are one and the same during summertime. Pair with authentic German, Swiss and Austrian cuisine for one of Vail’s oldest, tried-and-true dining experiences.

970-476-4671

pepis.com

The Fitz

Location: Vail

Vibe: Upscale American

Located at the Manor Vail Lodge, slightly out of the thick of Vail Village, The Fitz is a great spot for modern and seasonal American cuisine.

970-476-4959

manorvail.com

The Red Lion

Dave Tucker plays at Red Lion on Friday, May 29. Social distancing measures are in place to protect restaurant guests as well as the musician and staff.
Casey Russell | crussell@vaildaily.com

Location: Vail

Vibe: Casual American

Grab a few drinks and if you time your visit right, you’ll get to hear live music from Dave Tucker, one of the Vail Valley’s favorite après musicians. Another Vail classic.

970-476-7676

theredlion.com

Vail Brewing Co. and Rocky Mountain Taco

Vail Brewing Co. has two locations — the Solaris Plaza in Vail Village and Eagle-Vail.
Chris Dillmann | cdillman@vaildaily.com

Location: Eagle-Vail

Vibe: Casual drinks and bites

This location won the Vail Daily’s Best of Patio 2019 reader poll, and with the pandemic, the only seating option is outside. Combine beers and tacos to your heart’s content. Best paired with a warm evening and a gorgeous sunset.

VBC: 970-470-4351

Rocky Mountain Taco: 970-401-4443

vailbrewingco.com

rockymountaintaco.com

Vendetta’s

Location: Vail

Vibe: Casual drinks and bites

Pizza and beer is a match made in heaven, and these are two things that Vendetta’s is known for in the Vail Valley. Grab a few beers or a whole pitcher; a slice or the whole pie. The adventure is up to you.

970-476-5070

vendettasvail.com

Vin48

Location: Avon

Vibe: Modern Italian

The Vin48 patio brings the sultry atmosphere of the restaurant outdoors – another great spot for apps and drinks or a full meal.

970-748-9463

vin48.com

Open for Business: Lookout Lobby Bar at The Westin

Name of business: The Lookout Lobby Bar at The Westin

Physical address: 126 Riverfront Lane

Phone number: 970-790-6600

Website: www.westinriverfront.com

What goods or services are you offering at this time? 

The Lookout is now open from noon to 9 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays and noon to 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. Guests can enjoy live local music Fridays through Mondays from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. The Lookout is also hosting a special Sunday cocktail class each Sunday at 4:30 p.m.

How have you adjusted to serve your customers during these unprecedented times? 

Westin guests will be treated to a refreshed lobby experience this summer, including expanded dining and cocktail menus from The Lookout Lobby Bar. The new menu includes a variety of bites, snacks, salads and boards, including the cheese and charcuterie board and a seafood board featuring smoked trout pate, salmon rillette and tuna confit. Enjoy a cup of Red Bird Farms chicken soup or a delicious Sweet Corn or Wild Mushroom Flatbread. Sandwich choices include a bison burger, crispy Red Bird Farms chicken or a wild mushroom French dip. Large plates include grilled salmon with kale, sweet corn, roasted fingerling potatoes in aged balsamic or a grilled flatiron steak with wild mushrooms, farro spring vegetables and a bourbon demi-glace. The Lookout also serves an extensive list of wines by the glass, seasonal cocktails and Colorado craft beers.

How can the community support you?

Visit The Westin Riverfront for a delicious cocktail, snack or meal!

What’s the best source to keep up to date with your offerings? 

Our website: www.westinriverfront.com

What’s the response been?

Our employees are excited to be back at work and creating delicious meals and cocktails to share with our community.

What are your plans going forward as the “new normal” evolves? 

The Lookout has implemented extensive new safety precautions, including enhanced cleaning protocols and set social distancing guidelines. The Westin Riverfront staff is required to wear gloves and masks.

Open for Business: Sauce on the Creek

Name of business: Sauce on the Creek

Physical address: 101 Fawcett Road Suite 100 Avon, CO 81620

Phone number: 970-949-3291

Email: sauceonthecreek@gmail.com

Website: sauceonthecreek.com

What goods or services are you offering at this time?

We are welcoming people back to our dining room and deck and are also offering and takeout for customers who would like to enjoy our meals at home.

How have you adjusted to serve your customers during these unprecedented times?

We are following CDC, local and State health department regulations.

How can the community support you?

The community can support us by ordering takeout or dining here now that we are open. Please make a reservation. Gift cards are great, too.

What’s the best source to keep up to date with your offerings?

Check out our website, Facebook page and ads in the Vail Daily.

What’s the response been?

The local community is happy to be sitting in restaurants again and not cooking at home.

What are your plans going forward as the “new normal” evolves?

We plan on following all CDC, local and State guidelines as they evolve during this health crisis.

Open for Business: Avon Liquor

Name of business: Avon Liquor 

Physical address: 100 West Beaver Creek Blvd. Avon, CO 81620

Phone number: 970-949-4384

Email: info@avon-Liquor.com

Website: www.avon-liquor.com

What goods or services are you offering at this time? 

We are offering all of our wine, liquor, beer, mixers and accessories.

How have you adjusted to serve your customers during these unprecedented times?

We’ve added delivery and curbside pickup. 

How can the community support you?

The business is open with regular hours. Customers are allowed in the business but feel free to order online and schedule a delivery.

What’s the best source to keep up to date with your offerings?

Our website is www.avon-liquor.com or follow us on Instagram and our Facebook page.

What’s the response been?

The response has been positive. Customers have told us how thankful they are to be able to shop normally, but by still following state guidelines for Covid-19.

What are your plans going forward as the “new normal” evolves? Moving forward, Avon Liquor will operate normally but we encourage customers to take advantage of delivery and curbside pickup.  

Breakfast, lunch and dinner, area restaurants are here for you: Tricia’s weekend picks 3/27/2020

Editor’s Note: The Vail Daily has been publishing an updated list of open restaurants each day online and in print. If you don’t see your favorite restaurant listed there, call ahead to see if they are open and what their options are and encourage them to get on our list by emailing details to Kaylee Porter at kporter@vaildaily.com.

Currently, restaurants in the Vail Valley are able to be open and doing takeout, delivery or a combination of both during these trying coronavirus times. Some staffers at the Vail Daily had a chance to dine in while eating food someone else had made for them. Here’s a round-up of what they ordered. (Warning: Reading this article may make you hungry!)

Pam Boyd – Vail Daily reporter and editor of the Eagle Valley Enterprise

Which restaurant?

Grand Avenue Grill in Eagle

What did you order?

Asiago Crusted Chicken Club Sandwich and a Castle Peak Burger

Was it takeout or was it delivered to your home?

Takeout, super convenient from their ice cream window.

Was there a good variety of items on the menu?

These two items are my favorite (club sandwich) and my husband’s favorite (burger) and it is our standing order at Grand Avenue Grill. We were thrilled we could get them.

How did it taste? 

Terrific. Like always. The Grand Avenue Grill has had outstanding quality for nearly two decades.

Any other notes about the experience or any comments from the restaurant you’d like to share?

In the middle of these weird days, it was a great break to treat ourselves to our favorite lunch.

Morgan Allman – Digital content manager for Everything Vail Valley

Which restaurant?

Thai Kitchen in Minturn

What did you order?

I went for the classics and ordered pad Thai and Thai tea from Thai Kitchen in Minturn

Was it takeout was or was it delivered to your home?

Takeout- called in my order, and when I went to pick it up there were sanitizing wipes by the door (which I used to wipe down my hands as well as my card before I handed it over). I was greeted at the door and asked for my name.  I was given my receipt, I gave her my card, she ran it and brought me the to-go bag.  She was also wearing a precautionary mask and gloves.

Was there a variety of items on the menu?

The full menu is available for takeout.

How did it taste?

Delicious. I spent a summer backpacking through Southeast Asia and both the pad Thai and Thai tea tasted exactly as I remember.

Any other notes about the experience or any comments from the restaurant you’d like to share? 

The woman who helped me was very nice and my food was ready by the time I got to the restaurant, in about 10 minutes.

Emily Peterson – Vail Daily account manager

Which Restaurant?

Red Canyon Cafe in Eagle

What did you order?

We got delicious iced coffees and breakfast sandwiches along with amazing cinnamon rolls.

Was it takeout was or was it delivered to your home?

You can call in or go in with your order and you can do takeout or pick up your order curbside.

Was there a variety of items on the menu?

Looks like they have their regular breakfast menu featuring bagels, pastries and burritos. They have a wide variety of hot and cold sandwiches, soups and salads for lunch. Coffee and espresso drinks.

How did it taste?

It was awesome! We think they also have the best lunch sandwiches and the best coffee.

Any other notes about the experience or any comments from the restaurant you’d like to share?

Ryan, the owner, is always there taking care of guests with a big smile and this time was no different. It was also obvious that he was taking all the precautions from having hand sanitizer available to guests, wearing gloves, etc.

Tyler Buscemi – Digital content manager for Everything Vail Valley

Which restaurant?

Asian Fusion in Gypsum

What did you order?

We ordered a few of their lunch specials: General Tso’s chicken and kung pao chicken with egg drop soup and crab rangoon

Was it takeout or was it delivered to your home?

Takeout

Was there a good variety on the menu or were there only a few items available?

The full menu is available

How did it taste? 

This is our favorite Asian restaurant in the Valley. Great service, fast, dependable.

Any other notes about the experience or any comments from the restaurant you’d like to share?

When mentioning a “birthday lunch” for my wife, Brooke she didn’t hesitate to say that she wanted Asian Fusion.

Tricia Swenson, Vail Daily reporter

Which restaurant?

Zino Ristorante in Edwards

What did you order?

I took advantage of Zino’s deal going on that day which was 50% off appetizers. I ordered the melanzane – roasted eggplant parmigiana, mozzarella, marinara and dried basil pesto; cavolini – Brussels sprouts with house-made pancetta and frito misto – crispy calamari, shrimp, catch of the day, shishito peppers and harissa aioli.

Was it takeout was or was it delivered to your home?

I went online and ordered off the menu on their website. I called and gave my credit card information over the phone. The to-go bag and credit card receipt was on a table in the entryway at Zino, so, in its own little room. I waved at Giuseppe through the glass of the door between us. 

Was there a variety of items on the menu?

It looked pretty much like their regular menu with appetizers, soups, salads, pizzas, entrées and even desserts. Don’t forget the deals on bottles of wine, too!

How did it taste?

It was delicious and a nice break from the humble meals we’ve had at home. The frito misto was a treat since I don’t make fried calamari at home. Since I ordered three appetizers I had leftovers for lunch the next day.

Any other notes about the experience or any comments from the restaurant you’d like to share? 

When I called Zino, owner Giuseppe Bosco answered the phone in his enthusiastic Italian accent. It was good to hear his voice and he said he’s so grateful for the community’s outreach and thanks everyone who is supporting them during this trying time.

EAT: Maya brings together traditional and modern Mexican flavors in Avon

Editor’s note: This story first appeared as a paid feature in EAT magazine, highlighting restaurants across the valley.

At Maya, there is traditional and boundary-pushing cuisine, executed with precision and style. And then there’s the setting.

Located at the Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa in Avon with sweeping views of Beaver Creek, it welcomes a vibrant clientele well beyond hotel guests. Its spacious decor mimics its menu’s sensibilities: traditional Mexican tile and warm natural textures layered within a hip modern design. The space is bookended by its renowned tequileria to one side and floor-to-ceiling windows on the other.

Those windows and the restaurant’s location across from the hotel gondola to Beaver Creek set the tone of the restaurant throughout the day. In the morning it’s a bustling breakfast and Sunday brunch space; by afternoon the expansive patio boasts a lively après scene. As the alpenglow fades on the mountains, the restaurant lights up with a warm, inviting glow. Long tables accommodate larger groups while high leather-backed booths are perfect for an intimate meal.

Chef Richard Sandoval, originally from Mexico City, is committed to the traditions of Mexican cooking while incorporating bold flavors and techniques that have earned him praise as the “Father of Modern Mexican Cuisine.” Executive chef Angel Munoz Jr. oversees the daily operations with a tightknit team.

“When you work long and hard together, it is important to relax and laugh together as well,” Munoz said. That sense of camaraderie feeds directly into the welcoming atmosphere of Maya and inspires the dynamic dish and drink offerings.

One of the newest additions to the menu is the roasted vegetable sopes. The sope’s cornflour dough is dyed with beets to create a rich purple color then topped with black beans, roasted vegetables and crispy lettuce, with cotija cheese. It’s a perfect appetizer or vegetarian main dish.

While most people opt to start their meal with Maya’s tableside prepared guacamole (and for good reason), don’t miss the deceivingly simple tortilla soup. Blended in the traditional manner, its layered and rich flavors are warming to the core, a perfect end to a snowy day.

For the main course, the chicken mole poblano is a multi-tiered taste experience. The chicken is served with a warm cake of cilantro polenta and plantain hash with kale. Sandoval’s mole includes four types of chiles, chocolate and a secret ingredient you won’t believe: See if you can find out what it is from your server.

A visit to Maya wouldn’t be complete without sampling from the selection of over 150 carefully curated tequilas. One to look out for: the exclusive Maya Patrón that the restaurant developed in close collaboration with Patrón. The tequila flights are a popular option, as are the nine margaritas, each paired with its own unique salt rim. For something a little more indulgent, try the Casa Horchata, featuring housemade horchata spiked with Casa Mexico Añejo and topped with whipped cream. Not a tequila drinker? Sommelier Grant Lewis was recently brought on as Dining Room Manager and has developed a thoughtful spirit, wine and beer selection. 

Maya

Price

Starters and small plates: $13-$17

Entrées: $15-$29

Ambiance

Hip, modern and family-friendly Mexican kitchen and tequileria

Signature dish

Carne asada

EAT: Loaded Joe’s grows into new, bigger space in Vail Village

Editor’s note: This story first appeared as a paid feature in EAT magazine, highlighting restaurants across the valley.

Loaded Joe’s tagline is: Coffee. Food. Drink. And with their new digs in Vail, the coffee shop powerhouse embraces the concept in both Vail Village in addition to their flagship space in Avon.

Part restaurant, part bar, part community center, Loaded Joe’s holds a key spot on the local scene. Open for the early crowd at 7 a.m. with coffee and breakfast options, straight through the lunch hours into après ski, evening and late night, both locales close at 2 a.m. Though the menu is bigger and more complicated in Avon (think avocado toast or a lamb burger), the Vail shop is ready with breakfast and lunch sandwiches and salads. Grab them to go or stay and soak up the atmosphere.

“We outgrew the original Vail space, which is why we moved,” said owner Brandt Olsen about the Vail location.

The original Vail space was located down some stairs across from Russell’s: It was tiny and felt crowded with 10 people inside. Now, it’s located next to Sundae.

“It’s really allowed us to do more, and do it better. It’s about the same size menu, but we can use much better ingredients. And the bar is expanded. You can come relax and chill at any hour of the day and we’ve got you covered,” he said.

Though plenty of locals use the spots as impromptu office space, working on laptops and holding meetings over food and drink, the comfortable, cozy places are conducive to easy relaxation.

Loaded Joe’s

Price

Breakfast: $8.50-$11

Lunch: $8-$13.50

Ambiance

Friendly neighborhood coffee house with a full bar

Signature dish

Rococo coffee and anything with Tender Belly bacon

Tequila tasting with Chef Richard Sandoval at Maya: varieties to drink and some authentic apps to pair it with

Can’t view the video? Click here.

What do you like to pair with tequila? If you said lime and salt, chef and restaurateur Richard Sandoval would like to expand your palate and introduce you to a different way of enjoying the blue agave-based spirit.

Sandoval, whose Latin-based restaurant concepts span from Colorado to Tokyo, was in town on Tuesday, Feb. 25 to pair his culinary creations with Cantera Negra, a family-owned and operated tequila distillery in Jalisco, Mexico. Sandoval and his team at Maya at the Westin Riverfront Resort and Spa swapped out the typical multi-course dinner with small plates.

“Instead of having four courses you’re trying seven or eight different dishes with various tequilas and it’s a little more exciting, it allows you to engage more,” said Sandoval, who had just flown to Colorado after being at the Miami Food and Wine Festival.

Even though Cantera Negra was founded more than 40 years ago, it’s only been in the United States for two years (check out how it finally got to the U.S. at www.canteranegra.com). “This time last year we were in four states and we’re now in 20 states. We started distributing to Colorado this past Labor Day,” said David Szydlik of Two Sons Imports.

Szydlik offered tastes of Cantera Negra’s silver, reposado, añejo and extra añejo tequila to Maya’s guests and was greeted with the same response he’s heard the last several months while promoting the product. 

“Usually I hear things like, ‘I can’t believe that’s tequila’ or ‘this is the smoothest and best tequila I’ve ever had,’ and I’ve been in the spirits business for almost 20 years and I’ve never seen reactions like this. It’s so consistent,” Szydlik said.

Cantera Negra also has a cafe liqueur, which has just exploded in the last four months. It’s made with Mexican espresso beans, 100% blue agave spirit and liqueur. “It’s only 40 proof, 20% alcohol but the flavor that comes out from the Mexican espresso beans is just amazing,” Szydlik said. 

The food received rave reviews as well. Sandoval paired the Acapulco-style shrimp ceviche, the guacamole and the tortilla soup with the silver tequila. The subtle flavor of the añejo paired well with the tuna tostada and the stone crab taco. The al pastor pork belly taco stood up to the reposado.

“There are over 2,000 different tequilas today. It’s amazing what different distilleries do to it, whether it’s aging it in French or American oak, they are very different,” Sandoval said. “If you compare them, each one has a different profile. It’s very interesting to see what they’ve done and it’s fun to match the flavor profile with the food.”

5 local restaurants receive four diamonds in annual AAA restaurant awards

Each year, AAA awards diamond ratings to restaurants across the United States, and five Vail Valley restaurants received awards.

Each chosen restaurant can receive up to five diamonds, and 18 of the 77 Colorado restaurants honored received four diamonds.

The Vail restaurants that received diamonds are: Grouse Mountain Grill, Mirabelle, Splendido, Game Creek Restaurant and Beano’s Cabin. Beano’s was the only new addition to the list from last year.

“This mountainside restaurant is located in a former hunting lodge and comes complete with antler chandeliers and a cozy fireplace,” AAA said in its description of the restaurant. “The seasonal fixed price menu offers multiple courses and features fare such as venison, Wagyu beef and Colorado lamb. The restaurant is accessed by a scenic shuttle or sleigh ride.”

Here are all 18 of the four-diamond restaurants in Colorado this year:

  • Beano’s Cabin, Avon
  • Grouse Mountain Grill, Beaver Creek
  • Mirabelle at Beaver Creek, Beaver Creek
  • Splendido at the Chateau, Beaver Creek
  • Game Creek Restaurant, Vail
  • Element 47, Aspen
  • Frasca Food & Wine, Boulder
  • Flagstaff House Restaurant, Boulder
  • Summit, Colorado Springs
  • Edge Restaurant & Bar, Denver
  • Guard and Grace, Denver
  • Mizuna, Denver
  • Palace Arms, Denver
  • Panzano, Denver
  • Rioja, Denver
  • Alpenglow Stube, Keystone
  • Keystone Ranch Restaurant, Keystone
  • The Cliff House Dining Room, Manitou Springs

View the full list of four-diamond restaurants in all 50 states here. View the full list of five-diamond restaurants here.