Vail-Beaver Creek Restaurant Week is the perfect time to take advantage of the valley’s exceptional food and drink, without paying premium prices, as participating restaurants offer specials on everything from soft shell crab or oysters to filet mignon.
Originally launched to increase business during the slow shoulder seasons in May and September, Restaurant Week has moved later and later into the fall, because September — and even the first couple weeks of October — are now a part of the high season, said Alison Wadey, executive director of Vail Chamber and Business Association. And, as Denise Cheng, marketing specialist for the Vail Chamber pointed out, restaurants had “a great shoulder season in October.”
This year, the name is a bit of a misnomer; Restaurant Week started Nov. 11 and stretches into Nov. 23. The dates capture the opening day of Vail Mountain and the first day of the season at Beaver Creek.
After discussing the best dates with restaurant owners, Restaurant Week moved to align with Vail Mountain’s opening.
“It’s not typically the busy season yet, and we thought it was a good time to encourage people to come out and provide them with something to do if snow conditions aren’t ideal yet,” Wadey said.
But not everyone agreed on the exact date. Drew Riley, owner of Russell’s and Los Amigos preferred the week after Thanksgiving, so his staff doesn’t have to hit the ground running. He admits the date of Restaurant Week is “never going to appease 100 percent of people,” and he sees it as an evolving learning process. Wadey said the chamber and business owners “might work with a slightly different date” next year, particularly since many of Beaver Creek’s restaurants haven’t opened ahead of its winter season, and some maintenance work is going on in the village.
Still, Beaver Creek’s Blue Moose Pizza and Vail Coffee and Tea are participating, as is Stoke & Rye in Avon. The village also is supporting Eagle County Gives during Restaurant Week by accommodating table tents with information on how to donate to, or get involved with, nonprofits.
“Restaurant Week is a great event,” said Krista DeHerrera, director of events at Beaver Creek Resort Company. “It’s an opportunity to encourage locals to eat and drink and enjoy what our restaurants have to offer. Vail Coffee and Tea has a super amazing staff that’s very friendly and very welcoming, and Blue Moose Pizza is just top-notch and very fun and lively — kids love that restaurant. Both are staples in Beaver Creek.”
Every restaurant chose its own specials to highlight. For example, Russel’s wanted to showcase its new chef and upgraded menu items, so it’s offering a three-course meal so guests “can try as much food as possible,” Riley said, for $40.44.
“We still have all the classics; we just enhanced the menu to make it more contemporary, but we want to stress that most of what makes Russel’s Russel’s is still three — all the staples and classics,” Riley said, adding that the new menu features items like a Wagyu 4-ounce portion steak with scalloped potatoes and different vegetables and sides “to create more offerings.”
Meanwhile, Gessner is offering a main course with either an appetizer or dessert for $20.22, and diners can add the third course for a mere $8. Choose from onion soup or roasted vegetable salad for the first course; chicken fried chicken with potatoes and green beans or Boulder Colorado trout with Marcona almond, piquillo peppers, spinach and potato cake for the second course; and a limoncello ice cream flute with raspberry coulis and fresh berries or white chocolate croissant bread pudding with rum raisins, salted caramel and cheesecake ice-cream.
Other establishments offer everything from a serving of family-sized pulled pork with sides to tacos, burgers, pad Thai chicken and bacon-wrapped scallops.
“We wanted to include every restaurant with no restrictions,” Cheng said. “Locals appreciate the fact that they can try restaurants we don’t typically go to and experience what our guests experience.”
Vail Coffee and Tea: Fresh drip coffee and a cookie for $2.22. vailcoffee.com
Blue Moose Pizza (Vail and Beaver Creek): 18” pizza for $20.22; any 12” house pizza with two draft beers or glasses of house wine $20.22; or draft beers and house wines for $22.22 (this latter offer is only good from 3-5 p.m.). BlueMoosePizza.com
(Avon): Stoke & Rye: Small plate and glass of wine for $20.22. Choose from three specific wines and pan-seared bacon-wrapped scallop; beef tartar with cured quail egg yok; mushroom ravioli; or smoked oysters. StokeAndRye.com
8100 Mountainside Bar & Grill: $20.22 specials. Hyatt.com
Big Bear Bistro: Specials for $20.22. BigBearBistro.com
Moe’s Original BBQ: Double-wide family pack with 1 pound of pulled pork, two side pints and choice of bread. MoesOriginalBBQ.com
Russell’s: Three-course meal for $40.44 and select bottles of wine for $20.22. RussellsVail.com
Los Amigos: Select tacos for $2.20, select entrees for $20.22 and select half liters of margaritas and pitchers of beer for $20.22. LosAmigosVail.com
El Segundo: Any two tacos and a house margarita for $20.22. ElSegundoVail.com
Deca + Bol: DECA Burger for $20.22. DecaBolVail.com
Garfinkel’s: $20.22 specials. GarfsVail.com
Montauk Seafood Grill: A half-dozen freshly shucked oysters and glass of Champagne for $20.22. MontaukVail.com
Leonora at the Sebastian: Any breakfast and a bloody Mary for $20.22. TheSebastianVail.com
Frost at the Sebastian: 7X Colorado Wagyu Burger and a draft beer for $20.22. TheSebastianVail.com
Elway’s Steakhouse: Smash burger and a beer for $20.22. Elways.com/vail-home
Mountain Standard: One sandwich and one beer at lunch for $20.22, or two beers and the pimento cheese appetizer for $20.22 all day. MtnStandard.com
Sweet Basil: Lunch for two (choice of one appetizer, two entrees and one dessert) for $60, lunch only, or choice of any dessert with select dessert wine pairing for $20.22, all day. SweetBasilVail.com
The Hythe Vail – Revel Lounge: Signature bison poutine and Revel old fashioned for $20.22. TheHytheVail.com/Revel
Bully Ranch Sonnenalp: Chef Jesse’s Burger: double patty burger with white cheddar, bacon onion jam, crispy onions and a peppercorn aioli served with a draft beer. Sonnenalp.com/dining/bully-ranch
Treff Café: Two hugo sprintz cocktails for $20.22. Sonnenalp.com/dining/treff-café
Sushi Thai at Lionshead: Salt and pepper soft shell crab for $22, pad Thai chicken for $18 or Thai ginger chicken for $19. BeyondSushiThai.com
The Tavern on the Square: Half off all food between noon and 8:30 p.m. daily. VailResorts.com
Gessner: Choice of first and main course or main course and desserts for $20.22 (add $8 for third course). GrandHyatt.com
Yoshimi Pop-up @ Grand Hyatt: $20.22 daily sushi roll and draft Sapporo beer. GrandHyattVail.com
The George: $20.22 filet mignon, sirloin steak or plum duck. TheGeorgeVail.com