EAT: Chelsey Gardner’s Chow Time catering business brings Asian fusion cuisine to you |

EAT: Chelsey Gardner’s Chow Time catering business brings Asian fusion cuisine to you

By Heather Hower
Special to the Daily
Top left: smoked salmon lemon creme fraiche cucumber bites. Top right: antipasto salami bites. Bottom: Caprese skewers with balsamic drizzle.
Dominique Taylor | Special to the Daily

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

There’s a new personal chef and caterer on the scene, and she’s bringing high energy and creative flair throughout the Vail Valley. Chelsey Gardner, founder and owner of Chow Time, graduated from Le Cordon Bleu College Of Culinary Arts in Orlando.

She’s an Army veteran who spent five years in South Korea and mentored at some of the South’s eclectic restaurants… the result is a chef who fuses flavors and can create a totally unique menu or something more traditional.

Check out Gardner’s stuffed avocado — it’s a mouthwatering display of amazing flavor. The half avocado is set on a bed of sushi rice; it’s stuffed with cream cheese and diced ahi tuna that’s been rolled in Sriracha. Gardner then torches the avocado, so the tuna is seared on the outside. Add in spicy mayo, Sriracha, unagi and green onions to finish.

Sushi is what lights up Gardner, but she’s quick to share that she’s a full-range chef. “My food’s a little different. It’s Asian fusion but I can do anything.”

Support Local Journalism

Some of her other specialties are an English cucumber cut on the bias with a nice piece of smoked salmon, drizzled in crème fraîche and just a touch of dill and salami baked in muffin tin full of antipasto.

She’s also ready to teach classes, whether it’s a basic cooking class or more elaborate and fun sushi classes. This chef is using her tenacity as a disabled veteran to bring new culinary creations to town.

Support Local Journalism