Black Diamond Bistro at Beaver Creek adds a French twist |

Black Diamond Bistro at Beaver Creek adds a French twist

Melanie Grangaard
Special to the Daily

Editor's note: This article was previously published as a paid feature in EAT, a compendium of restaurant snapshots featuring the best in Vail Valley dining. Look for it on newsstands everywhere.

You know you're in for a good meal when both those who are in the kitchen and those serving the food are smiling. Black Diamond Bistro, located within The Charter in Beaver Creek, is a place that will transfer those smiles to guests' faces.

"It really feels like family here," says Restaurant Manager Matt Paula, referring to working with the experienced and largely classically-trained staff that stays consistent from year to year.

"For us, 'bistro' means 'comfort food for everyone,'" says Executive Chef Dan Kent. The "for everyone" is important. Since The Charter is a hotel featuring individually-owned condominium properties, Black Diamond Bistro is home-away-from-home for families as well as regular guests hailing from around the world. To accommodate the tastes and preferences of such a variety of cultures may overwhelm some, but not Kent and the experienced team that makes up the restaurant's staff.

By focusing on doing contemporary with stunning views, they are able to do to the best degree that they can do it, Black Diamond Bistro staff has put together a menu with something that gives a taste of comfort and hominess to all who enter. With options ranging from artisan pizzas and salads to a delicious Asian BBQ Red Snapper — accompanied by roasted mushrooms, tomatoes, and bok choy in a flavorful soy butter glaze — it really is a place with something for all tastes.

A Classic Touch

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This winter, many dishes feature a French twist in flavor or preparation style, including the succulent braised pork belly with a ride-along caramelized onion-Gruyère tart from the starter menu, and the decadent entrée Duck Cassoulet, with its classic combination of white beans and sausage crowned with an entire leg of duck confit. Over the top? Yes. Delicious? Absolutely.

Along with managing the restaurant, Paula heads up the wine program, and is also classically trained in cooking. This allows for an understanding of flavors that translates to consistently enhanced drink pairings for guests.

The staff is careful to only serve food that they themselves enjoy in both the cooking and the eating. For Chef de Cuisine Tim Dixon, this means working with pastry and chocolate. The restaurant serves Dixon's homemade breads and offers his array of sweet treats in its dessert menu. Don't miss the blueberry-white-chocolate cheesecake, and the moist pear cake, which is served with a scoop of crème fraiche ice cream and raspberries is another winner.

It's Black Diamond's mixing of the innovative — in flavor and technique — with time-honored dishes and authentic hospitality that ensures a smile. •

top left Slow Roasted Pork Belly with caramelized onion-Gruyère tart.

top right Crispy Duck Cassoulet with white beans, sausage and oven-roasted tomatoes.