Toscanini Ristorante features innovative Italian cuisine in chic atmosphere
At Toscanini Ristorante, innovative Italian cuisine complements its chic Beaver Creek Village atmosphere. Outside, Toscanini provides casual outdoor dining under large umbrella tables sitting adjacent to the ice rink. Inside, colorful artwork, soft amber lights, rich wood tables, walls of wine bottles and huge windows offer a sophisticated alcove amid village activity.
Chef John Zavoral creates unique and savory appetizers and entrées, ensuring each flavor melds with, and elevates, each ingredient. Growing up on a farm in Minnesota has inspired him to select high-quality, local products and make as much in-house as possible.
“It’s all about balance,” Zavoral says. “We use local food when quality is there, but still use amazing products if something just can’t be found locally. It’s important to find something that enhances the dish visually, while also enhancing the dish’s taste.”
He keeps his summer menu fresh and light and makes the majority of his pastas in house, including ravioli, tagliatelle, cavatelle and gnocchi.
“Caprese salad and the Capellini pasta are great examples of summer menu items with fresh local tomatoes and basil, and these are very traditional Italian dishes,” he says.
Just like the dinner menu, Toscanini’s cocktail menu embraces lighter options. Fresh fruit and herb drinks stand out with ingredients such as strawberries, peaches, oranges, basil and mint combined with house-made infusions. About half of the cocktail menu features Italian-inspired cocktails, as Italians love refreshing prosecco and gin mixes, Zavoral says. The rest of the cocktail list involves fun twists on classics named after Beaver Creek Ski Resort’s trails.
Toscanini acts as an all-inclusive meeting place.
“Our location naturally lends itself to a family-friendly restaurant,” says Courtney Southern, general manager of Toscanini. “Our patio is welcoming and inviting, and a great home base for time spent in the village.”
In addition to its gluten-free options, Toscanini offers an extensive kids’
menu and hands out coloring books
for younger kids.
“Whether it’s a family’s first day in Beaver Creek and they stumble upon Toscanini with very hungry kids, or they have been coming here for years…we celebrate it all, from parents that need to unwind on the patio with a glass of Italian wine while their kids ice skate, or a recently engaged couple enjoying a night out — we are happy to be a part of everyone’s experience,” Southern says. “We love to be the place where parents feel comfortable bringing their kids or where they get a babysitter and enjoy an adults-only meal.”
Toscanini also prides itself on the connections employees make with guests.“Toscanini is where guests are treated like family as they gather rink-side for timeless Italian cuisine and our award-winning all-Italian wine list,” Southern says. “Italian food is comfort food, and we do comfort food well!”
Fall means food and wine festivals and also a chance to see the colors just starting to turn over Vail Pass during a bike ride for charity.