Vista at Arrowhead
December 29, 2016
676 Sawatch Drive | Arrowhead | Edwards 970.926.2111 | vista-arrowhead.com
Micky Poage completes a melody on the piano with an elegant flourish, and Vista at Arrowhead patrons respond with applause and requests for favorite songs. The longtime valley piano man graciously obliges, and a new tune emerges from his keystrokes to provide a soundtrack to the soft candlelight and snowy windows of the restaurant.
Choruses of food emerge from executive chef David Collins' kitchen to harmonize with the delicate strains of music, as Vista celebrates the opening night of the winter season. It's the first full winter of ownership for Collins and his partner, Daryl DeYoung, who purchased the restaurant in January 2016.
The pair has made sweeping changes to the menu, beginning in the summer when they did away with the Tuscan theme established by the previous proprietors.
"The new direction of Vista is to incorporate local and seasonal products," DeYoung says. And it's evident from the start, with local craft beers and Colorado spirits, as well as first courses such as the tender braised Harris Ranch short rib with root vegetable puree studded with artisan blue cheese or the Borden Farms Colorado tomato soup.
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Vista has introduced another new concept with its customer-composed entrees. Choose a protein, such as sautéed Colorado striped bass or marinated duck breast, and add a sauce, vegetable and starch to create a custom dish.
"The option to make your own entrée allows customers to order what they would like, as opposed to switching out a side or sauce for something they don't want from a chef-composed dish," DeYoung says. "This option also allows people with certain dietary restrictions to create a dish they can eat and enjoy."
DeYoung says the restaurant gets many returning customers, and the menu allows them to try different items. Those who are hesitant about pairing complimentary elements can defer to the more traditional chef-composed section of the menu.
Here, Collins has created a handful of arrangements, from the pan-seared Hokkaido scallops with wild mushroom risotto and winter greens to the vegetarian chickpea- and quinoa-stuffed eggplant. Wasabi mashed potatoes and a soy-ginger butter sauce add complexity to the seared rare yellow fin tuna, or the potatoes can be chosen from the deconstructed side of the menu to add punch to a steak or lamb shank.
Each can be paired with a glass or bottle of wine from Vista's extensive collection of 100-plus labels, or with a craft cocktail, such as the blood orange-tini, built with house-made blood orangecello, or The Litigator — Colorado Woody Creek Rye with griotte cherry, black pepper simple syrup and an orange twist.
The finale is a classic dessert, be it a French apple tart or the playful butterscotch milkshake with vanilla doughnuts.
Vista at Arrowhead opens at 5 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays, with Poage on the piano starting at 6 p.m. nightly. •
Starters are $9-$15,
are $23-$41, and customer composed proteins are $21-$41, plus $5 each for sides
Cozy and traditional
Pan-seared Hokkaido scallops or tamarind-marinated Rohan duck breast
Yes, children's menu available