Game Creek stands out in Vail with distinctive Forbes Four-star rating | VailDaily.com

Game Creek stands out in Vail with distinctive Forbes Four-star rating

Kimberly Nicoletti
EAT magazine
If you go ... What: game creek restaurant, a regal mountain lodge Where: GAME CREEK BOWL | VAIL MOUNTAIN | ACCESSIBLE VIA GONDOLA & snowcat FROM EAGLES NEST Cost: Chef’s Five Course Menu: $145, Classic Four Course menu: $119, Children’s Three Course menu: $45 Signature dish: Butternut lobster bisque; George’s Bay scallops and grits More information: 970.754.4275 | GAMECREEKVAIL.COM

Editor’s note: This story first ran as a paid feature in EAT magazine.

The quintessential Game Creek experience begins as guests board the Eagle Bahn gondola and are swept up the mountain. From the top of the gondola, a custom, heated snowcat ushers guests further into Vail’s mountainous terrain.

From the moment guests enter the European-chalet inspired restaurant, sophisticated staff members anticipate their every need. As the only restaurant in Vail that earned the distinctive Forbes Four-star rating, Game Creek ensures a world-class dining experience, from its extraordinary wine list and completely housemade, fresh cuisine to perhaps the most glorious sunset ever seen.

Game Creek’s acclaimed wine list has garnered Wine Spectator’s Best of Award of Excellence for four years straight, and Sommelier Josh Maclean aims to keep that trend going strong. The list spans growing regions from all over the world, featuring unique varietals and highly sought after vintages. Several different formats of bottles make the list accessible to parties and diners of all sizes and discerning palates.

The restaurant’s modern, fine-dining cuisine features artisanal, high-end products and playful, yet familiar, flavor combinations.
“I am inspired by quality of product, locality and the emotional experience that food can bring us,” says Chef Dan Maguire. “There is nothing greater than seeing guests truly immerse themselves in our food, getting lost in flavors and creating memories.”

Soups and salads include the savory butternut or beet and the sweeter pear or sweet potato, while traditional and unique appetizers range from foie gras or duck to a combination of bison, shallot, Manchego, quail egg and sourdough. Maguire’s butternut lobster bisque hails from his days perfecting it at CAV restaurant in Providence, Rhode Island.

“It is a tribute to a mentor of mine, Sylvia, who taught me the importance of respecting ingredients and being passionate and invested in one’s own work,” Maguire says.

His George’s Bay scallops and grits provides a twist on the Southern favorite, shrimp and grits, and acts as a shout out to Maguire’s New England roots. He sears and bastes two U-10 scallops in herb butter before placing them atop a bed of artisanal stone-ground grits, and then accompanies them with a piquillio pepper butter sauce.

Entrées cater to meat and fish lovers, as well as vegetarians, with cauliflower “steak,” a beef duo, Colorado lamb rack, wild boar, black cod and Dover sole. Kids can choose from barbecued chicken, filet mignon or pasta. The multiple-course meal wraps up with donuts, stracciatella with chocolate caramel and raspberry, coconut panna cotta or chef’s selection of cheese, honey and jam (kids select a brownie sundae or fresh fruit cocktail).
A special take-home treat, warm farewell and trip down the gondola to enjoy sparkling nighttime views of Vail Village further guarantee that a dining experience at Game Creek will never be forgotten.