New restaurant, bar The Assembly opens in Eagle on Monday, Aug. 10
Special to the Daily
A new restaurant, bar and gathering space is opening in Eagle on Monday, Aug. 10. Created by Jaimie and Caleb Mackey with chef Chris Aycock overseeing the kitchen, The Assembly is a community-focused restaurant with the vision to bring people together over fresh, seasonal, globally-inspired food, wine and cocktails. Located at 1143 Capitol Street #104 in Eagle (formerly Luigi’s Pasta House), The Assembly is a new addition to the social and dining scene in a time when it’s sorely needed.
“Eagle is a tight-knit community and that’s what we love about it — it’s why we chose to raise our family here,” said Jaimie Mackey. “You bump into people you know everywhere. We wanted to create another place where locals could gather, another layer. The Assembly is the restaurant that we wished existed here.”
The result is a bright, airy space with a menu focusing on fresh food with global flavors that’s designed for sharing.
Executive Chef Chris Aycock is no stranger to the Vail Valley. A Texas native, he trained in Portland, Oregon, exploring farm-to-table, sushi and Asian Pacific cuisines. He then came to the Vail Valley, where he cooked in some of Vail and Beaver Creek’s most prestigious restaurants and went on to open Yama Sushi. Aycock moved to Belize to open Blue Water Grill, spending over a decade pairing the country’s abundant seafood and vibrant local ingredients with flavors from around the globe. In 2019, he returned to Eagle County, bringing his passion for flavor and unbridled creativity with him.
Under Aycock, the menu at The Assembly focuses on seasonal ingredients inspired by an eclectic palate — including a daikon and watermelon radish crudo; island-inspired conch fritters; Mediterranean-spiced roasted baby heirloom carrots and house-made harissa marinated chicken thighs served on saffron basmati rice with preserved lemon and a shower of parsley.
“We wanted to bring more of these international, globally-inspired, creative flavors to the area,” Jaimie Mackey said. “There are all of these culinary influences (South American, Southeast Asian, African, etc.) that haven’t made their way to Eagle yet. We love to cook with these flavors at home and wanted to bring them into the restaurant without tying ourselves to just one. This way, we can add new dishes and elements without changing the whole menu.”
The menu is also heavily infused with vegetables: Vegans, vegetarians and those with gluten sensitivities will find plenty to enjoy. The wine list is another draw for both the connoisseur and the curious.
“We’ve gone down a fun rabbit hole of exploring wines from really exciting producers,” said Caleb Mackey, who will be managing the restaurant as well as curating the wine program. “The wine list is comprised of smaller producers who all have an interesting background. Many are going back to more traditional methods or a more craft style of making wine, and all have a really cool story.”
Whether it’s a husband and wife team that focuses on biodynamic and organic farming (Lady of the Sunshine and Scar of the Sea) or a French winemaker who unearthed hundred-year-old vines on his property (Château D’Oupia), the wine list is a study in out of the box options that maintain a high quality, level of care and — most importantly — taste.
Owners Caleb and Jaimie Mackey said they have always dreamed of owning and operating a restaurant and wine bar; when the space became available, they knew it was meant to be. The pair have backgrounds in small business entrepreneurship, customer service and hospitality: Caleb previously owned and operated the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory in Silverthorne, and Jaimie was an editor at BRIDES Magazine in New York City before joining the team at Go Bella, a luxury event design and planning company based in Breckenridge.
The Assembly’s concept is one that extends beyond the walls of the restaurant. In addition to the thoughtfully sourced wine list, creative craft cocktails and Aycock’s fresh and vibrant menu, the Mackeys want to create a gathering place, one where neighbors and visitors alike can come together to share a meal or a spare hour between responsibilities.
“Even with COVID-19, we really hope that families and smaller social groups can use the restaurant as a place to gather and spend time together outside of the home,” Jaimie said. “People can’t gather at the bar like normal, but it’s still a place where we can share a meal together and make great memories.”
“We are committed to keeping our staff and our guests safe and healthy,” Caleb added. “We are working closely with our team to take precautions and maintain the highest standards of cleanliness so we can help our community both survive and thrive in these uncertain times.”
The Assembly will open to the public on Monday, Aug. 10, with happy hour at 4 p.m.; dinner will be available at 5:30 p.m. In adherence with the current public health order, all patrons are required to wear a mask in the restaurant until seated with their party. A 6-foot distance between tables will be maintained in both the restaurant and outdoor patio area; the bar will close at 10 p.m.
For more information, visit http://www.theassemblyeagle.com or call 970-328-2828.