Chefs series continues at Vail alpine gardens |

Chefs series continues at Vail alpine gardens

Daily staff report
Vail, CO Colorado

VAIL, Colorado – Haute cuisine is on the front burner again at America’s highest botanical garden.

Part of a growing list of cultural and educational programs this summer at Betty Ford Alpine Gardens, the second annual Chefs in the Gardens series offers live cooking demonstrations by some of the Vail Valley’s most celebrated chefs. The hour-long demonstrations, featuring Colorado cuisine showcasing locally grown and organically produced ingredients, are free to the public and take place from noon to 1 p.m. in the Children’s Garden, near the Schoolhouse gift shop and museum in Vail’s Ford Park.

The series, sponsored by Plum TV, continues Thursday, when Executive Chef Armando Navarro of Larkspur Restaurant whips up something special with ingredients from Gypsum’s LaVenture Farms and Silt-based Divide Creek Farm.

“It is still quite early in the season to know exactly what we’ll bring to demonstration,” says Navarro, a native of Mexico who earned his chops in culinary destinations around the world, including Napa Valley, Calif.; St. Moritz, Switzerland; New York; and San Francisco.

“Whatever is ready the day before will be the subject,” Navarro said. “Guests can be assured it will be super-fresh.”

On July 22, Executive Chef Jeremy Kittleson of Restaurant Avondale is in the Gardens, followed on Aug. 26 by Executive Chef Richard Bailey of The Lord Gore Restaurant at the Manor Vail Lodge.

Other cultural programs at Betty Ford Alpine Gardens this summer include: Art in the Gardens, in which local artists demonstrate the techniques they use in creating their work; Music in the Gardens, live performances held in conjunction with the Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival; and Yoga in the Gardens, led by local instructor Maria DeSimone.

Betty Ford Alpine Gardens, at 8,250 feet above sea level in Vail’s Ford Park, is the highest botanical garden in the United States, providing free access to an estimated 100,000 visitors annually.

For a complete events schedule or more information, call 970-476-0103, ext. 3, or visit

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