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eat! drink! dish. cut.

Wren Wertin
Vail, CO Colorado

Watch out. Something is happening on the southwest end of the Corner at Edwards,and it’s spreading. It started with wine and cheese, then expanded into shared plates and ephemeral menus. Almost inevitably, artisan farmers and ranchers became involved. Now we’re looking down the barrel at philosophy, culture and WAY OF LIFE. Ladies and gentlemen, we are in it.

Less than five years ago Pollyanna Forster and Chris Irving opened eat!, a wine bar and cheese shop, and drink!, a wine shop that happened to carry everything poured at the cheese shop, and more. Passion attracts passion, and soon chef Jenna Johansen got involved. The trio opened Dish, where Johansen proved herself to be as crazy as she is energetic. She and her team reinvent the menu every week, depending on what’s actually available or what they dreamed up when they rightfully should have been sleeping. And no, it doesn’t end there. Cut is coming down the pipe, and that means “artisan proteins for the food-lover’s soul.” Translated, that’s fish, meat, poultry and eggs from the closest sources possible. “I don’t just serve Colorado eggs anymore,” says Johansen. “I can tell you which farm the eggs come from.” Forster might even be able to show you a picture of the bird.

What it became

And somewhere along the way, this grouping of like-minded endeavors has created something as real and necessary as dirt. Because it’s not just a restaurant, it’s a place where people can interact with chefs, or show up for a farmers’ market walk-thorugh and grill lesson. And it’s not just a cheese shop, but it’s a gathering place for people throughout the day, where they can eat paninis and sip bubbles and talk, even if it’s 3:30 in the afternoon. And those aren’t normal flower beds out front, but they’re about to bloom into an herb garden. “We’ll be using those herbs in Dish, and selling them in Cut,” says Forster. The eat!-drink!-dish-cut crew is learning how to be responsible mountain composters, and will be nourishing the ground with the natural by-products of running an ingredient-driven restaurant. They won’t be keeping the how-to to themselves.

Plus

All the ideals in the world can’t replace really good food. The cheese selection has jumped from 120 to 180 options, and this just might be the year of the Dish. “I think our food is having a nice evolution,” says Johansen. “We’re not learning how to run a restaurant anymore, we’re figuring out how to make it better.” And better it’s become. Dish is still a shared-plates eatery, but if someone wants to sit down and have an appetizer and entree without anybody else’s fork involved, that’s allowed. Johansen still enjoys seeing whole tables share plate after plate. “People lean in forward and talk a little more,” she says. “It’s more intimate.” And that’s what the southwest corner is all about.

eat! drink! dish. cut.

Corner at Edwards

970.926.1393 (eat! drink!) 970.926.3433 (dish)

eatdrinkdish.com


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