Guest chefs, demos and tastings make Beaver Creek a delicious destination this weekend | VailDaily.com
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Guest chefs, demos and tastings make Beaver Creek a delicious destination this weekend

Kim Fuller
Special to the Daily
The kickoff event for the Beaver Creek Winter Culinary Weekend, a Wine and Tapas social, is seen under way at The Metropolitan restaurant on Thursday evening.
Townsend Bessent | Townsend@vaildaily.com |

Beaver Creek Winter Culinary Weekend schedule

Saturday, Jan. 23

• 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. — Ski.Eat.Ski, Beaver Creek Mountain and Zach’s Cabin, SOLD OUT

• 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. — Cooking Demonstration & Lunch, Splendido at the Chateau, $130

• 2-5 p.m. — Mules & Manhattans, 8100 at the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek, $50

• 7-10 p.m. — Grand Tasting, Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort & Spa, Ford Hall, $150

Sunday, Jan. 24

• 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. — Sunday Brunch at The Dusty Boot, $50

For tickets and more details, visit http://www.beavercreek.com/culinary.

BEAVER CREEK — Here’s an easy-to-follow recipe for a great winter day in Beaver Creek: Ski. Eat. Drink.

These activities are enjoyed with gusto during the resort’s biggest gourmand gathering of the winter. The Beaver Creek Winter Culinary Weekend has been serving up slope-to-table experiences since Thursday night at the Wine and Tapas Pairing, a five-course experience at The Metropolitan crafted by Executive Chef Dan Ladenburger.

“I think hosting the opening event for what is one of the greatest culinary festivals of the year is a great honor,” Ladenburger said. “This night opens up the window for what’s going to be happening over the next few days.”

Something new

Beaver Creek homeowners Bob and Robyn Cherrie have never attended the annual January event in the past but said they will likely participate again in the future. Robyn said Thursday night’s tasting, which began with a tuna tartar course, followed by a beef carpaccio, shifted her view of raw food from aversion to appreciation.

“I would not have ordered either of the raw dishes,” she said, “but I enjoyed them both.”

The citric and velvety tuna tartar was paired well with an oak-aged sauvignon blanc, and a bigger-than-standard pinot noir stood against the drizzles of truffle creme over the arugula-dressed beef carpaccio. Ladenburger said he planned to diversify the tasting with exciting flavor and wine combinations.

“A lot of wine parings go white, white, red, red,” he said, “and what we’re trying to do here was create a new experience with the white, red, white, red.”

The tasting proved that there’s no color code when it comes to courses. After the two starter dishes, a cucumber mint sorbet cleared the palate for seafood — clams, mussels, shrimp, garlic and parsley served over a buttery white-wine sauce and house-made pappardelle pasta, paired with a crisp chenin blanc and viognier blend.

Back to red, the last savory course was braised beef short ribs atop an almost-fruity sunchoke puree and alongside a berry-heavy petite syrah.

The star of the show didn’t come out until the finale: a port-poached pear with house vanilla custard and port reduction. A ruby port complemented the light and perfectly sweet dessert, and the happily full crowd sunk even more deeply into their seats.

The weekend brings in a lot of culinary explorations, just like this one. Bob Cherrie is part of a men’s cooking club in Georgia, so hopefully he can bring home some new ideas.

“It’s like anything — like a book club or anything,” Robyn Cherrie said. “You get to try something you wouldn’t normally read, or with this, eat something you might not normally eat.”

More to come

The foodie fun isn’t over yet, with plenty of events and guest chefs on the menu for today and Sunday.

At 11 a.m. today, guest chef George Mendes leads a cooking demonstration and lunch at Splendido, and for apres ski, visit one of Beaver Creek’s well-loved local chefs, Christian Apetz, at 8100 at the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek for Mules and Manhattans from 2 to 5 p.m. He’ll pair a selection of hors d’oeuvres with handcrafted cocktails from Marker’s Mark and Tito’s Vodka.

If there’s one event to not miss this weekend, then it’s the Grand Tasting tonight. Held in Ford Hall of the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek, it’s where guests can try dishes from Beaver Creek’s local chefs, an abundance of wine, beer and cocktail tastes and specials from all of the visiting talent — chefs such as Mendes, as well as Richard Blais, Jon Bonnell, Stephanie Izard, Paul Reilly and Brandon Foster.

Finish it all off with Sunday Brunch at The Dusty Boot, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., complete with a carving station, cheeses, muffins, fruits and pastries, an omelet stop and more, with a mimosa bar and many other libations.


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