Cocktails & Dreams:
Featured Butcher's Block: $22-$42
Upscale & 'revolutionary'
The Rotisserie Mountain View Porchetta; the 7x prime rib
With food rotating on hot spits, are you kidding?
26 Avondale Lane | Inside the Beaver Creek Lodge | Beaver Creek | 970.845.1730 | revolutiondining.com
It’s not every year a new fine-dining establishment heads into its second season here in the Vail Valley with expectations even higher than when it opened — but that comes as no surprise for fans of Revolution, Beaver Creek’s ongoing experiment in Brazilian-style rotisserie cooking at the hands of local culinary prodigy Riley Romanin.
With a full winter season under his belt — and the continued success of his nearby seafood restaurant, Hooked, providing additional inspiration — owner Romanin has made two significant changes for this summer, and beyond, that he believes will solidify Revolution’s place among the valley’s top steakhouses.
The Battle Mountain High School graduate has incorporated Hooked’s omakase-esque method, bringing the day’s top cuts of choice meats to the table, raw on a butcher block, for close inspection and selection by customers before the meat is mounted on the rotisserie spit. To pull it all off, he’s promoted his first sous chef at Revolution, Alfonso Palma, to executive chef, having worked with him intensely to create an original menu full of fun and “revolutionary” surprises.
“I’d never worked with rotisserie, or Brazilian style. In the beginning, I was confused, but I started getting what was inside Riley’s head,” says Palma. “He wanted to create something that would amaze people.”
A lifelong cook from Puebla, Mexico, with years of experience in French, Italian and Greek restaurants in New York City before moving to Colorado for stints at the Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch and Maya Mexican Kitchen & Tequilaría at the Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa, Palma says he’s now convinced there’s no better method than rotisserie for cooking fine cuts of meat while preserving their moist, juicy flavors inside a delectable, crispy encrustation.
“It’s different than other methods,” he says. “It’s like cooking from the inside out.”
Of course, any meal is best when preceded by a hand-made cocktail, and Revolution’s head bartender, Danny McGuckin, has designed four new “brain freezes,” or frozen libations, for the summer drinks menu, best enjoyed at Revolution’s unusual, south-facing, indoor-outdoor bar. His take on the piña colada — the Smokealada, with house-made cachaça rum infused with slices of pineapple rubbed with spices and smoked on the rotisserie — comes highly recommended, meanwhile.
“It’s a little smoky, a little spicy,” explains bartender Alina Debrowski, adding the unblended version is known, aptly, as the Up In Smoke. “And you can’t get it anywhere else because we do the infusion ourselves.”
A slew of new appetizers are on offer for summer, as well. For something special, try the Salad-Tini, a miniature Cobb salad, of sorts, with intricate layers, top-to-bottom, of Gruyère cheese, egg, avocado aioli, red onions, fresh peas, Romaine lettuce, corn, crumbled bacon and a yogurt ranch dressing served in a parfait-like glass bowl.
“Make sure to dig deep, and often,” says Revolution’s Andrew Parent, the new general manager.
The fun really begins, however, when your server — very possibly the entertaining Domenico Guiseppe Iandolo — brings the evening’s Featured Butcher Block over for inspection, displaying cuts of meat ranging from a 7x filet mignon or Colorado pork tenderloin to bacon-wrapped chicken breasts, Skuna Bay salmon, wild Mexican shrimp or Maine lobster tails; then it’s time to decide among 11 preparations, from Revolution’s own Taste of Vail award-winning R-1 steak sauce to classic au poivre, carne asada, Jamaican jerk, Sicilian — or “Chiliango.”
Dessert? You can’t go wrong with a Revolution sundae. The deep-fried banana split, complete with a crunchy peanut coating, chocolate sauce and maraschino cherries, looks to be a huge hit with your date … and/or the kids.
“We’re bringing back the old classics with a funky twist,” Romanin says.
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While Kaemmer loved skiing, he also loved to work, and in Vail he found what he believed would be an idyllic setting to be both an entrepreneur and a skier.