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A burger at Mountain Standard in Vail
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Where To Eat and Drink in the Mountains This Ski Season

This season’s best bets in the high country

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A burger at Mountain Standard in Vail
| Mountain Standard/Facebook

If recent snowfall (and the Farmer’s Almanac’s prediction of a 2019 “Polar Coaster”) are any indication, it’s going to be another epic year in ski country. But if there’s anything Colorado skiers and boarders love as much as an epic powder day, it’s the many hours of apres-ski that follow.

In Colorado, passionate and talented chefs who have taken their skills to the hills and developed restaurants that have become destinations themselves. In a turn-and-burn industry where restaurants often struggle to last past the one-year mark, these places have developed a loyal following that has kept them going strong over thepast five years and beyond.

From a roadside hot dog stand to fine dining spots frequented by the jet set, here are some of the best places for making sure that the time spent off the mountain is just as enjoyable as the hours spent careening down it.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. The Pullman

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330 7th St
Glenwood Springs, CO 81601
(970) 230-9234
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Chef Mark Fischer’s award-winning restaurant in Glenwood Springs has been a mainstay for almost a decade. The menu changes frequently and focuses on fresh, innovative dishes like braised local goat and truffled goat cheese agnolotti and roast Berkshire pork shoulder with grits and apple butter.

2. Eagle Diner

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112 Chambers Ave
Eagle, CO 81631
(970) 328-1919

This classic 1950s-style greasy spoon is a Vail Valley favorite, with menu items like a breakfast burrito smothered in green chili, biscuits and sausage gravy, and BLTs. Filled with memorabilia like vintage advertising, formica tables, and checkerboard flooring, this classic American joint has been around for almost 20 years.

3. Craftsman

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56 Edwards Village Blvd Unit 112
Edwards, CO 81632
(970) 926-5833
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Edwards, a short drive from Vail, may just be the best place to grab lunch in the valley. Chris and Janelle Schmidt draw on years of industry experience to bring not just flavorful food and drink, but a convivial community atmosphere to the area. Small plates like deviled eggs, Brussels sprouts, and red lentil hummus are shareable. Customers can pair satisfying sandwiches like a Cubano or hot chicken with craft whiskeys and beers from Colorado breweries like Fort Collins’ Funkwerks. Add in vinyl and shuffleboard, and afternoon: made.

4. Aurum Breckenridge

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209 S Ridge St
Breckenridge, CO 80424
(970) 771-3943
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An American steakhouse with locations in Breck and Steamboat, Aurum offers the classics with an approachable twist. Find Parker House Rolls, beef tartare and a Bibb wedge salad alongside raw oysters and hamachi crudo. Mains include Colorado trout and lamb shank, plus pork collar and steak.

5. Hovey & Harrison

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56 Edwards Village Blvd Unit 120
Edwards, CO 81632
(970) 446-6830
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H&H is a market, cafe, bakery, and bar rolled into one. They use local ingredients from Western Slope farmers whenever possible for breakfast burritos, farm breakfasts, and bowls (like the one with lamb meatballs, Fruition Farms award-winning sheep’s milk feta, polenta and brodo). They have a full coffee menu, cocktails and beer, cider and wine on tap. They also have produce, bakery, and grab & go options.

6. The Rose

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97 Main St Suite W 102B
Edwards, CO 81632
(970) 855-0141
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Restaurateurs often worry about waning interest after the five year mark. But The Rose in Edwards, which opened in 2013, has fought such fatigue by expanding on their fifth birthday to bring even more delicious baked goods, craft cocktails, and healthy, sustainably-sourced and affordable meals to locals and visitors alike. Think buffalo cauliflower, beef barbacoa tacos, and homemade ramen bowls in a super-hip atmosphere.

The reinvented chiles en nogada at The Rose.
The Rose/Facebook

7. Minturn Country Club

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131 Main St
Minturn, CO 81645
(970) 827-4114
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The Vail Valley’s oldest steakhouse, the Minturn Country Club, lets diners choose their own cut of meat and grill it themselves. In its wood-paneled dining room, bar manager TJ Ricci delights diners with magic tricks while they sip their drinks. Those in the know are always sure to save room for the Minturn Tater, a super-sweet dessert that looks like a baked potato but is a cookies and cream ice cream treat.

8. Mountain Standard

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193 Gore Creek Dr
Vail, CO 81657
(970) 476-0123
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From the creators behind Vail icon Sweet Basil comes Mountain Standard, bringing fire-roasted fare to the table. Rotisserie Piri Piri chicken, pork loin, flatiron steak and other flame-kissed creations grace the menu.

Flame-broiled burger at Mountain Standard
Mountain Standard/Facebook

9. Almresi Vail

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298 Hanson Ranch Rd
Vail, CO 81657
(970) 470-4174
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Like wandering into a Bavarian cottage, this rustic-looking restaurant serves traditional German, Austrian, and Swiss dishes (with sister restaurants in Aspen and Metzingen, Germany). On the menu: schnitzel, bratwurst, short ribs with spaetzle and red cabbage and other Alpine specialities.

10. Piante Pizzeria

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520 S Main St #3M
Breckenridge, CO 80424
(970) 423-6693
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Post-slopes pizza is a must, but Piante brings something different to the table: it’s 100 percent vegetarian. Find delicious and vegan wood-fired pizzas like the pesto with kale-walnut pesto, Piante “mozzarella” blend, sun-dried tomatoes, red onions, and artichoke hearts.

11. Bread Bar

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1010 Main St
Silver Plume, CO 80476
(720) 772-7323
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Bread Bar started life as an actual bread supplier to the small mining town of Silver Plume in the Gold Rush days until Dram Apothecary turned it into a hip cocktail and live music destination in a ghost town. It’s been under its current ownership for three years and continues to carry on the weekends-only tradition, offering drinks like the Chief Colorow, a blend of bourbon, sweet and dry vermouth, and bitters.

12. Bread+Salt

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401 E Main St
Frisco, CO 80443
(970) 668-0902
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The married owners of Bread + Salt, Michal Ulehla and Joyce Delatorre, hail from the Czech Republic and Mexico, respectively, but are Colorado proud at both their breakfast joint and their Bagalis Italian restayrant across the street. Bread + Salt offers tantalizing breakfasts made with fresh ingredients, like chilaquiles, challah french toast, and a classic eggs Benedict. One look at the menu explains why there’s always a wait.

13. Westbound & Down Brewing Company

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1617 Miner St
Idaho Springs, CO 80452
(720) 502-3121
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Everyone knows Idaho Springs for the Tommyknocker Brewery and Beau Jo’s Pizza. But in 2015, the hungry ski gear-donning hoards got another spot in Idaho Springs to stop: Westbound & Down. Producing award-winning brews like the Westbound Double IPA and the Double Barrel Louie, they have a menu of solid bar favorites with a twist, like their classic bison burger or the fried green tomato BLT, plus vegan options like the BBQ jackfruit sandwich or falafel. Westbound and Down was also heavily awarded at this year’s Great American Beer Festival.

A classic burger at Westbound & Down in Idaho Springs
Westbound & Down/Facebook

14. Coney Island Boardwalk

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10 Old Stagecoach Rd POB 973
Bailey, CO 80421
(303) 838-9999
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The Coney Island Hot Dog Stand has been around in some form since the 1960s. Located near Bailey on Highway 285, the hot dog-shaped diner has both indoor and outdoor seating. Three years ago, it was gutted, renovated, and reintroduced to the public with a totally revamped menu that includes locally-sourced gourmet dogs and brats from Continental Sausage, Elevation Ketchup, and Rocky Mountain Soda.

15. The Little Bear

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28075 CO-74
Evergreen, CO 80439
(303) 674-9991
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Evergreen is the last stop before coming down the mountain and The Little Bear Saloon should be your destination after a day on the slopes. Not for the cuisine, though the wings and bison burgers are winners, but for the atmosphere. This spot is a perfect blend of dive bar meets Old West saloon, with swinging bar doors, brass cash registers and walls covered with license plates and band memorabilia.

16. Bucksnort Saloon

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15921 S Elk Creek Rd
Pine, CO 80470
(303) 838-0284
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This funky Western dive bar makes for a perfect stop along 285 for live music, beer served from deer antler tap pulls, and bar classics like loaded burgers and baked potatoes, and nachos all in an atmosphere where visitors roar up on their Harley and chow down, tack a dollar bill on the wall, and ride off into the sunset.

17. Switchback Smokehouse

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26220 CO-74 Frontage
Evergreen, CO 80439
(303) 200-0878
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Easily the most notable barbecue joint in the foothills, Switchback uses cherry and apple woods to smoke brisket, duck, salmon, chicken, pulled pork, sausages and ribs to be ordered ‘meat and three’ style or on sandwiches or salads. The Rooster Booster features pulled chicken with lettuce, tomato, remoulade, and fried pickles or fried onions.

1. The Pullman

330 7th St, Glenwood Springs, CO 81601

Chef Mark Fischer’s award-winning restaurant in Glenwood Springs has been a mainstay for almost a decade. The menu changes frequently and focuses on fresh, innovative dishes like braised local goat and truffled goat cheese agnolotti and roast Berkshire pork shoulder with grits and apple butter.

330 7th St
Glenwood Springs, CO 81601

2. Eagle Diner

112 Chambers Ave, Eagle, CO 81631

This classic 1950s-style greasy spoon is a Vail Valley favorite, with menu items like a breakfast burrito smothered in green chili, biscuits and sausage gravy, and BLTs. Filled with memorabilia like vintage advertising, formica tables, and checkerboard flooring, this classic American joint has been around for almost 20 years.

112 Chambers Ave
Eagle, CO 81631

3. Craftsman

56 Edwards Village Blvd Unit 112, Edwards, CO 81632

Edwards, a short drive from Vail, may just be the best place to grab lunch in the valley. Chris and Janelle Schmidt draw on years of industry experience to bring not just flavorful food and drink, but a convivial community atmosphere to the area. Small plates like deviled eggs, Brussels sprouts, and red lentil hummus are shareable. Customers can pair satisfying sandwiches like a Cubano or hot chicken with craft whiskeys and beers from Colorado breweries like Fort Collins’ Funkwerks. Add in vinyl and shuffleboard, and afternoon: made.

56 Edwards Village Blvd Unit 112
Edwards, CO 81632

4. Aurum Breckenridge

209 S Ridge St, Breckenridge, CO 80424

An American steakhouse with locations in Breck and Steamboat, Aurum offers the classics with an approachable twist. Find Parker House Rolls, beef tartare and a Bibb wedge salad alongside raw oysters and hamachi crudo. Mains include Colorado trout and lamb shank, plus pork collar and steak.

209 S Ridge St
Breckenridge, CO 80424

5. Hovey & Harrison

56 Edwards Village Blvd Unit 120, Edwards, CO 81632

H&H is a market, cafe, bakery, and bar rolled into one. They use local ingredients from Western Slope farmers whenever possible for breakfast burritos, farm breakfasts, and bowls (like the one with lamb meatballs, Fruition Farms award-winning sheep’s milk feta, polenta and brodo). They have a full coffee menu, cocktails and beer, cider and wine on tap. They also have produce, bakery, and grab & go options.

56 Edwards Village Blvd Unit 120
Edwards, CO 81632

6. The Rose

97 Main St Suite W 102B, Edwards, CO 81632
The reinvented chiles en nogada at The Rose.
The Rose/Facebook

Restaurateurs often worry about waning interest after the five year mark. But The Rose in Edwards, which opened in 2013, has fought such fatigue by expanding on their fifth birthday to bring even more delicious baked goods, craft cocktails, and healthy, sustainably-sourced and affordable meals to locals and visitors alike. Think buffalo cauliflower, beef barbacoa tacos, and homemade ramen bowls in a super-hip atmosphere.

97 Main St Suite W 102B
Edwards, CO 81632

7. Minturn Country Club

131 Main St, Minturn, CO 81645

The Vail Valley’s oldest steakhouse, the Minturn Country Club, lets diners choose their own cut of meat and grill it themselves. In its wood-paneled dining room, bar manager TJ Ricci delights diners with magic tricks while they sip their drinks. Those in the know are always sure to save room for the Minturn Tater, a super-sweet dessert that looks like a baked potato but is a cookies and cream ice cream treat.

131 Main St
Minturn, CO 81645

8. Mountain Standard

193 Gore Creek Dr, Vail, CO 81657
Flame-broiled burger at Mountain Standard
Mountain Standard/Facebook

From the creators behind Vail icon Sweet Basil comes Mountain Standard, bringing fire-roasted fare to the table. Rotisserie Piri Piri chicken, pork loin, flatiron steak and other flame-kissed creations grace the menu.

193 Gore Creek Dr
Vail, CO 81657

9. Almresi Vail

298 Hanson Ranch Rd, Vail, CO 81657

Like wandering into a Bavarian cottage, this rustic-looking restaurant serves traditional German, Austrian, and Swiss dishes (with sister restaurants in Aspen and Metzingen, Germany). On the menu: schnitzel, bratwurst, short ribs with spaetzle and red cabbage and other Alpine specialities.

298 Hanson Ranch Rd
Vail, CO 81657

10. Piante Pizzeria

520 S Main St #3M, Breckenridge, CO 80424

Post-slopes pizza is a must, but Piante brings something different to the table: it’s 100 percent vegetarian. Find delicious and vegan wood-fired pizzas like the pesto with kale-walnut pesto, Piante “mozzarella” blend, sun-dried tomatoes, red onions, and artichoke hearts.

520 S Main St #3M
Breckenridge, CO 80424

11. Bread Bar

1010 Main St, Silver Plume, CO 80476

Bread Bar started life as an actual bread supplier to the small mining town of Silver Plume in the Gold Rush days until Dram Apothecary turned it into a hip cocktail and live music destination in a ghost town. It’s been under its current ownership for three years and continues to carry on the weekends-only tradition, offering drinks like the Chief Colorow, a blend of bourbon, sweet and dry vermouth, and bitters.

1010 Main St
Silver Plume, CO 80476

12. Bread+Salt

401 E Main St, Frisco, CO 80443

The married owners of Bread + Salt, Michal Ulehla and Joyce Delatorre, hail from the Czech Republic and Mexico, respectively, but are Colorado proud at both their breakfast joint and their Bagalis Italian restayrant across the street. Bread + Salt offers tantalizing breakfasts made with fresh ingredients, like chilaquiles, challah french toast, and a classic eggs Benedict. One look at the menu explains why there’s always a wait.

401 E Main St
Frisco, CO 80443

13. Westbound & Down Brewing Company

1617 Miner St, Idaho Springs, CO 80452
A classic burger at Westbound & Down in Idaho Springs
Westbound & Down/Facebook

Everyone knows Idaho Springs for the Tommyknocker Brewery and Beau Jo’s Pizza. But in 2015, the hungry ski gear-donning hoards got another spot in Idaho Springs to stop: Westbound & Down. Producing award-winning brews like the Westbound Double IPA and the Double Barrel Louie, they have a menu of solid bar favorites with a twist, like their classic bison burger or the fried green tomato BLT, plus vegan options like the BBQ jackfruit sandwich or falafel. Westbound and Down was also heavily awarded at this year’s Great American Beer Festival.

1617 Miner St
Idaho Springs, CO 80452

14. Coney Island Boardwalk

10 Old Stagecoach Rd POB 973, Bailey, CO 80421

The Coney Island Hot Dog Stand has been around in some form since the 1960s. Located near Bailey on Highway 285, the hot dog-shaped diner has both indoor and outdoor seating. Three years ago, it was gutted, renovated, and reintroduced to the public with a totally revamped menu that includes locally-sourced gourmet dogs and brats from Continental Sausage, Elevation Ketchup, and Rocky Mountain Soda.

10 Old Stagecoach Rd POB 973
Bailey, CO 80421

15. The Little Bear

28075 CO-74, Evergreen, CO 80439

Evergreen is the last stop before coming down the mountain and The Little Bear Saloon should be your destination after a day on the slopes. Not for the cuisine, though the wings and bison burgers are winners, but for the atmosphere. This spot is a perfect blend of dive bar meets Old West saloon, with swinging bar doors, brass cash registers and walls covered with license plates and band memorabilia.

28075 CO-74
Evergreen, CO 80439

Related Maps

16. Bucksnort Saloon

15921 S Elk Creek Rd, Pine, CO 80470

This funky Western dive bar makes for a perfect stop along 285 for live music, beer served from deer antler tap pulls, and bar classics like loaded burgers and baked potatoes, and nachos all in an atmosphere where visitors roar up on their Harley and chow down, tack a dollar bill on the wall, and ride off into the sunset.

15921 S Elk Creek Rd
Pine, CO 80470

17. Switchback Smokehouse

26220 CO-74 Frontage, Evergreen, CO 80439

Easily the most notable barbecue joint in the foothills, Switchback uses cherry and apple woods to smoke brisket, duck, salmon, chicken, pulled pork, sausages and ribs to be ordered ‘meat and three’ style or on sandwiches or salads. The Rooster Booster features pulled chicken with lettuce, tomato, remoulade, and fried pickles or fried onions.

26220 CO-74 Frontage
Evergreen, CO 80439

Related Maps