Dine around at these hot restaurants in Aspen and Snowmass this season.
From traditional Italian cuisine to decadent meat and cheese boards, Aspen has just the spot for all of your cravings.
Pompeyo Lopez, The Wild Fig
Chef Pompeyo Lopez—affectionally called “Poppy”—is the man behind the Mediterranean bistro-style dishes served at the much-loved Wild Fig. “Flavors of the Sun” is how they describe the menu at “The Fig,” as locals know it. Originally from Durango, Mexico, Lopez came to the U.S. at age 15 and began his culinary career at the pioneering French restaurant L’Escargot in Chicago. In 2003 he matriculated to the Fig. “I started as the lead line cook under some talented chefs. One was from France and another from Italy,” Lopez explains. “They each had visa issues and would get stuck in Europe for extended periods of time, so I would step in and run the kitchen. Eventually the owners realized that I could seriously cook. I have been the executive chef since 2007.” Poppy’s is proud of his signature dish, fish in a bag, which is a must-try this summer. “It has been on the menu from day one—Dec. 19, 2003,” he enthuses. “ It is bright, fresh and incredibly delicious!” 675 E. Durant Ave.
Bryan Garneau, Meat & Cheese Restaurant and Farm Shop
Farm to table has become an overused cliche in today’s food scene, but for Aspen’s Meat & Cheese Restaurant and Farm Shop, it has been a part of its DNA since Wendy Mitchell first opened the aptly named eatery in 2014. Today, locals and visitors flock to the shop and restaurant for their takeout meats and cheeses, of course, and the hearty, simply prepared dishes that celebrate the seasons tableside. Last May, the Financial Times named Meat & Cheese as one of the “Fifty Greatest Food Stores in the World.” Meat & Cheese chef Bryan Garneau has mountain cred, having spent time in Missoula, Mont.’s hot spot Scotty’s Table and Denver’s popular Root Down, which is famed for its fresh-from-the-earth veggie offerings. He came to Meat & Cheese to indulge his passion for fresh food made with the best ingredients from local farms and ranches. His roasted beets dish with turmeric and pistachios is sure to be a healthy hit this summer. 619 E. Hopkins Ave.
Allan Whitehouse, Aurum Food & Wine
This past winter saw a “golden” addition to the Snowmass Base Village as the elegantly casual Aurum (Latin for gold) opened slopeside. Under the auspices of chef de cuisine Allan Whitehouse, this Aspen Snowmass outpost of Destination Hospitality ups the game in the increasingly busy Base Village. “We are so fortunate to have the exterior patio for lunches and sunny afternoons, but we can also provide a more curated experience inside for diners,” says Whitehouse, a classically trained chef who cut his chops in Houston, San Diego and Breckenridge before finding his way to his newly designed Snowmass kitchen. Whitehouse’s shashlik and German potato salad is a summer specialty that harkens back to his youth. “Every culture has some sort of meats on a stick, but as a kid, my grandmother used to grill these and pair them with the potatoes, and they were part of our family’s German culture,” he reminisces. 110 Carriage Way, Snowmass Village
Photography by: PHOTO BY BRUNA BRANCO/UNSPLASH