Copper Mountain and environs

Gonna go out on a limb here.

I may find myself in the Copper Mountain region.

I just took a quick look at the town and there are a very limited amount of resorts. Looks like lodges, condos, and inns.

Are there any good places to eat in the area? Open to all cuisines. No budget.

Was hoping to spend some time in Denver, but that might not be possible due to time constraints.

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Sounds pretty.

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Spent some time adventuring in the Colorado Rockies recently.

If you are staying on the Copper Mountain resort area, there’s a Whole Foods in Frisco you can stop at on the way from Denver. Most resorts in the area offer a full kitchen with facilities. We stopped mostly for water and snacks.

Vintage (Vail) -
Only open Friday - Monday for brunch and dinner, we started our day with a late breakfast and cocktails. It’s a super charming bistro in Vail Village.
The service team is extraordinarily well-trained. They are knowledgeable about the menu…describing specials with great clarity and they are careful to notice when drinks need refilling.
Bacon-wrapped Figs: dried Mission figs, bacon, Roquefort, Marcona almonds, sherry-vanilla honey
With the tasty cheese, this wasn’t as cloyingly sweet as I thought it would be

Meat & Potatoes Benedict: eggs, filet mignon, bacon “smashbrowns,” roasted mushrooms, toasted baguette, amended to chipotle Hollandaise
The chipotle Hollandaise was actually spicy…this was a very rich dish. The steak was perfectly cooked, and the roasted mushrooms were so tasty! My complaint was that the smashbrowns were not as bacon-y or crispy as I would have expected.

Their cocktails were quite good and well-balanced…I can’t remember what this was but it was vodka-based and had a blueberry ice cube…the online seasonal menu is not reflective of the drink I had.

I will say that drinks up at this elevation will hit you differently. Instead of feeling it 2-3 drinks in, I was feeling it 2-3 sips in. Scientific lesson: your body needs twice the hydration at 10K feet.

Butterhorn Bakery & Café (Frisco) -
Known for their breakfast and baked goods, I was a touch too late for breakfast and had lunch here instead. There are breakfast items available all day, but those are more the traditional items than their specialties.
Getting a solo table after 1PM was pretty easy on a nice summer day. Sign in to their electronic waitlist and then go exploring on Main Street (it’s not very big). They’ll text you when your table is ready.
The menu for lunch is fairly large. What’s cool is you can get most of their sandwiches half-sized. Since I knew I couldn’t polish off an entire sandwich, I opted for half a tuna melt on croissant with their house made potato salad.
Sorry no photos…it was a great lunch. I got some baked goods to go. Their ginger cookie is a hit and their coffee cake is so moist.

Uptown on Main (Frisco) -
Options for dinner are not entirely plentiful if you look for dinner after 8PM on a Wednesday. The most popular places are really busy so we hopped in to this place because we didn’t want to wait.
Sorry no photos…it was an okay meal. The salad was just fine. The short rib pappardelle was less successful…the short ribs were not tender enough and the sauce was both acidic and too cognac-y.

Radicato (Breckenridge) -
From the team that brings Rootstalk, they opened an Italian-inspired place on Main Street. They based their menu on a 48 hour L.A. eating trip that included Rossoblu, Rustic Canyon, Chi Spacca, and I can’t remember the last place. You’ll see that the menu is reminiscent of some popular dishes we see here.
Service is pretty impressive for a 2 month old restaurant. No hiccups. Knowledgeable and friendly FOH, they had a great handle on the menu and wine list.
Nice when warm. It was a proficient focaccia. Good to sop up sauces from pasta and to eat with the next 2 items.

Chicken liver mousse with plum jam:
Creamy and umami rich with the right amount of sweetness from the stone fruit jam…it just melted over the hot bread. It was a nice version.

Porchetta de Testa:
Porcine butter that melts gently over hot bread

Fritto misto: red shrimp, calamari, blue prawns, anchovy, caper dressing
Cooked really well…the batter was light and was quite fine without the dressing. The anchovies were my favorite bite along with the head-on prawns.

Ravioli: corn & chanterelle mushrooms
This was more savory and not as sweet corn as I expected. Pasta texture was great, but this dish was missing the right balance that I was looking for.

Bucatini: lobster, parm breadcrumbs, roasted garlic & lemon
I’m not sure that the pasta was a bucatini. The lobster was well cooked, but lemon overwhelms the palate and fails the dish. Fun fact…the pasta guy is allergic to lobster so can’t taste the dish…he relies on someone else in the kitchen to taste this dish before it goes out.

NY Strip: garlic confit, grilled shallot, mushroom, balsamic
This was a solid dish.

Whole branzino: Tuscan kale, Castrovetrano pesto, hazelnut
Well-cooked and crispy skin. It was good.

Melanzana: eggplant conserva, preserved tomato, pecorino
The preserved tomato was the star of this dish and brighter in flavor than anything else on the plate. I wish there was more of a textural contrast on this plate of vegetables. It was soft on soft.

Broccoli rabe: parm, palisade onion, pine nut, olive
This was more successful in terms of balanced flavors and textures.

We declined dessert because we were so full…but also this meal didn’t blow us away. But I can see what they are trying to do and I’m sure the resort community will really enjoy this place.