Top Places to Dine in Aspen: The Earth DietMar 24, 2021
While in Aspen, I compiled a list of Earth Diet-approved spots for dining! It is no doubt a foodie town, but I was on the hunt to find the healthiest, yet most tasty options and they can all be found below!
For sure, the most Earth Diet-friendly restaurant was Pyramid Bistro. The Chef, Martin Oswald, who considers himself a nutritarian (someone who consumes the most micronutrients per calorie), learned from leading nutritionists, which inspired his highly plant-based menu. Their warm Brussel Sprout and Kale salad and Vegetable Potstickers were wonderful- I highly recommend stopping by this location if you're in the area.
As soon as we arrived in Aspen, we met a friend for drinks at White House Tavern. Though there weren’t many healthy food items on the menu, I was able to find smoked salmon and brussel sprouts! It’s always so great to find healthier options on any menu. I also enjoyed some champagne with my meal.
For dinner that night we went to Element 47 at The Little Nell Hotel, where the vegetables are locally sourced and the meats are hormone-free; definitely, Earth Diet approved. Everything from the wine to the Chef’s compliments was remarkable- nothing on the menu disappointed. In particular, I found the cod to be outstanding! This is the perfect spot if you are looking to share some dishes family-style, such as the Hawaiian Mero Bass with brussel sprouts, kuri squash, shitake, and gigante beans; the Black Bass with salsify, broccolini, mustard greens, and ginger velouté; and their exquisite mushroom selection- I’ve never tasted such flavorful mushrooms! We also enjoyed some excellent wines from Spain and France. If you’re looking for a higher-end, formal dining option, Element 47 should definitely be at the top of your list!
Another favorite dinner was at Cache Cache, a beautiful French restaurant with a sleek bar. This restaurant is a bit on the pricier side, but it is definitely worth it. They offer authentic food for vegetarians and meat-eaters alike while providing impeccable service. They strive to use local ingredients whenever possible and have an emphasis on fresh, high-quality foods. This is also a great spot to explore various wine options, as they have a Parisian Sommelier on site. I tried the Colorado Lamb and the Trout and Beet Salad, which were both divine! As a note, when eating out at restaurants that don’t offer grass-fed beef or organic chicken, lamb or local fish are two great options. Most lamb is pasture-raised, not factory farmed. Lamb also has a more superior nutritional profile. As a red meat, lamb inherently contains more zinc and iron than non-red meats.
At the bottom of Snowmass Mountain, there is an amazing taco place called Venga Venga that offers authentic Mexican food in a fun, welcoming environment. Who wouldn’t love to enjoy chips and guac after a morning or afternoon on the slopes? The best part is the wait staff comes and prepares it right in front of you, so you know it’s super fresh. Avocados typically don’t absorb a lot of pesticides, so you are good to go with these, even if they aren’t organic. They also offer a salmon salad and veggie tacos that look great, if you’re in the mood for a full meal!
Lastly, Cloud 9 was fascinating! Perched up 10,000 feet above sea level, the only way to get up or down is to ski or snowboard down the mountain. I had the seafood tower, and wow was it was divine-- so fresh! The small size, which feeds 4 people, or one extremely hungry skier, was $147, but the view was epic and well worth the price. The menu is limited, but there are definitely lighter options, if you’re just in the mood for a salad!
Other places to check out that I didn't get the chance to visit:
- The Wild Fig: This restaurant boasts its European charm and offers items of various origins: Spain, France, Italy, and Greece. If you want a taste of the Mediterranean, this would be a great spot to check out. Their “Simple & Fresh” menu section would be a great place to start, as it has creative, largely vegetable-based dishes, such as their scallop option that comes with purple cauliflower puree and oyster mushrooms- yum!
- French Alpine Bistro: Presentation is spot-on at this candlelit destination. One look at the menu has me wishing I got the chance to try this place out; more of a reason to go back and visit soon! In particular, the bistro bowl with quinoa, radishes, edamame, and a toasted sesame ginger stood out, in addition to their roasted beet salad with blood orange dressing. There are undoubtedly healthy options at this restaurant!
- Casa Tua: This cozy, yet sophisticated space is the perfect spot to enjoy an organic, ethically sourced meal inspired by Italian cuisine. From risotto farro lobster to grilled octopus with a cauliflower puree, Casa Tua has something for every type of eater, especially the adventurous ones! I always love finding restaurants like this with such an emphasis on where ingredients are sourced, and the wide array of options makes it that much more appealing.
- Campo de Fiori: Another Italian inspired restaurant to check out in Aspen. Campo de Fiori features fresh, local ingredients in addition to dried goods straight from Italy, making their dishes as authentic as possible! This spot offers an upbeat, vibrant atmosphere to enjoy a comforting, yet high quality meal after a day on the slopes or around town.
- Matsuhisa: It’s no secret that I love a good sushi spot, and I’m sure to find at least one everywhere I go. Though I didn’t get to try out any of their dishes, they offer many plant forward options and a vast assortment of fresh seafood. Chef Nobu draws inspiration from his training in Tokyo and life abroad, particularly in South America, so it is no doubt that his dishes will leave you wanting to try more!
Other tips when traveling to Aspen:
I certainly recommend drinking lots of water; the altitude is no joke and should not be underestimated. To combat the stresses that come with an increase in altitude, snowboarding, and traveling in general, I also recommend trying out my Anxiety-Free Supplement! If you’re looking for a snack to bring with you for the plane ride or out on the slopes, Sunbutter and Fine and Raw Chocolate are a great place to start. They taste amazing while keeping you satiated and fueled, especially the Sunbutter, for a long day outside. While in Aspen, there is a market that sells an abundance of organic produce, cold-pressed green juices, organic frozen foods, and some of my favorite shelf-stable items, such as gluten-free pancake mix, for the days and nights where you feel like staying in and cooking. I made King Arthur pancakes, topped with Mansfield maple syrup and chocolate Sunbutter spread- the perfect treat for a snowy morning! I also released a new recipe for Irish Potato Soup on St. Patrick’s Day, which is super creamy and grounding. The best part is, it’s dairy-free, but you wouldn’t even know!
I hope this guide is helpful for your future travels to Aspen- there are so many fun locations, and I know you'll enjoy every spot on this list!