A rundown of Aspen’s upcoming restaurant openings.
Formerly: Scarlett’s Aspen (since 2019) and Bootsy Bellows (since New Year’s Eve 2018)
Opening: End of September
The concept: A bright update of the classic New York City Meatpacking District steakhouse (CATCH has been a staple there for a decade) makes its way to Aspen.
The design: A total overhaul of the rooftop restaurant will install reclaimed wood on the floors and ceiling, Cognac-colored leather banquettes and an arched metal screen to frame the open kitchen. The entryway’s red and amber mosaic tile floor is meant to conjure images of houndstooth blankets and cozy winter coats. The basement (Bootsy Bellows) will become a space for private dining.
Outdoor dining: The rooftop’s wraparound patio with views of Aspen Mountain boasts a new central fireplace, wood-clad perimeter walls and plenty of greenery via tall trees.
Must-try menu items: Calabrian chile tuna tartare; wild Dover sole with lemon-caper emulsion; and a Japanese Wagyu flight of three choice cuts cooked tableside, such as “snow beef” from Hokkaido prefecture, “olive beef” from Kagawa prefecture and A5 Kobe Beef from Hyōgo prefecture. 515 E. Hopkins Ave., catchrestaurants.com.
The Board Room
Formerly: A basement conference room in The Little Nell
Opened: Superbowl Sunday 2021
The concept: A hidden speakeasy for private buyout only, available with a personal sommelier to guide guests through the property’s award-winning wine list.
The design: Accessible through a decoy bookcase, the Art Deco jewel-box space decorated with Prohibition-era scrap wood and vintage glass features programmable LED lighting, an 88-inch flat-screen TV and a pool table that converts into a dining table.
Must-try menu items: A frosty gin fizz mixed in a two-foot-tall, cast-iron Tanqueray No. Ten Imperial Shaker—one of few in the world—plus snacks such as caviar tacos, charcuterie boards, a Wagyu Alpine cheesesteak and truffle fries, naturally.
Inside scoop: The Board Room is the sultry sister of the Nell’s launched-last-winter Wine Bar, complete with an all-vinyl DJ booth. 675 E. Durant Ave., thelittlenell.com.
Formerly: Piñons Restaurant (since 1988)
Opening: July 1
The concept: “Authentic food from Northern Italy with Mediterranean seafood,” says chef-owner Angelo Elia of what to expect from the menu.
The design: A high-end renovation will conjure the Tuscan countryside with warm-toned wooden floors, elegant bar seating and a private dining room. A 2,000-bottle wine display case presents selections from Italy, France and California.
Outdoor dining: The deck will undergo an additional renovation in November to add an awning and cool-weather seating.
Must-try menu items: Bistecca alla Fiorentina; wild branzino; oysters; risotto; and house-made pasta including pappardelle with wild-boar ragu, spinach-ricotta ravioli with sweet butter and pine nuts, and macaroni with vodka sauce and shaved prosciutto di Parma. Piñons’ Freddy Salad may even stay on the menu.
Inside scoop: Elia has operated popular namesake restaurants in South Florida (Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton, Aventura) and at Atlantis Bahamas on Paradise Island. The seven-year Snowmass resident maintains a culinary garden that supplies fresh herbs and produce for Casa d’Angelo. 105 S. Mill St., casa-d-angelo.com.
Dante Aspen at Chefs Club
Located: In the St. Regis Aspen Resort at Chefs Club, host of various pop-ups since June 2012
The concept: “The World’s Best Bar 2019” Dante NYC transitions from its former spot at mountainside après-ski destination The Snow Lodge. Familiar fare incorporates coastal Italian influence with locally sourced, seasonal eats.
Outdoor dining: The stately St. Regis courtyard, perfect for Aperitivo Hour, every Monday to Friday from 3-6 p.m., featuring $10 Negronis.
Must-try menu items: Australian-inspired brunch dishes; fried artichokes; Piedmontese strip-steak tartare; whole Dover sole and top-notch cocktails, from a Seville Spritz and Rhubarb Sbagliato to the legendary Dante Martini. 315 E. Dean St., dante-nyc.com.
The Woody Creek Tavern underwent a subtle spruce-up and deck expansion at the hands of the CP Group (The Wild Fig, Steakhouse No. 316) and is expected to reopen at the end of June. Not to worry, the funky character of Hunter S. Thompson’s former stomping grounds remains. woodycreektavern.com
Celebrating 30 years in Aspen, Kenichi brings its beloved sushi, sake and pan-Asian cuisine to Snowmass Base Village sometime around Thanksgiving. kenichiaspen.com
Carbondale’s Idylwilde Brewing, takes over the former Hops brewpub on the Hyman Mall, serving weekend brunch (starting in July) and lunch and dinner (think: pretzel-bun burgers) to pair with local deals of $2 pints and a “buy two, get third free” happy hour. idylwildebrewing.com