By Kim Fuller Published in EAT Magazine
There are three ingredients that La Tour chef-owner Paul Ferzacca wants foodies to pay attention to this summer: truffles, corn and watercress. Summer staples, no doubt, but the longtime Vail chef is inviting guests to try what he calls “one of his newest trilogies” as a new masterpiece on his menu.
The dish features halibut — a filet’s soft layers held between the savory, sweet and earthy angles of each edgy flavor in Ferzacca’s trifecta. Wine director and sommelier Derek Reijmer pours a white burgundy to add a classic splash alongside the chef’s more contemporary canvas.
“The menu is based on French technique,” Reijmer explains, “but the food doesn’t really scream French at all.”
So what does it scream? Hamachi sashimi with Mas de Daumas rose frizzant, to start, and white BBQ sauce oysters with Veuve Clicquot, to follow … oui, oui.
Classic or modern, every piece of art has a place. Beyond the edible craftsmanship that has made La Tour one of Vail’s most well known culinary establishments, the dining room is adorned with warm painted works, luminescent blown glass forms, and every table stands adorned with one of Harold Linke’s palm-sized romantic sculptures.
To stroll past La Tour’s patio without being enticed by a bistro seat for lunch or a flute of bubbles for brunch is impossible for most, but it’s the start of a love story that would turn tragic if not pursued.
This summer’s new watermelon salad with a luscious mass of burrata is as bold and bright as the season, popping with pickled onion and black sea salt, and savory sweet from shaved apple, rosemary croutons, olive oil and balsamic. Step aside, caprese.
Ferzacca’s parmesan crusted Colorado lamb rack chop is a symphony of flavors, delicate to the blade and nothing short of intoxicating to taste. A glass of Artadi tempranillo plays the harmony with smooth tannins and fruit, while rhythms of Israeli cous cous with almond mint pesto direct the dance.
Slide into dessert with a trio tasting, perfect for sharing. Risen tea cakes, little Madeleines, come covered in powdered sugar and a side of lemon curd for dipping. Try a little Tokaji with them and the mini creme brulee. Chocolate truffles melt on the tongue with every sip of 20-year tawny. Ferzacca is right … good things do come in threes.