By Kim Fuller Published in EAT Magazine
Executive chef Christian Apetz is on fire, like the 70-inch white oak-burning grill that is the muse for most of his top-notch menu.
“This year, we are really trying to showcase the wood-fire grill,” shares Apetz. “We have far more offerings, at a wider price point, from the grill — everything from Canadian lobster tail to the giant, 24-ounce porterhouse, and all the way down to organic, chili-marinated tofu.”
The steel-framed grill section of the kitchen is open for bar-seated onlookers and diners walking to their table to see, and it’s what Apetz acknowledges as “the star of the show.”
Order the prime porterhouse for two, and while the succulent slab of meat is cooking on the grill to your temperature preference, start with the seafood crudo — a light and fresh trifecta of raw hamachi, diver scallop and ahi tuna.
For a second course, seafood lovers will swoon over the seared sea scallop dish, served in a slender dish atop a butternut squash emulsion, crunchy pistachios, and savory bacon gastrique.
Everything from the oak fire grill comes a la carte, so sides like the bacon cheddar croquettes (think fried mashed potatoes), white cheddar scallion grits, bacon-wrapped asparagus and baby vegetables complement grilled orders nicely.
For a red wine recommendation, Apetz recommends the Pahlmyer “Jayson” from Napa Valley — ideal for sipping with rustic dishes like the porterhouse and the Colorado lamp chop. The wine is robust yet smooth, like the melt-in-your-mouth meat it can accompany so well.
The menu at 8100 always marries inspiration with innovation, and the bar is following suit — three new mixologists have been added to the team this season, and creative cocktails like the Last Run, made with a combination of several spirits including gin and smoky mezcal, keeps the fire in your belly lingering a little bit longer.
Pastry chef Jacquelyn Lopez brings a refined sweetness to the dining finale at 8100, with an elegant and bright lemon sour cream cheesecake, topped with a graham tuile and surrounded by blood orange segments. Her fig sticky toffee pudding will entice bourbon lovers with its “add-your-own” Maker’s Mark finger pump. The dessert is divine, accompanied with decadence by double vanilla bean ice cream and pecan florentine.
Finish your evening snuggled up beside one of the outdoor firepits overlooking Beaver Creek Mountain, and grab a s’mores kit on your way out the door.
1800 serves breakfast and lunch as well, and Apetz says the true-to-South chicken and biscuits at breakfast, and lunch’s butcher shop grinder with beef and pork meatballs from Colorado Meat Company in Avon, are not to be missed.
Starters and shared plates: $7-$20;
Lunch Mains: $13-$22; Evening Mains:
$14-$51 per person
Upscale mountain grill
Prime 24-ounce porterhouse steak
50 West Thomas Place
Park Hyatt Beaver Creek