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A plug for two mom and pops

Dear Editor:

I have lived in Aspen for more than 20 years and have seen many mom-and-pop operations come and go. That’s why I am always in awe of anyone who puts their heart and soul into a new business. Two new businesses have recently caught my attention: The Dark Horse Alley and The Grape Bar.

The Dark Horse Alley, which started this summer literally sandwiched between two buildings, is now located in the atrium of the Ute City Banque building. Wendy Smith, the owner/operator, has created such a lovely atmosphere there that it feels like you’re walking into the south of France. Besides the delicious sandwiches, make sure to ask for her signature soup!

Oh, and by the way, I overheard an Australian couple say that the coffee was the best they ever had in the United States. I understand that those Aussies take their coffee seriously!

The Grape Bar, off the lobby of the Grand Hyatt (formerly the Wine Spot), is another wonderful place that has a very welcoming and cozy atmosphere with two fireplaces and an outdoor fire pit. Gregg Hemming, who knows more about wine this side of the Mississippi, has put together a fabulous wine list. They also have a delicious bar menu; the cheese fondue is my personal favorite. Great place for apres ski. On Thursdays, Gregg’s lovely wife Karen bartends to host Ladies’ Night.

The best part of both places is that I can afford to go there often even on my proletarian budget. So let’s keep our mom and pop’s alive. You won’t be disappointed!

Carole Gunther Cottrell

Aspen


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