New on the local dining scene
At the start of each new season in the Aspen area, there are always a handful of new shops, hotels and, of course, restaurants. Following are some of the latest dining options.Owners of the highly touted The Wild Fig have opened the new D-19. Executive Chef Dena Marino, formerly of the Aspens Ajax Tavern, oversees both kitchens, as well as the locals favorite, The Popcorn Wagon. The Wild Fig will continue to serve innovative Mediterranean cuisine, while D-19, located around the corner from The Wild Fig, serves Chef Marinos notable Italian fare.Jour de Fete This cozy French cafe was an Aspen favorite 10 years ago and has been reopened by Frenchman Olivier Mottier. With an emphasis on fresh, homemade cuisine, Jour de Fete serves breakfast specialties with gourmet coffee, croissants and pastries. Enjoy lunch or dinner in the cafe or take out, with such French classics as quiche, chicken piccata and daily specials. Fresh sushi is served as well. Open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.The Wine Spot This new downtown lounge, located inside the new Hyatt Grand Aspen on Dean Street, features 35 wines by the glass from global vintners. Operated by longtime locals Seth Hollar and Lisa Hatem, The Wine Spot features a careful selection of boutique wines from vineyards around the world. A small-plates tasting menu includes cheese plates, caviar, light salads and an extensive desert menu.iNg Cuisine Sushi chef Henry Ng, formerly of Nobu Matshusia, has opened his own natural Pan-Asian cooking and sushi outpost. Think of it as takeout with taste. Open Monday through Friday; 5 p.m. to closing. Located at the Aspen Business Center inside Mountain Naturals. La Comida Owner Walt Harris of Syzygy restaurant recently took over La Cocina, one of Aspens favorite Mexican restaurants. The name has changed to La Comida (but you can still call it La Co); diners are still be treated to affordable Mexican cuisine and the margaritas are two-for-one during happy hour.Ben & Jerrys Ice Cream & Coffee Shop Located in the heart of downtown Aspen (next to the Wagner Park playground), Ben & Jerrys satisfies Aspens sweet tooth. Ice cream flavors change daily, while such classics as Mint Chocolate Chip and Old-Fashioned Vanilla tempt tourists and locals alike. Cool down with one scoop or warm up with a cup of Green Mountain coffee. Restaurant Barclay Restaurant Barclay is born from its predecessor Restaurant Mogador. Promising the same quality of cuisine, service and atmosphere known at Mogador, chef Barclay Dodge leaves behind his Mediterranean focus and returns to his American roots. Dodge has teamed up with Alain Azizi, a longtime Aspen resident and restaurateur who will manage both the dining room and wine list. Together the duo is sure to make a formidable pair, bringing to Aspen a look at new cuisine along with elegant dining.Saxys Cafe Opened in September by Christy Sax, the wife of longtime Jimmys bartender Bryan Sax, this Basalt coffeehouse and lunch spot is quickly gaining popularity. Featuring healthful paninis and salads full of Italian meats and cheeses, she also serves egg sandwiches and other breakfast items. Located at 104 Midland Ave., the cafes hours are 6:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.Platos This new restaurant is located at the Aspen Meadows conference facility. Featuring eclectic decor and some of the most beautiful views of Aspen, Aspen Highlands and Buttermilk mountains, Platos contemporary cuisine will certainly be on the list of visiting Aspen Institute guests from around the world. Open from 6:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.Brunelleschis Dome Pizza, or Brunos for short A new pizzaria has opened in the former Merlins space in the Mill Street Plaza, serving lunch and dinner with a full menu that includes hand-made, thin-crust gourmet pizzas, salads, pastas and other Italian fare.
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Colorado’s Western Slope is considered a climate hot spot where temperatures are increasing faster than the global average. This warming has contributed to more than 20 years of dryness, which scientists are calling a megadrought.