Getting hangry on the slopes of Utah? Can’t blame you. Food is foremost for starving skiers and snowboarders after dynamic daytime downhilling. But these days it needs to be more than just fast fuel. With high altitude appetites demanding steeper standards, resort restaurants are responding with city-style cuisine. Here are five ski resorts for satisfying your mountain munchies in Utah:
1. Park City Waldorf Astoria
The Park City Waldorf Astoria is the only winter sports Waldorf in the world. Think heated sidewalks, suites the size of apartments, boot room valet service and private gondola to the Canyons lift system. Restaurants are just as ritzy with the bar overlooking exotic hot pools and, nearby, a genteel fireside lounge. For ultimate decadence, the Waldorf’s “Life Elevated” program tops off a heli ski tour with dinner at a distillery.
2. Canyons Resort
Adjacent is Canyons Resort, Utah’s largest ski area, where Lookout Cabin specializes in lavish lunches. For organic farm-to-table fine dining in the village, pig out at The Farm where the paté is home made and all the meats are hand-butchered by Chef Steven Musolf. Fave drink: The Ransom – Old Tom gin, Cherry Heering, Solerno blood orange liquor, fresh blood orange juice and bitters. Happy appie: Oxtail Onion Soup with Beehive Cheese barely buzzed cheddar, rubbed with espresso and lavender.
3. The Washington School House
In nearby Park City, modern ski infrastructure meets historic houses downtown. The Washington School House, dating back to 1889, morphed into a boutique hotel in Dec 2011. With immaculately conserved architecture, all the new owners had to do was carve an outdoor pool and spa into the hillside and kit it out with fancy European antiques, vintage fabrics and glitzy crystal and silver.
4) Sundance Mountain Resort
With its famous founder and annual artsy film fest, Sundance has long flown the banner for sustainable dining. Reflecting the tastes of movie icon, Robert Redford, the Forbes Four Star Tree Room is rustic but refined with a menu of fresh, organic local ingredients served by romantic candlelight amid beautiful Native American art. And the fresh food philosophy extends to Sundance’s other eateries including the casual cowboy-themed Owl Bar which serves tasty treats by the fireside. Biggest claim to fame: it’s the original Hole in the Wall Gang bar dating back to 1890 – bought, dismantled and rebuilt by Robert Redford.
Stay in Sundance’s cute cabins dotted through the forest, linked by low-lit riverside pathways. And, while skiing, don’t miss the chili and oatmeal molasses cookies at Bearclaw Cabin perched at the summit with 360-degree panoramic views over Mt Timpanogos.
Snowbasin has the most luxurious daylodge with the highest quality self-service lunches anywhere, cushy carpeted and chandeliered seating areas and elevators down to award-winning restrooms. A far cry from the horrors of chemical toilets which still exist in some ski resorts, the facilities in Earl’s Lodge are made from topnotch Italian Carrera marble and accented with handmade Italian glass chandeliers, inlaid African Anegre wood and hand-painted walls. You might feel a bit out of place in cumbersome ski boots and sweaty ski gear but will definitely enjoy the posh food and pampering.
And the Utah advantage – seven top resorts are within one hour’s drive of Salt Lake City which is served by 250 direct Delta flights daily from 82 destinations. So, for tourists who fly into SLC and rent a car, all of these elegant eating experiences are doable during the same vacation.
The writer was a guest of Ski Utah. The company did not review or approve this article.