Three Men, Three Telluride Mountain Village Restaurants

Jake Linzinmeir from M's Restaurant

Jake Linzinmeir from M’s Restaurant

Every successful venture needs a driving force. This is particularly the case in the restaurant world where it takes a strong presence—whether in the kitchen or front of house—to shape a dining experience into a memorable moment that defines an establishment. Well in my humble opinion, there are a few noteworthy guys creating remarkable dining experiences in three restaurants in Telluride Mountain Village, a town populated by tony part-time and year-round residents and visited by discerning travelers from all over the world. These discriminating diners all know a thing or two about a red-letter night out on the town, so there’s little room for anything short of excellence in Telluride’s Mountain Village.

It came as big news this past spring—especially to locals—that Chef Jake Linzinmeir was taking over the helm at M’s Restaurant, the signature dining establishment of Hotel Madeline, formerly Capella. Jake, long known as the restaurateur extraordinaire of Telluride, having simultaneously owned and operated three best-loved restaurants in T-ride in recent years, seems to be the perfect fit for this swanky restaurant that demands that the cuisine live up to its high-stepping decor. Jake, widely applauded for his versatility and passion for quality, has the presence both in and out of the kitchen to provide a standout dining experience.

M's Smooth Interior

M’s Smooth Interior

One of Jakes' Innovative Culinary Creations

One of Jake’s Innovative Culinary Creations

If you catch a peek of Jake, you may recognize him from his frequent appearances on The Today Show. But don’t go thinking he’s all about “the show.” No, quite the contrary. Jake presents a Colorado Rocky Mountain Farm to Table Cuisine that features the many exceptional food products for which Colorado is becoming increasingly recognized. From Colorado beef dry-aged onsite to mushrooms picked within the outlying region, Chef Jake’s cuisine reflects the bounty of Colorado flawlessly prepared with the refined palate of the gastronome in mind.

Table with a View at Allred's

Table with a View at Allred’s

Mario Petillo from Allred’s

Allred’s, a landmark restaurant, only accessible by the gondola, perched high on the mountain between the towns of Telluride and Telluride Mountain Village, is also undergoing changes that are making it more of a perennial favorite rather than a special-occasion restaurant. With its unique location that furnishes some of the most exceptional views in Telluride, Allred’s deserves to be hopping every night of the week. It seems as though this is quickly becoming the case, especially at the bar where locals are flocking (always a good sign) for killer views accompanied by Happy Hour specials that last well into the night. Just call it Happy Night, featuring the best darn sunset of the Rockies and food and drink at reasonable prices.

Allred's, Spectacular Year-round

Allred’s, Spectacular Year-Round

This concept and so much more is the brainchild of Mario Petillo, the new General Manager of Allred’s, an elegant Italian that has worked in the hospitality industry in Europe and in the United States for decades. He’s been a familiar face on the restaurant scene in Telluride as well, a warm and welcoming gentleman that has the ease and grace to meet each diner’s requirements no matter how great or small. Whether you’re ordering Truffle Fries to accompany a glass of wine as you peruse Allred’s enticing menu or being served a Rocky Mountain Elk Short Loin as your main course, you can bet Mario has a say in how your food arrives at your table. Can’t wait to see the many other ways in which Mario will make this restaurant truly great.

Poolside Dining at The View

Poolside Dining at The View

If a more relaxed dining experience is calling, head to The View, the tavern-style restaurant housed within Mountain Lodge Telluride. As the name suggests, the views here are nothing short of fabulous. Truly one of the best-kept secrets of Telluride, The View thus far caters mostly to its lodge guests, however, those not staying at this handsome mountain resort are always more than welcome. In the summer, The View’s poolside dining offers a prized experience unique in T-ride; here you sit on (or lounge upon!) teak patio furniture, surrounded by tubs of blooming flowers while gazing at the San Sophia Range, some of the most awe-inspiring peaks of the Rockies. I suggest you order a juicy burger or a BLT salad topped with grilled chicken breast, an Arnie Palmer and slip into vacation mode whether you’re here for lunch or to spend a few days. By night, this handsome pool deck transforms into a different sort of magical place as fire pits are illuminated and margaritas become the drink of choice.

Inside The View, you’ll discover one of the most impressive “great rooms” of the Rockies, characterized by a stunning log interior, an immense stone fireplace, one of the longest bars of Telluride, a forty-five foot soaring ceiling, and expansive windows that furnish spectacular views from nearly every seat in the house. Wooden tables and chairs, cozy couches and two widescreen T.V.s complete the tavern-like feel embodied by The View.

Tommy Tompkins from The View

Tommy Tompkins from The View

But what would a tavern be without a warm, genuine welcome from the person in charge? At The View you’re likely to encounter that friendly greeting from Chef Tommy Tompkins, an affable guy that has proved as well versed in the front of the house as in the kitchen. “We try to provide good tavern food as an affordable option for people,” Tommy told me during a recent visit here. “Call it tavern fare with a high-end flare,” he added as he stepped away to say hello to some potential diners that had just entered his space.

Now that’s what I call “being on it,” I thought. In today’s world—more than ever before—you can’t take your restaurant diner for granted. You have to offer them added value each time they walk into your establishment. It takes someone special, someone who cares and has a keen understanding of the hospitality industry to make the difference.

It’s nice to know you can find those key people in Telluride Mountain Village.

Good Eats at The View

Good Eats at The View

Note that only The View (970-728-2413) is open for lunch and dinner; reservations are not required. It is, however, recommended to reserve at M’s Restaurant (970-369-0880) and at Allred’s (970-728-7474) for your dinner plans.

Know that Wednesday evenings are particularly happening in Telluride Mountain Village during the summer when the town hosts a Sunset Concert Series at 6 p.m. from July 6th through August 24th. All concerts are held in Sunset Plaza and are free to the public. Check out the lineup—you’ll discover there are some great acts.

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