Feasting on Fondue and Raclette in Telluride

A Bubbling Pot of Fondue at Alpinist and the Goat

A Bubbling Pot of Fondue at Alpinist and the Goat

Providing a Heartwarming Welcome

Providing a Heartwarming Welcome

Serving Up the Bubbles

Serving Up the Bubbles

Brrrr. Baby it’s been cold outside, at least here in the Rocky Mountains. Tis the season to eat lots of warm, hearty foods–calorie-rich meals that refuel you after charging down the slopes all day at Telluride Ski Resort.

And baby do I have a recommendation for you. Book your table at Alpinist and the Goat where you can delight in melted cheese in its most delectable forms: fondue and raclette. Both specialties from the Alps, here these convivial dishes are served with salad, seasoned bread and apples. For the fondue, you can choose from seven different options such as traditional, truffle and Cortina, a twist on the classic recipe blended with creamy gorgonzola. More adventuresome gastronomes will want to try the Basquel, a spicy fondue made with traditional Emmenthaler, Manchego and chorizo or Cajun Fondeaux, a rich blend of cheese finished with crawfish tails and Cajun seasonings. Yum. Leave it to Americans to innovate a centuries-old classic from the Alps.

Scraping the Goods Off of the Bottom of the Fondue Pot: The Best Part

Scraping the Goods Off of the Bottom of the Fondue Pot: The Best Part

If you’ve never had raclette, you must give it a try here. Racler in French means to scrape and that’s what has been done in chalets, bistrots and refugios throughout the Alps for ages. Half a wheel of cheese is pushed up against the fire to sizzle and bubble in the most traditional establishments. When it reaches just the right degree of doneness, this delectable gooeyness is scraped onto a plate and then served up with boiled potatoes, mini onions, cornichons and an array of thinly sliced meats such as smoked ham and salami. Love all that charcuterie! Double yum. Alpinist and the Goat raclette consists of Gruyere cheese melted onto a hot stone and served with seasoned croutons, a panoply of mashed potatoes, imported speck and grilled vegetables, a more table-friendly presentation for this cozy restaurant reminiscent of a Swiss chalet.

Neal and Karla Elinoff in Their Elinoff Gallery

Neal and Karla Elinoff in Their Elinoff Gallery

“My restaurant is the size of three gondola cabins,” says Neal Elinoff, owner of both the restaurant and Elinoff’s, a long-established gallery and jewelry store on the main floor. After a summer expansion, it’s a bit bigger than that but still very intimate. It’s the perfect place for a romantic evening or a convivial dinner with friends. Neil and his wife, Karla, have created a great ambiance in this wood-floored enclave decorated with Chagall prints, paintings of Paris boulevards and a collection of old fondue pots.

The Caramel Caravan

The Caramel Caravan

Leave room for their all-you-can-eat dessert bar showcasing goat’s milk caramel, organic ice cream and a spread of fruits and sweets that will give you something to yodel about.

Cocktail aficionados will love the assortment of house-infused liqueurs made from currants, ginger and blood orange. Powder hounds might opt for a stiffer jalapeno tequila.

Either way, all this will set you up just right for another day on the slopes.

Raclette at Home

The Biggie: Raclette Maker at Alpen Schatz

The Biggie: Raclette Maker at Alpen Schatz

The Mini and the Medium: Raclette Makers at Alpen Schatz

The Mini and the Medium: Raclette Makers at Alpen Schatz

My mom sent me a raclette maker many years ago and it has been the showcase of many dinner parties ever since. Raclette is fun, delicious and easy to make. (Even those without a smidgen of culinary talent can pull it off with great aplomb.) Alpen Schatz, another revered Telluride institution, sells raclette makers in three different sizes. Order one online and enter Bonjour in the coupon code and you’ll receive a 10% discount on the raclette makers as well as their other beautiful assortment of alpine treasures.

Bon appétit!

Alpen Schatz Owner Mary Dawn DeBraie Serving Up the Raclette During Noel Night

Alpen Schatz Owner Mary Dawn DeBraie Serving Up the Raclette During Noel Night

Scrape, Scrape, Scrape

Scrape, Scrape, Scrape

The Alpen Schatz Team

The Alpen Schatz Team

 
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