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Bad Meals in Aspen?

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USA
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37 posts
145 reviews
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Bad Meals in Aspen?

I keep researching various sites looking for a few good restaurants and am shocked by the mixed reviews and high prices.

I have yet to find one restaurant with consistently good reviews at any price point.

I guess we'll have to resign ourselves to expensive and mediocre meals for our upcoming trip or less expensive and mediocre meals.

I've never had so much difficulty researching restaurants before for other destinations... very odd.

Littleton, Colorado
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1. Re: Bad Meals in Aspen?

I guess if you expect mediocre and expensive meals, you'll get it! I believe reviews are just a guide, and not 100% true 100% of the time. How long ago were they written? If some people wrote good reviews, it must have something going for it. You could find a restaurant with nothing but glowing reviews whose chef is having a bad night, a server who's got personal problems, an understaffed restaurant on any given night that would make your experience much worse than expected.

Isn't the fun of traveling finding the unexpected? I suppose if you have such low expectations, any place you find with half decent food and service will be a pleasant surprise! Honestly, Aspen has some terrific restaurants - go with an open mind and you'll have a better experience!

Fruita, Colorado
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for Fruita, Grand Junction
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2. Re: Bad Meals in Aspen?

Unless you eat at a chain where the food all comes prepackaged you will find variations every day. I have eaten at the same restaurants back to back and found one meal perfect and the next lacking - a lot depends on the kitchen staff and the quality of the materials they have to work with. A good place will work with customers to be sure they are pleased with their food and redo food oders that do not meet expectations. As far as price, hey - this is Aspen. If cost is what you’re worried about, many restaurants in Aspen have a “bar” menu or "small plates" entrees. They are smaller portions of meals and can run less.

Jersey
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3. Re: Bad Meals in Aspen?

We went to Aspen a couple of years ago as we have friends who own an apartment there. We found the food good everywhere, although expensive.

Frisco, Colorado
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for Frisco
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4. Re: Bad Meals in Aspen?

You are traveling to an elite ski resort area, home to many well-to-do folks; How could you possibly even complain prices are high, perhaps Aspen is not for you. Also a town full of refined pallets and restaurateurs, come on, how about a little 'glass is half full'! Stop researching and ask a local once you get in town.

There are some people who just can not be pleased, hence bad reviews. If you are not one of them, then I know you will find some fantastic dining. Good Luck!

Frisco, Colorado
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for Frisco
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5. Re: Bad Meals in Aspen?

That would be 'refined palette' not 'pallet' - this place is not a bunch of fancy truck drivers!!! LOL

Nederland, Colorado
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6. Re: Bad Meals in Aspen?

Actually, it would be "palate" : )

Frisco, Colorado
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for Frisco
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7. Re: Bad Meals in Aspen?

I tried! It kind of spoils the point when writing about refinement, and one can't even spell the word correct! Oh well, hopefully you get my gist. LOL!

evergreen, colorado
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8. Re: Bad Meals in Aspen?

O.K., this is hysterical. I you can spell palate correctly are you entitled to a good meal in Aspen?

Aspen, CO
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980 posts
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9. Re: Bad Meals in Aspen?

Of course I'll say first of all, user generated content is always suspect. Online reviews anywhere are very subjective and honestly, more people post when they have an ax to grind rather than when they're happy. Just look at the airline forum here on Trip Advisor. If we each had a dollar for every posting that starts out "I'll never fly XXX airline again!"

Second of all, when the attitude is bad in the first place you'll likely get exactly what you're expecting.

Third, please keep resort prices in mind, and this goes for all ski resorts. Labor is expensive, food is usually not grown locally, and chain restaurants with their mass buying power are thankfully in limited supply in the resorts. It's what makes them so unique. No, your dinner will never cost what it does at home in a big city so expect it.

That rant off my chest, let me now ask some questions- what is your price point you're looking for (cost of a main dish) and what type of cuisine do you like? If we start with that myself and many others here will have suggestions for you.

USA
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37 posts
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10. Re: Bad Meals in Aspen?

Thanks to everyone who responded. We are picky and critical when it comes to hotels and restaurants and seem to get more that way with each passing year. At home we tend to eat in inexpensive ethnic restaurants. We also eat at pricey places but sometimes find the price doesn't justify the flavor and the experience.

I normally cross reference trip advisor with chowhound when doing restaurant research. I had settled on Montagne for our big splurge night but then saw a very poor recent TA review which made me look into Pinons. Heehee- I got a big kick out of the $26 tofu enchilada main course at Pinons- one of the few places that posts menus and prices online. I think we'll save the enchiladas for Su Casa...

Yes, I am surprised at the $20-30 appetizers in Aspen. And yes, I mostly trust the negative reviews on TA. An exception would be if a place gets glowing reviews and one poor one but this doesn't seem to be the case for Aspen restaurants... all the reviewers sound so indignant LOL.

We're staying at the St Regis on a fall special- $215 per night (4 nights). We're willing to spend quite a bit for good meals but don't want to waste money on bad ones. The concierge emailed a list of restaurants and then I spoke to the front desk clerk and asked where he liked to eat. I said how about Campo di Fiori? No, he really preferred L' Hostaria- OK fine.. but then I check TA.. very mixed reviews for Hostaria- some are truly awful. He also likes Lulu Wilson- same.

Here is is my tentative dinner list:

Hostaria

Wild Fig

Su Casa

Asie

Brunelleschi's Pizza

Lunch:

J Bar

Pine Creek Cookhouse for views and ambiance

Explorer Bistro

Olives

Breakfast:

Poppycocks

Hickory House

Main St Bakery or Wienerstube

Has anyone tried Zocalita Latin Bistro? Does anyone have a favorite Italian restaurant?

All comments are welcome and appreciated. Thank you!!

PS We had fabulous meals in Charleston SC a few mos ago using TA and Chowhound but it was much easier to research since most reviews were very good.