The Best Restaurants in Aspen: Culinary Delights


Known for its world-class skiing and luxurious resorts, Aspen, Colorado is also home to over 100 restaurants and is one of the best places for food lovers. From fine dining experiences to cozy local favorites, Aspen’s culinary scene offers a diverse array of options that cater to every taste and preference. The city’s restaurants showcase the best of Colorado’s fresh, local ingredients and innovative culinary techniques, creating unforgettable dining experiences. Come experience Aspen culinary creations for yourself!


  • Aspen offers a wide range of dining options, from award-winning restaurants to hidden local gems.
  • The city's restaurants focus on using fresh, local ingredients and innovative culinary techniques.
  • Combining stunning views with exceptional cuisine, restaurants in downtown Aspen provide unique dining experiences that activate the senses.

Exploring Top-Tier Restaurants in Aspen

Signature Dishes and Where to Find Them

Aspen’s top restaurants are known for their signature dishes that showcase the best of the city’s culinary scene. At Matsuhisa Aspen, Chef Nobu Matsuhisa’s famous Black Cod Miso is a must-try. For a classic steakhouse experience, head to Steakhouse No. 316 and indulge in their prime cuts of beef.

Award-Winning Chefs and Their Impact

Aspen’s dining scene is elevated by the presence of renowned chefs who bring their unique styles and flavors to the city. Chef Nobu Matsuhisa, known for his innovative Japanese-Peruvian cuisine, has made Matsuhisa Aspen a top destination for sushi lovers. Chef Barclay Dodge of Bosq is another notable figure, known for his creative use of local ingredients.

Dining with a View: Best Restaurants for Scenic Experiences

Many of Aspen’s restaurants offer stunning views alongside their exceptional cuisine. Located at the top of Aspen Mountain, The Sundeck provides panoramic views of the surrounding peaks while you enjoy gourmet dining. Ajax Tavern, situated at the base of Aspen Mountain, offers a more laid-back atmosphere with outdoor seating and mountain views.

Local Favorites and Hidden Gems

Cozy Cafes and Bistros

For a more intimate dining experience, head to one of Aspen’s cozy cafes or bistros. Meat & Cheese Restaurant and Farm Shop is a local favorite, known for its rustic charm and farm-to-table menu. Grateful Deli is another popular spot, offering delicious sandwiches and salads in a casual setting.

Late-Night Eats and Social Spots

Aspen’s nightlife scene is just as vibrant as its dining scene, with plenty of options for late-night eats and socializing. The J-Bar at Hotel Jerome is a popular spot for drinks and bar snacks, with a lively atmosphere that attracts both locals and visitors. The Living Room at Hotel Jerome offers a more sophisticated setting, with craft cocktails and small plates.

Seasonal and Farm-to-Table Dining

Seasonal Menus and What to Expect

Aspen’s restaurants take advantage of the region’s seasonal bounty, with menus that change throughout the year to showcase the freshest ingredients. In the summer, expect to find plenty of fresh produce and light, refreshing dishes. In the winter, heartier fare like stews and braises take center stage. Whatever the season, you can expect to experience a culinary delight.

Family and Group Dining Options

Best Spots for Group Gatherings

If you’re dining with a group, Aspen has plenty of options that can accommodate larger parties. Clark’s Oyster Bar is a great choice for families, with a kid-friendly menu and casual atmosphere. For a more fine dining experience, consider Catch Steak Aspen, which offers private dining rooms for groups.

Kid-Friendly Restaurants

Aspen has several restaurants that cater to families with children. Jing Restaurant is a popular choice, with a menu that includes kid-friendly options like fried rice and noodles. Kenichi Aspen is another great option, with a kids’ menu that features sushi rolls and teriyaki dishes.

Dietary Accommodations and Innovative Menus

Restaurants Offering Vegetarian and Vegan Options

Aspen’s restaurants are increasingly catering to diners with special dietary needs, including vegetarians and vegans. Spring Cafe is a standout option, with a menu that focuses on plant-based dishes made with fresh, organic ingredients. Spring Cafe is also a juice bar.

Gluten-free and Allergy-Friendly Menus

Many of Aspen’s restaurants also offer gluten-free and allergy-friendly options. Acquolina Aspen, an Italian restaurant, has a separate gluten-free menu that includes pasta dishes and pizzas. Ellina, another Italian spot, accommodates various dietary restrictions with advance notice.


What are some must-try dishes for first-time visitors to Aspen?

Some signature dishes to try in Aspen include the Black Cod Miso at Matsuhisa Aspen, the prime steaks at Steakhouse No. 316, and the farm-fresh fare at Meat & Cheese Restaurant and Farm Shop.

Which Aspen restaurants offer the best views?

For stunning mountain views while you dine, head to The Sundeck at the top of Aspen Mountain or Ajax Tavern at the base of the mountain. Bosq also offers lovely views from its outdoor patio.

Are there any exclusive or reservation-only restaurants in Aspen?

While most of Aspen’s restaurants accept walk-ins, some of the more popular spots, like Matsuhisa Aspen and Steakhouse No. 316, recommend making reservations in advance.

What options are available for vegetarians and vegans dining in Aspen?

Aspen has several restaurants that cater to vegetarians and vegans, like the Spring Cafe, which focuses on plant-based, organic cuisine. Many other restaurants, like Bosq and Meat & Cheese, offer vegetarian options on their menus.

How do Aspen restaurants accommodate food allergies?

Most of Aspen’s restaurants are happy to accommodate food allergies and dietary restrictions with advance notice. Some, like Acquolina Aspen and Ellina, even offer separate gluten-free menus. It’s always best to call ahead and inform the restaurant of any allergies or restrictions.

What is a great brewery in Aspen?

Treat yourself to a cold beer and pizza at Aspen Brewing Company. Aspen Brewing Company also offers great salads for those looking for a lighter dish.

What is so special about Pine Creek Cookhouse?

The epic Pine Creek Cookhouse at the base of the Elk Mountains serves gourmet alpine food and is the best restaurant if you’re also looking to go horseback riding. Here, you can enjoy fresh fish and wild game in dishes prepared with organic, local ingredients. The Pine Creek Cookhouse not only hosts guests for lunch and dinner but also horseback riding and events like weddings.

What is one of the best places to get coffee in Aspen?

A favorite local coffee house in Aspen is Unravel Coffee. Here, you can energize yourself for your next adventure while sipping fantastic coffee. You can also grab an artisan snack to fuel you.

When I’m not at a restaurant in Aspen, what can I do in town?

When you’re not dining or on the nearby trails or slopes, one of the enriching things you can do is visit the Aspen Art Museum, which will be open again on May 30th for an exhibition staged by Allison Katz called In The House of Trembling Eye. Aspen Art Museum hosts a number of community and educational events you can enjoy for a full-bodied experience of the town.

When does the French Alpine Bistro re-open?

The French Alpine Bistro re-opens on June 7th. Like many restaurants, it is temporarily closed for a few weeks during Aspen’s brief off-season. Before booking your vacation, it’s important to check the websites of restaurants you’re interested in trying.


About the author

James Ranson

I’m an editor, traveler, and fan of the great outdoors. I’ve been to all 48 continental US states, and my drives through Colorado’s rugged peaks and snowy forests (not to mention whiskey tastings in Denver!) still stand out in my memories. I’m excited to use my ten years of editing experience to develop engaging and informative guides and articles that enhance the outdoor experiences of both Colorado residents and visitors. Whether a piece is about exploring the best ski resorts, uncovering scenic trails for hiking, or finding the most inspiring drives through the Colorado Rockies, my aim is to provide comprehensive and accessible content that encourages adventure and exploration.