A wide choice from fine dining, steaks to tex-mex, burgers and pizzas.
The hottest restaurant table in Vail is at Kelly Liken where the absurdly young-looking eponymous chef serves American seasonal produce in smallish but incredibly flavoursome portions. There are over 100 wines on the list, with 30 by the glass. Larkspur ,at the base of Golden Peak, is a slick, contemporary American restaurant that uses first-class ingredients and has an extensive wine list. Many visitors prefer to eat at the stylish bar.
The Cucina Rusticana , specialises in Italian cuisine and has a very impressive list of Italian wines. It, like The Wildflower, is situated in the Lodge at Vail. The Wildflower has to be on the list of any visitor seriously interested in food. Literally, across the street from the Lodge is Sweet Basil, another popular choice. It has been going since 1977 and serves light, contemporary American food and has an award-winning, catholic wine list. It also has an excellent cocktail bar that serves especially good Bloody Marys, made with vodka marinated with peppers and garlic. It expanded for 2006/2007 and has an enlarged bar area as well as extra booth-like tables. Other establishments at the upper end of the choice and price are La Tour and Terra Bistro. Russel's is a small, friendly steak and seafood restaurant, also in Vail Village centre by the Covered Bridge. A few steps along Bridge St is the Ore House also serving steak based cuisine.
For the more budget conscious dining, The Red Lion serves typical American Burgers and Pizzas. Pazzo's is also a good choice for inexpensive pizza. It will be busy on peak dates - so be prepared to wait.
In Lionshead, Centre V , inside The Arrabelle. is a French style bistro. Prices are not over the top bearing in mind location and that it is in a 5 star property. Also within the Arrabelle is the Blue Moose Cafe serving pizzas which are surprisingly inexpensive considering location.
Montaukis good for seafood, while Garfinkels is good for high-quality fast food. Sushi restaurants have recently sprung up everywhere for those seeking a change from American portions. Mezzaluna has a sister branch to the popular Aspen haunt - a firm favourite there since 1987.
The sumptuous Game Creek Club on the mountain is open to the public at night and is reached via the gondola to Eagles Nest and then by snowcat. Incidentally, the Eagles Nest complex itself is open in the evenings and in addition to bars and restaurants has a variety of night-time activities including ice-skating.