“We’re really trying to build something special up here at Alpin Room,” says Chef Oyer.
An Afternoon at Alpin Room
Located mid-mountain on Snowmass, Alpin Room's Alps-inspired cuisine welcomes a refreshed menu crafted by new head chef Emily Oyer.
As you glide off the Alpine Springs chairlift mid-mountain on Snowmass, High Alpine greets you on the right: A large, window-covered building home to delicious grab-and-go, market-style food; a welcoming, lively bar; and of course, Alpin Room.
Inspired by several European cuisines, Alpin Room’s menu is a modern take on classic dishes found in the mountains of Switzerland, Austria, and particularly Alsace, France—think chicken cordon bleu, fondue, and yes, very good wine.
“When I think of Alpine cuisine, I think simple and hearty foods that warm the soul,” says Aspen Snowmass’ Culinary Director, Jim Butchart, who recently hired Cloud Nine’s former executive sous chef , Emily Oyer, to take the helm and reimagine Alpin Room’s menu. Oyer is a Food Network-featured chef who has competed—and won—on multiple cooking shows including Chopped 420, and most recently, Beat Bobby Flay, and plans to breathe new life into the Aspen Snowmass restaurant.
“I’m bringing passion. I always do,” says Oyer. “I have a big drive to make people happy with the food I create. I try to be infectious with my energy. A lot of people feel it, and it shows through my food.” The 31-year-old chef has a bright smile and a contagious enthusiasm for culinary experience. “I started as a dishwasher at a seafood restaurant in Virginia Beach when I was fourteen,” says Oyer, who as of today, has laddered up to several prestigious roles in various kitchens and has been featured across multiple media platforms.
Now, Oyer has been tasked with reimagining the menu at one of Aspen Snowmass’ newest culinary experiences. Alpin Room (located inside of the High Alpine building) is the ideal setting for Alsatian-inspired food—tucked at the base of some of Snowmass’ steepest terrain. After parking your skis or board at the large rack out front and passing through the bustling scene of High Alpine, you’ll slide on some slippers in the Alpin Room entryway before entering a bright space with natural light pouring in around you.
Once seated, you’ll want to go straight to the wine list, which is celebrated for its selections from around the world. By glass or bottle, opt for the Scarpetta from Italy for something crisp (ideally paired with the “tartiflette” fondue), or any of the reds, like the Daou Cabernet Sauvignon, perfectly smooth without sacrificing its full body. There are also hot beverages perfect for a blustery day, like traditional gluhwein or a cognac hot toddy.
Don’t go light on shared dishes for the table—like a basket of warm, fluffy popovers served with butter and house-made jam. For classic Alsatian flavors, spring for Oyer’s delicious poutine featuring hand-cut potatoes covered in cheese curds and a rich yet simple gravy; or the tartiflette, a potato and caramelized onion fondue with three cheeses—MouCo Colorouge, cave-aged gruyere, and imported Swiss Emmental—served with pretzel bread. And to squeeze in some vegetables, try the butternut squash tossed in a creamy avocado dressing or the beet carpaccio with arugula and toasted pistachios.
If you’re hoping for an entree bursting with character, Oyer’s chicken cordon bleu with a mustard Beurre Blanc fits the bill—it’s elegant, classic but bold in flavor. If you’d prefer something more simple, the French onion soup gratinée will warm you from the inside out. Or, go for the pork tenderloin glazed in an apricot demi, a delectable approach to a meat-forward dish with asparagus and with fondant potatoes. And these options only scratch the surface.
Each dish is filled with flavor, but none will leave you to full to ski down the hill. “This is an on-mountain restaurant you’ll want to go to for good food done well while knowing you won’t feel heavy afterwards,” says Oyer. “You should be able to sit down, love your meal, and let it fuel you for the rest of your day on the mountain.”
When it’s time for dessert—because you’ll definitely want dessert—grab an espresso and the crepe suzette, complete with a tableside flambee; or a decadent slice of brown butter almond cake with hazelnut glaze.
“We’re really trying to build something special up here at Alpin Room,” says Chef Oyer. “I want this food to be approachable for people but also give them something new to try. I want to incite curiosity.” Oyer also plans to source as many ingredients as she can from local businesses, growers, farmers, and ranchers.
As with all of Aspen Snowmass’ on-mountain restaurants, Alpin Room provides food choices that are sourced from a local network of sustainable farmers and partners and a menu that’s able to grow and shift dynamically over time. And with Alpin Room and High Alpine under one roof, there is something for everyone; whether you’re popping in for a quick meal or taking a more leisurely route with a long lunch. Alpin Room offers a little something special in Snowmass—a bit off the beaten path while affording a dining experience that is well worth the journey.
Dine at the Alpin Room
Dine at the Alpin Room
The Alpin Room is open throughout the ski season from 11am–3pm, Thursday through Monday. Head to the Alpin Room's page to book your reservation.