Beaver Creek Wine & Spirits' Grand Tasting

Image: Zach Mahone

Vail Craft Beer Classic

Vail Village’s salute to suds is back for a second season and brings over 300 beers, wine, and spirits (and nearly as many brewers, distillers, and vintners) along with it. Ticketed outdoor excursions like “Off the Hook” (a fly-fishing and craft beer pairing on the Eagle River; June 16, 8 a.m., $195) or “Bikes and Barley” (a guided mountain bike excursion followed by lunch and a beer flight; June 16, 9 a.m., $60) provide some impetus to burn off all that beer—before consuming more—and enjoy the perks of the festival’s mountain locale throughout the weekend. But if you’d rather skip the workout and get straight to the suds, opt for Sunday’s Toast of Vail (a biergarten-like scene—that includes more than 45 breweries and live music—at Solaris for the weekend’s one final bash; June 16, 3 p.m., $49).

Where it is:

Vail Village

When it is:

June 15–17

What it costs:

From $35

Who goes there:

Thirtysomething beer geeks from Denver

More info:

vailcraftbeerclassic.com

For the Colorado craft beer connoisseur

Think you’ve tasted it all when it comes to Colorado’s beer scene? Maybe, but probably not from the state’s highest-altitude beer tasting atop Vail Mountain. Attendees at the festival’s Sip at the Summit Grand Tasting catch a ride on the Eagle Bahn Gondola for a mountaintop sampling of over 30 strictly Colorado brews paired with bites from local chefs. The ultimate festival photo op? Toasting Mt of the Holy Cross while you sample the goods (June 15, 6–9 p.m., $65).

Beaver Creek Wine & Spirits Festival

This culinary event on Beaver Creek Mountain pairs food and wine with outdoor activities (last season included tasting hikes and 4x4 tours enhanced with port and artisan cheese to sunrise al fresco spin classes and yoga sessions followed by a breakfast feast) and indoor seminars celebrating food-geekdom (with wine, tequila, and cigar tastings held in village restaurants, lounges, and galleries)—culminating with a Grand Tasting where corks are popped and all the culinary stops are pulled out under a circus-size tent staked beside the Centennial Chairlift.

When it is:

Aug 9–12

Where it is:

Beaver Creek Village

What it costs:

$50–$175

Who goes there:

Wine-loving residents of Beaver Creek and Bachelor Gulch, Front Rangers who haunt Denver’s hottest restaurants, seeking a respite from the
city’s heat

More info:

beavercreek.com

If you’re a localvore ...

Mirabelle’s Farm to Table Dinner, hosted by master chef Daniel Joly, who plates dish after dish with locally sourced ingredients—some harvested from the geodesic greenhouse just behind the restaurant, a historic pioneer farmstead at the resort’s gatehouse that’s also Joly’s home (Aug 10, 7–10 p.m., $130)

Image: Zach Mahone

Gourmet on Gore

This four-day, outdoor, pay-as-you-go food bazaar with local restaurants serving small plates from tented stalls to strollers sipping and noshing their way around the streets of Vail Village also includes ticketed outdoor excursions, like a guided cruiser ride down Vail Pass, and guided hikes on Vail Mountain to burn calories that will be more than replenished with after-action gourmet fare. Gourmet on Gore dollars (purchased at booths scattered around the venue) are the only cash vendors will accept; to avoid long lines at the currency exchanges, stock up the first day.

When it is:

Aug 31–Sept 3

Where it is:

Gore Creek Promenade and other venues around Vail Village

What it costs:

Varies by vendor; excursions from $20

Who goes there:

Front Rangers looking for one last taste of the high country’s festival season

More info:

gourmetongore.com

For the early riser ...

Brunch Off Bridge Street (Sept 3, 10 a.m.–3 p.m.) offers the same strolling and snacking format—with the added bonus of Bloody Marys, mimosas, and breakfast fare to the Gore Range backdrop.

The Fall Food & Wine Classic

The summertime cousin of Taste of Vail, a weeklong food and wine festival wherein a horde of Oregon pinot and Colorado lamb devotees from across the valley and around the Front Range besiege Vail Village every spring like a scene from World War Z. The Classic revolves around two days of active foodie adventures (last season’s event included a hike up the Berry Picker, a catered fly-fishing excursion, a cycle down Vail Pass followed by lunch at Matsuhisa) and culminates with a grand tasting at the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater, pairing small plates prepared by local chefs with wines from the southern hemisphere. 

When it is:

Sept 21, 22

Where it is:

Vail Village

What it costs:

$85

Who goes there:

Local foodies and gourmands from the Front Range experiencing Taste of Vail withdrawal

More information:

tasteofvail.com

 

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