A blog about food
Sun Valley Magazine celebrated the holidays after the holidays this year. Christmas it seems, fell in January, after the holiday rush of parties, dinners and family affairs. We started our festivities with an afternoon of skiing on Baldy, followed by fondue and beer at Averell’s Bar at Roundhouse, and finally capped off the evening with dinner at Vintage Restaurant.
Vintage Restaurant is particularly special to Ketchum. A cabin tucked away on Leadville Avenue in the heart of downtown, thoughtful food, and a cozy, comfortable evening always await. For nine years, Jeff Keys, owner and chef has created food and ambience that reflect what he loves best—good food in a timeless setting. (Although he has only had Vintage for nine years, he has been serving up culinary delights for 27.)
On this particular Tuesday evening, we took up nearly half the restaurant space with our party of 13. Suffice it to say that Vintage is small. With only seven tables, reservations are definitely recommended. Vintage’s menu changes often, so what I describe today, may not be on the menu tomorrow—but rest assured, whatever you choose will be amazing.
We started the evening off with a smattering of appetizers and salads. Oysters bathing in a bowl of broth with peppery orange aioli and pico de gallo. While not optimal for sharing, we managed to make it work. (I drank the broth with my spoon like it was soup.) We cleansed our palates with a House salad of butter lettuce topped with pear, Amish gorgonzola and an orange-pecan vinaigrette, as well as a Beet Salad with fresh watercress and goat cheese in drizzled balsamic syrup and olive oil. For lack of a better word, it was magnifique!
And then it was onto our main courses—beware of some mouthwatering words coming your way. Following is a mere snippet of what we dined on that night.
Hagerman Rainbow Trout encrusted with a red crab remoulade served with a New Orleans slaw and spicy Cajun risotto. This dish was a hit at our table—the encrusted trout was baked, so each bite was crunchy without being heavy. Fabulous.
Painted Hills Flat Iron Steak with oven-roasted marrow bone and wild hedgehog mushrooms, served with black truffle mashed potatoes and New York steakhouse-style creamed spinach. The black truffle mashed potatoes were perfectly paired with this steak. I could have had a helping of mashed potatoes for dessert if I had any room left.
Jeff’s old-fashioned Crispy Skin Duck, slow oven roasted, served with wild rice bean sprout Egg Foo Young, honey-roasted grapes and a Kung Pao drizzle. Need I say more than crispy duck and Egg Foo Young? I will order duck next time it’s on the menu. Fantastic.
Mixed Grill Dinner, included Painted Hills shortribs, pan-seared sweetbreads, andouille sausage from New Orleans, served with oven-roasted vegetables, Hagerman butternut squash and tabbouleh. This dish had a definite Cajun twist to it—the andouille sausage was spicy and the short ribs fell off the bone. I’m not a big sweetbreads fan, (typical American who can’t get over the whole thymus gland thing), but in short order, it was devoured.
Vintage has a fantastic wine list to keep its fantastic food company. We sipped Macon-Villages Chardonnay by Kermit Lynch and R Collection Merlot by Raymond. Those with discriminating palates will have no trouble finding something that peaks their interest on Vintage’s wine list.
Last, but definitely not least was our dessert. Jeff appropriately christened it “Delights of the Naked Stranger.” A chocolate truffle torte with chocolate and caramel sauce served with house-made Mountain Decadence ice cream (several dishes with different flavors of ice cream were floating around the table, I think the chocolate chip, lavender and banana were favorites).
We wrapped up the evening by taking the handy path that leads to the Casino bar (seats easily found on a Tuesday night at 8:30 pm) and raised our glasses to a great Sun Valley Mag crew (that would be us) and a great year ahead.
Thanks boss for the perfect Sun Valley day—on and off the slopes! Here’s to the best job, in the best town, in the world!
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