Two Basalt debuts take farm-totable to heart.
TWO BASALT DEBUTS TAKE FARM-TO-TABLE TO HEART.
“When I told a customer I had no tomatoes for his burger, he looked at me like I had two heads,” says Steve Humble, coowner with his wife, Robin, of the new Free Range Kitchen & Wine Bar (305 Gold River Ct., Basalt, 970-279-5199; freerange basalt.com) in historic downtown Basalt. But Humble takes his garden-fresh mission seriously: “If tomatoes aren’t in season, or if I can’t get fresh tomatoes, then I’m not going to serve tomatoes.” Such a literal approach to the local-food philosophy has taken root downvalley, where a new breed of farm-totable bistro has cropped up.
With the likes of Rock Bottom Ranch and Mountain Primal Meat Company nearby, Basalt restaurateurs have found the optimal location for sourcing high-quality local product. That’s why Aspenite Mawa McQueen decided to venture downvalley to Willits Town Center, where she opened Market Street Kitchen (499 Market St., Basalt, 970-510-5820; mkstreet kitchen.com). “We saw a real opportunity here, not only in terms of growth but in a demand for quality food and wine,” says the classically trained FrenchIvorian chef, whose menu spans sweet and savory crêpes, tartines, salads, and savory bowls that feature local produce, meat, and cheeses—all in addition to an extensive wine list. “We saw a real need for the kind of elevated food you typically find in Aspen, but with more of a local atmosphere.” .
Local greens, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, haricots verts, and eggs join wild salmon for a Niçoise salad at Market Street Kitchen, one of two Basalt debuts taking seasonality and local sourcing to another level.
Valley vanguard: Two new Basalt restaurants are turning the localfood focus inward by celebrating midvalley agriculture. above: A
vegan curry from Market Street Kitchen. here: A pork chop with seasonal succotash
from Free Range Kitchen & Wine Bar.