Destination: Jackson Hole
This popular Jackson restaurant tries a bit too hard in both its design and its cuisine—Japanese with an emphasis on innovative sushi and sashimi. Diners are seated in a sleek room whose sloping ceiling is clad in backlit white recycled resin panels, creating the effect of being in a huge igloo. Dainty candles glow in the fireplace at the far end, an oddity in Jackson Hole, where roaring fires are the norm. Stick to the more-straightforward items, such as hand rolls made with organic sweet brown rice, truffled tuna tartare and lace-thin salmon carpaccio, since the more daring concoctions can fall flat; on a recent visit, the spicy yellowtail was overpowered by a tomato seviche. The menu also contains heartier dishes like elk, beef tenderloin and pan-seared red deer. Blu is not inexpensive, but since opening it has had a loyal local following of diners who come craving lighter fare than that served at the more typical American bistros in town. Open daily for dinner in season.
Koshu Wine Bar
UPDATE: THIS RESTAURANT IS NOW CLOSED
A bit off the square’s main tourist drag, this intimate wine and sake bar also serves a tasty menu of heavily Pan-Asian-inspired small dishes, such as seviche of shrimp with palm and mango, curried rice noodles with bell pepper and bok choy, and crab wontons served with orange-chili dipping sauce. The wine list is excellent, as are the potent cocktails, including ruby martinis, margaritas and mango Bellinis. If you’re not in the mood for a loud cowboy bar, this is a great place for a quiet aperitif. Open daily for dinner.
Located at the base of Après Vous Mountain (past the Adirondack chairs on the patio in front of the Four Seasons Jackson Hole), the Peak is a wonderful casual place for a quick lunch between runs. Less formal than the hotel’s Westbank Grill, it offers such comfort food as hearty stews, chili, chowders and specialty sandwiches liked shaved pork. For dessert, there are kids’ favorites like hot chocolate with marshmallows, homemade pies and oversized cookies. Open daily for lunch, après-ski and dinner.
This buzzing Jackson bistro was launched in 2005 by a trio (thence the name) of foodies, two of which were former chefs of acclaimed Snake River Grill, and the innovative menu certainly attests to a high level of culinary skill. Its ambiance, though, is more sociable than at the foodie temple down the road. Diners sit at simple wooden tables or at a small bar that looks into the open kitchen. The menu showcases American classics, playfully reconceived: a BLT here is a flavorful tomato soup with arugula pesto, apple-wood-smoked bacon and sourdough croutons; the grilled NY steak is served with a heaping of grilled red onions and a blue-cheese-thyme butter; and crispy waffle fries (not to be missed if you’re craving comfort food) are doused in blue cheese, scallions and black pepper. It’s the kind of place where everyone knows everyone and visitors are invited to joint the revelry. Families with children will appreciate the excellent pizzas, pastas and burgers. During the high seasons, reservations are a must. Dinner only.
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