Avalanche Ranch spawns from-the-farm market & restaurant.
Avalanche Cheese Company’s exemplary goat cheese burst on the Roaring Fork Valley culinary scene in 2008 and quickly became a major player on the Colorado artisanal cheese scene. Fast forward to 2014, and owner Wendy Mitchell opened Meat & Cheese, a combination restaurant, farm market and gourmet food market on the order of Alex Seidel’s Mercantile Dining & Provisions in Denver’s Union Station and Hosea Rosenberg’s Blackbelly in East Boulder that are restaurants plus something else.
At Meat & Cheese, the “something else” comprises Avalanche and other cheeses, salume and sandwiches fill the glass cases near the front door, while a long, skinny dining area along the left side of the space is for eat-in guests.
Even in the off-season between Thanksgiving and Christmas when i it’s mostly locals in town, the restaurant was buzzing, and with good reason. Locals know what’s good, whether a long-time favorite or, even more so, when there’s a new place. Meat & Cheese has a Continental air about it — what with the farm shop component, the superb artisanal cheeses and cured meats, house-made deli meats, seasonal produce, imported or America gourmet foods in cans, packages or jars on a tall shelf. And of course, there are craft beers and interesting wines by the glass and bottle.
Meat & Cheese is also a terrific place to go for lunch (order from the counter) or dinner (table service), which I truly enjoyed with two companions. We happily shared “boards” and other items, just the way the menu was designed.
Price check: At dinner, “boards,” $6 (bread board), then $12-$40 (single to double) and local rotisserie chicken ($24 for half and $48 for whole); dinner, $-$28; desserts, $7.
I just alerted urbanspoon.com to Meat & Cheese. Until they add their graphic, know that it is at 319 East Hopkins Avenue, Aspen; 970-710-7120.