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Aspen: Piñons

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Word of mouth from locals is usually the best way to find a great meal. So I was excited when I heard the recommendations for Piñons from staff at The Wine Spot and later at Zocalito. At both places the words, 'Best in Aspen' came up. That seemed a little much to me, but with such strong reviews, I couldn't leave without trying it.

Sadly, word of mouth can also lead to unwarranted expectations. I can't say anything bad about the meal I had. It was good. I had a duck quesadilla starter and the steak main you see about.

That said, it wasn't a very interesting meal, particularly given the price. For a steak at their prices, I want something aged and buttery. And the variety of the menu reminded me of my initial impressions of Aspen, years ago: contrived, unnecessarily full of itself and overpriced. I can't speak to the decor or the ambiance, since I sat at the bar and didn't see much of the main dining area. I'm no militant locavore, but the fact that a key item on offer is New Zealand Elk steaks when there are probably elk within 5 miles from the restaurant seemed a little stupid.

Contrasted with Zocalito or The Wild Fig, where my meals weren't great, but displayed an interest in trying new things and challenging the palette, Piñons was just boring.



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