Dine – Aspen Food Festivals

 In Community

Aspen loves a reason to celebrate just about everything. With renown culinary artists and highly respected eateries speckled throughout the area the food scene in Aspen and the Roaring Fork Valley is hotter than ever. Good food? Now that’s a reason to celebrate. Locally, we like to cook up some great festivals to sample throughout the year. Some are established and some are just sprouting onto the scene, but we guarantee all of them are worth the effort.

In January, Aspen’s annual toast to winter comes complete with a soup-making contest judged by the public. With Winterskol comes Soupskol,  a soup contest where restaurants are judged on their entry by ladling free samples for those who wish to cast a vote. Your favorite will enjoy the coveted Soup Bowl Trophy and cash prizes and, of course, the chance to gloat.

The 2016 Aspen Food and Wine Classic will be June 17-19. Culinary talents and industry authorities tempt each other and attendees through demonstrations, tastings and seminars. Classic tickets might just fit very nicely into a stocking or gift box for the holidays and will be available for purchase on December 9, 2015. Don’t wait to get your tickets; this has been a sellout event for years running.

Get fired up at Heritage Fire, a wood-fired, meat-laden feast of all feasts. With 40 chefs preparing over 3,000 pounds of heritage delights paired with fine wine, brews, and distilled beverages, this event sold out in 2015, its first year. Immediately following is the Grand Cochon, where top Chefs compete to be named the best in their class.

Known for over a decade as the Snowmass Chili and Brew Fest, the newly appointed Snowmass Mammoth Festival ushers in a smoking hot June with the International Chili Society chili competitions. Chili recipes from all over the US, paired with brew tastings and red hot music makes for a great intro to summer in the Aspen and Snowmass area.

Say cheese, oh, and BYOF (bring your own fork) to the mouth watering Aspen Mac and Cheese Fest, celebrating it’s 6th year in 2016. Local eateries compete with deluxe versions like Toasted Ancho Chillies and Smoked Gouda, or, how about Bacon, Roasted Jalapeno, 3 cheese, or, the winner, Mushroom Truffle Mac. Rumor has it that you’ll pay this year to attend, but with gourmet blends like these, it’ll be worth the cost. No date yet for the 2016 festival, but stay tuned.

Celebrate fall with ACES, or The Aspen Center for Environmental Studies, Harvest Party at Rock Bottom Ranch. An event that has grown in popularity since its inception, this year’s event sold out after 1000 tickets were purchased in advance. Featuring catered lunch, live music, and traditional games, the family friendly event is a great way to enjoy Colorado in autumn.

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