Dinner after “I Do” is often a grand affair. Cocktail hour mixed with hors d’oeuvres, followed by a plated dinner and cake finale is the typical order, although the details can vary.
But what if you’re a food enthusiast with a vision and a taste for Michelin?
A year ago, a bride and groom requested a wedding experience that included a multi-course dinner featuring their favorite dishes from restaurants around the world, all of them wildly unique. This past spring, Keith Theodore, The Nell’s executive sous chef, turned their vision into reality atop Aspen Mountain.
The menu took 13 months to plan; the prep over three days. The Nell’s culinary team meticulously executed the diverse menu and served the wedding dinner at Aspen Mountain Club on top of Aspen Mountain in spring of 2017. The menu was matched with wine pairings from Carlton McCoy and the bride and groom’s vows set against Highland Peak.
While we could use this entire page to tell you about the tastes and textures, we’d rather show you. With notes from Keith himself, here is a wedding dinner grander than your imagination.
“Burnt Avocado is an adaption from Next, a restaurant by Grant Achatz in Chicago; the avocado itself is seasoned with Yuzu with garnish of sweet potato chips and finger lime caviar.
This was the dish we enjoyed creating the most. We used stones, taking them from the oven. Then we made an avocado mousse and piped it onto the stone before torching it. ”
“The gougère is a simple pâte à choux with gruyere cheese and filled with a golden beet jam and pistachio emulsion.”
“Dashi Fluid Gel is based off of a Shitake Dashi, set with agar and adorned with sea beans, Maitake chips, shiso, and crispy salmon skin.”
“Green Gazpacho di Mare was adapted from David Kinch at Manresa. The dish is a cucumber-based gazpacho which is garnished with scarlet runner beans, Kumomoto Oyster, and crudo’s of hamachi and nairagi.”
1st Plated Course – Uni
“The Uni itself is gently torched and served on a light cloud of cauliflower, garnished with smoked salmon roe, chive powder, toasted sourdough crumb and Satsuma Ash.
“We used micro planned Mimolette to finish this dish along with a leaf of citrus lace and a thin shave of watermelon radish.”
Wine pairing: Weimer Czerney, Gruner Veltliner, Wagram, Austia
2nd Course – Beeswax Potato
“This beeswax potato course was adapted from Christopher Kostow at Meadowood and is all things potato and sorrel. We did this course as a duo with a truffle risotto. The Beeswax gives the potatoes an earthy flavor of honey.”
Wine Pairing: Mayacaymus Chardonnay, California
3rd Course – Fallen Log of Foie
“For the Fallen log of Foie, we did a torchon of Foie pudding which is lightly flavored with candied citrus rind. We used textures of brioche and port espresso jam as the main components of the dish and garnished with coco nib and pistachio crumble, fresh fig, nasturtium leaves, brown butter suds and finely shaved Midnightmoon cheese from Cypress Grove Creamery.”
Wine Pairing: New York Malmsey, Madeira
4th Course – 72 Hour Short Rib
The 72 Hour Short Rib was cooked sous vide at 60 degrees C in a liquid of kombu, dried shitakes, scallions, mirin and demi glace. The kombu, shitake, and scallion bring umami to the finished short rib, and the reduced braising liquid is an incredible finish. We paired this with a puree of turnip and white leek. The garnishes are Alliums and a Fiscalini Cheddar Crisp.
Wine Paring: Gravelly Meadow, Volcanic Hill, & Red Rock Terrace ’87 Cabernet ’87
Dessert – Pana Cotta
Dessert was the preserved Palisade Peach Pana Cotta with blueberry mascarpone garnished with pickled blueberries and brown butter sponge.
Wine Pairing: Royal Tokaji
Whether you’d like a custom menu for a wedding atop Aspen Mountain, or simply want to splurge for dinner, visit The Little Nell’s award-winning restaurants and experience Aspen’s culinary talent.