Few places exude glamor and pure Parisian chic in Snowmass quite like Betula. A destination for tastemakers and connoisseurs, Betula boasts a rotation of DJs on the weekends, as well as a refined menu by chef Laurent Cantineaux and an outrageously chic dining room by Venezuelan architect and restaurateur Juan Carlos Pérez Febres.
Together, Cantineaux and Febres own Bonito in St. Barth and bring the same upscale island vacation atmosphere to Betula, which adds a fun spin to dining out in the cold mountains of Aspen.
And it lives up to its reputation, eschewing the usual log cabin aesthetics in favor of crisp white linens, comfy cream seats, and farmhouse vibes that provide an elevated flair to any post-ski meal. Walking through the dining room is an experience unto itself, with sharply dressed diners cozying up amongst shelves of books and crackling fires, we knew we were in for a good night.
Local Colorado fare is showcased on the menu with nods to Japanese, Mexican, Latin, and New American flavors. The bonito ceviche, prepared in a Leche de Tigre marinade, is exquisitely sharp and tangy. And the hamachi tiradito — which blends Japanese elements like the hamachi fish with a Latin preparation — is truly breathtaking. Delicate, light, yet simultaneously sour and spicy, the fish is delicately prepared and lets the produce do all the heavy lifting. With the seafood out of the way, it was time to dive into the burrata and winter squash prepared with a French vadouvan, a spin on the classic Indian masala. The complexity of this dish was pushed even further with ambrosial dried fruits and crunchy pops of pistachio.
The mezcal cocktails are the perfect accompaniment to the delectable dishes, from the strong and spicy pinche Picante — a Dona Venga mezcal infused with jalapeño and topped with grapefruit bitters — to the smooth and citrusy punch of the El Alebrije, which combines yuzu with ginger syrup for a spicy, refreshing libation.
By the time the mains arrived at the table, we were feeling great. Each dish was plated beautifully, and the table went silent as we devoured our first few bites. The black Angus picanha — which is the most marbled part of the sirloin — was tender and flavorful, complete with Venezuelan avocado salsa, umami mushrooms, and pillowy roasted potatoes. Meanwhile, the crispy skin striped bass was cooked to perfection, with the salty and flavorful skin giving way to delicate and moist fish, which was paired with a Thai-inspired coconut curry sauce and black rice.
Throughout the meal, the service was sharp and attentive, with our server answering all of our questions and going above and beyond by suggesting drink pairings and their own favorites on the menu. When dessert came around and we needed some help making a decision, we weren’t led astray.
The rum-soaked tres leches cake topped with a luxurious dulce de leche crémeux was a decadent end to the night. Salty, sweet, and wonderfully creamy, each bite was better than the last, with notes of sweetened milk lingering on our tongues long afterward.