By Ali Margo | May 26, 2017 | Food & Drink
Two Basalt debuts take farm-to-table to hear.
A pork chop with seasonal succotash from Free Range Kitchen & Wine Bar.
“When I told a customer I had no tomatoes for his burger, he looked at me like I had two heads,” says Steve Humble, co-owner with his wife, Robin, of the new Free Range Kitchen & Wine Bar (305 Gold River Ct., Basalt, 970-279-5199) in historic downtown Basalt. But Humble takes his garden-fresh mission seriously: “If tomatoes aren’t in season, or if I can’t get fresh tomatoes, then I’m not going to serve tomatoes.” Such a literal approach to the local-food philosophy has taken root down-valley, where a new breed of farm-to-table bistro has cropped up.
A vegan curry from Market Street Kitchen.
With the likes of Rock Bottom Ranch and Mountain Primal Meat Company nearby, Basalt restaurateurs have found the optimal location for sourcing high-quality local product. That’s why Aspenite Mawa McQueen decided to venture down-valley to Willits Town Center, where she opened Market Street Kitchen (499 Market St., Basalt, 970-510-5820). “We saw a real opportunity here, not only in terms of growth but in a demand for quality food and wine,” says the classically trained French-Ivorian chef, whose menu spans sweet and savory crêpes, tartines, salads, and savory bowls that feature local produce, meat, and cheeses—all in addition to an extensive wine list. “We saw a real need for the kind of elevated food you typically find in Aspen, but with more of a local atmosphere.”
PHOTOGRAPHY COURTESY OF MARKET STREET KITCHEN (CURRY); BY SHAWN O’CONNOR (PORK)