Attached to the Hotel Columbia, overlooking the gondola to Mountain Village, this contemporary American restaurant incorporates local ingredients in as many dishes as possible. My appetizer of goat-cheese burrata came with heirloom tomatoes, pumpkin seeds, savory pumpkin-seed oil and arugula. The buffalo tenderloin that followed was very flavorful, and was accompanied by risotto studded with foraged porcini mushroom. A short but well-chosen wine list focuses on California, France and Italy.
COSMOpolitan 300 West San Juan Avenue. Tel. (970) 728-1292.
This former house a short walk from the Hotel Columbia has no view of note, but it ranks as one of Telluride’s leading restaurants. In a cozy space decorated with bright landscapes, we started with a selection of house-made sausages, of which the sweet and savory chicken-cranberry and the Asian-inflected duck-mushroom versions were especially delicious. I also relished my main course of Colorado striped bass, served with meaty mushrooms and crunchy haricots verts.
221 South Oak 221 South Oak Street. Tel. (970) 728-9507.
We enjoyed a fine Italian lunch at this classic restaurant on Colorado Avenue, Telluride’s main commercial street. I particularly enjoyed a plate of citrus-cured salmon served with crunchy white cabbage and tangy Borettane onions. The steep $29 price tag of the homemade tagliatelle with porcini mushrooms was less palatable. But I would return just to take advantage of the impressively broad selection of Italian wines. I ordered a sprightly Picollo Gavi di Gavi, and a lush La Cappuccina “Arzimo” Passito for dessert.
Rustico Ristorante 114 East Colorado Avenue. Tel. (970) 728-4046.