Mile High Dine and Recline: Stock and Ray, Avon

Written by Katie Rapon, Editor

Each month, Mile High CRE will highlight a new “dinner or lounging” place in the centenary state. A September feature is the new Stoke & Rye Restaurant located within the award-winning Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa, Avon, Vail Valley.

Formerly Maya, a modern Mexican kitchen by celebrity chef Richard Sandoval, the restaurant underwent a major renovation that began in April 2022, transforming it from a fairly simple space into a modern, bright and airy American grill that takes advantage of the stunning views of the site and is more in keeping with the overall design of the resort.

Denver-based Simple Brown Design was the interior designer and architect for the renovation, and Ann Benson Reddy & Associates served as the art consultant. The restaurant officially opened on June 19, 2022.

design

Semple Brown has been tasked with reimagining the restaurant’s layout and functionality. “The original design of the restaurant wasn’t lined up well along the glass and so our focus was on capturing stunning views of the mountains for as many seats as possible,” says Georgia Brown, curator at Simple Brown. “One of the things we thought a lot about was how the space would feel in the snow and how the space would feel in the summer. We designed a bright space because the eye has a hard time adjusting to the white on the outside with the dark inside.”

The result is a spacious and inviting dining room that embraces the natural beauty of the Rocky Mountains with earthy textures and rustic design elements mixed with metal and plants. Guests can also enjoy unparalleled views of Beaver Creek Mountain and the Eagle River on Stoke & Rye’s spacious patio, which offers several fire pits and a full-service outdoor bar.

Designing a restaurant within a resort comes with its own set of unique challenges, both from a logistical and a design perspective. Construction was carried out during the landing season. “We have closed the restaurant completely for two months or more to complete major renovations,” said Westin Riverfront General Manager Brian Harrier. “The Stoke & Rye space is brighter – it has lighter floorboards and paint. We also added a blond brick firewall that separates the dining space from the lounge/bar area.”

In addition, supply chain disruptions forced Semple to make several last-minute adjustments. “We actually ended up designing the furniture before we designed the finishes due to the long lead times of the furniture,” Brown says.

In redesigning the space, Semple carefully considered all components of the resort, to build a unique and cohesive experience. Brown felt lucky that the design firm had previously been involved in remodeling the Westin Riverfront lobby, making the restaurant’s design an easier transition. “It’s about making something look like it fits into a larger wallet, as well as making it feel special,” Brown added.

dishes

A world leader in contemporary Latin cuisine, Chef Richard Sandoval’s restaurant Stoke and Rye somewhat breaks the mold for the celebrity chef, when positioned among his extensive portfolio of restaurants located throughout the United States and in nine other countries.

“While the core of our portfolio is and always will be with Latin concepts, there are a few American brands like Stoke & Rye or Asian restaurants like Zengo that celebrate culture through other types of cuisine,” Sandoval explains. “One of the biggest challenges was creating a concept that resonated with the Vail Valley locals and the diverse mix of travelers.”

Sandoval spent over a year working to finish the Stoke & Rye roster. The menu reflects the Colorado landscape while embracing Chef Sandoval’s creative methods. The dishes are authentic, time-honored and traditional – slow roasting in wood embers, roasting, preserving, and smoking techniques bring the true flavors of great America’s food. Hand-cut steak and chops, flaming tomahawk, shelled oysters, seafood towers, a rack of lamb with herb crust, and a Colorado-caught home smoker line feature the signature menu, which also features a dynamic pastry program.

Attracting a cosmopolitan crowd, The Westin Riverfront guests are looking for a unique dining experience. Which is why it features bowls like 52 oz. Steak Tomahawk is on the menu. “It’s definitely a showroom — it’s a tableside flaming with whiskey and moonshine. It’s really a dramatic show that paints the entire dining room,” says Sandoval.

Many dishes at Stoke & Rye are prepared for sharing, such as Raclette. Also served at the table, this comforting dish includes cured meats, roasted potatoes, and house-roasted focaccia.

To keep locals coming back, Sandoval has changed the Stoke & Rye menu seasonally to add new dishes that highlight amazing, locally sourced Colorado ingredients.

To learn more about Stoke and Rye, visit: https://www.stokeandrye.com

Photos courtesy of Stock and Ray

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