Sophisticated Living Indianapolis

SEP-OCT 2017

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Daily afternoon hot chocolate bar at e Arrabelle e Arrabelle's rooftop lap pool One of three ice skating rinks in Vail Village slmag.net 57 pick-me-up and for those so inclined, there's a host of heartier entrée options and a full bar. The altitude and uptick in activity mean that I'm always looking to the next meal, and in Vail there are several culinary institutions, but few have the staying power of Sweet Basil, which opened in 1977 and has remained a favorite of both locals and visitors (sweetbasilvail.com). Situated in the heart of Vail Village, their modern American cuisine is accompanied by a globally sourced wine list of more than 500 selections. Menu standouts that are as pretty on the plate as the palate include the charred octopus, the Alaskan Halibut, Barramundi A La Plancha, and the tastes-like-summer Strawberry Tart. Within the cozy and rustic surroundings of Sweet Basil's sister restaurant, Mountain Standard, diners are treated to upscale gastro-pub fare cooked over a wood-fired grill (mtnstandard.com). Our favorites among the fire-kissed features included the calamari with pineapple curry, sweet and spicy peppers, Thai basil and black lime peanuts as well as the Colorado lamb sirloin, served with sweet pepper piperade, charred eggplant, chickpea fritter and basil chimichurri. For me, half the fun of skiing is dressing the part, and shopping could be classified as a sport in Vail, where you can find everything from a kitschy $10 t-shirt in a souvenir shop to a limited edition $15,000 ski jacket at Gorsuch (gorsuch.com). While there are free shuttle options to get you from one side of town to the other, walking in the fresh mountain air on the paved trail that winds along the banks of Gore Creek through the center of town is a simple pleasure that only adds to my running list of Vail's beguiling attributes. Cozied up to an outdoor fire pit at the base of Lionshead Mountain with my fingers gingerly wrapped around the stem of a champagne flute, I can't help but think that the sprightly bubbles dancing about mirror my giddy emotions at the end of another action-packed day in Vail. sl

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