SUMMER HAS ALWAYS BEEN THE TIME TO EMBRACE THE OUTDOORS, THIS YEAR MORE SO THAN EVER. SO, WHEN IT’S TIME TO RAISE A GLASS, HEAD FOR THESE FABULOUS PATIOS AND ROOFTOP DECKS FOR COCKTAILS AND NIBBLES WITH A VIEW.
Vail's Alpenrose exudes true European charm. PHOTO COURTESY OF ALPENROSE
Alpenrose has been a Vail staple since 1974, but new ownership in 2018 has elevated the dining experience here. The Thoma family, which has restaurants in Germany (as well as Almresi in Vail), brought in a shipping container of interior decor and fine china from Europe, delivering authentic flair to this faux Bavarian ski town. The servers, many hailing from the old country, bustle between tables in South Tyrolean-style corduroy vests and lederhosen, cowhide aprons and felt caps with feathers.
PHOTO COURTESY OF ALPENROSE
Choose to sit on the deck out front, for people-watching on Vail’s Meadow Street, or on the secluded patio tucked behind this charming alpine restaurant. Rough-hewn wooden tables and chairs with hearts carved in them get cozied up with pillows, sheepskins and cowhide throws. The classic order: a stein of beer paired with a freshly baked German pretzel served with Bavarian Obatzda cheese dip. The doughy twist will arrive at your table hanging ceremoniously from an antler. The Röstibällchen, rustic potato balls stuffed with Swiss cheese and bacon, is a delight, perhaps best enjoyed with an Aperol spritz. 100 E. Meadow Drive, Ste. 25, Vail, 970.476.8899, alpenrose-vail.com
TERMINAL BAR AT UNION STATION
Situated on Wynkoop Plaza at Denver’s landmark Union Station, the Terminal Bar patio is a perfect spot for urban people-watching in the heart of LoDo. From wooden benches under a white canopy, with the 1881 station’s Italian Romanesque-style facade as your backdrop, you can gaze down 17th Street to Wazee, where the original Terminal Bar was once located. Choose from a lineup of Colorado craft beers, including seasonal brews from Ratio Beerworks and Crazy Mountain Brewery. On a warm day in the Mile High City, summery cocktails like the herbal blackberry sour or blueberry hibiscus martini promise cool refreshment. And while there are plenty of savory treats on the menu, any time of day is right for fried doughnut holes tossed in cinnamon and powdered sugar with a side of coffee ice cream. 1701 Wynkoop St., Denver, 720.460.3701, terminalbardenver.com
Corrida, Boulder. PHOTO COURTESY OF CORRIDA
Located on the rooftop of the former Daily Camera building, Corrida is a sophisticated steakhouse that specializes in cuisine from northern Spain, under the direction of executive chef Paul Jaramillo. For happy hour, settle into a fireside seat on the sprawling open-air patio and enjoy tapas with unimpeded views of Boulder’s dramatic flatirons. The rolling drink cart will come to you for gin and tonics crafted tableside. If it’s a chilly summer night, tuck into one of Corrida’s five private, alpine-themed rooftop yurts and indulge with a multicourse dinner (wine pairings optional; reservations required). 1023 Walnut St., Boulder, 303.444.1333, corridaboulder.com
MAYA AT THE WESTIN RIVERFRONT
The patio at Maya at The Westin Riverfront in Avon overlooks the Eagle River and the slopes of Beaver Creek. The hotel recently underwent upgrades to its lobby, and the expansive terrace also got a spruce-up with new deck furniture just in time for summer. Maya is a modern Mexican kitchen with a menu that showcases chef Richard Sandoval’s vibrant take on traditional recipes, from scratch-made tacos to ceviches crafted from authentic Latin ingredients. On cool evenings, gather around the deck’s fire pits for tableside guacamole and a pepino mezcal, a refreshing sipper with cucumber, lime juice, honey and mint. You have choices here: The drink menu features more than 150 agave-based spirits and house-infused tequilas. Maya is bringing back Friday Afternoon Club, known as FAC, the popular evening outdoor live music series on the terrace from 6 to 9pm. 126 Riverfront Drive, Avon, 970.790.5500, riverfrontdining.com/maya
54thirty, Denver. PHOTO COURTESY OF 54THIRTY
Denver is proudly situated at 5,280 feet above sea level. The Mile High City’s highest open-air rooftop bar, perched 20 floors up, atop Le Méridien Denver Downtown, takes its name from its own elevation: 5,430. In summer, pair sky-high views with handcrafted cocktails and small bites from a globally inspired menu. The atmosphere is upscale and inviting with comfy lounge seating, private cabanas and fire pits. Sip drinks like Red Rocks, a blend of vodka, Aperol, lemon and soda water, and nosh on the cheese and meat board, which pairs cheeses like Beehive bourbon aged cheddar and MouCo camembert with prosciutto and bresaola—all with sweeping views of the Rocky Mountains and Denver’s skyline as your backdrop. Seating is first-come, first-served by waitlist. 1475 California St., Denver, 720.996.1558, 54thirty.com
Kisbee on the Roof, Denver. PHOTO COURTESY OF KISBEE ON THE ROOF
KISBEE ON THE ROOF
When you need a respite from shopping at Louis Vuitton and Tory Burch, head for Kisbee on the Roof, an upscale cocktail bar perched nine floors above the fray. It’s the crowning jewel over The Jacquard, a 201-room luxury hotel in the heart of Cherry Creek. The sparkling rooftop lap pool, available to hotel guests, adds to the ambiance, but it’s the 180-degree mountain and city views that will command your attention. After a pandemic hiatus, this elevated rooftop bar reopened with an all-new food and beverage program, a fresh look and new events. It’s the perfect spot to unwind, watch the sun set and sip Kisbee’s newest signature cocktail for summer, the Menehune, a refreshing blend of Mo Jones white rum, lemon, blueberry, cucumber, basil and Fever-Tree soda water. Pair it with the watermelon salad, a dish of compressed watermelon, local honey, aged balsamic, feta, mint and pistachio. 222 Milwaukee St., Denver, 303.515.2000, thejacquard.com/rooftop