Classic Aspen Dining

Hot Spots on the Double

Days before June’s Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, two pieces of prime real estate on the Mill Street pedestrian mall emerged from darkness, sending sighs of relief through the dining community.

By Amanda Rae July 1, 2014 Published in the Midsummer/Fall 2014 issue of Aspen Sojourner

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Image: Allie Welch

In the space adjacent to Wagner Park, formerly occupied by Pacifica, Jimmy Yeager opened Jimmy’s Bodega, a homey seafood-driven wine bar and mezcaleria with Pacifica alumnus Brian Nelson in the kitchen. Next-door, the Regal Watering Hole’s Scott and Carly Weber launched R&R Restaurant. Both did so in little more than two weeks.

“A strong team gave me the confidence to reach back on my thirty-plus years of experience and figure out how to make it happen,” says Yeager, who unveiled local-favorite Jimmy’s: An American Restaurant and Bar during Food & Wine in 1997 with a semi-secret “whisper party,” serving drinks only. This time, Jimmy’s Bodega boasts a full menu, 130 wines, and warp-speed service thanks to cleverly bottled cocktails available by the bucket.

The Webers’ R&R—“rest and relaxation,” though ever-bustling—featuring cool Veuve Clicquot patio lounge, straightforward comfort food (wasabi Caesar, Maine lobster roll, New York Strip) was another speedy, serendipitous brand expansion. “We always wanted to have our own restaurant,” muses twelve-year industry veteran Scott. And the Webers aren’t afraid of winging it: They acquired the Regal on a dare.

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