I feel the need—the need for…CHEESE.

Well, dear reader, I have found my people. They are cheese people. Clark Norris, executive chef at Silver Lake Lodge and Corrine Cornet-Coniglio, have brought the art of handcrafted cheese to Deer Valley. And, considering I have the need to eat cheese nearly every night—sometimes as my meal—it stands to reason that I would find a certain connection with people who revel in the joy of cheese-making. Not to mention cheese-eating.

Imagine my delight when I was invited to a cheese tasting with this dairy-loving duo. And then, imagine the expression on my face when a plank of assorted cheese was set between us in a booth at Royal Street Café. Trust me when I tell you, we were the envy of every passer-by. (One skier stopped, tableside, and said, with some reverence in his voice, “Is that a thing you can order? Because I could just have that for every meal.”) Seriously, I could get used to this.

Over bite after bite of perfectly-aged and cured cheeses, we discussed the roaring success of the new-this-year Deer Valley Cheese program. The cheeses are not only served in all the restaurants, but they’re sold at the Deer Valley Grocery~Café.

“It’s all we can do to keep up with demand,” Clark admitted. “The other lodges are using Meadowlark a lot.” That would be the double-cream soft-ripened cow’s milk cheese. It’s in a white rind, and handmade in the Frence Moule a la louche tradition.

The name actually reflects the cheese’s origins. “There is always a meadowlark in the valleys of Heber and Midway, singing over the pastures as the cows graze,” he said. “This cheese is truly “terroir’—“

“Wait,” I interrupted. “Explain that term, please?”

“Terroir is the French tradition of making cheese from local cows eating local grasses,” Corrine said. “I’m very proud that we make Utah Terroir cheese, born right here.”

Corrine acquired an interest in learning the art of French cheese making as result of her former career selling cheese-making equipment. “I was traveling a lot in France and Germany,” she said. “And I just wanted to know how to do it.” Cue the career change, and she’s been making cheese for 10 years.

I deferred to the experts in choosing accompaniments for each cheese. Corrine steered me to the black walnut confit with the Blue Belle. “It’s aged over 60 days, “ she explained as she made the first cut into the new wheel. “The Blue has a mind of its own, so the first tasting is always a surprise.”

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For the record, that surprise was totally pleasant. A fun fact: Every line in the blue cheese is the result of forty holes that are poked in each wheel to give the culture room to grow.

Next, we tasted some house-dried pears with the Meadowlark—firm, buttery and delicious. Then, the Moon Shadow. I can’t say, out loud, that I have a favorite among these cheeses, but this one comes awfully close. It’s ash-ripened, and while the goat’s milk is 100 percent local, the ashes are imported from France. “They are vegetable ashes from the vine leaves in the Loire Valley,” Corrine explained. I can’t stress enough how much this sort of detail makes my day. Eating a product that is hand-crafted with such care is a privilege—and it’s clear Corrine feels the same way about making it.

“I work at night when no one is here,” she explains. “Cheese doesn’t like to be stressed or rushed—me neither. And, it needs to age.”

We moved onto Provence Kid, the fresh goat cheese encrusted with Herbes de Provence. It is served in a bruschetta on the Royal Street Café menu (yum), and is the so good that if I were to be left, unattended, with a jar of this cheese, I would eat it directly out of the container in an embarrassingly brief timeframe.

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Fair warning—Corrine and Clark rigidly adhere to the sanctity of the goat’s milk season. So, if you are having a hard time finding the goat’s milk cheeses in mid-February or early March, fear not—they will be back as soon as the milk supply is replenished. Trust me, it will be worth the wait.

In the meantime, pick up some of the Triple Truffle, a triple-cream Camembert-style Brie that is infused with black truffles from Umbria, Italy. Trust me, it’s not a bad way to pass the time. Creamy and earthy, it’s the kind of cheese that makes a person want to alternate bites with sips of wine.

We were all smiles at the table as we finished up our tasting—all of us noting that the experience had lifted our moods. “We don’t do this enough,” Corrine explained. “Sitting and tasting is a luxury.” And then, she said something that will now be my personal mantra:

“If you’re having a bad day, say, “Cheese.”

Well played, Corrine. Well played.

Deer Valley Resort Announces Special Take-Away Menu for Super Bowl Sunday

Just in time for the big game, the resort has announced a take-away menu guests can order from and pick up at Deer Valley~Grocery Café for their Super Bowl parties. 

Super Bowl to-go menu options include:

    • Chilled cooked shrimp
    • Chilled Dungeness and Opilio crab legs
    • Housemade tortilla chips and salsa fresca
    • Purple, sweet and russet potato chips with caramelized onion and balsamic dip
    • BBQ and cilantro lime glazed pork ribs
    • Buffalo-style chicken wings
    • Pulled pork sliders
    • Mini cup cakes
    • Assorted half-size cookies
    • Assorted brownies and bars
    • Mini chocolate éclairs
    • Cashew caramel corn
    • Football shaped sugar cookies

Additional information and pricing for the take-away menu items can be found at deervalley.com. Orders may be placed by calling 435-615-2400. Orders must be placed by 5 p.m. Saturday, February 1, and picked up at the Café by 7 p.m. Sunday, February 2, 2014.

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Deer Valley Grocery~Café serves fresh roasted coffee and espresso drinks, soups, chilies, stews, salads made with seasonal ingredients, Panini sandwiches, creative appetizer and entrée specials, housemade breads, desserts, cakes and other freshly baked items. The café also offers daily soup, sandwich and salad specials. A selection of gourmet grocery items, house prepared take-away entrees, as well as wine, beer and liquor are available for purchase.

Deer Valley Grocery~Café is open daily from 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. and located in the Deer Valley Plaza building at 1375 Deer Valley Drive, Park City, UT 84060.

Paddleboarding Birthday Party

Lance bdayOur first stand up paddleboard experience was such a rousing success, that no sooner were our feet dry, and lunch eaten, than Lance decided he wanted to celebrate his impending 10th birthday by inviting a few pals to try the sport with him and then have lunch at the Deer Valley Grocery~Café.

I, for one, could not think of a more fun way to celebrate my firstborn son’s first decade. Trent Hickman, owner of Park City SUP, was thrilled. “I love when people get excited about the sport after the first try,” he said. “I can’t wait for the party!”

paddlesWe booked one board per child, and one for me, for one hour. I figured that it made sense to have an adult on the water, and since Trent would likely be on and off throughout the hour, tending to other guests—and I’m crazy about SUP—I nominated myself as the adult. Secretly, I was hoping that Seth would get up the nerve to paddle solo, and kick his old mom off the water, but I didn’t tell him that. Fact is, he announced up front that he preferred to “ride with the professional.”

trent bdayIt was, by far, one of the easiest birthday parties I have ever planned. The team at Deer Valley Grocery~Café made it easy—Janine (DVGC Manager) and I sat down with a menu a couple of weeks ahead of time, and scrutinized it for party-friendly options.

Kid-favorite/birthday party staple pizza? Check.
Lemonade? Check.
Unexpected fun nosh in the form of house-made potato chips in multiple colors and flavors? Check.
Menu settled, the countdown began.

About a week before the party, Lance got into the habit of checking the weather forecast. I keep trying to explain to him that “forecasts” in Utah are more like “suggestions of what could happen at any given time on any given day,” because the weather can change three or more times in an hour. (There’s a reason that locals wear out the phrase, “If you don’t like the weather, wait five minutes.”) Still, there were thunderstorms predicted on the day of the party. I reasoned that we needed only one hour of clear weather—the hour we planned to be on the water. Fortunately, the morning of the party dawned just partly-cloudy, with the storm clouds hovering just outside of Deer Valley Resort.

kids bdayAnd so, we paddled. The kids assembled—most had paddled previously—and Trent offered a few words of safety instruction, and we were off. Seth announced to Trent, “I’ll ride with you.” Trent, as I suspected, needed to tend to business on the shore, so he suggested that Seth ride on mine. And, just like that, the kid sold me up the proverbial (and literal) river. “I don’t trust her, she’s not a professional!” Quick-thinking Trent said, “She’s better than a pro—she’s your MOM!” and Seth climbed aboard. I have never had more fun supervising a party—just watching the kids invent games while they paddled, “accidentally” fall into the water, and even take sunbathing breaks (I’m looking at you, Anna!) was a hoot.

Seth bdayThe hour-long rental was perfect—the kids worked so hard on the boards that they were wiped out after about 45 minutes, and then splashed around and goofed off for another 10 or 15 minutes before we dried off for lunch. Trent took me aside and said, “I hope we can get Seth out a couple more times this summer—he’s on the verge of gaining the confidence he needs to paddle solo, and I’d love to see that happen.” I made a mental note to use that little tidbit to entice Seth to keep at it.

candlesAbout five minutes into lunch, those storm clouds moved in, and rained onto the deck awning that covered our tables. The kids told jokes, did magic tricks and generally ignored the weather while the adults shook our heads in amazement at the luck of it all. Pizza and chips were consumed (the grownups enjoyed the DVGC Burger—delish!) and by the time we served cake, the weather had cleared.

Birthday groupAfter lunch, we rounded up the kids for a “hike” along the paths around the ponds, and a couple of photo ops. I had to take a moment to look at my child and his wonderful friends—at least one of whom he’s known since birth. Jeff and I looked at them—and then at each other—in amazement. How lucky we are that our children are growing up in a community where they bond with their friends over interesting outdoor sports, and laugh uproariously while they do it. The fact that we have Deer Valley as our playground all-year is an amazing thing, and one we don’t take for granted.

Dinner at the Deer Valley Grocery~Café

dvgc- (3) Park City and Deer Valley Resort have many secrets only known by a select few (generally local folks, a few visitors in the know, or natural explorers). One of them might still be the Deer Valley Grocery~Café located at the Deer Valley Plaza. This restaurant stands as a refreshing oasis of calm, fine food, casual ambiance and relaxation, a stone’s-throw away from the busy commercial heart of Park City.

In fact, barely one mile separates the Grocery~Café from the bustling Historical Main Street. There, visitors will discover a place filled with serenity, framed by nature and offering sensibly priced meals on a deck facing a pond that now welcomes stand-up paddleboarding during the day and entire families of ducks that take over the water front when the sun is ready to set.

dvgc- (20)This pristine location is already known for its wonderful breakfast with delightful croissants and other morning pastries, something I have experienced since the place was taken over by Deer Valley Resort. It has gradually been gaining popularity before becoming the choice breakfast place in Park City. It is also a great spot to take someone to lunch and have a quiet conversation accompanied by good food.

dvgc- (10)What most people still don’t realize is that the Grocery~Café can also be a wonderful location for a casual, yet delightful dinner. This is something I discovered for the first time a few evenings ago and that I am definitely going to repeat.

If walking the short distance between Main Street and Deer Valley Plaza is not quite what you had in mind, just hop in your car. If you’re coming from Park City, drive up Deer Valley Drive or descend Royal Street if you are staying up the hill; you’ll always find abundant parking for your car and you’ll be welcome “Deer Valley style” by a staff that never forgets how important their guests are.

Since beautiful weather rules almost constantly in Utah, any day will do. When you get there, just place your order at the counter and pick a table on the deck. Dinner is served from 5 to 8:30 p.m. during the summer and it’s not rare to see diners linger on well into the cool evening. After you’ve ordered at the counter, the servers will bring the order right to your table.

dvgc- (17)Perhaps the best way to prepare for all the delightful options offered by the Grocery~Café extensive menu, is to go online and review its tantalizing array of fares in advance. There are great starters, a large selection of salads, the classic Deer Valley panini sandwiches and wraps, some great soup and gazpacho, plus the usual hot specialties ranging from pizza to quiche. For dinner, the Grocery~Café also offers an extensive list of specials with a good selection of vegan and gluten-free options.

dvgc- (6)The gazpacho was recommended to us, so that’s how we started our dinner. It was the perfect appetizer on such a beautiful summer evening. We continued by sharing a few small plates; the cedar plank salmon that was literally melting in the mouth and received the perfect accompaniment of rhubarb rosemary compote.

We also wanted to sample the duck breast and were not disappointed. It was roasted to perfection and was just delicious. Somehow, we also wanted to try the chicken wrap that was to die for, and dying we almost did from such a feast, but we still managed to conclude the evening with the appropriately named “World famous biscotti” for dessert. What a treat and what a discovery!

A superb evening, a relaxing, casual and beautiful setting, plus a very affordable menu have added the Deer Valley Grocery~Café to our very select list of great dinner spots in Park City. The tranquility of the site, its informality, a staff that goes out of their way to make sure everything is perfect, all these elements bring a piece of magic hard to duplicate anywhere.

Make sure to experience it during these last weeks of summer and I’ll guarantee that you too will become fans. As for us, we’ll soon be back!

Swapping the Supermarket for the Deer Valley~Grocery Cafe

girls night outSummer may be a vacation for my kids, but I’m still on duty. For instance, the people must be fed, and I find myself at the supermarket with alarming frequency. So, it was a double treat to let my family dine without me, and head out to a “grocery” of a different kind, for a Girls’ Night Out.

I rallied some friends to try the small plates menu offered each evening by the Deer Valley Grocery Cafe. We hit it at the perfect time–just as the soft light of early evening was dappling the pond. (Purple prose notwithstanding, that’s EXACTLY how it looked). A couple of families were enjoying dinner after stand up paddle boarding. We, on the other hand, were enjoying a bottle of Liberty School Cabernet Sauvignon.

We ordered liberally–after all, it was our first visit, so it was incumbent upon us to sample as many of the menu offerings as possible. Nothing disappointed. Among our favorites: the charcuterie platter, the cedar planked salmon with strawberry rhubarb compote and the beef tenderloin.

My personal favorite (I couldn’t stop myself from making joyful exclamations after each bite) is an item that will be on the menu at various points this summer: Fried Heber Valley Halloumi, a Greek style cheese served with honey, Marcona almonds, a sherry reduction, arugula and baguette. The dish hits all the right tart/sweet/savory notes, and feels completely indulgent.

photo (7)Sitting on the patio, we noticed that the evening only got prettier as it wore on. There is a joke in there somewhere about people in bars, but I promise I had only one glass of wine, and the changing light and achievement of the perfect temperature by 7:30 p.m. did all the work for us. That, and the fact that the staff made us feel as though we were honored guests.

By the time we had worked our way through all of the delicious dishes, it was clear that there was no room for dessert. This fact, however, was lost on Meg, the service team leader at the cafe. “You have to have the ice cream sandwiches,” she insisted. “There are three in the order…and three of you.” My dining partners attempted to demur. I know Meg to be a wise woman, so I overruled them:

ice cream sandwich“They don’t know what they are talking about,” I said. “Ignore them–they only THINK they don’t have room.” And what do you know? I was right.

Ski Prep- Top 6

In our house, fall isn’t really one season, but two: “Almost Ski Season” and “Ski Season.” We spend the Almost Ski Season getting our ski bags sorted out, and generally getting our heads in the game. Here, the top six ways my family and I prepare for the ski season:

1. Just a bit more summer….

I know, I know, it’s like skier blasphemy—we spend half the year fantasizing about recreating that perfect run from the previous ski season, so why in the name of Hidden Treasure would I need more summer? Well, there is something about summer that just reinforces my longing for winter. I’ve had my fill of warm weather, and I’m ready to stash my flip-flops, and slide into my sheepskin boots. Or my cute high-heeled boots. Or the fun magenta lace-ups. When you live in snow country, your boot wardrobe is diverse.  Also, historically, when we travel to a warm climate in autumn, the snow gods hear us and dump snow. So…we spent the kids’ fall break soaking up the sunshine in Florida, giving our flip flops one last big outing, and then—Boom! We came home to a solid October 26 storm. You’re welcome.

2. The October Storm 

This year’s flake-fest happened exactly one day later than last year’s. Both served as opportunities to dig out the winter gear, figure out what fits, needs replacing, We pulled out jackets, pants, helmets, and boots. We determined everyone needed new jackets, Mom and Dad needed new pants, too, and the boys had plenty of pants to keep them warm on the hill and the school playground during the week. (This is key—the kids here actually wear their bib pants at school all day, to save the hassle of suiting up repeatedly for snow play.)

3. Comic Relief
The Saturday after the big storm coincided with the Saturday before Halloween—and Seth had a birthday party to attend where my friend Belinda revealed her heretofore hidden (to me) face-painting skills. We went straight from there to shop for soft goods—and brought our own entertainment committee. Seth walked into Jans and Cole Sport announcing,

“I am a ZOMMMMMBIE!” and kept us giggling through what is otherwise an extremely tedious process (shopping with kids, that is.) Jackets accomplished, except for mom, but I snuck my new duds into the gear shopping day. What? What’s that?….

4. A second day of shopping.

There’s no way to get all the gear in one day when you have kids—shopping-averse kids, at that. So, we set out to make the rounds to upsize their equipment. Lance is in an annual rental program at Utah Ski and Golf, for which we paid an up-front fee before his first season, and all we have to do is show up in the fall with the previous year’s gear, and he gets fitted into his new size at no additional charge. 

While we were there, we bought him a new orange helmet to match his new blue and orange coat, plus ski gloves for Seth.  Next stop: Surefoot, where. Seth is enrolled in a trade-up program, so that each time he outgrows a pair of boots, we trade in and get half of what we paid for them back in credit toward the new pair. Then we headed to Jans to enroll him into the ski program—which works similarly: you purchase the gear at full price, then receive 40 percent back toward the purchase of a new pair when the first pair is outgrown, and so on. And you know you’ve done your job indoctrinating the kids into the “play inside in your gear” habit when you find your son skiing around Jans.

5. Candy. Lots and lots of Halloween Candy.  If you know me at all, you know I never ski without bribes—I mean rewards.  In our house, we know that Halloween Candy isn’t going to get gobbled up in the first week of November. I like that the holiday falls conveniently close to the start of ski season, because those mini Milky Ways and Twizzlers tuck nicely into the pockets of my jacket and pants. Don’t forget to hit me up for a sweet treat when you see me on the hill!

6. Brunch at Deer Valley Grocery Café. Duh. I mean, if you’re planning to ski for lunch a few times a week, you might as well get in practice. I ignored the siren call of the French Toast (I know, I know) and ordered oatmeal with tons of fresh and dried fruit. It can’t hurt to at least start pre-season training in “healthy” mode, right?

Counting Blessings in Park City

I wasn’t sure if I could handle the winter here when my husband suggested we move from Northern California to Park City. But living here for the past year has been even better than I could have imagined. Granted, the locals tell me we had a very mild winter last year, but we did it. This year I am ready for the snowfall with some help from a kind local (who I nicknamed my “winter consultant”). She took my husband and me under her wing and shared her snow secrets. We now have smart wool socks and sweaters, studded tires on our all wheel drive vehicles and “yak trex” (which are like snow tires for your boots to put on when it’s icy.) Thanks to my friend, I can say, “bring it on Mother Nature.” I count her as one of my many blessings in the past year.
What blessings will you count this Thanksgiving? Here is a list of some other things I am thankful for living in Park City:

Winter: It isn’t difficult to figure out why they call Utah snow, “the greatest snow on earth.” You can actually hear it crunch when you walk on it – harder for making snow balls because it is so dry and flaky. I am past the snow ball throwing stage so I don’t really mind. The snow is wonderful to ski on since the skis seem to grab the snow on the edges when I turn, giving me more control and agility. Not to mention, the snowflakes brush right off helping me to stay dry and warm so I can ski a few more runs instead of running to the lodge for relief from my damp gloves and jacket.

The beauty: What I have been told by the locals is that even in winter the sky here is always a beautiful bright blue. So they never get the winter blues even when it’s a long one. With the Wasatch Mountain range as a back drop, it takes your breath away. I try to drink in the beauty every single day.

The people: This is a town of very active people who, at a moment’s notice, are ready to invite you to join them in whatever activities they find out you may like. Whether they were locals or part time residents, this spring and summer, there was a constant flow of invitations from people of all ages to join a golf game, a hike, or a bike ride. I count my blessings for not losing too many golf balls at Park City Municipal Course and for all the places I explored with my new friends.

The activities: There is almost too much to do. We planned on doing some home improvements last year but who wants to stay home? There is the Sundance Film Festival, the FIS Freestyle World Cup Ski events, international ski jumping competitions at the Olympic Park, and of course, the chairlifts at Deer Valley to take me to a new mountain to explore. The events here seem to always be calling my name. In fact, they called so many times that my home never got updated bathroom fixtures or touch up paint on the doors and moldings, but then again my life has been filled with adventure.

The shopping: Did I tell you that I live within walking distance of TJ Maxx? I know. Enough said. My favorite factory outlet stores include the Gap, Banana Republic, Lucky Brand Jeans, Polo, and Coach. Did I mention that those are also all just around the corner? And they just opened a Bare Minerals Outlet store! Park City has the most amazing boutiques on Main Street for that something special and although I haven’t yet been to the City Creek Center in Salt Lake City, I am certainly grateful it’s there! I can’t wait to go at Christmas time to visit Macy’s, Michael Kors, TUMI, Nordstrom and Tiffany.

The food: Is it ok to be grateful for food? I guess so. I love to eat at Deer Valley~Grocery Café for breakfast and bring my laptop and just spend a couple hours writing there in the mornings. I was blown away by Fireside Dining experience at the Empire Canyon Lodge. My favorite restaurants on Main Street are Wahso – very classy take on Asian Cuisine and Flying Sumo is my first stop for sushi. We’ve taken many a guest to a combination of the High West Distillery and Butchers for whiskey tasting and dinner. There are many wonderful places to enjoy a delicious meal in Park City.

You: I have to say I am really blessed to have started last year as a blogger for the Deer Valley Resort Blog and I want to give a big shout out of thanks to you – the readers – for your warm response to my posts. You guys continue to read, comment, share on Facebook and Tweet posts from the blog. You’ve laughed with me (hopefully not at me) at my first attempts at skiing last year and all my rookie mistakes as I moved from a beginner to an intermediate level skier.
I definitely have many blessings to count this year and I hope you do, too. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving and I’ll see you on the runs at Deer Valley on opening day December 8th!

Deer Valley Grocery and Cafe – Nature at Your Doorstep

When you live in Park City, you live right in the center of paradise.  To a mountain lover like me, Park City is the most beautiful place on earth.  So when I am inside working on a stretch of long days in my home office, I go a little stir crazy.  Last week was one of those weeks.  I didn’t see the light of day with what seemed like an endless stream of projects. At the end of four intense days, I asked my husband, Jay, to get me out of the house, even if it was just for a drive. Well, he had a better idea.  He drove me directly to the Deer Valley Grocery ~ Cafe for a relaxing dinner on the deck.
I’d had breakfast inside the cafe last winter and loved their strong coffee and hot oatmeal with what seems like a hundred condiments piled on top – brown sugar, sliced almonds, raisins, etc. but I had never been there for dinner so I took my time in ordering.  Jay immediately went for the made-to-order cheeseburger when he saw the grill outside on the deck.  I had much more of a challenge with the tapas menu.

Clayton, our waiter, explained they have about twenty different small plates -tapas- which they constantly rotate.  The six I had to choose from all sounded wonderful – there were chicken lettuce wraps, smoked duck empanadas, Brussels sprouts with bacon and shallots, short ribs, grilled asparagus, etc.  You can see my dilemma.  With some help from Clayton, I settled on the duck empanadas and added a Caesar salad.

We grabbed our silverware, two glasses of water, our little number, and headed out to the deck.  In the evenings, the entire deck is shaded so every table is a prime location. We chose a table in the corner overlooking the pond and adjacent to pots overflowing with flowers.  When we sat down, Jay looked at me and said, “I had no idea this place was so nice!”

We love historic Main St. but the cafe had a whole different vibe to it. Nature was at our doorstep. Fish were jumping, mallard ducks were swimming by, and egrets were on the shoreline stalking their evening meal.  We were informed the pond is often frequented by moose wandering in for an early evening swim, and osprey circle and dive for fish. 

To our delight, Clayton walked out with a tub of breadcrumbs and gave us quite the show as he dropped them one by one into the water.  We watched fish versus ducks in what I dubbed, “The Battle of the Breadcrumb.” The ducks were often the victors but the fish gave a valiant fight as the jumped on top of each other sometimes coming completely out of the water to get closer to their treats.

When our dinner arrived, we scrambled back to our table. A waitress brought out a tray of condiments that included local mustards.  She was kind enough to leave it for Jay so he could sample them to his heart’s desire. The empanadas were delicious and the salad was the kind of Caesar I like, which I can only describe as “Caesery.” Even though we were stuffed, we opted for the bread pudding with caramel sauce anyways.  We knew we couldn’t eat the whole thing so we took the rest home after eating a couple of delicious bites.

Sitting on the deck after a glass of wine and a delicious meal, I felt reconnected with the paradise I love.  With the fish jumping, ducks swimming, and a slight breeze kicking in, the deck started filling up with more patrons and Jay smiled as he overheard someone say, “I had no idea this place was so nice.”

 

 

 

The Deer Valley Grocery ~ Café is open daily from 7:30 a.m. – 8:30 p.m. and is located in the Deer Valley Plaza building at 1375 Deer Valley Drive, Park City, Utah.

For more information and a sample menu click here.

Cheers to Summer at Deer Valley

September Bickmore and Bonnie Ulmer of Deer Valley Grocery~Café, produced the winning cocktail last month at the Park City Cocktail Contest when a panel selected this original cocktail, “Flower & Pine” as Park City’s “Signature Cocktail” for spring and summer 2012.

We met up with Bonnie Ulmer to find out what makes summer in Park City so great and to share a recipe for one of Deer Valley’s signature cocktails.

When did you come to Deer Valley?

I was one of the originals. Starting as a bartender and cocktail waitress at the Après Ski lounge, I started opening day in 1981. I have been making drinks here ever since.

What is a perfect summer day to you?

I usually have Sunday and Mondays off. We wake up early to get a little wakeboarding or waterskiing in on the Jordanelle or Deer Creek. On Sundays we make our way over to the Park City Silly Market for a while and then head back to the closest body of water for paddle boarding. We usually round the day off with a BBQ and of course a couple cocktails.

What is your favorite thing on the menu at Deer Valley Grocery~Cafe?

Ben Stevens, the chef at Grocery~Café makes the best Panini’s. I love to sit and eat on the deck.

What is your most memorable concert at Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater?

My favorite concert at the Snow Park Amphitheater had to have been Lyle Lovett. He was married to Julia Roberts at the time and all my friends and I kept trying to see if she was in the crowd somewhere.

Your must have treat at Deer Valley?

My favorite dessert has to be the McHenry’s Frozen Lemon Meringue Pie served at Royal Street Café.

What is your favorite cocktail?

Blueberry Mojito.

Biggest misconception about Utah liquor laws?

I have so many bar patrons surprised you can actually get a drink in Utah. Some of our cocktails, with liquor flavorings have as much as two and half ounces of liquor in them.

We asked Bonnie to share the recipe to her favorite cocktail, the Blueberry Mojito. It makes a great cocktail to enjoy over the Memorial Day weekend.

Cheers!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Deer Valley Blueberry Mojito

Yields: 1 Drink

Ingredients:

1 handful mint

1 tsp. granulated sugar

Quarter wedge of lime

½ to ¾ cup lemonade (preferably not from concentrate)

1 oz. premium light rum (Bacardi Silver brand suggested)

2 Tbsp. fresh or frozen blueberries (one tablespoon smashed to create some juice)

Splash of soda

½ oz. premium dark rum (Myer’s brand suggested)

Sprig of mint (for garnish)

Slice of lime (for garnish)

Ice

Procedures:

-  In a tall 16 oz. class, add mint leaves and sugar. Squeeze juice from the lime wedge into the glass. Mash the ingredients with the back of a spoon or a special wooden “muddler” until the mixture is fragrant. Fill the glass with ice.

- Add lemonade until the glass is 2/3 full. Add splash of soda then add light rum and blueberries and stir.

- Slowly pour dark rum into the drink so it floats on top.

- Garnish with a sprig of mint and lime, serve.