Sweet Basil Takes Home Top Honors at Taste of Vail

Sweet Basil Takes Home Top Honors at Taste of VailChef/Partner Paul Anders of Sweet Basil took home top honors at the 14th Annual American Lamb Cook-Off at Taste of Vail for his Oaxacan Lamb Barbacoa, Mezcal Salsa Borracha, Navajo Fry Bread and Watercress. Second place went to Beano’s Cabin and third place went to Revolution/Hooked. Beano’s Cabin was also awarded the People’s Choice award.

Sweet Basil Takes Home Top Honors at Taste of VailThe lamb cook-off, sponsored by the American Lamb Board and held throughout the streets of Vail Village, showcased 22 of the area’s finest chefs preparing diverse dishes featuring Superior Farms Colorado leg of lamb. The lamb bites were complimented by samples from participating wineries.

“The barbacoa was traditional, made with banana leaves, adobo and Mexican spices,” said Anders. “We topped it with mezcal salsa and served it on Navajo fry bread. I love tortillas but I wanted to serve something more original. What is cool about the fry bread is that it is airy and light.”

Sweet Basil Takes Home Top Honors at Taste of Vail“We are always amazed how the Vail Valley chefs showcase leg of lamb in diverse and innovative dishes,” said Megan Wortman, executive director of the Denver-based American Lamb Board. “Many of this year’s dishes highlighted global flavors and trends – from Chargrilled Lamb Rogan Josh to Roasted Lamb Banh Mi to Smokey Lamb Ramen Bowl.”


Additional restaurants that participated in the 14th Annual American Lamb Cook-Off include:

  • Bistro 14
  • bol
  • Elway’s
  • Flame
  • Frost Creek
  • Game Creek Restaurant
  • La Tour Restaurant
  • Leonora
  • Mid Vail
  • Mountain Standard
  • Sauce on the Creek
  • Terra Bistro
  • The 10th
  • Toscanini
  • Two Elk
  • Vin 48
  • Vintage
  • White Bison
  • Wildwood Smokehouse 

About the Taste of Vail
Rated among the top food and wine festivals by Forbes, Travel Channel and USA Today, Taste of Vail is held at several different venues throughout North America’s most popular mountain resort from April 4-8, 2018. In addition to Lamb Cook-Off offered during this year’s Taste of Vail, the event includes Debut of 2017 Rosé, The Mountain Top Tasting and the Grand Tasting as well as extraordinary seminars held throughout the week. Taste of Vail is the nation’s only event that invites dozens of winemakers and owners from all over the world to pour wine and interact with participants. For more information visit www.tasteofvail.com

About the American Lamb Board
The American Lamb Board is an industry-funded research and promotions commodity board that represents all sectors of the American Lamb industry including producers, feeders, seed stock producers and processors. The Board, appointed by the Secretary of Agriculture, is focused on increasing demand by promoting the freshness, flavor, nutritional benefits, and culinary versatility of American Lamb. The work of the American Lamb Board is overseen by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the board’s programs are supported and implemented by the staff in Denver, Colo.