Come to Vail, Colorado, for its Bavarian-inspired atmosphere, architecture and cuisine. Inspired by Italian, German, Swiss and Austrian influences, Vail’s design and genuine hospitality date back to World War II. Vail’s founder Pete Siebert was a 10th Mountain Division soldier during the war and sought to emulate the character and charm of the European locations he experienced.
Here, you’ll enjoy the authentic flavors and hospitality, beloved by Siebert, throughout the villages. We invite you to discover the best of Bavaria with Vail’s German restaurants:
From the moment you enter Alpenrose, you’re whisked away for a visit at a German grandmother’s home. Featuring recycled wood, ski chairs from the olden days and bright-white paint, this spot’s decor evokes a rustic Bavarian charm.
The family-owned and -operated restaurant offers recipes from their roots in Germany’s Black Forest — and they love sharing their culture and recipes with visitors. Try their Austrian, German and Swiss dishes that’ll melt the chill in the air.
For groups: Enjoy the Walliser tomato fondue at long, comfy tables, or order the Raclette Grill & Fondue Combo — it’s designed for all-ages fun. A variety of foods can be cooked all at once, allowing for creativity and entertainment. Alpenrose loves children, too, so they can provide a special kids’ menu.
Other dishes to sample: filling goulash, savory snack plates, tender dumplings and kässpätzle pasta followed by traditional Alpine desserts. You can sip on another Austrian tradition, schnapps, in flavors like zirbenschnaps (made with fruit picked from the Austrian stone pine).
Seeking an only-in-Vail dining experience? The Alpenrose delivers dinner in a private gondola featuring a pre-fixe three-course menu. Originally from Italy’s South Tyrol, the gondola cabins were shipped to Austria for interior improvements, then traveled to south Germany for final exterior touches before making their way to Vail. A gondola car can seat four adults comfortably and it’s outfitted with a private Bluetooth speaker, romantic dimming lights and a small heater (though we still suggest you dress warmly). Be sure to make reservations far in advance!
As a sister restaurant to the Alpenrose, Almresi brings the flavors of the Bavarian region alive directly from the family’s German heritage. As soon as you walk up the stairs, you’ll feel like you’ve just taken the train to the Alps. Most of the authentic “cabin” decor — including rustic wood tables, red-checked napkins and flickering candles — were imported from Germany or Austria.
Want to take the kids for a nice dinner out? The staff welcomes all ages. Looking for a unique date restaurant? They have candlelight and fondue. Almresi — beloved for any occasion — brings a touch of romantic charm and European culture to Vail Village. You’ll love being served in a festive atmosphere featuring German, Austrian and Swiss tastes.
Sample menu favorites including schweinshax’n (a pork shank with sauerkraut), schweizer rösti (a Swiss dish made with potatoes, farmer’s cheese and smoked salmon) and schmorbraten (pot roast). Special beverages range from traditional glühwein to handcrafted sippers, chilled Bavarian brews and an expansive wine menu.
The Sonnanalp Hotel, a family-owned business with a distinctly international vibe, is home to another Vail favorite — the Swiss Chalet, a Swiss-style centerpiece to Vail’s alpine dining experience.
Here, you can taste traditional cuisine like schnitzel, käsespätzle (house-made Swiss dumplings topped with crisp onions and cheese), deliciously filling fondues and raclette (a cheesy, Swiss dish everyone will love). Save room for freshly made desserts including Austrian apple strudel and chocolate fondue.
If you’re a wine enthusiast, Swiss Chalet has you covered. You can sip from an award-winning list boasting more than 1,000 vino selections. According to the restaurant, the menu was designed with gemütlichkeit — or a state of friendliness, coziness and good cheer — in mind.
Pepi’s Restaurant and Bar
Pepi’s is tucked away in the Hotel Gastof Gramshammer, an iconic Vail spot founded in 1964 (it’s still owned and managed by one of Vail’s original families). The hotel and restaurant, located in the center of Vail Village, remain true to their original Austrian heritage and charm to this day.
The hotel features four main dining areas dripping in Austrian ambiance. The Antler’s Room (winter only) is internationally known for its tableside service and wild-game dinners. The main dining room specializes in Austrian dishes like bratwust and wienerschnitzel. Be seen on Pepi’s iconic outdoor deck (open summer and winter with heated covered option), especially during après ski. Over at Pepi’s Bar, you can listen to local musicians strumming while savoring authentic Austrian beers amid founder Pepi’s ski medals and trophies.
No matter the time of year, we hope you enjoy exploring these Bavarian restaurants the next time you’re in Vail. Share your favorite experience with us on Instagram.