Restaurant Reveal: Legends Bar and Grill at Park City Mountain Village redefines resort food
When Chef Jared Hedrick came on board as Executive Chef of Legends Bar and Grill at Park City Mountain Village, he and Executive Chef of Mountain Dining Alex Malmborg were tasked with building a menu and dinner business almost from scratch.
“When I came, we didn’t really have a lot of recipes for anything; we just had the ideas,” Hedrick said. “Working closely with Alex to figure out what’s the flavor profile that we want; what’s the look; really just building out each individual dish by itself, and testing it … all of it was really fun to create.”
Malmborg said he hired Hedrick specifically to help revamp and improve the overall menu at Legends, and to try to reform the dinner service that had long been overshadowed by lunch and après crowds.
“We definitely saw an opportunity to increase the amount of business that [Legends] does…We have a full dinner menu now, with some really great options on it,” Malmborg said.
Choosing local, fresh ingredients, including hosting a series of farm-to-table dinners during the summer, helped shape this winter’s menu and boost the success of dinner since 2016.
“We did a maple-brined pork tenderloin that had some very good feedback over the summer, so we decided to translate that more into a winter dish,” Hedrick said.
Being a ski resort gastropub has its responsibility to meet certain menu choice expectations, but it doesn’t limit the quality of dishes Legends offers.
“We try to cater to skiers, so we have to have the things that people coming off the mountain are gonna want, when they come into a bar-type setting,” Malborg said. “We have to have the burgers; we have to have nachos; we have to have wings – those things that you would typically see in a ski resort bar. And we sell a ton of them. But we definitely try to do those things elevated.
“We use the best ingredients we can use, and also to present them in a way that isn’t just a pile of wings on a plate, or a pile of chips with melted cheese on it,” he added. “We try to make them look really visually appealing, as well as delicious.”
The overall goal for Legends – one of only two Park City resort restaurants with table service and a full bar – is to give their patrons an experience that rivals any they could find on Main Street.
“The end goal is we trying to make people come for the food as much as for the skiing,” Malmborg said.
So in addition to the burgers and nachos, Legends offers dishes such as Wagu top sirloin steak, striped bass with a blend of flavors, textures and temperatures, and crispy skinned sous vide cornish game hen, which Malmborg describes as, “The skin is really crispy, but the flesh literally just melts off the bird.” Even their crispy garlic-ginger soy-glazed cauliflower appetizer has earned a fandom eager to ask for the recipe – which Hedrick often agrees to share.
“I love deliver the food to tables, talking to the guests, just to see reactions, amping up that quality of service,” Hedrick said. “I can’t tell you how many times a winter I get asked for the recipe [of the cauliflower dish]. It’s just absolutely wonderful, it’s easy to make, it’s fun. And that gives that guest that experience that we’re really looking for.”
Legends Bar & Grill is located inside the Legacy Lodge at the Park City Mountain Village, 1345 Lowell Avenue. Open for lunch, après ski and dinner Sunday through Thursday 11:00 a.m. to 9 p.m. and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. For information, call 435-658-5812 or visit parkcitymountain.com.
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Park City Library director Adriane Herrick Juarez hosts the Library Leadership Podcast that helps and inspires librarians across the country to strengthen their libraries.