Fat Alley Opens at the Camel’s Garden as Oak!
Restaurateur Robbie O’Dell takes over at Telluride’s best location
Telluride is rocking as music lovers from around the world pour into town for the incomparable Telluride Bluegrass Festival, which kicks off tonight with FirstGrass and continues through Sunday with an amazing lineup that includes Sarah McLachlan, Bela Fleck, Emmylou Harris, The Decemberists, Robert Plant and Mumford & Sons.
Other than Town Park – Telluride’s absurdly beautiful festival venue – the weekend buzz will be at its best at Oak, the new restaurant at the Camel’s Garden Hotel.
Oak is the latest venture from Robbie O’Dell, who previously ran one of Telluride’s most popular restaurants, Fat Alley, which won people over with great barbeque and a friendly, casual vibe.
O’Dell has managed to keep that vibe, along with the fabulous comfort food, while upgrading his approach to match Telluride’s best location.
At the junction of Oak Street and San Juan Avenue, the Camel’s Garden is just a few steps from Lift 8 and the Gondola, an area that essentially serves as the “base area” of the Telluride Ski Resort as it descends into town.
Yet, in a setup unique to Telluride, the location doesn’t have a “base area” feel at all and blends perfectly with the rest of Telluride’s vibrant, historic business district.
O’Dell takes advantage of this location by expanding on the things that made Fat Alley so popular: Quality food and friendly service.
The menu includes Fat Alley favorites mixed with new offerings. Oak also capitalizes on the space’s great bar and huge patio for what has already become Telluride’s favorite afternoon hangout and what’s sure to be its best après ski destination.
“I love everything about the space and location,” O’Dell said of the new digs. “It allows me to do everything I did at Fat Alley and much more. This is going to be a place that locals and visitors embrace. It’s going to be fun. It’ll be Fat Alley, only better.”
Camel’s Garden co-owner Michael Zivian says O’Dell’s Oak is great fit for the space.
“Telluride has this wonderful balance between luxury and being a friendly, down-to-Earth, casual place,” Zivian said. “That’s what we exemplify at the Camel’s Garden. We give our guests the best amenities and location without the attitude. Oak fits perfectly into that mix.”
Co-owner Larry Holmgren said it is important to note that Oak is not a hotel restaurant.
“It’s independently owned, just like the Camel’s Garden,” Holmgren said. “Oak will be a great local hangout, have a terrific après ski and be a high-quality southern-style restaurant that locals, hotel guests and other Telluride visitors will all enjoy.”
As Camel’s Garden General Manager Scott Spencer puts it: “This is a win-win-win. It’s good for Robbie, good for our guests and it’s great for Telluride.”
Oak is open daily, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. For more information, call Oak at (970) 728-3985.