Food, Music & Art08/01/2018 10:37AM ● By Alesha Damerville
By Alesha Damerville
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS –“I wanted to bring something really different to Steamboat,” says Hannah Hopkins, co-owner of Bésame, a Latin-inspired restaurant in downtown Steamboat. The amalgamation of food, music and art has been Hopkins’ moving force throughout her life.
“Steamboat is at a point where I could do something a little bit different,” Hopkins says. “The food scene is amazing and evolving. I thought it was time to bring some new flair to Steamboat.”
Hopkins and her partner Jeremy Macgray opened Bésame in March of 2018, in the building that formerly housed Cantina. “The place had really good old bones,” Hopkins says. “My partner and I fell in love with the space – the brick and the old floors. We were excited to restore it.”
The restaurant’s concept, producing bold food inspired by South, Central and Latin American cuisine, is an organically-evolved operation between Hopkins and Bésame’s chef, Joe Campbell.
Hopkins wanted to share her favorite aspects of traveling through Spain and Ecuador with the Yampa Valley’s residents and visitors. “Chef Campbell is also well-traveled,” she says. “The restaurant is a combination of our experiences coming to the plate.”
“Our menu is around 85 percent gluten-free naturally," Hopkins adds, and she knows what she is talking about. She was a chef for years before becoming a restaurant owner. Many of our dishes are light, but packed full of flavor."
Tapas, one of the staples of the Bésame menu, are little bites created to inspire connection over the sharing of multiple plates. “It’s about lighter bites, less waste and you leave Bésame feeling full and not over-stuffed,” Hopkins says.
The menu offers tapas, cold plates, large shared plates and entrees.
Chiles, lime, melon, mango and coconut are some of the usual flavors to be found at Bésame. As far as the unusual, they also have a small section in their menu called the “hot zone,” introducing foods from around the equator. Curry, Thai, Jamaican and Latin flavors can be found in this section.
The cocktail list was thoughtfully created to complement the menu. Bésame’s skillful bartenders concoct fresh fruit mojitos, sangrias, and Spanish takes on classic cocktails. “Our wine list was one of the hardest parts,” Hopkins says. “I wanted to offer an all-Spanish wine list. Everything is imported from Portugal, Spain, Chile and Argentina.” They offer an eclectic wine list, with wine you won’t find anywhere else in Colorado.
Eye-catching art is strategically placed throughout the building to compliment the food and the space. Oil reproductions from Picasso and Diego Rivera hang on the walls, as well as paintings acquired through Hopkins’ travels and photographs exhibiting the Cuban culture.
“The calla lilies from Diego Rivera’s piece directly inspired the design of the space, which Vertical Arts helped me with,” Hopkins says.
Bésame offers an escape from the ordinary with their creative cocktails and vividly delicious dishes. For more information visit https://www.besamesteamboat.com This piece was sponsored by Bésame.
For more on Bésame’s featured photographer Catherine Zdeblick, see the article below.