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Steamboat Magazine

Food is Art

08/07/2018 05:41PM ● By Alesha Damerville

By Alesha Damerville

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS – “You eat with your eyes first,” says Chef Joe Campbell when discussing food as an artistic medium. 

Campbell pushes his creativity to new places during his process of creating new dishes. “When I’m writing a recipe or coming up with a dish, I always try to visualize how to make the dish as eye-catching as possible,” he says. “I’m always trying to put myself in the guest’s seat, and question what I’d want to see. I always want to be surprised or blown away in some sense. We try to achieve that. When the plate hits the table, we want the guests thinking, ‘Wow, this is amazing!’ There is a lot of thought that goes into our dishes. Food is definitely art.” 

Campbell’s claim isn’t far-fetched. You can see his dedication to his craft with every meal concocted in Bésame’s kitchen. The dishes not only boast a unique profile, but also offer a visually stimulating presentation to intrigue diners. 

The watermelon gazpacho with blood orange sorbet is a stunning dish that offers a cool break from the summer heat. Campbell offers a unique twist on traditional ceviche, pulling flavors from Peru and Thailand. “The dish is a total east-meets-west, and it makes for a really explosive dish,” he says.

The creators of Bésame strive to provide a unique dining experience to their guests, which at times includes dishes you might have trouble finding outside of Steamboat. The passionfruit foie gras is almost too pretty to eat. Campbell starts with removing the seeds of a passionfruit, then pipes a foie gras mousse into its shell and tops it with the seeds. It’s then set in dry ice to offer a smoky aesthetic. “That’s something you probably won’t find anywhere else in the states,” Campbell says. 

“When sitting down to a meal at a restaurant, people often have high expectations,” he says. “The food you serve should not only taste amazing, but should be visually explosive and appealing as well.”

This article was sponsored by Bésame for more information visit 

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