When most kids go on vacation, they come back with a T-shirt, a set of Mickey Mouse ears and a sunburn. I came home with cookbooks. These days, my taste in mementos hasn't changed much, but I now have a terrific set of bookcases. From a young age I learned how our connections with place and taste create lasting memories while fueling a sense of adventure!
Our curiosity about places, cultures, and cuisines can take us around the world, or allow us to more fully appreciate our own backyard. I’ve enjoyed fabulous flavor experiences while living in the more far-flung locales of Greece and Ireland, and have been just as captivated by encounters while living in California and Colorado.
More than wanting to enjoy a delicious experience, I’ve often sought to understand why it happens - what is it about any wine, food, or meal that dazzles everyone? To better understand the mechanics of flavor, I earned a Masters of Gastronomy from Boston University. Upon putting down roots in the Grand Valley I taught at Colorado Mesa University’s community education culinary program. Five years ago my role at CMU and Western Colorado Community College grew, and I am currently fortunate to keep learning every semester as a professor in their Viticulture and Enology degree program.
I enjoy creating an occasion for people to gather and appreciate each other - and find sharing food and wine can be incredibly engaging. For a decade I’ve enjoyed working within Palisade’s wine and spirit hospitality trade and connecting with visitors. Now, I’m delighted to have a place at a phenomenal Grand Valley gathering place, where I’m part of an outstanding group of specialized curators crafting boutique events.
Ultimately, I strive to inspire delight and connection between my guests, no matter the setting of our curated adventure. Each of us has a unique taste experience; our palates are as remarkable as we are! I look forward to sharing wonderful flavor adventures with you, quenching your thirst for knowledge, and introducing you to the distinctive and delicious diversity of Colorado’s Wine Country.
Ellise Basch West
Founder, West Slope Bespoke