The Left Bank in Vail, CO has been recognized as a DiRoNA Awarded restaurant since 1992!

Left Bank Restaurant serves traditional French cuisine with a modern twist in the heart of Vail Village. Using the freshest ingredients of the finest quality, chef Jean-Michel Chelain prepares every dish from scratch. Think classics like Gigolette d’Agneau and Bouillabaisse de Crustacés au Fenouil. Each item is carefully prepared and beautifully presented to offer a culinary experience unlike any other. We hope to have the pleasure of serving you not just to eat, but to dine.

Recently remodeled after 44 years, Left Bank has been a place to wine and dine for discerning locals and visitors from around the world since 1970. Specializing in a very traditional French menu with a modern twist, Left Bank brings you a true fine dining experience in an exquisitely classic way. We have cultivated relationships in France and California over the past 44 years in order to bring you selections of the rarest wines available, impeccably stored and aged for your drinking pleasure. 

Chef Jean-Michel Chelain

A native of Grenoble, in the French Alps, Chelain began pursuing his culinary muse at a tender age. Chelain recalls, “when I was about nine years-old I began baking cakes, in the French school system we had Wednesdays off and all I ever wanted to do on Wednesdays was to bake cakes.”

Chelain began his two-year apprenticeship at age sixteen, and at age eighteen he began working in kitchens in Cannes and on the Cote d’Azur before coming to the United States in 1996. Once in the U.S., Chelain went to work in Carmel, California at Stone Pine a 4-star rated Relais Chateau, before moving on to Vail.

Though traditionally trained, and a purist when it comes to how he prepares classic French fare, Chelain describes his cooking as not very traditional at all. His menu supports this claim. Dishes such as  a Fresh Bonelss Trout sauteed with olive oil, capers, caper berries, tomatoes and fine herbs or his Fresh Salmon baked with olive oil, garlic, tomatoes and fresh herbs share billing with such traditional dishes as Bouillabaisse de Crustaces au Fenuill, and a well known dessert favorite  like chocolate souffle.

Chelain augments his set menu, which he updates seasonally and allows his creativity and artistry to flourish.

It’s important to Chelain to establish a standard and continue to meet it. He says that they can serve between 150 and 180 patrons in an evening. Beyond that and the ability to serve them well suffers and so does their experience.

Chelain has a personal affinity for the apprenticeship method of learning the culinary arts. It served him well, and now he’s the master training his own prot’s.


DiRōNA Awarded

Left Bank