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Just admit it: The best part of skiing is the après ski and the best ski town is Aspen. So we hit the mountains and discovered the most over-the-top amazing spots to take your Aspen après ski game to the next level. It was our pleasure.

RELATED: Europe’s 5 best ski towns

Sam’s

Photo courtesy of Sam’s, Jaye Fletcher

You simply can’t compete with this new modern Italian restaurant,  located at 10,620 feet and boasting its own slipper room. The second you enter, they trade you slippers for your ski boots (it tempts us to skip the skiing and go straight for the slippers, but we do need to pose for the skiing Insta photo). Since you worked up an appetite, dine on their pasta—made in-house.

Gwyn’s High Alpine

You’ll fin d this cozy restaurant smack dab in the middle of the mountain in Snowmass by the Alpine Springs Lift. Take off your boots, slip on your slippers and eat a three-course meal at 10,500 feet. Or, take a quick break and simply stop in their marketplace, which has homemade soups, stews and hot apple crisps. They also have an outdoor deck, where they grill tuna sandwiches, beer brats and buffalo burgers, which you can eat while watching other skiers glide down the black diamond. Those who prefer to collapse post-skiing can chill in the lounge with a hot toddy or peppermint schnapps.

Venga Venga

At the base of Snowmass, this Mexican restaurant’s DJ spins tunes while you sip on margaritas and nibble nachos. They have outdoor fire pits, more than 120 types of tequila and panoramic mountain views.

Limelight Hotel Snowmass

Limelight Hotel

Photo courtesy of the Limelight Hotel

This new hotel is known for its après (they’re so cool, they dropped the word ski), where they focus on being casual with live music. Try the Limelight Frose, which is frozen dry rose, syrup and a strawberry (basically an adult slushy). Got kids? Limelight is totally family-friendly.

Cloud Nine High Alpine Bistro

Photo courtesy of Cloud Nine High Alpine Bistro, Tom Zuccareno

This is the quintessential Aspen après ski spot. It’s located on-mountain at Highlands, where the après ski party gets pretty raucous. Translation: Expect people to dance on chairs, and to spray champagne. They like to pretend they’re in Europe (perhaps Switzerland?), but with a Los Angeles twist. You’ll dine on fondue and caviar with plenty of bubbly. Cloud Nine regularly hosts ski-boot dance parties. (These are spontaneous events, so don’t be the guy who calls requesting a reservation for a ski-boot party.)

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W Aspen

W Aspen

Photo courtesy of W Aspen

The new W Aspen just opened, and if we know our W hotels—and we do—then we would be willing to bet that their après ski will be the place to be this winter. The hotel boasts a rooftop, close proximity to the bottom of Aspen Mountain and a W hotel crowd, so expect a glam group of partiers along with a bit of hot tub action.

Highlands Alehouse

Everyone does après at the Highlands Alehouse. It’s ski-in, ski-out, totally casual, with an awesome deck, and great food and drinks. They’ve got the farm-to-table local ingredients, the food is made from scratch and they have 16 beers on tap, 60 bottles and cans, 75 whiskies and good wine. Basically, they make people happy.

Home Team BBQ

Photo courtesy of Inn at Aspen

Picture this: A stone-covered fireplace, the sun shining over Aspen Mountain, a handcrafted wooden table, a local beer or craft cocktail and ribs just off the smoker. Home Team BBQ is located inside the newly renovated Inn at Aspen, and it feels like a reclaimed barn, but with a mountain backdrop.

Ajax Tavern

Photo courtesy of Little Nell

See and be seen at this spot at the base of Aspen Mountain. It’s all about the people watching here, plus the cocktails. They’re also known for their truffle fries and Ajax wagyu double cheeseburger, though you could opt for the special après ski menu, which has raw oysters, crab and lots of fancy drinks. This is attached to the Little Nell hotel, and has epic views.

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Danielle Braff

Danielle Braff

Danielle lives in Chicago with her family, two cats and a dog, but she's constantly researching her next vacation. Check out her other articles at www.Daniellebraff.com
Danielle Braff

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