The next time you’re at Steamboat Ski Resort, if you hear strains of reggae drifting through the air and catch the aroma of braised beef wafting across the snow, you’ll know you’ve found the Taco Beast.
This tricked-out snow cat, which debuted at Steamboat on opening day back in November, is the first of its kind in Colorado. An on-mountain version of a food truck, the Beast serves tacos, Mexican street corn, sodas, and 24-ounce beers right on the slopes. It roams the resort by day, hunkering down in various locations to surprise and satiate hungry skiers and snowboarders before retreating to its cozy cave each night.
“The Taco Beast has put a new spin on the term ‘slope side’ dining,” said Maren Franciosi, digital communications manager for the resort. “We are excited for guests to experience this unique new dining option while taking in the views between runs.”
Schuss over, unclip, and take a gander at the options. There are four types of tacos: beef barbacoa, elk chorizo, pollo asado, and the vegetarian Tres Hermanas (a blend of roasted butternut squash, black beans, and corn), each served on a flour tortilla and topped with cilantro, shredded cabbage, pickled onion, and queso fresco. Top your selection with snow-cat-made salsas ranging from mild pico de gallo to seriously spicy carrot-habanero. One taco makes for a good snack and three will fill you up, especially if you add a cup of the creamy, fiery Mexican street corn, which is cut from the cob for easy eating.
Executive sous chef Adam White developed the Beast’s menu, drawing on his experiences with street tacos and food trucks in Portland, Oregon. “I wanted to give guests some variety, but not go too crazy or too overboard,” White said. “I wanted to make it approachable.”
In the first month that the Taco Beast roamed the resort, it was open for a total of 10 days—it is “weather permitting” after all, and White says that making guests stand outside in a blizzard to order tacos isn’t his idea of a pleasant experience. In that short time, however, the Beast sold almost 1,250 tacos, indicating that the roving, taco-dispensing machine is already a hit.
When you’re shredding the gnar at Steamboat and your stomach lets out an animal-like roar, track down the Taco Beast and feed the fiend within.
If you go: The Taco Beast operates daily from 11 a.m.-2 p.m., weather-permitting. Food is $5 per item; sodas and beer are $4 and $10, respectively. Follow @TacoBeastSBT on Twitter for status updates and current locations.