MENU IN LAKE YELLOWSTONE HOTEL STRESSES SUSTAINABLE CUISINE, UPSCALE DISHES AND FRESH, SEASONAL CHOICES

The menus in the Lake Yellowstone Hotel dining room this year will focus on local, seasonal and sustainable food with a pronounced upscale presentation.

A sampling of this year’s dinner menus includes entrees such as cumin-crusted wild Alaska salmon with stewed organic lentils and sautéed spinach; steamed fresh wild Alaska halibut with baby bok choy, sesame ginger cilantro broth and snow pea-carrot julienne; Wolf Ridge lamb medallions with pinon sage pesto, couscous and broccolini; and a wide range of dishes to suit the varied tastes of the traveling public.

While diners will enjoy the upscale menu in the Lake Yellowstone Hotel restaurant, they will also be assured that when possible, the ingredients are purchased from sources that support sustainable fishing, farming and ranching. For example, new this year is the relationship with Montana Fish Company which is providing several fresh seafood items for the Lake Hotel menu as well as special items at other dining facilities around the park. All seafood purchased from Montana Fish Company is approved by the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch program as a best choice or good alternative for sustainability.

“Every year we increase our sustainable offerings with the goal of 50 percent of our total menu by the year 2015,” said Jim Chapman, executive chef for Xanterra Parks & Resorts in Yellowstone. “Adding fresh sustainable fish and other items such as switching from imported cheese to domestic artisan cheese not only increases our sustainability, but our quality too.”

Xanterra’s efforts to purchase from sustainable fishing, farming and ranching operations are supported by the Western Sustainability Exchange, the Marine Stewardship Council and the Animal Welfare Institute. Sourcing several of these items helps to support more than 350 family farmers and ranchers in nine states.

Specific practices include:

  • Serving the freshest highest quality sustainable seafood from Montana Fish Company in Bozeman, Mont.
  • Serving Montana Ranch Brand Beef in Yellowstone restaurants. This is 100 percent Piedmontese beef raised in Montana without added hormones or antibiotics.
  • Serving Wolf Ridge Lamb and Wool lamb medallions from Pray, Mont.
  • Using Amaltheia Dairy’s organic goat cheese from Belgrade, Mont.
  • Serving farm-raised game and organic chicken.
  • Carrying organic legumes from Timeless Farms in Conrad, Mont.
  • Continuing membership in the Chef’s Collaborative, a national network of more than 1,000 members of the food community who promote sustainable cuisine.
  • In partnership with Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Inc., offering organic shade-grown Fair Trade Certified coffee in many of its restaurants.
  • Offering Silk brand organic soy milk in restaurants.

The Lake Hotel dining room is open May 16 – Oct. 4, 2009. Dinner is served 5 – 10 p.m., and reservations are required for dinner. Dinner reservations may be made by calling the reservations office at 1-307-344-7311. Breakfast and lunch are on a first-come, first-seated basis.

Lake Yellowstone Hotel is the park’s oldest hotel. It was built as a simple hotel in 1891, but famed architect Robert Reamer transformed it over the course of several years to an elegant structure with majestic columns, gables and moldings. The hotel sits on the shore of Yellowstone Lake and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. In addition to hotel rooms, the Lake Yellowstone Hotel operation offers recently renovated Frontier cabins.

Xanterra operates lodging, restaurants, gift shops and activities in Yellowstone National Park. General reservations for accommodations, tours and activities can be made by calling (1) 307-344-7311 or toll-free 866-GEYSERLAND (1-866-439-7375).