It’s no secret that the residents and guests of Aspen, CO like to have fun. Whether it be on one of four world class mountains, or at the bar for aprés, fun is just part of the culture. That being said, it’s no wonder that a concept like a mobile champagne bar would be a perfect fit for Aspen Mountain. And The Oasis is just that: a champagne bar, on “skis,” that graces the slopes of Ajax each Friday, Saturday and Sunday during the spring. The idea was hatched by Sabato Sagaria, the food and beverage director of The Little Nell hotel, who runs the operation of The Oasis.
“When I was in Los Angeles on vacation, I was checking out some restaurants and the new trend there was food trucks. People would find out basically via Facebook or Twitter, where they were going to be parked that day,” says Sagaria in the episode. “At the same time you hear about these chefs doing pop up restaurants, and I said, ‘Well that’d be kind of cool to do something on Aspen Mountain similar to that.’ So, I came up with the idea of doing a pop up, ski-in, ski-out, moveable champagne bar.”
No need to sneak a sip of that warm PBR you’ve got hidden in your pocket on the chairlift anymore. Just head to whatever location on the mountain that The Oasis is stationed, sit back in a lounge chair and add a bit of class to your drinking repertoire with a glass of Veuve Clicquot. According to Sagaria, the best spot on the mountain that The Oasis will occupy is at the top of F.I.S. lift because “You have one of the most spectacular views that just looks out on the whole valley.”
Episode 4 of Aspen/Snowmass’ Our Story – Champagne Bar
But a contraption of this nature just doesn’t appear out of thin air. It took tons of hard work from Denver based Public Works to craft the famed bar that weighs in at about a ton. That 2,000 pound load is then mounted on top of—for lack of a better word—skis, hitched to a snowcat and towed around Ajax to the perfect spot for the day. Sagaria and staff then work to stock the bar with delicious Veuve Clicquot champagne, as well as make the bar look like the coolest spot on the mountain, or in town for that matter.
“Thanks to our partnerships with Veuve Clicquot and with some creative construction by Public Works, we were able to make a dream into a reality with The Oasis,” says Meredith McKee, public relations wizard for Aspen Ski Co. “We can’t be sure how many bottles have been popped, but at least 1/4 of those have been popped by the Freeskier staff over #FreeskierFest.”
And while that may be an exaggeration (or is it?), The Oasis is an innovative concept that gives guests and locals alike the chance to revel in a bit of luxury at 11,000 feet.
“People are out there just soaking in the sun on a beautiful day,” says Sagaria. “Just sipping champagne and saying, ‘Hey, life’s pretty good up here on the Oasis.'”