One of Durango’s newest fine-dining experiences, Prospector, can be found just a short 18-mile drive north of town in the Glacier Club development. Located at 7,400 feet and nine miles from Purgatory ski resort, the setting is stunningly magnificent and a perfect spot for an après-ski meal or a destination dinner date.
After a short turn off US Hwy 550 N., you enter the club’s confines and see the rust-colored stone and metal Valley Clubhouse at the southwest corner of the parking area. The building houses the golf pro shop, The Mineshaft Bar & Grill, and the restaurant. Although Glacier Club is a member-only community, the restaurant is open and welcoming to the public.
Glacier Club owner Rick Carlton, who purchased the development in 2001, saw that the success of the much smaller Mineshaft Bar & Grill next door gave an opportunity to expand the dining options available in the north valley. The previously open-plan space hosted many events and gatherings over the years. It underwent an eight-month renovation to become the new cozy dining room it is today. The restaurant opened in June of 2023.
As you enter the building, past a giant print of a David Yarrow Western photograph (see Durango Magazine Summer/Fall 2023 for the full story about David Yarrow), a mineshaft-like hallway leads you to the romantically lit room that now features an open-display kitchen to the left and a full bar to the right. Outside dining on the covered patio is available in good weather as well. The décor is like a modern mountain lodge with a nod to our area’s mining history. Our candle-lit table, with a view through the spacious patio, was delightful. The dining room seats 80-90 patrons and the patio seats 30-40.
Offering refined mountain fare, the restaurant had us excited to sample a variety of inspired dishes prepared by Executive Chef Adam Bergtold, along with tasty cocktails from the bar. Our server, Patty, was attentive and helpful with our menu choices. The menu changes five to seven times a year, featuring seasonal meals and farm-fresh flavors.
We thoroughly enjoyed the grilled Sicilian-style ahi tuna with an Italian salsa verde as an appetizer. Other starters include crispy Brussels sprout chips served with sweet soy-glazed shishito peppers, Mediterranean shrimp, and an antipasto and charcuterie plate.
The soup & salad section of the menu features, among other offerings, a classic French onion soup, candied bacon Caesar salad, and a grilled romaine wedge salad. We chose the Burrata Peach & Rocket (arugula) salad with a creamy mozzarella burrata, grilled peaches, prosciutto, and roasted garlic croutons with pomegranate balsamic gastrique.
We are always looking for great pizza, and we found it with Prospector’s Southwest Pizza that combines red chili pulled pork, roasted poblanos, green chili, and shredded pepper jack cheese. Other brick oven pizzas offered include Margherita, White Out (with alfredo sauce), Burrata, Peach & Prosciutto, White Clam, and Calabrian. There is an option to build your own pizza as well.
For a lighter, hand-held meal, Prospector offers their signature Prospector Burger and a rotisserie Italian porchetta sandwich.
We splurged on the entreés and ordered the Chicken Francese; pan-fried crispy pounded chicken breast with lemon butter sauce on herb capellini, the pan-seared Chilean sea bass; with sun-dried tomato butter and fennel-roasted fingerling potatoes, and last but not least, the Rocky Mountain Field & Stream: pan-seared elk tenderloin filet with rosemary demi-glace accompanied by brick-oven-roasted trout with garlic lemon butter. Garlic mashed potatoes, balsamic mushrooms, and cippolini onions are served alongside.
The rotisserie prime rib and ½ chicken are always available.
Though we were stuffed, the desserts sounded too enticing to pass up! We shared the four-layer chocolate cake and the pecan pie with vanilla ice cream.
A truly delicious dining experience awaits you at the new Prospector restaurant located in Glacier Club.
Winter hours started October 1st (dinner only), 4-8 pm Wednesday-Sunday. The restaurant will return to breakfast, lunch, and dinner over the holidays and again in the spring.
The Mineshaft Bar & Grill next door is open seven days a week for breakfast, lunch, and dinner from 8 am to 8 pm and is open to the public.
You can also get to-go food and alcoholic beverages to take with you and enjoy the spectacular views of the nearby Hermosa Cliffs.
To contact Prospector directly, please call 970.382.6775.