Two terms not often found in the same sentence: Fancy and Crested Butte. The isolated Colorado resort is more known for its laid-back appeal and incredibly difficult terrain. Somehow the three-year-old Dogwood Cocktail Cabin successfully mixes the finer things in life with the rustic nature of the central Rockies resort.
Or, maybe the town’s visitors and residents just need a cocktail that badly after staring down the Banana Funnel all day or navigating narrow, rocky entry points into Third Bowl.
The Dogwood Cocktail Cabin is a mishmash of honest western appeal you’d expect in quaint Crested Butte and chic boozy flavors normally reserved for cities like San Francisco, Portland and New York.
Owners Douglas and Phoebe Pedersen bought the cabin intent on turning it into a first-of-its-kind upscale drink destination. Problem was, it was literally falling down (and was known to be quite the party house back in its heyday), meaning they had to spend more than eight months renovating it. This included lifting the house and building a foundation, along with just about every upgrade and fix imaginable. It opened in July 2008.
“It was intense. We did most of that ourselves,” Pheobe said. “Getting things done in a small community is always difficult, but the whole process endeared us to the community. It’s been a labor of love.”
Now it has all of the comfort of a cozy cabin on the inside but with a cocktail scene and sex appeal that draws the most sophisticated crowd in town. That’s not to say Carhartts and ski pants aren’t acceptable attire. It’s Crested Butte, after all, and anything goes.
“The girls like it because they can get a little snazzy and not stand out,” Pheobe said. Douglas came from an entertainment and music background. Pheobe spent many days behind the bar in various Portland abodes, slinging cocktails in what is possibly the most creative mixology city in the U.S.
“A lot of the drink menu is from culinary inspiration,” Pheobe said. “These are flavors that I love that harmonize best, and I just make it into cocktails.”