Thursday, June 14

8 am – Wake up to watch a wine-spitting contest on Plum TV (a local cable station) between superstar sommelier Richard Betts and cheese expert Laura Werlin--two big personalities at the Classic. Laura is the surprise winner in accuracy but Richard beats her in distance.

8.30 am – Line up for coffee at local hangout Ink! behind Top Chef judge (and co-worker) Gail Simmons. Thumb through Vanity Fair's awesome Africa issue and think that the cover of next year’s Classic tasting-notes booklet should feature different chefs whispering to each other (instead of Vanity Fair’s Jay-Z and George Clooney, F&W would have Mario Batali and Emeril Lagasse).

12 pm – Have lunch at Richard Betts’s house. He and his wife, Mona, and their gorgeous daughter Bella drag a huge table out onto their front lawn and we feast on radish and butter toasts, handmade beet-green-stuffed ravioli and Premier Cru white Burgundy. We decide it’s the best restaurant in Aspen. No one spits their wine.