Dinner out at a midrange price point can be hard to find in a ski town. Providing just such an option is Mark Rogers’ goal for Mad River Grill. The steakhouse will open on June 28 at 527 Sugarbush Access Road in Warren, the location that was most recently Terra Rossa Ristorante.
The wood-fired pizza oven from the previous restaurant remains, but pies will fill only a small segment of Mad River Grill’s meaty menu. Rogers recently returned to his native New England after a stint as chef-owner of Rogue Wave, an Ocean Grill, outside Kansas City, Kan. He’ll use that experience to create a traditional midwestern chop house in Vermont.
Mad River’s priciest steak is a $28 wagyu ribeye; other cuts include a USDA prime New York strip and a grass-fed Vermont filet mignon. Among the fish dishes are pan-seared halibut with maple mustard and a pistachio crust; and zucchini-wrapped, pan-seared scallops in a maple-balsamic reduction. All entrées come with a choice of two sides, such as sautéed kale and Swiss chard, garlic mashed potatoes and grilled asparagus. Burgers, salads and homemade cheesecake round out the menu.
Rogers, who cooked at Waitsfield’s Big Picture Theater when he first returned to Vermont, says his new friends have already embraced his new business. “It’s been overwhelming, the outpouring from the community, the excitement from everybody in the valley,” he says.
Locals may be even more excited when they learn about Thursday nights at the Mad River Grill. That’s when Rogers will break out the smoker for dinners of pulled pork, chicken and ribs with homemade bourbon-barbecue sauce.