During the Ski Canada Test 2017, the grading and critiquing of skis didn’t stop when the ski boots came off. It often spilled over, sometimes literally, into Jasper’s après establishments.
No surprise the crew of testers and brand reps brag equal know-how, grading ambience and mixology as they do flex patterns and edge hold. Yet, despite the millennia of combined experience, the only discernible feedback from testers was: “With a beer in hand, it’s hard to go wrong.” Here’s our list of top five places to wet yer whistle after skiing Marmot Basin.
Roll into the D’ed Dog Bar and Grill in the Astoria Hotel hungry and thirsty and you won’t have to leave for the rest of the night. Start with a pint of Big Rock Traditional beer, shoot a few games of pool and then order a Big Game Burger. A tester favourite, the patty is a house mix of elk, venison and buffalo. deddog.com
BEST for discerning tastes
Love craft beer? You may not go anywhere else besides the Jasper Brewing Company. Brewmaster Don Moore alchemies five distinct beers plus seasonal specialties, all made using Rocky Mountain water. Order a taster flight and try them all. jasperbrewingco.ca
BEST for après, après
The venue for the legendary Ski Canada Test final night party, the Downstream Bar is the place to end a Jasper visit in style. Downstairs from the foodie-favourite Downstream restaurant, the bar was perfect for our team of 70, plus at least as many locals, to pack the dance floor, but intimate enough that friends never disappeared for long. downstreamjasper.ca
BEST for live music
Right across the street from the railway station, the Whistle Stop Pub probably is for some VIA Rail passengers. For Jasperites, it’s the place to listen to live music, a regular event in the casual bar in the Whistlers Inn. (The pre-dinner snacks are good, too.) whistlersinn.com
BEST local experience
He’s hard to miss on the hill wearing another vintage onesie and 200-cm straight skis. And then again in the bar, with his white hair tied back in a ponytail and a flask on his goateed lips. Ask Charlie Finley nicely and he might share his 40-odd-strong straight-ski collection and his even deeper wine rack.