Half the fun of a day of snowboarding or skiing is being able to enjoy a break midday with a great meal. Sure, we’ve had days where it’s been all about the bell to bell turns, with a cold energy bar or a smushed PB&J lunch on the chairlift. But there is something to be said for a leisurely lunch, especially after you’ve earned your calories with a few hours of leg burning descents. With ample gourmet options available at the Lake Tahoe ski resorts – noodle bars, custom burgers and international flavors galore – there are plenty of ways to enjoy lunch on the mountain, Tahoe style.
Did you know that in addition to steep terrain and deep powder snow, Kirkwood offers a plethora of culinary delights? The blackened shrimp and avocado quesadillas at the Off the Wall Bar are definitely worth stopping for. If you need something heartier, check out the Cornice Grill’s Ultimate Grilled Cheese – think 4 kinds of cheese, oven roasted tomatoes, peppered bacon and arugula on griddled sour dough. For those looking for grab and go, the Pastrami sandwich (pastrami on marble rye with 1,000 island dressing and crisp sauerkraut) from the G-Store at Red Cliffs Lodge is the local’s choice.
When at Sierra-at-Tahoe, plan to lunch at the 360 Smokehouse BBQ at the top of Grandview Express. Follow the overwhelming smell of fresh, flame-grilled meat and indulge in some of the tastiest morsels on the mountain while enjoying spectacular panoramic views of the Lake Tahoe basin. The menu includes traditional BBQ favorites such as brisket, pulled pork sandwiches and ribs, along with tasty sides such as fried green beans, mac n' cheese and sweet potato fries.
Whether you’re spending a day on the mountain or in the Village at Northstar California, you won’t want to miss the Zephyr Lodge. Located between Mid-Mountain and the Summit, the Zephyr Lodge has sweeping views of the Pacific Crest, a gourmet cafeteria, a full bar, and the LEED-certified building is a model example of modern design with a rustic feel. The Zephyr Burger, the signature bloody mary (with bacon!), the apple fries with homemade marshmallow whipped cream and the make-your-own noodle bar are all crowd favorites.
Booyah's is Heavenly's newest on-mountain restaurant, located inside of Lakeview Lodge at the top of the Tram on the California side. Featuring made-to-order build your own burgers and 97 varieties of microbrews, Booyah's is *the* place to stop and catch the game. The sweeping views of Lake Tahoe aren't too shabby either. Create your own burger from the eight types of burger, three sizes of burgers, 7 breads to put it on (including a lettuce wrap for those watching carbs), 22 sauces, 10 cheeses, 17 cold toppings, and 12 hot toppings. There are over 250,000 different combinations, but you don’t have to try them all in one go. If the sheer volume of options make it too overwhelming to build your own, consider ordering the Whiskey BBQ Bacon Bacon Cheeseburger, a bacon Angus patty with cheddar cheese, applewood smoked bacon, lettuce, tomato, pickles, beer battered onion rings, and whiskey BBQ sauce.
Alpine Meadows’ main lodge offers a variety of dining options. Try Meadows Café for homemade pizza and hearty burgers, or for international flair, don’t miss the tuna tagarashi at the Last Chair Bar.
At Squaw Valley, lunch options range from North America’s first ski-in/ski-out Starbucks to mouthwatering dishes like beef bourguignon, asian glazed pork pops and portobello fries at the Terrace Restaurant at High Camp. Love al fresco dining? Make sure to check out the Poolside Café, which offers indoor and outdoor seating, along with signature Squaw favorites like the smoked pheasant soup.
Mt Rose’s new Winters Creek Lodge, located on the Slide Mountain side of the resort, is a modern ski lodge with dramatic ceilings and a striking glass façade that boasts commanding views of Nevada desert. It also serves great lunches. Enjoy a burger or sandwich with the views, along with a beer in the bar.
Homewood is known for its jaw-dropping views of the lake. It offers a very tasty lunch with said views, which we call a win-win. Be sure to try the selection of grilled sausages at the mid-mountain Big Blue View Bar. Throw in a full bar, DJs playing outside and the new Foundation Bowl Terrain Park just outside, and you’ve got yourself a lunchtime party with beautiful Lake Tahoe as the backdrop.
Sugar Bowl’s Mid-Mountain Lodge offers the best of both worlds – great food and great views (sense a theme here?). Choose from pizzas, burgers, sandwiches and more at the cafeteria and grill, or choose from a wide selection of brats, sausages, and veggie options at the Mid-Mountain BBQ. The outdoor deck means that you can enjoy stunning views of Disney's East Face and racing action with your fries. Just don’t forget the sunblock.
Where is your favorite Tahoe ski resort on-mountain lunch? Let us know in the comments.
Photo courtesy of Heavenly.
Posted by Jenn Gleckman