Where to Eat in and around Lake Tahoe
When visiting Lake Tahoe, waterfront dining is practically a requirement. Restaurants here pair breathtaking views with everything from hearty fare to prix-fixe menus to craft beers, making the setting even more enjoyable.
5160 W Lake Blvd, Homewood, CA 96141, USA
This waterfront café and lodge is a lake-lover’s dream. The building’s architecture alone is worth a look, with its dark teak wood, soaring ceilings, and massive windows that show off the lake. As soon as you walk in the front door, you’ll understand why so many couples hold their wedding receptions here. Every seat has a water view, but none more dramatically than the outdoor tables on the pier, where guests dine with Tahoe’s gentle waves lapping beneath their feet. The menu offers a wide range of beautifully presented standards (Niman Ranch beef, king salmon, ahi tuna), and the kitchen manages to hit the right note in any season, whether you’re seeking an après-ski snack or a summer supper on the deck. Thanks to the café’s west-shore vantage point, moonrises over the lake are unforgettable.
10007 Bridge St, Truckee, CA 96161, USA
This café tucked inside the 1873 Truckee Hotel is Tahoe’s version of a chic evening in Paris. The Moulin Rouge–style supper club offers live jazz three nights a week, and the musicians are top-notch. Tune in while you sip a craft cocktail and you may find yourself wondering how you suddenly wound up in France. To pair with your drinks, Moody’s has assembled a menu of fan favorites, from tomato soup with a crusty crouton topping to truffle deviled eggs and homemade pasta. On sunny summer days, the outdoor patio is the place to be.
1850 West Lake Boulevard
Boasting the largest lakefront deck at Tahoe, Sunnyside features a summer-party atmosphere and somewhat predictable burgers-and-ribs menu that keeps diners of all ages happy. A meal here is more of a social event than a fine-dining experience, but that’s exactly what the crowd wants. Expect to see a lot of fried calamari plates coming out of the kitchen, as well as people sharing slices of hula pie (macadamia nut ice cream on a chocolate cookie crust, crowned with whipped cream and chocolate fudge). In winter, the action moves indoors to the cozy, lodge-style dining room, but the vibe is equally lively.
115 Grove St, Tahoe City, CA 96145, USA
Lauded by Bon Appétit, Christy Hill’s Mediterranean-inspired cuisine is rivaled only by the restaurant’s panoramic views of Lake Tahoe. The creative and often-changing menu features entrées like Moroccan spiced lamb loin, osso buco, and slow-roasted duck, as well as small plates such as braised pork belly. Even if you’re not big on dessert, save room for the chocolate croissant bread pudding or the more savory pumpkin spice cake with salted caramel ice cream.
10046 Donner Pass Rd, Truckee, CA 96161, USA
Epicures vie for a table at Restaurant Trokay, where chef-owners John and Nyna Weatherson dream up prix-fixe menus with imaginative ingredients and artful flavor combinations. The dining room’s green walls and contemporary design create an inviting space to relax and focus on the food, which is designed to amaze—roasted parsnip bisque, ash-cured trout, porcini mushroom borscht. Best of all, the beautifully plated dishes are served without a hint of attitude; even new customers are treated like family. If you wish you could cook with similar skill, sign up for one of the in-house classes, which cover topics like knife skills, roasted meats, cheese, basic kitchen techniques, and more.
2050 Lake Tahoe Blvd Suite #2050, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150, USA
At South Lake Tahoe’s only self-pour bar, you’re in charge of the taps. Choose from 25 regional craft beers—including seasonal limited releases, artisan fruity sours, and made-in-Tahoe IPAs— then pour just a few sips or a full glass. Don’t worry, your high-tech “wristwatch” will keep track of your tab. If beer isn’t your beverage of choice, AleWorX also has wine and kombucha on tap. Whatever you choose, pair it with a hearty salad or thin-crust pizza made in the open kitchen’s wood-burning oven (take a close look—it’s completely covered in copper pennies) and know that the best seats here are outside by the fire pits, which somehow generate enough heat to keep you warm even on winter evenings.
111 Country Club Dr, Incline Village, NV 89451, USA
Perched on the lakefront at the Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe Resort, the Lone Eagle is best visited during daylight hours, when diners can fully appreciate the views of the cobalt-blue water. Even if it’s snowing outside, the restaurant’s floor-to-ceiling windows make the most of the stunning alpine scenery. Have a seat at the dark-wood bar and sip from Lone Eagle’s enormous wine glasses, or cozy up outside by the fire pit with a hot toddy. No matter where you sit, you can expect top-notch service and beautifully prepared food. The main dining room serves mostly traditional fare (grilled lobster tail, Niman Ranch lamb chops, filet mignon, roasted barramundi), but the menu is extensive enough to please every taste. If you’re a foie gras fan, order it here.
6300 West Lake Boulevard
Built in 1857, this historic, wood-beamed pavilion enjoys a park-like setting right on the beach. Folding French doors create the feel of open-air dining, and the simple but satisfying menu (salmon, filet mignon, duck breast, and burgers) gives you the impression that you’re dining at your own private club. One of the west shore’s most photographed locations, the outdoor bar at Chambers is also one of the area’s biggest party spots on summer weekends. Arrive by boat or car, but if you’re the designated driver, steer clear of the infamous Chambers Punch, a lethal concoction of rum, orange juice, and pineapple juice. Note: The restaurant is open May to September only.
100 Lake Pkwy, Stateline, NV 89449, USA
With Edgewood’s vaulted ceiling and massive windows overlooking North America’s largest alpine lake, it’s hard to focus on its Continental-style menu, which features fresh seafood, elk chops, aged rib eye, and filet mignon. At every table, Lake Tahoe is practically sitting in your lap, so don’t make the mistake of dining after dark. Instead, time your reservation for sunset—but plan ahead, as everyone else wants to do the same.
5000 N Lake Blvd, Carnelian Bay, CA 96140, USA
Zoom up to the dock in your private yacht (or just drive your car to the parking lot), then score a spot on the outdoor deck here for gorgeous lake views. Whatever you order, wash it down with a Wet Woody, a signature mix of specialty rum, peach schnapps, and fruit juice. Sunday brunch is a big deal in the summer months, so plan to arrive early if you don’t want to wait for hours. In winter, the action moves inside, where there’s live music during aprés-ski, plus cozy appetizers like deviled eggs, French onion soup, and crab chili relleno.