Now is the time of year to throw off the casual clothes of Summer and dress up a bit for dinner. It’s also a time to do some end-of-year celebrating. The Lake Tahoe area has some wonderful restaurants for fine dining with award-winning chefs, menus and excellent drinks and wines. All of these restaurants are located just a few steps from the lake and most of them have a view.
Intimate, cozy and oh-so-cute with candles. Cafe Fiore in South Lake Tahoe serves Italian food that you write home about. Reservations are required at this tiny place that only has about seven tables. The cafe, voted one of the best places to kiss in Northern California, serves up entrees like Linguine alla Toscana, Aragosta Melodia and Pollo al Pomodoro. Their wine list is extensive and the cafe has their own wine cellar.
The Edgewood has been a popular stop for a fine dining experience for years and the view of the lake and the Edgewood beach might be one of the reasons. The restaurant is impressive, with large pine logs as decor and a great fireplace. Most of the seating has a view out the large windows and the menu includes local steak and seafood as well as local produce. Try the fresh Cypress Island Salmon with Dungeness Crab or fresh Ahi Tuna with wasabi créme.
Christy Hill in Tahoe City has one of the best views of the lake. No matter what the weather, you will be able to see the lake lapping (or crashing) at the deck of this stylish, but low-key restaurant. For over 25 years, Christy Hill has been serving a nice mixture of seasonal, sustainable California cuisine with a French twist. Their wine selection is superb and the bar is a popular place to hang out during happy hour.
Dinner items include Hamachi Tartare, Organic Field Greens, Moroccon Spiced Lamb Loin and Braised Short Ribs of Bison. The desserts are heavenly and include Vanilla Bean Creme Brûlée and a Flourless Chocolate Torte with fresh berries.
If you want a spectacular view of all of Lake Tahoe, head to this restaurant just up Kingsbury Grade. The Chart House has been in the Tahoe area for decades and is a choice for many visitors for engagement and wedding parties as well as a place to pop the question. This is a great spot for birthday dinners too.
The Chart House serves primarily seafood with items like Lobster Bisque and Tempura Lobster Lollipops as well as Crab Stuffed Mushrooms, Surf and Turf and Macadamia Encrusted Mahi Mahi. The desserts include Mud Pie and Lava Cake. Their happy hour is from 4:30-6:30 Monday through Friday.
Wolfdales in Tahoe City is a great place for a romantic dinner that is part Asian inspired and part California hip. Come for happy hour from 5:30-6:30 Sunday through Friday and stay for a great dinner that includes small plates like Seared Bay Scallops or Chile Relleno Tempura, entrees like Thai Seafood Stew, Tagine Braised Lamb Shank or the Portabella Cheeseburger. Dessert is a must with items like Warm Chocolate Molten Cake and the Berry-Port and Coconut Sorbet. Their specialty drinks are fun too with cocktails like the Lemon Grass Cocktail costing $9.
Photo courtesy of Wolfdales’s