Local Expert's Favorite Reno Restaurants
1 hide detailThe second home of the notorious Awful Awful
Right across from the University of Nevada, this place drips with blue and silverWolf Pack paraphernalia. It also includes a UNLV (Las Vegas) chair especially for Rebel fans...upside down on the ceiling!
But this places is getting to be known as the second home of the Awful Awful burger. If you don't want to venture into the funky Golden Nugget, come here instead for the famous burger and fries and other fried and fast food like chicken fingers, chicken wings, sandwiches and good beer.
2 hide detailIf you are awful, awful hungry, then stop by here and try the famous Awful Awful Burger. It's a favorite Reno bargain consisting of a charbroiled half-pound burger atop a mound of seasoned fries for $6.95. The restaurant is always crowded with counter-style seating. The hassle of parking downtown and sitting elbow-to-elbow with the other hungry patrons is quickly forgotten when your food arrives. You can order breakfast, lunch, or dinner any time of the day or night. The restaurant accepts cash only.
- +1 775 323 0716
- 233 N Virginia St
- Nugget Casino
The Little (Golden) Nugget in downtown Reno, right near the Reno Arch should not be confused with the much larger Nugget Casino in downtown Sparks, the city next to Reno. This little place really only houses a bar, a few slot machines and a diner in the back. However, this diner has become very well known for its great prices, large portions and the oh so wonderful Awful Awful Burger. It's named because it is awfully big and awfully good. The burger and its basket of fries cost around $7, but it is a huge portion that you might have to share. The half-pound burger is juicy and flavorful and is topped with cheese, huge slabs of onion, tomato and lettuce and served on an excellent soft onion burger bun. This burger won the Food Network's Food Wars contest between the Sparks Nugget.
The diner also serves up other good food including calamari sandwiches, bacon and eggs and a huge stack of pancakes that are great at 2 a.m. after a night on the town.
The diner is a little dated and dingy, but for diner lovers, this is a great place to hang out a the bar and meet some interesting characters.
3 hide detailThis unassuming restaurant close to downtown is very popular with locals for their excellent lunch buffet. All standard Indian dishes are featured as well as some great sauces and garlic naan. Try their kher for dessert. The restaurant plays Bollywood music videos all day long and they are fun to watch and dance to.
Our Local Expert Says:
The mint sauce at the buffet is cool and spicy at the same time. Ask for the garlic naan.
India Kabab and Curry has become one of the most popular places for lunch in Reno. It's located just a few miles from downtown in the MidTown area on Virginia Street. Their lunch buffet special is priced at $6.95 and their dinner menu items cost between $3.50 for appetizers and $10.95 for main dishes.
The lunch buffet serves up salad, fresh fruit, rice, various meats in sauce and vegetables. There are some vegetarian options as well as a soup of the day. Some of the most popular items are the Chicken Tandoori, the Chicken Tikka Marsala, and the Murg Vindaloo. Some of the best items include the anise spiced carrots at the salad bar as well as the spicy mint sauce. There is usually a Pakora or a Samosa item as well.
The interior is clean and colorful and the bar is beautifully decorated with warm colors and chic lanterns. The bathroom is one of the nicest of the smaller restaurants in town.
4 hide detailThis restaurant in West Reno is in an interesting location across from the Truckee River, several parks and downtown Reno. They purchase locally grown, organic food from local farmers and serve it up French bistro style. Their wine and food choices are expensive but spectacular. Definitely a place for a great date.
The 4th Street Bistro near the railroad and the Truckee River has made a name for itself by serving some of the best, freshest and most organic food in the area. Really, no matter what you order, it will be delicious.
Some of their dishes include appetizers like Artisan Cheeses with White Truffle Honey and Petite Tagine of Louisiana Shrimp, main courses such as Pan Roasted Alaskan Halibut, Grilled Pork Tenderloin with White Polenta and Duck Confit with Wilted Spinach. Most main dishes will cost around $35.
Their extensive wine list runs the gamut from sparkling wine to Sauvignon Blanc from France, Chardonnay from Sonoma Valley, Pinot Noir from Oregon and Merlot from Italy. Most bottles will run you about $35-$40 and there is a $20 corkage fee. The desserts and coffee are elegant and feature items like Tirimisu, Creme Brulee and fresh local cheese.
The atmosphere is elegant, but low-ley with white tablecloths, low lighting and candles and French bistro posters on the wall. This is a popular place and can get noisy at night.
5 hide detailEat at the breakfast spot the locals rely on. The crowds at Peg's Glorified Ham & Eggs will prove that this place is one of the best in town. Bring your appetite and don't plan on eating the rest of the day...the portions are huge.
Our Local Expert Says:
Very generous servings!
This is where the locals go for a huge breakfast that will last you way into the evening. Peg's is a popular coffee and breakfast spot that is well know for its huge portions, excellent staff and fun selection various items including stacks of pancakes, skillet meals and Latin inspired dishes.
Favorite menu items include the Huevos Ranchero served in a skillet with fresh salsa, beans, hash browns and fruit or the Mexicali Omelette with guacamole and salsa. For something lighter you can order the huge portion of Lox, Bagel and Cream Cheese or a Veggie Benedict. Their classes Eggs Benedict is excellent as well as the their French Toast and Pancakes.
Prices are higher than your average coffee shop, but you won't have to eat again for the rest of the day. The average price for breakfast will run you about $10 to $12 per person. The weekend breakfasts can be very busy, especially during the summer and the holidays.
6 hide detailA Little Bit of Paris
This buffet at the Eldorado Hotel will bring a little bit of Paris to your dining experience. Diners are greeted with a light and airy atmosphere. Painted ceilings and mirrored columns are featured in this newly redecorated restaurant. The famous Mushroom Ravioli is served every night along with traditional steak and prime rib. Seafood lovers can get more than a bowl of chowder at the Friday night Seafood Extravaganza. Breaded Calamari, shrimp enchiladas and crab ravioli are some of the favorites.
7 hide detailBangkok Cuisine is one of the most popular Thai restaurants in Reno, so popular, they have opened two other locations in town. The original is closest to downtown and has been family run for years. The food is classic Thai that features entrees, salads, soups and desserts. Their lunch specials are a great deal and the Pad Thai is filled with sprouts, original sauce and fresh lime.
This is probably some of the best Thai food in town. Bangkok Cuisine near MidTown is a family run restaurant with a large menu and very friendly service. The atmosphere brings in the decor of Thailand, but with a lounge-like twist. The entry way is a great place to hang out and some nights a hookah is brought out to be shared.
The menu includes fresh appetizers such as their wonderful Spring Rolls with chicken, bean threads and veggies or Fish Patties with basil, lemon leaves and red curry. Both their entrees and appetizers are known for their handmade sauces and dips in flavors ranging from curry and coconut milk to peanut sauce and spicy mustard.
Some of the top entrees are the delicious Pad Thai Noodles, their Drunken Noodles, Black Pepper and Garlic Beef or Spicy Crispy Duck. Bangkok serves a multitude of different dishes with red, green or yellow curry as well as sides of rice, salad and vegetables. The desserts can run the gamut from Deep Fried Bananas to Mango or Green Tea Ice Cream.
Bangkok Cuisine also serves Thai Iced Tea and various teas and alcoholic drinks for their bar.
8 hide detailThe best sushi in town. The sport bar atmosphere does little to detract from the great taste and freshness of the great sushi here. You can get maki and nigiri sushi as well as special rolls. The waitresses are fast with the drinks and the bar is the best place to sit, even though there are plenty of high tables scattered through the restaurant.
Our Local Expert Says:
One of my top places for lunch.
Don't let appearances deceive you. This sports bar-like sushi restaurant serves up the best sushi in Reno. The chefs are open and friendly and the atmosphere is fun. Locals will let you in on some of chef's "specials" and you can eat yourself silly with an all-you-can-eat lunch and dinner. Visitors from the Bay Area will even take a trip up to Reno specifically for a few rolls at the Sushi Club.
The typical rolls at the Sushi Club are some of the best: these include the San Francisco (try it deep fried with crab on top), the Rainbow Roll, the Salmon Skin Hand Roll and Wayne's Hand Roll with crab and scallops. One of the most delicious specials is a Shrimp Tempura with Crab on top.
Many of the larger rolls like the Caterpillar and the Mountain are only served during their all-you-can-eat dinners. At dinner and lunch you can also get mussels, daikon radish appetizers, miso soup and cabbage salad.
9 hide detailMy Favorite Muffin is in a great location on California Avenue just south of downtown. This popular locals spot sells muffins, bagels and excellent bagel sandwiches. They also serve coffee and tea. There are a few outdoor chairs and tables.
My Favorite Muffin is one of the most popular places in town for both breakfast and lunch. They are mostly known for their large menu of breakfast bagels and bagel sandwiches. Several of their popular sandwiches are the Big Apple Club with ham, turkey, bacon, American cheese, mayo, lettuce & tomato and the Roast Beef Parmagiana Grinder with thinly sliced roast beef with marinara sauce, roasted red peppers and melted Provolone cheese.
For breakfast you can get a good old fashioned Bagel with Lox or a Just Veggies! Omelet with scrambled eggs, green pepper, tomato & onion.
They also serve hot soup, salads, baked goods and small pizzas like the Grilled Chicken Bruschetta with chicken breast, fresh tomatoes, mozzarella, and oregano with just the right touch of garlic.
Their drinks range from coffee drinks like the Creme Caramel Latte or their great smoothies like the 90 calorie Mango Beach with Ten Fruit Juices, Mango, Peaches and Passion Fruit.
The prices for most sandwiches are around $6.95 and coffee and smoothies are around $3.95.