What's new in dining at Northstar

Do you want to grab lunch in the Village or mid-mountain? Is it too early to be having a beer with lunch (or brunch)? Where are we après-ing? These are the questions I’m asking every day during the winter, often before I’ve even eaten breakfast or cruised down the first run. And if you’re anything like me, they’re probably the questions you’re asking, too, even more so than things like where to ski, what to do off the slopes, and where to stay. After all, there has to be sustenance that fuels all of those activities.

And with the advent of a new ski season, there are a plethora of new restaurants and dining perks at Northstar California. You may already be familiar with staples like the Village’s Rubicon Pizza and the Ritz Carlton’s Manzanita, but there are a whole host of new spots in and around Northstar California for the 2016/2017 ski season. See below for what’s new in dining at Northstar California ski resort this year.  

Mountain Thai. If there’s going to be a hip, urban food truck at Northstar California, it only seems appropriate that it’d be just beyond some of Northstar’s terrain features. According to Northstar’s executive chef, Steve Anderson, the go-to is the Pad Thai (available with chicken or shrimp), while other options include Bahn Mi, Tom Kha, and fresh spring rolls. Additionally, with a selection of beers available, you can merely grab a beer and the Coconut and Cashew Fried Banana while taking in the snowboarders on the superpipe. For those who aren’t skiing or snowboarding, the food truck is just feet from the gondola if you want a break from the traditional Village restaurants for a more unique dining experience.


Frites. But Mountain Thai isn’t the only cool dining addition to Northstar. Enter Frites, which is the new French fries cabana (yes, a fries cabana) coming to the Village at Northstar by the ice rink. These aren’t your everyday fast food fries, but rather gourmet fries like what you’d find in Europe. As Chef Steve put it, the tagline is simply “gourmet fries and craft brews.” Best combo ever? The fry menu includes everything from bison chili fries to short rib fries to poutine (topped with cheese curds and gravy).

Copper Lane Café and Provisions. Also new to the Village at Northstar is part fresh food market, part café, Copper Lane Café and Provisions. The café part of it is highlighted by locally inspired foods, such as the grass-fed burger using beef from nearby Hole-In-One Ranch, while the provisions part of it includes everything from California craft drinks to local produce and cheese. Meanwhile, they are open for breakfast, too, featuring locally roasted coffee and fresh pastries using organic ingredients, as well as open for late-night munchies (closing at 10 pm). 

Mountain Table Dinner Series. The Mountain Table Dinner Series isn’t new per se, but it’s coming this year with new participating wineries, new menus, and perhaps the coolest new addition, a sleigh (yes, really) to transport guests up to Zephyr Lodge. Taking place four weekend nights during the winter, each dinner features a different winery paired with a custom menu using regionally sourced ingredients, all to the backdrop of beautiful views and to the sound of live music. Needless to say, this isn’t your everyday ski resort dinner, especially with dishes this year that include lobster risotto and Wagyu ribeye. Participating wineries this winter include Orin Swift Cellars, Talbott Winery, Bonny Doon Vineyards, and Merryvale Vineyards. Additionally, each dinner supports Tahoe Food Hub, a local non-profit helping restore local food distribution to the area. 

Southern born and bred, Spencer was bitten by the travel bug at a young age, flying on a plane for the first time at age five and by himself for the first time at seven. While he continues to travel around the world in search for the best whiskey, Spencer now calls Reno home, where his search is for the best cocktail (and first tracks, naturally). He has written about travel, food, and drinks for a number of publications that have included the Los Angeles Times, National Geographic, Outside Magazine, and Travel + Leisure, just to name a few. See a more candid version of Spencer on his website, whiskeytangoglobetrot.com, and follow him on Twitter and Instagram.