Luxury dining in North Lake Tahoe at The Ritz-Carlton

While Northstar is an all-purpose ski resort, especially for food and drink lovers, it really excels at those finer, more luxurious details. And that luxurious element can be found in excess just up the mountain at The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe. Located mid-mountain, The Ritz strikes a great balance between accessibility and retreat from the bustle of the Village down below, while offering a wide variety of options. It’s the perfect place to lounge on plush sofas while enjoying a delicious selection of appetizers and wine, or enjoy hands-on experiences such as mixology instruction at a bar overlooking breathtaking views of the Sierras. World-class wine lists complement fantastically modernized renditions of international favorites, all delivered via first-rate service.

Whether you want a mid-mountain lunch break in between runs, prefer a secured dinner reservation, or are looking for something to grab on the go, there are plenty of ways to wine and dine at The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe, no matter your final destination. Here are the different ways in which you can partake:

Café Blue

Featuring fresh-pressed juices, organic coffee, signature paninis, and pastries, Café Blue is the perfect grab-and-go spot. Café Blue features counter service with cafe seating available, offering the most flexibility for that time of the day you break the fast -- or maybe just to keep your day going with some easy, lunchtime fuel. You’ll get decent views while you’re at it, too, with its upper lobby location with a view of the back patio below.

Backyard Bar & BBQ

The great views continue with Backyard Bar & BBQ, which takes full advantage of the seasons with its ski-in/ski-out location on The Ritz's back patio. Barbecue is cooked in an on-site smoker year-round, highlighted by St. Louis-style smoked ribs, brisket, and pulled pork sandwiches heading up the menu. They’ve also got burgers and bratwursts, wood-fired pizzas and even a vast selection of craft beers and cocktails to wash it all down. In the summer, enjoy happy hour specials on weekdays.

The Living Room

Lounge in the open luxury of the landing floor inside The Ritz-Carlton, aptly known as The Living Room. You’ll know you’re in the right place when you see the stone fireplace, which serves as a great centerpiece in the midst of outside views thanks to floor-to-ceiling windows. Bask in natural light during the day or cuddle up in The Living Room’s nighttime cozy quarters with a cocktail and some appetizers.

Highlands Bar

Climb two flights of staircases to get to Highlands Bar, a cozy cocktail bar that has a picturesque view of the Sierra Nevadas. Try one of their signature cocktails off the menu or go with your favorite classic. If you want to learn how to make your own, reserve a spot at The Ritz's weekly Art of the Cocktail mixology class, so that you can replicate not one, but three cocktails -- and enjoy appetizers paired with those cocktails.

Manzanita

At Manzanita, you’ll experience The Ritz-Carlton’s signature dining experience. Whether for breakfast, Sunday brunch, lunch, or dinner, impeccable service delivers each guest delicious plates complemented by well-balanced cocktails and world-class wines. The finest ingredients are sourced seasonally and locally from farms and fields to create imaginative twists on classic favorites, such as the BLT topped with salmon or the French onion soup served in a Vidalia onion. The open kitchen creates a festive vibe, whether you’re observing from the rich hued dining room, the lively bar or even the Chef’s Table or Counter. Vibrant, colorful design features complement wooden rafters and natural, stone walls for a warm, cozy feel.

Esther is a freelance writer, avid snowboarder, food enthusiast, worldwide traveler, and occasional musician based in Los Angeles. Whether on the mountain or off, she is always looking for the best places to eat and drink in the vicinity. Her writing career began with a food blog over ten years ago and she has since contributed to the L.A. Times, Eater, Discover LA, Thrillist, GOOD Magazine, Time Out, and more. Follow Esther on Twitter and Instagram.