Gastronomes Hit the Jackpot in Reno

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There are many things you may not know about the Biggest Little City. For one, the locavore and microfarming philosophies championed in the Bay Area have reached this mountain town, where sushi lunches, food trucks (and bikes!), and curry and basil ice cream are now a thing. Here are the best places to chow down in Reno.


Coffee & Breakfast Treats

For breakfast, cafes like Two Chicks in MidTown and Wet Hen Café in South Reno are breaking local eggs for omelettes and quiche Lorraine. Crème Café has sweet and savory crepes, and Dish Café & Catering’s homemade granola has been featured on Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives.” For coffee lovers, locally roasted brews are served at the bicycle themed Hub Coffee Roasters at their locations on the Truckee River or MidTown. You can also indulge in homemade chocolate croissants or savory scones with a doppio at Homage Bakery & Coffeehouse.

Lunch Bites

The lunch options in Reno have exploded over the past year and even a few favorites from Portland have moved to MidTown. Laughing Planet serves whole food and veggie dishes with an international twist and PDX favorite Midtown Eats serves fried avocado slices and falafel. Just next door, Süp’s chicken coconut curry soup and Great Full Gardens’ Totally Tomato soup are made from scratch daily. The lunch menu at chez louie, at the Nevada Museum of Art, features daily tartines.

Dinner's on!

Reno dinners range from the PB&J Bacon Burger at The Stone House on Arlington, to the Beets, Beets & More Beets salad at Heritage. The Whitney Peak restaurant and bar also serves local game dishes for dinner and poutine for their Happy Hour. Mark Estee’s Campo sources from more than 20 local farms, and next door, the Reno Provisions’ cafeteria trays are loaded with North Carolina pulled pork and porchetta with lemon aioli. The Old Granite Street Eatery has a local charcuterie plate, while Pignic Pub & Patio lets you bring in your own meat or fish for grilling.

Sushi All the Time

I’ve personally met Bay Area visitors who drive up to Reno just for an all-you-can-eat (AYCE) sushi meal that only exists in the Biggest Little City. Nearly every corner has an AYCE sushi restaurant and, for around $20 for lunch and $30 for dinner, you can stuff yourself silly with nigiri, long rolls, and sake. Reef Sushi & Sake, on the Truckee River, serves the Reef Roll with dill cream cheese and basil sauce, and the Surf & Turf, which has delectable pieces of marinated tri-tip. Hiroba Sushi, on Skyline Drive, also includes Korean dishes on its menu, and Sushi Saga at the Siena and Ichiban at Harrah’s have the fastest chefs in town.

Food Truck Fridays and Ice Cream by Bike

If you’re in Reno during the summer, the food trucks are out in full force during events such as Food Truck Fridays, at Idlewild Park and downtown. From Electric Blue Elephant's vegan bowls and smoothies to Asian Fusion at Kenji’s, you can sample some serious eats. (Keep up with weekly food truck stops from the trucks’ Facebook or Twitter feeds.) While wandering around MidTown, flag down the IceCycle Creamery for dessert. Beer Nutz, Bleu Cheese and Balsamic Swirl, Fresh Basil and Slasher Flick are on this ice cream bicycle’s menu.

READ MORE: If you're headed to Reno, also check out the mountain town's emerging craft cocktail and micro-brewing scene, here