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How managing stress and adopting healthy eating and lifestyle patterns are critical to our minds and bodies
Written by Ashley Johnson
During these difficult times, with their unprecedented challenges and unfamiliar rules, our health and wellbeing should take center stage. The combination of the shift to remote work with less physical activity and the adoption of bad eating patterns is changing our bodies, inside and out.
A recent article in The New York Times takes a deeper look at the role stress plays in our bodies. Not only do stress, traumatic events, and lifestyle changes trigger internal physical changes, but they can cause problems with our gastrointestinal systems and how we digest food.
Mark S. Riddle, M.D., a doctor of public health and associate dean of clinical research at the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine, explains the different types of stress and how each one affects the GI system.
“GI problems are really common in the population, and stress is a component of those,” he says.
Mark S. Riddle, M.D., associate dean of clinical research, at University of Nevada, Reno’s Center for Clinical Research
Stress on the Body
Acute stress, typically identified as the fight or flight mechanism, releases hormones that essentially shut down the stomach and lead to bloating, cramping, and nausea. Alternatively, chronic stress can have similar effects that result not from the release of hormones but from food and liquids that leak from your gut and intestines. This happens when the linings of the intestines become compromised, allowing bacteria to pass through that barrier into the body. Over time, this can lead to inflammation and other GI problems. More importantly, stress can alter our microbiome, or the composition of bacteria and microorganisms in our intestines. Changes in the microbiome affect our immune systems, chronic low-grade inflammation, and bacterial absorption of nutrients, and they can lead to diarrhea, gas, and other gut issues.
“Chronic GI problems are common; we don’t understand exactly the cause of everybody’s problems, but there are treatments out there that can be tried and work for you,” Riddle says.
It’s important to be cognizant of these changes and notice any negative patterns. Emotional eating, or stress eating, caused by overwhelming feelings of uncertainty has increased since quarantine began. Often, people reach for quick and easy solutions, which tend to be junk food. If you notice you are not exercising as much, it’s important to build that into your daily routine. Dr. Riddle suggests using a calendar to set an appointment for a 15-minute walk so that it becomes part of your daily schedule.
“Life is stressful,” he says. “There are stresses in life and that can affect your gut. So do things that will relieve your stress, whatever that may be, whether it’s exercise, yoga … whatever you do that makes you, at the end of the day, feel less stressed.”
Managing stress is important and can prevent chronic health problems. Consistently exercising, getting enough sleep, and eating a well-balanced diet will help your body stay in equilibrium and ultimately affect your health overall.
“There are treatments for chronic GI problems. There are not only nutrition and exercise, but also things like cognitive behavioral therapy or hypnosis even have been shown to treat these chronic GI disorders,” Riddle says.
One tip Riddle recommends is drinking plenty of water. This forces you to get up more often to use the bathroom and move around. It also helps your body process and metabolize nutrients.
“I think what we’re seeing sometimes is people just aren’t doing their normal routines, so they’re not drinking the same amount of water that they usually drink,” he says.
Adopting Healthy Patterns
Caitlin Bus, a registered dietitian at Renown Health Intensive Cardiac Rehab, recommends sticking to an eating schedule in which you only eat when you’re hungry and keep yourself busy with non-food-related activities you enjoy that keep your hands busy without reaching for food.
From left, Caitlin Bus, registered dietitian, provides nutrition counseling to a patient. Photo courtesy of Renown Health
“Whether that’s listening to music, calling up a friend, or just getting outside and getting some fresh air, that can really help,” Bus says.
As more people experiment with new recipes at home and opt for comfort foods, Bus recommends investing that time in trying healthy new recipes. She recommends experimenting with substitutions for butter and sugar commonly found in baked goods recipes.
“One thing I like to use is either mashed banana or applesauce,” Bus said. “These can replace the fat in a recipe. They add moisture and natural sugars without adding refined sugars,” she says.
Substituting refined sugar with natural sugar — such as fruit, honey, or maple syrup — helps to reduce inflammation in the gut. Additionally, sugar alternatives such as stevia, Splenda, or monk fruit are easily accessible and cost effective. In addition to experimenting with new foods and recipes, some people have used quarantine as an opportunity to experiment with new diets such as keto, Sirtfood, paleo, and so on.
“A lot of diets imply that they’re just temporary, and you might see some results initially, but they’re hard to maintain long term,” Bus says. “The best option is to choose a well-balanced eating pattern that encompasses the healthy foods within all food groups.”
Ashley Johnson is a prolific freelance writer based out of Incline Village, with more than 10 years’ experience writing on topics such as health technology, mind and body awareness, and sports innovation.
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Reviving the traditional art of garlic braiding
Written by Heidi Bethel
Walk into nearly any old-school Italian joint and you’ll likely find beautiful braids of garlic adorning the walls. While they are an artful nod to one of the key ingredients in many great dishes, garlic braids serve more than just an aesthetic purpose. Local farmers are busy this time of year crisscrossing long stalks they’ve grown since last fall.
Preserving the Aromatics
Traditionally, garlic braiding has been used to keep garlic fresh longer. With the increased air circulation provided, the shelf life of braided garlic is stretched two to three times that of cloves stored in mesh bags or thrown in a container somewhere in the kitchen.
About three years ago, Christine Rosakranse, co-owner of Bee Here Now Farm in Wadsworth, started garlic braiding after seeing a big demand at the annual Reno Garlic Festival.
“These are beautiful, heirloom creations that you can’t buy at the store,” she notes. “They are a great way to enjoy garlic well into the winter months since some varieties will last up to nine months. You don’t have to worry about funky mold or mildew, or those little black bits that mean it’s gone bad.
“The braids also put off a wonderful smell for anyone really into garlic,” she adds. “They give off the garlicky aroma for months.”
Garlic braids created by Christine Rosakranse at Bee Here Now Farm
Pretty Up a Corner
The technique for garlic braiding can be as simple as a three-section braid typical of little girls’ pigtails or as exquisite as the intricate designs used to lace the dough for challah bread. It’s really up to the braider.
“People can put a lot of work into their pattern or just keep it straightforward,” Rosakranse says. “It’s definitely one of those things that’s a nice, homey look. It’s like when you have a really pretty candle that you never burn, you end up with this beautiful piece of art that adds to your home.”
She goes on to explain that if folks plan to eat the garlic bulbs, it’s important that they are stored correctly … even hanging on the wall. “You’re supposed to keep them somewhere relatively dry and out of the sun. They can really brighten a dark spot in your kitchen without affecting the flavor of the garlic.”
Try Your Hand
For those who want to take up garlic braiding, Rosakranse suggests growing the garlic themselves. She typically plants the bulbs in the fall, garnering longer stalks for braiding in the early summer months. Then she urges braiders to watch videos on YouTube.
Garlic growing at Bee Here Now Farm. Photo by Nick Hill
The fourth annual Reno Garlic Festival that was originally scheduled for July 25 has been cancelled due to COVID-19 concerns. However, event organizers have converted the event to a year-long opportunity for education and inspiration, including the “A Year in Garlic” course that provides insights on growing garlic locally, as well as promotions for free garlic seed. Follow news about the event at https://www.renofoodsystems.org/garlicfest.
Meanwhile, pick up some local garlic at your area farmers’ markets. As Rosakranse says, “They’re a great way to support local farmers and have a nice, usable piece of art in your home for months to come.”
During her youth, Heidi Bethel had a neighbor who absolutely loved garlic and would proudly hang her homegrown braids throughout her kitchen and living room. Bethel remembers the vivid essence of garlic before you even entered the front door.
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Written by Claire McArthur
We’re living in unprecedented times, but amid all of this chaos and uncertainty, at least one thing remains true: If you plant a seed in the ground, give it sunlight and water, it will grow. More people than ever have turned to growing their food — some for the first time — in the wake of COVID-19. Not only is doing so resourceful, but gardening is an excellent stress reliever and gets people outside while still observing social distancing.
Fisk Farm Herbs, Two Ravens Farm, and Mewaldt Organics are offering sliding-scale discounts for their seedlings.
Photo courtesy of Fisk Farms Herbs
It’s also a great way to support regional farms and nurseries as they navigate these difficult economic times. A number of these businesses across Reno-Tahoe have adapted their business practices to make purchasing seedlings safer this year, so skip the bulk orders from large online retailers, and instead put your dollars back into the local economy.
In response to COVID-19, Moana Nursery launched an online store with curbside pickup at the Moana Lane location and delivery to anywhere in Reno and Sparks. Call the South Virginia Street and Pyramid Lane locations to utilize the personal shopper service for curbside pickup. Moana Nursery also has created various sized “victory garden packages” to get you started on an edible garden, including a phone or Zoom consultation with a gardening expert, vegetable starts based on the conversation, soil, and fertilizer.
Moana Lane Garden Center
1100 W. Moana Lane, Reno
Pyramid Way Garden Center
3397 Pyramid Way, Sparks
South Virginia Street Garden Center
11301 S. Virginia St., Reno
Loping Coyote Farms
Though you can’t browse Loping Coyote Farms’ annual plant sale in person this year, you can flip through the nursery’s online plant catalogue and place orders over the phone or through email. Plant pickup day is May 2 at the north parking lot of Bordertown Casino, located at 19575 US Hwy. 395, Reno.
Old Stone House Gift and Garden
Old Stone House Gift and Garden has curbside pickup and delivery options from its Reno greenhouses. They also offer delivery of gift-wrapped potted plants as a way to send a thoughtful gift to someone you care about but can’t see in person due to social distancing.
1350 Geiger Grade Road, Reno
Reno Food Systems
Reno Food Systems, a nonprofit organization cultivating community-based food systems, has been hosting seedling sales outside at its Park Farm. Five packs of seedlings go for $5, with the sixth plant getting donated to local organizations that help feed people in need, such as Soulful Seeds and Katharina's Garden and Compost Program.
Reno Food Systems has been holding seedlings sales, announced through its social media platforms, at its Park Farm.
Photo courtesy of Reno Food Systems
Future sale dates are not yet set and are based on when the seedlings are ready, so follow along on Facebook or Instagram for updates. To ensure social distancing, a board is used to provide shoppers with a number to text to “get in line” for the sale while they wait in their cars. Reno Food Systems also accepts payment through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
3295 Mayberry Drive, Reno
Great Basin Community Food Co-op
Though Great Basin Community Food Co-op had to cancel its usual in-person seedling sale, seedlings from regional farms are available for sale on the co-op’s website, with curbside pickup. All orders must be placed by 10 p.m. on May 12 for pickup in the parking lot on Fri., May 15 from noon – 3 p.m. or Sat., May 16 from 9 a.m. – noon.
240 Court St., Reno
Greenhouse Garden Center
Call Greenhouse Garden Center to place and pay for an order for curbside pickup or delivery. Delivery fees apply based on location.
2450 S. Curry St., Carson City
Fallon Food Hub
The Fallon Food Hub is doing an online seedling sale with local farmers. Items are available for purchase on the Great Basin Basket Farm Share website, with pickup at Lattin Farms, located at 1955 McLean Road in Fallon.
Fisk Farm Herbs, Two Ravens Farm, and Mewaldt Organics
This trio of Fallon farms has teamed up to deliver vegetable, fruit, medicinal, and culinary herb seedlings to homes in Fallon, Reno, Sparks, and Carson City with a minimum purchase of $40, through the end of April. They also are offering sliding-scale discounts from 10 to 50 percent off. Visit Fisk Farm Herbs’ website and submit your email to get details on how to purchase the seedlings.
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Order Alaska Select's wild-caught, quality catch from home
Written by Jenna Talbott and Le‘a Gleason
Strange times indeed leave many small businesses shuffling to consider not only how they can stay afloat, but also how they can adjust to serve their local communities, if possible. The COVID-19 pandemic has fallen on the Reno-Tahoe area like an invisible fog, presenting the social paradox of isolation and unity. Personal and economic sacrifices are being made for the greater health of our communities as we try to navigate uncertain times. Social distancing and quarantining make food and shelter our collective priorities as all non-essential businesses are closed until further notice.
Alaska Select Seafood representative Jenna Talbott was born and raised in Reno, and says the company’s sea-to-table business is on track to distribute its flash-frozen, sustainably caught, wild Alaskan seafood to its club members in the Reno and Truckee areas in May.
“Hopefully things will be back to normal by then,” Talbott says. “But either way, we are going to keep on track taking seafood orders and providing a convenient and quality source of omega-3s and protein for households.”
Alaska Select Seafood traditionally distributes bulk orders of premium, sustainably caught seafood to individuals in Reno and Truckee twice a year, in May and again in October/November. Club members (join for free here) generally pick up their orders at designated times and locations in the area.
Sockeye salmon fisherman Captain Nick Lee, owner of Alaska Select Seafood, says that due to the present circumstances, the small company is offering home deliveries to those who are immunocompromised or under quarantine.
“We will encourage those who are able to please come and pick up their orders while still practicing social distancing as necessary,” he says. “We will do our best to responsibly manage the distributions. We are taking this opportunity to maintain services for our customers very seriously.”
Talbott says that, in general, if Alaska Select Seafood is about anything (besides quality, she notes), it would be responsibility. The company uses its income and resources to fund educational projects about the seafood industry so that consumers can make responsible choices, whether it’s with Alaska Select Seafood or in the seafood aisles of their local markets.
The Story of Alaska Select
“I first got involved with Nick Lee on his passion-project side of things,” Talbott says. “We put together a presentation that sort of decoded the intentionally misleading language used in the seafood industry, so that consumers can understand what story they are buying into. Nick is very passionate about empowering people to make responsible choices because he really understands what is at stake with our oceans.”
Lee has fished in Bristol Bay (the world’s largest and most sustainable wild sockeye salmon run) for more than 35 years, and over time he began growing his personal distributions of sockeye salmon from family and friends to create Alaska Select Seafood in 2013. He began networking with other responsibly sourcing fishermen and small fisheries in Alaska to provide a variety of wild-caught options for seafood lovers to order in bulk.
Arial shot of Captain Nick Lee's fishing vessel, the Anasazi.
Its name was written in the muddy delta by crew members.
Photo by Austin Breckinridge
Lee’s sockeye salmon is available for order in 10- or 20-pound boxes of flash-frozen filets or portions. Alaska Select Seafood also offers black cod, Pacific cod, lingcod, king salmon, smoked sockeye salmon, halibut, spot prawns, and bairdi snow crab — some available in five-pound boxes. The Alaska Select Seafood website has detailed information on the background and sourcing of each product.
After getting involved with Alaska Select, Talbott is heading into her third season working in Bristol Bay. As a quality control personnel, she saw firsthand how the fishery has upped its standards to produce the quality products Alaska Select proudly offers. Lee and Talbott also are working on a book that delves into how these practices revolutionized and saved the Bristol Bay industry, which now provides more than half the world’s sockeye salmon.
Lee hangs his captain hat all but six weeks of the year, yet his whole life is dedicated to sharing his insights into the seafood industry.
Nick Lee, owner of Alaska Select Seafood, barbecues black cod. Photo courtesy of Alaska Select Seafood
“I began fishing in Alaska 37 years ago. Over that time, I’ve worn many hats and become all too familiar with the inner workings of the fishing industry and its battles over sustainability, safety, and quality. I’ve harvested sockeye, silvers, kings, cohos, halibut, black cod, herring, Pacific cod, and even sea monkeys, in a variety of regions with different gear types,” he says, referring to the equipment used for fishing.
“At age 18, I worked my way up from the ‘slime line’ in a processing plant to the first line of quality control,” Lee continues. “My first job out of college was inspecting for a seafood trader. I served as the logistics coordinator for a shipping company, where I oversaw union labor. I was a founding board member for the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development, which helped delegate funds for scientific research, quality programs, and management for the largest sockeye salmon run in the world. I’ve now worn a captain’s hat for 25 years and, most recently, started Alaska Select. The common thread through all my endeavors in the industry has been the pursuit of quality. My goal now is to share some of my knowledge with seafood lovers — to give them the tools to pursue sustainable quality for themselves and to take the story of seafood for Americans back.”
Talbott says Alaska Select Seafood’s mission is two-fold.
“We aim to provide responsibly sourced, quality products from select fisheries that fund projects through which Nick can share his insight and story,” she says.
The following video showcases Lee’s passion for his work.
At the forefront of Alaska Select Seafood’s projects is a documentary on the importance of wild salmon as it relates to the Pebble Mine project.
Lee has been hard at work year round with a team gathering footage and interviews to spread awareness about a myriad of issues including the imposing threat of the Pebble Mine, which will put the world’s largest, most sustainable sockeye salmon run at risk of devastation.
Reno geologist Ann Carpenter disagrees with the anti-Pebble Mine movement, but she has become a big supporter of Alaska Select Seafood because of the quality of the fish.
Carpenter initially tried some of Alaska Select Seafood’s offerings at a dinner party hosted by Talbott and placed an order the next day.
“I got smoked salmon and prawns and it was lovely,” Carpenter says. “I (liked) both the freshness and the sustainability aspect. I’m concerned about overfishing the ocean. I’m landlocked here in Nevada so I really haven’t had a lot of great luck with fresh fish. I noticed the flavor differences. You get farmed salmon and it’s got no character.”
Carpenter also was impressed by Alaska Select’s treatment of its products.
“The company freezes them and puts together a product that’s frozen once, not 700 times by the time it makes it to Reno,” she says. “I think that makes a difference — you freeze and thaw anything enough and you affect the quality of the food or even the flavor of it.”
Reno locals gather at a private residence for a dinner presentation on the seafood industry hosted by Alaska Select.
Photo courtesy of Alaska Select Seafood
After ordering once last year, Carpenter made a bigger order this fall, which included salmon, smoked salmon, black cod, and prawns. She is especially fond of the black cod.
“Once I started eating the cod, everything was going to come up second to it. The cod just speaks for itself. I either pan fry it or bake it and use very little butter or oil because the flavor is so incredible,” she says.
The Alaska Select Seafood website provides an array of recipes to guide and inspire home cooking — something it seems we are all becoming more accustomed to lately.
To join a Reno or Truckee club, go to Alaskaselectseafood.com and sign up for free. Club members will be notified when orders open in April and distribution hits in May.
“Hot tip: The black cod goes fast!” Talbott says.
- Category: Blog
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Compiled by Jessica Santina
We are in a time that is new for each of us, with so many unknowns, and navigating through this takes a village.
To help you access needed food, products, and services, and also to provide critical support to local businesses who cannot afford to lose their incomes, we’ve compiled the following list of resources, which we’ll update as we are able.
Gift cards, delivery, drive-through or curbside pickup, free or low-cost shipping… all are ways we can support each other in our Reno-Tahoe community. If you can commit to supporting some of these businesses or even purchasing gift cards online, it can make the difference between someone staying open or closing permanently.
Please call restaurants directly to inquire about their takeout and delivery services, before using services such as Grub Hub, Door Dash, and Uber Eats, which all take portions of profits. Calling businesses directly helps ensure that local businesses receive the maximum level of support in this time of crisis.
Many delivery services are booking days out, so be patient! And remember to over-tip your delivery drivers. Please make sure to follow us on social media @ediblerenotahoe or subscribe to our newsletter on our home page for updates.
Publisher/Advertising Director Jaci Goodman has compiled an alphabetized list of restaurants, bakeries, and breweries offering pick-up, delivery, online ordering, and curbside service. And edible Reno-Tahoe contributor Michael Tragash, a local community director with Yelp.com, has provided this list of restaurants in Reno-Tahoe offering curbside/takeout/delivery/online ordering.
Additionally, here’s the latest information we’ve received — we’ll do our best to keep this list updated.
Free home delivery to all residents in the Somersett/Del Webb/Sierra Canyon/Northgate/Robb Drive neighborhoods, plus a drive-through window is available.
Wild River Grille
Wild River Grille and Sierra Arts Foundation are launching a gift card offer to help support the economic health of several regional arts organizations. For every gift card sold for the restaurant, Wild River Grille will donate 50 percent of sales to Sierra Arts Foundation, a nonprofit that focuses on advocating for arts and artists, to allocate to four performance-based entities: Good Luck Macbeth, Reno Little Theater, the Brüka Theatre and the Pioneer Center for the Performing Arts.
The gift card effort is designed to help support the local arts community during the social distancing efforts designed to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Chuck Shapiro, owner of Wild River Grille indicated operations will be suspended for the time being.
Sierra Arts Foundation supports artists through advocacy, opportunity and the cultivation of skill and promotions. They will act as a fiscal agent for this collection effort and will not retain any dollars raised. The organization’s March Senior Care Concert events were recently cancelled in an effort to protect the senior citizens at high risk for infection. In order to ensure the performance artists receive grant dollars, Sierra Arts Foundation is asking them to perform solo in the nonprofit’s gallery and will live stream for all to enjoy on its Facebook page.
To purchase a gift card, call Wild River Grille at 775-284-7455.
The Urban Deli
Offering a free sandwich with the purchase of any $50 gift card, and available for deliveries placed over the phone from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m., with porch drop-off to eliminate contact. You can also ask that one of our staff members walk any pickup orders out to your vehicle. Using all delivery partners (UberEats, GrubHub, and DoorDash).
Food + Drink
Pizzas and liege waffle available via online ordering. Pull up and the staff will slide your pizza through the window! Get 20 percent off the first order with the coupon code FUCKCORONA. Foodanddrinkreno.com
Offering to-go items. Place and pay for your orders online, by calling 775-324-4787, or in person.
**Out-of-School Access to Food
In light of Governor Sisolak’s announcement to close all K-12 schools in Nevada, the Nevada Department of Agriculture (NDA) is implementing the first of a two-tier strategy to mitigate National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and School Breakfast Program interruptions. Programs used to serve school children during the summer months will be used to provide food while schools are closed in response to the threat of COVID-19 (coronavirus). The food, which will still meet federal nutrition standards, will be served in a grab-and-go style to minimize contamination potential and avoid delays.
“We understand the importance of preventative closures to protect students, faculty and members of the community, and we are doing everything we can to help minimize the impact to students and families that rely on school meals and ensure they have access to nutritious meals,” NDA Director Jennifer Ott says. “We are strongly urging all meal site sponsors to practice social distancing by using drive-thru service where possible and by requiring six feet of space between all individuals, should lines start to form.”
If widespread school closures result in reduced capacity of school central kitchens to provide grab-and-go meals, the second-tier strategy uses USDA Foods through the Emergency Food Assistance program (TEFAP). TEFAP resources can supply household food, not prepared meals.
NDA has received waivers from USDA that will allow more flexibility to provide emergency food response to affected communities with reduced risk through temporarily eliminating signature requirements and reducing and contact.
Food distribution sites and times confirmed so far
**This list will be updated as sites are confirmed – please visit the NDA’s Facebook page for any updates.
Meal sites expected to start Tuesday, March 17.
C.C Meneley Elementary School
Aspire Academy High School
Delivering meals via the bus route from 9 to 10 a.m. starting March 16.
Two options starting Wednesday 03/18/20:
Option 1: Walk-up meals 10 to 11 a.m. provided at Round Mountain, Gabbs Elementary, Tonopah Elementary, and Tonopah Middle and High.
Option 2: Bus Routes will be operating their normal route with meals staring at 10 a.m.
Churchill County grab-and-go meal sites (breakfast and lunch) are expected start on Wednesday, March 18, 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.:
Churchill County High School
Numa Elementary School
Northside Early Learning
Meal sites expected to start Tuesday, March 17, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Empire Elementary School
Mark Twain Elementary School
Seeliger Elementary School
Carson High School
Drive-thru breakfast and lunch starting Tuesday, March 17.
Battle Mountain Elementary School 10 to 11 a.m.
For updates, please visit Nevada Department of Agriculture.
- Parent Category: Blog
- Category: Eat Local
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Story and photos by Claire McArthur
Though this winter did not bring the “Februburied” we hoped for, there is still hope for a Miracle March to dump more snow on Reno-Tahoe. For a peaceful alternative to groomers at the resort, strap on your snowshoes for a trek followed by a bite at a nearby eatery. It’s a recipe for a perfect winter’s day.
Fallen Leaf Lake + Sonney’s BBQ Shack Bar and Grill
Fallen Leaf Lake on Tahoe’s South Shore is gorgeous any time of year, but on a windless winter day, the still waters create a perfect reflection of the snow-capped peaks, including the iconic cross on Mount Tallac.
Fallen Leaf Lake is a picturesque location for snowshoeing
It’s a short trek to the lake, then choose your own adventure on the roughly 8-mile loop. Afterwards, head a few minutes down the road to Sonny’s BBQ Shack Bar and Grill for deep fried mac ’n’ cheese and a half rack of baby back ribs slow roasted with a house-made signature rub and sauce.
Sonny’s BBQ Shack Bar and Grill, 787 Emerald Bay Road, South Lake Tahoe • 530-541-7427 • Sonneysbbqshack.com
Chickadee Ridge + T’s Mesquite Rotisserie
Chickadee Ridge near Incline Village is a popular snowshoeing trail for its sweeping views of Lake Tahoe and friendly birds that are its namesake. The two-mile, out-and-back trail will get you hungry for a stop at nearby T’s Mesquite Rotisserie, which has, in this humble writer’s opinion, the best burritos you will ever eat. Tri-tip and whole chickens turn slowly in the rotisserie behind the counter before getting stuffed into a flour tortilla with cheese, rice, and black beans. Opt for the slightly sweet green salsa.
T’s Mesquite Rotisserie, 901 Tahoe Blvd., Incline Village • 775-831-2832 • Tsrotisserie.com
Hope Valley Sno Park + Hope Valley Cafe and Market
Snowshoe along the West Fork of the Carson River in Hope Valley Sno Park near the intersection of State Routes 88 and 89. The valley has gorgeous views of the mountains and is an easy, flat trek that you can make as long or as short as you’d like (but don’t forget to purchase a permit online or in South Lake Tahoe or Meyers). After blazing a trail through the sno park, head to Hope Valley Cafe and Market for from-scratch sandwiches, homemade potato chips, and a unique selection of baked goods. The cozy, rustic café is known for its pies, so don’t skip dessert!
Hope Valley Cafe and Market, 14655 Hwy. 88, Hope Valley • 530-694-2323 • Find Hope Valley Cafe on Facebook
Spooner Lake + Tahoe Hot Pot
The 2.5-mile trail around Spooner Lake is flat and is frequented by snowshoers and cross-country skiers alike
Tackle the 2.5-mile loop around a (hopefully) frozen Spooner Lake on snowshoes before heading down U.S. 50 into Stateline to warm up at Tahoe Hot Pot. The restaurant mainly serves shabu-shabu, a Japanese soup prepared at the table by the diner. Choose two broth bases and add in thinly sliced meat, seafood, and vegetables to cook and eat alongside an array of dipping sauces. It’s a relaxing way to cap a brisk day in the backcountry.
Tahoe Hot Pot, 177 Hwy. 50, Stateline • 775-586-8883 • Find Tahoe Hot Pot on Facebook
Claire McArthur is a freelance writer and avid snowshoer who believes every outdoor activity should be complemented with an excellent meal.
- Parent Category: Blog
- Category: Eat Local
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Written by Claire McArthur
Soba noodle stir fry with tempeh (stir fry sauce, shiitake mushrooms, sautéed onion, kale, bean sprouts, cashews, sesame seeds, scallions)
from The Station in Truckee. Photo courtesy of Grace Burnes at The Station
Chances are, your January was filled with sweeping declarations to live a healthier life — start exercising, cook more nutritious meals, consume less meat, or eat more veggies. For some, the idea of healthy eating is synonymous with deprivation, dieting, and skipping meals out. Not so!
Across Reno-Tahoe, eateries are embracing cuisines that can accommodate a wide variety of nutritional choices. Eating out does not have to be the entire-stick-of-butter restaurant meal written about by the late Anthony Bourdain. It can be flavorful yet nutritious, high quality but affordable.
Treat yourself — without derailing your wellness goals — with a trip to one of these Reno-Tahoe eateries for a colorful, nutritious meal.
Pola Poke Bowls | Reno
Pola's Hawaiian poke bowls are chock full of omega 3-rich fresh fish and vibrant vegetables, making it an easy, healthy meal to grab on the go.
Photo courtesy of Pola Poke
Tucked in the Plum Tree Plaza, Pola Poke Bowls serves up delicious Hawaiian seafood bowls chock full of vegetables, fruits, and grains. You can build your own bowl or choose from a selection of favorites, all with incredibly fresh tuna, salmon, real crab, octopus, and more. From cucumbers and edamame to pineapple and beets, fill your bowl with vibrant, nutritious toppings to reach your recommended five a day.
594 W. Plumb Lane Suite A, Reno • 775-683-9901 • Polapokebowl.com
Sprouts Natural Foods Café | South Lake Tahoe
Sprouts Natural Foods Café is the health food hub on Lake Tahoe’s South Shore. Since 1990, the café has served up veggie-forward sandwiches, salads, soups, burritos, and bowls made with fresh ingredients, lean meats, and protein alternatives such as tempeh and tofu. Its huge selection of juices and smoothies should not be missed either.
3123 Harrison Ave., South Lake Tahoe • 530-541-6969 • Sproutscafetahoe.com
L.A. Bakery Cafe & Eatery | Carson City
At L.A. Bakery, choose from a selection of delectable baked goods, including vegan, gluten-free, sugar-free, and zero-trans-fat treats. For a heartier meal with Mediterranean influence, opt for panini, falafel pita, lettuce-wrapped grass-fed burger or a Buddhist plate brimming with veggies drizzled in a lemon olive oil dressing.
1280 N. Curry St., Carson City. • 775-885-2253 • Labakerycafe.com
Great Full Gardens | Reno and Sparks
Whether you want your tacos stuffed with wild Alaskan cod or jackfruit, or your grain bowl topped with organic chicken or tofu, at Great Full Gardens you can be sure that every dish is made from real, whole ingredients and full of colorful veggies. The restaurant’s healthy take on everything from benedicts to burgers never disappoints, and the vibrant atmosphere makes it a great place to enjoy a meal.
Several locations across Reno and Sparks • Greatfullgardens.com
Uncommon Kitchen | Tahoe City
Dubbed “Tahoe’s Ethnic Deli,” Uncommon Kitchen in Tahoe City serves sushi (with numerous vegan options), Vietnamese spring rolls, and unique sandwiches served up on freshly baked baguettes or gluten-free bread. Try unique nori maki rolls made with organic rice, including combinations such as ahi tuna, mango, basil, and toasted macadamia nuts. A rotating selection of hot dishes — falafel and pad thai, for example — also are available.
505 W North Lake Blvd., Tahoe City • 530-583-3663 • Uncommonkitchen.org
The Station | Truckee
Brickletown chicken (grilled chicken thigh, provolone, peppers, onion, olives, capers, pickled cabbage, and almond dressing) at The Station. Photo courtesy of Grace Burnes at The Station
From slow-cooked cheesesteak sandwiches with cashew “cheese” sauce to the Istan-bowl (crispy falafel, farro, cilantro-jalapeño slaw, harissa feta, and cucumber salad), The Station in Truckee doesn’t sacrifice flavor for nutritional value. The diverse menu has food for meat eaters, vegetarians, and vegans alike with a focus on using quality protein and ample veggies.
10130 West River St., Truckee • 530-563-5285 • Truckeestation.com
- Parent Category: Blog
- Category: Eat Local
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Written by Claire McArthur
Don’t let the weather fool you: There are still farms in the region churning out delicious local produce and goods using hoop houses, greenhouses, and indoor grows. And thanks to grocery stores and markets committed to selling local all year round — Great Basin Community Food Co-op, Fallon Food Hub, and Reno’s only winter market, Riverside Farmers Market, to name a few — it’s easy to support farmers year round.
In my home, winter is also known as soup season, which I usually enjoy at dinner with a platter of aged-white-cheddar grilled cheese or a simply dressed salad of leafy greens.
Any soup aficionado worth their salt knows that the secret to a good soup is layering in flavors starting from the very base. Since 1979, Peri & Sons has been growing white, red, yellow, sweet, and organic onions — an essential for almost any soup — in Yerington. The Peri family keeps its customers inspired by providing onion-forward recipes inspired by cuisines from around the world. One of their latest dishes is Augadito de Pollo, a hearty Peruvian chicken-and-rice soup with many opportunities to utilize local produce — and perhaps some of that summer produce that you smartly stored away in your cellar or freezer.
Augatido de Pollos is a hearty Peruvian soup that you can make using locally sourced onions, carrots, chicken, and broth. Photo courtesy of Peri & Sons.
Augadito de Pollo
(courtesy of Peri & Sons in Yerington. Serves 8 to 10)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large poblano pepper, seeded, cored, and diced
1 small white onion, finely chopped
1 serrano or jalapeño pepper, seeded, cored, and minced
5 cloves garlic, minced
6 cups chicken stock, divided
2 cups cooked chicken, shredded or diced
1 pound Yukon gold potatoes, diced
2 large carrots, peeled and diced
½ cup white or brown rice
½ cup peas
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 bunch fresh cilantro leaves
Juice of 1 lime
Extra fresh cilantro leaves, chopped, and thinly sliced green onions, for garnish
Heat oil in a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Add the diced poblano pepper and white onion; sauté 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened and translucent. Stir in minced serrano/jalapeño pepper and garlic; cook 2 more minutes. Transfer entire mixture to a large blender, and set aside to cool.
Return stock pot to heat. Add 5 cups chicken stock, cooked chicken, potatoes, carrots, rice, peas, and cumin; stir to combine. Bring mixture to a simmer, then reduce heat to medium-low so that soup maintains low simmer. Cover partially and cook, stirring occasionally, for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are fork tender and the rice is cooked.
Add cilantro leaves, lime, and remaining 1 cup chicken stock to blender along with pepper mixture. Purée 1 to 2 minutes or until the mixture is completely smooth. Stir purée into soup, garnish with cilantro and green onions, and serve warm.
Seasonal Produce in Reno-Tahoe
Here’s what’s fresh and available from local farms right now:
Peri & Sons (Yerington)
Variety of onions
Ital Farms (Reno)
Assortment of microgreens
Dayton Valley Aquaponics (Dayton)
Lattin Farms (Fallon)
Avanzino Farms (Reno)
Prema Farm (Loyalton)
MaryAlice’s Sprouts Farm (Reno)
Kennedy Ranch (Lamoille)
Bare Ranch (Gerlach)
Palomino Valley Chicken and Eggs (Reno)
- Parent Category: Blog
- Category: Eat Local
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Written by Jane K. Callahan
Photos courtesy of Camp Richardson
JT Basque Bar & Dining Room in Gardnerville. Photo by Jeff Dow
Visitors and locals alike who want to dive into Nevada’s history on a full belly should consider beginning where it all started: Carson Valley. It’s the oldest region in the state, which includes the first town ever established here in 1851. Holding true to its wild, western roots, the area has evolved into a prime hub for epicurean adventures. And with its proximity to Tahoe, it’s the perfect place to get your calories back.
“Carson Valley has done an amazing job of bringing new and exciting dining options to life while also preserving the history of our buildings and the traditional ways of preparing food and drink,” says Jan Vandermade, executive director of Visit Carson Valley. “Travelers can go elsewhere for bells and whistles, but for history-loving foodies, it would be hard to argue there’s a better locale for an updated but old-town feel than Carson Valley ... and it’s really good!”
Here are just a few top spots for a unique blend of the old and new, whether you’re there for a day trip or the week:
Photo courtesy of Battle Born Wine & Whiskey
Named after Nevada’s addition to the United States by way of the Union Army more than 150 years ago, Battle Born Wine & Whiskey is a decade-old business located in a historic residence, constructed in Virginia City in 1880 and moved by wagon. Despite its long history (and journey), this venue constantly is serving up new palate pleasers and boasts more than 2,000 labels on a weekly rotation. Run by sommelier Troy Philips — who always is happy to tell you what’s coming next — Battle Born carries locally made spirits, a roster of international wines and Champagnes, and more than 500 craft beers and ciders. And if you love what you taste, Troy offers a deep discount on crates.
1448 Hwy. 395, Gardnerville • 775-782-7684 • Battlebornwine.com
Open 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. Mon. – Sat.
If you’re making a day of it, add Bently Heritage Estate Distillery to the itinerary. Located in a 100-year-old flour mill, the building was remodeled after old public houses but as a LEED-certified structure. Here, grains are grown for distillation the old way — sustainably. Take a one-hour tour Thursday through Sunday between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m., and enjoy bespoke cocktails during tasting room hours, 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. Thurs. and Sun., 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. Fri. – Sat.
1601 Water St., Minden • 775 210-5097 • Bentlyheritage.com
More of a beer aficionado? Swing by Minden Meat and Deli, offering a huge selection of craft beers, with 31 varieties on tap. Wash down some burgers, which are made fresh daily using locally raised beef.
1595 Hwy. 395, Minden • 775-783-9999 • Mindenmeat.com
Open 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Mon., 9 a.m. – 8 p.m. Tues. – Sun.
Photo courtesy of Genoa Bar and Saloon
History buffs shouldn’t miss a stop at the state’s oldest watering hole, the Genoa Bar and Saloon. While patrons of yore may have tied their horses up outside, today the owners have found success in their outdoor porch parties.
2282 Main St., Genoa • 775-782-3870 • Genoabarandsaloon.com
Open 10 a.m. – midnight Fri. – Sat., -Sat from 10am to midnight, 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. Sun. – Thurs.
Genoa local Lois Wray decided to open a cheese and charcuterie outpost in the city’s landmark The Pink House, a gothic revival-style building that needed some TLC since its construction in 1855 (making it one of the first buildings to go up in the town). Wray offers a fresh take on food and drink, serving traditionally cured meats alongside goodies for modern tastes and specialty coffees. Much like eateries 100 years ago, its artisan menu is based on seasonal produce. Try the mushroom tart and cheesemonger’s grilled cheese.
193 Genoa Lane, Genoa • 775-392-4279 • Thepinkhousegenoa.com
Open 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. Tues. – Sat., 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sun.
Photo courtesy of J.T. Basque Bar & Dining Room
If you’re looking for large portions of exotic food, consider venturing into J.T. Basque Bar & Dining Room, which serves up multi-course, family-style meals in the Basque tradition — a result of the significant population of the European region’s shepherds who immigrated to Nevada in the mid-1800s. Where else in Carson Valley can you share locally grown veggies, bottomless soup bowls, roasted rabbit, and pig’s feet, with a glass of picon punch? Only here.
1426 Hwy. 395, Gardnerville • 775-782-2074 • Jtbasquenv.com
Serving lunch 11:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. Mon. – Fri., 11:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. Sat. Dinner 5 p.m. – 9 p.m. Mon. – Fri., 4:30 – 9 p.m. Sat.
1862 Saloon and Bar at David Walley’s Resort marries rustic Nevada saloon culture with updated elegance in its dining room, serving three meals a day (and live entertainment most Friday and Saturday nights). Diners can enjoy aged steak or fresh salmon, to name just two of its mouthwatering menu items, amid the ambiance of a historic lodge. Digest with a dip in the nearby hot springs, which have been there for way longer than the town itself.
2001 Foothill Road, Genoa • 775-782-8155 • Davidwalleys1862.com
Open daily, 7:30 a.m. – 9 p.m., NV 89411..
Photo courtesy of 1862 Saloon & Bar
If you desire a sweet ending to your day, stop into the Chocolate Shoppe, which carries traditional goods such as butter toffee alongside a more contemporary stash of CBD chocolates. With the goal of making sure that “it looks as good as it tastes,” this family-owned spot drums up images of an old-school candy store.
Mon. – Fri. 9am–5:30pm and Sat. 9:30am–5pm. 1363 Hwy. 395, “Sweet” 7. Gardnerville • 775-267-1002 • Chocolateshoppe.us
Jane K. Callahan is a freelance journalist and Nevada resident who insists on cooking very complicated recipes and messing them up — which is why she knows so much about local dining.
- Parent Category: Blog
- Category: Eat Local
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Tasty Tastings and Fine Presents Galore
The Flavor Studio brings gourmet to a whole new level this holiday.
Written by Heidi Bethel
Photos courtesy of The Flavor Studio
Curated food-and-drink experiences and luxurious gifts unite at The Flavor Studio in South Reno. Established by several local food lovers, this unique place brings expertly paired nosh to life with not-so-common wine and spirits for memorable public and private happenings, as well as special gifts this season.
Sake, sushi, and soy sauce tastings. Italian wine with homemade pasta. Tequila alongside gourmet tacos complete with house-made tortillas. With space to accommodate up to 35 people, The Flavor Studio brings creative flair to fine foods, wine and spirits affairs. Celebrating themes that highlight various dishes and drinks makes each event special.
“The food always is something exceptional that you wouldn’t find any place in Reno,” explains Laurel Pine, chef and curator at The Flavor Studio. “What we’re offering is an experience not offered anywhere else in town. We have a great lineup of events coming up that focus on tastes of the season.”
Events rounding out the year include Bubbles and Luxury Appetizers on December 27, which promises to bring together delicious faire and can’t-miss drinks. Pine says The Flavor Studio also is available for private events, for which the team creates experiences specific to the host’s vision. While the calendar still is in the works for 2020, attendees can expect more memorable pairing events and winemaker dinners.
Whether looking for an interesting bottle of wine or basket of delicious wares, Pine and others at The Flavor Studio marshal superb preferences in gift giving.
“We taste everything before we carry it and don’t have anything here that we wouldn’t give to our loved ones,” Pine notes.
Opulent gifts include:
- 2007 Vintage Cava from Spain in a beautiful gift box for $41.99
- Penfold’s “Grandfather” Rare Tawny (minimum average blended age is 20 years), 92 points Robert Parker for $97.99
A bottle of Penfolds Tawny
- Highly rated Italian wine gift basket with three Italian olive oil bottles in blood orange, lemon, and basil for $90.97
- Black River Russian caviar, packed in house to order, price based on tin size.
With the hustle of the season in full effect, book a tasting appointment to discover some amazing, exclusive foodstuffs and wow friends and family with special treats under the tree.
For private tastings and event tickets, visit Theflavorstudio.com, or call 775-525-5898 to make a reservation.