The latest food and drink news from Tahoe and Truckee

Written by Suzie Dundas


After a busy summer of restaurant openings and summer food and beverage events, Tahoe’s entrepreneurs are hard at work with new offerings for the winter season and new year.

Gaining much attention is the newly opened Inclined Burgers and Brews in Incline Village, a joint venture from co-owners Scott Penning and Scott Beck. Penning, formerly of The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe, and Beck, who hails from a family of restaurateurs, opened Inclined in the former home of Barjay’s. It’s a space that Penning felt would be perfect for a burger joint, going so far as to try to lease it prior to 2018 — though the former owners beat him to the punch. He describes its menu as “simple and streamlined,” though he notes that the cooks are practicing several cooking techniques in the kitchen to elevate the tastes well beyond the standard burger joint fare. While the menu currently is limited to burgers, veggie burgers, salads, and fries, Penning says they’ll be adding a “sweet treats” menu in the near future.


Inclined Burgers and Brews
901 Tahoe Blvd., Unit 2, Incline Village
775-298-7909 •


In Truckee, DRINK COFFEE DO STUFF is gaining attention in the coffee world as it was recently nominated for a 2019 Good Food Award. The national award is given by the Good Food Foundation and recognizes food and beverage businesses that create sustainable, authentic — and, of course, appetizing — offerings. DRINK COFFEE DO STUFF is one of 25 nominees in the coffee category, alongside well-established brands such as Equator Coffees & Teas out of the Bay Area, which ended 2017 with revenues of $16 million. How does owner Nick Visconti feel about DCDS being nominated among such massive brands?

“We’re stoked,” he says.

Winners will be announced in January 2019.

12177 Business Park Drive, Truckee


In ski news, Alpine Meadows announced the opening of the new Hideaway Café, serving breakfast and lunch at the bottom of the resort’s Subway Chair Life. It’s the latest project from chef Carolyn Newman of the Tahoe Food Hub, and it opened on December 1, in time for the 2018-19 ski season.

Chef Carolyn
Caption: Photo courtesy of Squaw Valley – Alpine Meadows

Hideaway Cafe at Alpine Meadows
2600 Alpine Meadows Road
800-403-0206 •


Northstar California has given a gourmet facelift to the Summit Smokehouse, a ski-in, ski-out restaurant situated 8,610 feet above sea level at the top of the Comstock Express lift. The newly refreshed space received an interior makeover and introduced a new menu that focuses on quality and sustainability. Sodas are offered without artificial flavoring or sweeteners, and no disposable cups are available. The culinary concept centers on smoked meats and cocktails infused with western flavors, such as a bacon Bloody Mary or bourbon-spiked sweet tea.

LowRes G1C3872
Caption: Photo courtesy of Northstar California


Summit Smokehouse at Northstar California
5001 Northstar Drive, Truckee
530-562-3679 •


Other movers and shakers in the area include Alibi Ale Works, which will occupy the former home of Hacienda in Incline Village. The new facility is slated to open in April 2019 and will have 2,500 square feet of indoor space, plus an additional 800-square-foot deck. The current taproom will offer growlers and cans for sale, plus limited brewery tours.

Alibi Ale Works
204 E. Enterprise St. Incline Village
775-298-7001 •


Incline residents will no doubt have noticed that Wildflower Café closed after 34 years of business, with its owners citing leasing difficulties as the main motivator to retire. In South Lake Tahoe, Refuge Coffee has opened a small café inside Blue Granite Climbing Gym under the direction of Refuge Coffee owner Jared Marquez. Though Marquez has been offering coffee-by-mail services for years, this is the first storefront for the young business.

Caption: Photo by Mikhaila Howard Photography

Refuge Coffee
1259 Emerald Bay Road, South Lake Tahoe (inside Blue Granite Climbing Gym)
530-600-2761 •


And for skiers making the trek down to Kirkwood, The Cornice Pizza recently opened in the village, offering creative pies with an ’80s-inspired, neon vibe.

The Cornice Pizza

1501 Kirkwood Meadows Drive
209-258-6000/ •

Suzie Dundas is a Lake Tahoe-based freelance writer. She writes about everything from adventure travel to social media and inspired food and drink. You can find more of her work at