Editor's Picks for the Top Restaurants in Reno
By Christina Nellemann
Tahoe Local Expert
Many visitors to the Reno area are surprised by the amount choices in restaurants. Look past the casino buffets and you will find excellent cafes, Italian, Indian, Thai and natural foods. Locally grown produce and meat has also found its way into many of the eating establishments in the area.
For those looking to save some money and still get a great deal, visit the India Kabab and Curry restaurant in Midtown. They have an excellent lunch buffet and authentic Indian food. Just down the street is Bangkok Cuisine, which has been voted some of the best Thai in town.
Reno has become a hot bed of all-you-can-eat sushi. For around $20 for lunch you can get fresh and excellent sushi at restaurants like Hiroba and Sushi Club. Other medium priced places include the Old Granite Street eatery where you can get some nice appetizers during their happy hour or visit Sup or Midtown Eats for some local soups, salads and sandwiches.
For a splurge, visit the 4th Street Bistro or the Beaujolais Bistro where you will find local ingredients in a French atmosphere. Sterlings Restaurant at the Silver Legacy downtown is also a great place to celebrate a special occasion. For a look at old Reno, visit the Harrah's Steakhouse and get one of their flambéed desserts.
Head to the Little Nugget downtown where you can indulge in one of the most famous burgers in the world: the Awful Awful. It has been featured on several FoodTV shows and comes with a giant basket of fries.
10 Sterlings Seafood & Steakhouse
One of the best restaurants in the Big Three casinos downtown: the Silver Legacy, the Eldorado and Circus Circus. Sterlings in the Silver Legacy is a great place to have a special dinner and their Sunday Brunch buffet is probably the best in town. The menu includes items such as Escargot, New England Clam Chowder, French Onion Soup, Porterhouse Steak with Peppercorn Sauce and Desserts like Creme Brulee. The dinners will run about $40-$50 per person. The restaurant is elegant and the seating is booth style that is very private and great for couples or small groups. The Sunday Brunch is fantastic with seafood, steak and poultry specialties, an omelet station, a wonderful selection of breads and pastries and some wonderful fruit and desserts.The Sunday brunch (non-holiday) is about $25 per person. ((800) 687-8733)
9 Midtown Eats
The midtown Reno vibe is becoming more vibrant with additions like Midtown Eats. This little place in Midtown, just south of downtown serves up salads, soups, sandwiches, burgers and tacos during lunch and items such as Steak and Frite, Berkshire Pork Belly and Duck Confit during dinner. Their Sunday Brunch has Brioche French Toast, Huevos Rancheros, a Classic BLT, Fresh Squeezed Juice or Mimosa and Coffee from the Hub Coffee Roasters just down the street. The Atomic Burger is making a name for itself with its Habanero, Avocado and Charred Tomato Salsa and people are raving about the Tri-Tip or Snapper Tacos with Tomatillo Avocado Spread for $2 each. Most lunch items run about $10 each and dinner items run about $15-$24. Midtown Eats also serves up housemaid drinks such as the Chupacabra with Tequila Blanco, Chili Infused Ginger Liqueur and Watermelon. (89501)
8 Hiroba Sushi
Consistently voted one of the best sushi places in town and usually packed every night, Hiroba Sushi in the foothills above Reno has a cool vibe and wonderful sushi. Like most sushi restaurants in reno, AYCE is on the menu and for about $22 for lunch and about $32 for dinner you can get as much sushi as you want. Lunch comes with a bottle of warm sake and you can choose from a wide variety of rolls, Nigiri and hand rolls like the Yellowtail, the Paradise Roll and the Upside Down Shrimp. Their individual pieces of sushi are very good too. Visitors rave about the desserts which include Mochi Ice Cream and Fried Banana Ice Cream. ((775) 829-2788)
7 Old Granite Street Eatery
This charming little place is located in a refurbished building in the court area of Reno. The decor is clean and inspired by the farm and the food is unusual and most of it is from local farms. The menu features items such as the delicious Devils on Horseback which is dates wrapped in bacon and grilled and the Linguine with Blue Cheese Cream Sauce. The beer and cocktails feature names like the Dark n' Stormy and the Blood & Sand. The food is fresh and excellent and the staff is fast and friendly, but the prices are not cheap. Most appetizers go for about $6 to $12 and most entrees are around $20. However, they do have a great happy hour on the weekdays where you get appetizers for a special price and half off all draft beer and wine by the glass. The Granite Street Eatery features a weekend brunch on Saturdays and Sundays served from 10:00 am-4:00 pm. Granite Street is open at 11:00 am Monday-Friday, the kitchen remains open until 10:00 pm Monday-Thursday and stays open until Midnight on Friday and Saturday. A handful of small party reservations will be taken daily, with a large community table and bar available strictly for walk-in dining and/or imbibing. ((775) 622-3222)
6 Peg's Glorified Ham & Eggs
This is where the locals go for a huge breakfast that will last you way into the evening. Peg's is a popular coffee and breakfast spot that is well know for its huge portions, excellent staff and fun selection various items including stacks of pancakes, skillet meals and Latin inspired dishes. Favorite menu items include the Huevos Ranchero served in a skillet with fresh salsa, beans, hash browns and fruit or the Mexicali Omelette with guacamole and salsa. For something lighter you can order the huge portion of Lox, Bagel and Cream Cheese or a Veggie Benedict. Their classes Eggs Benedict is excellent as well as the their French Toast and Pancakes. Prices are higher than your average coffee shop, but you won't have to eat again for the rest of the day. The average price for breakfast will run you about $10 to $12 per person. The weekend breakfasts can be very busy, especially during the summer and the holidays. (775 329 2600)
5 4th Street Bistro
The 4th Street Bistro near the railroad and the Truckee River has made a name for itself by serving some of the best, freshest and most organic food in the area. Really, no matter what you order, it will be delicious. Some of their dishes include appetizers like Artisan Cheeses with White Truffle Honey and Petite Tagine of Louisiana Shrimp, main courses such as Pan Roasted Alaskan Halibut, Grilled Pork Tenderloin with White Polenta and Duck Confit with Wilted Spinach. Most main dishes will cost around $35. Their extensive wine list runs the gamut from sparkling wine to Sauvignon Blanc from France, Chardonnay from Sonoma Valley, Pinot Noir from Oregon and Merlot from Italy. Most bottles will run you about $35-$40 and there is a $20 corkage fee. The desserts and coffee are elegant and feature items like Tirimisu, Creme Brulee and fresh local cheese. The atmosphere is elegant, but low-ley with white tablecloths, low lighting and candles and French bistro posters on the wall. This is a popular place and can get noisy at night. ((775) 323-3200)
4 Bangkok Cuisine
An elegant and classic Thai decor will welcome you to this local favorite. This family run restaurant in Midtown serves authentic and delicious Thai food. They have the classics like Pad Thai and some excellent red, yell and green curry dishes. Their appetizers ilke Coconut Prawns, Shrimp Rangoons and Spring Rolls are excellent. Their Thai Salad with the peanut dressing is delicious with a hint of honey and spice. Their popular entrees include their soups like Mixed Vegetable Coconut Soup and Tom Kha soup. Their noodles include Spicy Basil and Wide Noodles with Chili Sauce. You can also get a variety of stir fry veggies and meat with your choice of sauce. The Bangkok Seafood Pot is also good with Fresh Crab, Cod fillets, Large Shrimp, Scallops, Calamari, pineapples and mushrooms, cooked with a chili sauce, coconut milk, lemon grass and kefir leaves. Save some room for dessert and get the Sticky Rice and Mango or Green Tea Ice Cream. ((775) 322-0299)
3 Zozo's Ristorante
This little neighborhood restaurant is a slice of old Reno. Reno resident Toni Tenille is a regular here. Zozo's serves classic Italian food and really good wine. Holidays can be crowded, but the food is good. They are famous for their garlic bread and homemade salad dressings. Their menu contains country style items like Proscuitto Wrapped Asparagus, Grilled Polenta, a great Tomato Salad, Vegetarian Lasagna, Rigatoni with Sausage, Zozo's Chicken with fresh herbs and mushrooms and really good Veal Picatta. Their wine list is extensive and the wine is served in super large glasses that you can practically swim in. Their specialties are Italian reds, Chianti and a good house Chardonnay. (829-9449)
2 Nugget Diner
This is not the nicest restaurant in town, but this dive of a diner serves up Heaven on a plate (or in this case) a basket. The Awful Awful is the famous burger of Reno that has been a star on Food Wars on FoodTV and there's a reason: the huge, juicy burger on an onion bun with crisp lettuce and tomato is delicious. The seasoned fries served with them have bowled some people over. The diner serves other things besides the Awful Awful like eggs and pancakes, sandwiches, salads, Chicken Fried Steak, but most people come in for that burger. (775-323-0716)
1 India Kabab & Curry Restaurant
India Kabab and Curry has become one of the most popular places for lunch in Reno. It's located just a few miles from downtown in the MidTown area on Virginia Street. Their lunch buffet special is priced at $6.95 and their dinner menu items cost between $3.50 for appetizers and $10.95 for main dishes. The lunch buffet serves up salad, fresh fruit, rice, various meats in sauce and vegetables. There are some vegetarian options as well as a soup of the day. Some of the most popular items are the Chicken Tandoori, the Chicken Tikka Marsala, and the Murg Vindaloo. Some of the best items include the anise spiced carrots at the salad bar as well as the spicy mint sauce. There is usually a Pakora or a Samosa item as well. The interior is clean and colorful and the bar is beautifully decorated with warm colors and chic lanterns. The bathroom is one of the nicest of the smaller restaurants in town. ((775) 348-6222)
About Christina Nellemann
Christina has lived in the Reno/Lake Tahoe area since she was a baby. A first-generation Nevadan, her Danish parents instilled in her an intense love of travel and the wild, rugged outdoors of the Western U.S. She spends her time hiking, camping, biking and kayaking in the mountains around her home, and snorkeling and boating in Lake Tahoe. Christina loves to visit the neighboring states of California, Oregon, Utah and Arizona but has traveled around the world including to Japan, Fiji, Turkey and Ecuador. When she's not traveling or living outdoors, Christina is a graphic and web designer, writer and blogger.
Read more about Christina Nellemann here.