These days, Nevada’s cuisine scene is pretty damn haute. From Mr. Chow to Gordon Ramsay, Nevada’s food and drink scene has beckoned celebrity chefs from all backgrounds and culinary styles, ready to leave their mark on your taste buds. Get your hands on a schmancy bartender flare-ified cocktail then stroll the Strip. Claw your way through a king crab feast in the buffet capital of the United States (and planet). Slink into a red leather booth at a Rat Pack-approved steakhouse. Take your pick of food comas at Reno’s more-per-capita-than-anywhere all-you-can-eat sushi spots. But the Nevada food scene’s bragging rights don’t stop there. When we’re cruising around the Silver State, sometimes we just find ourselves craving some tried-and-true Nevada flavors and a classic haunt to savor it all in. Drink in some history at backroad sagebrush saloons. Beef up with family-style garlic-loaded Basque steak and lamb feasts. Or toast that local beef burger basket with estate-grown spirits and local wines. So then… what’ll it be?
Food & Drink
Shake Your Foodie
State of Nevada
Nevada Restaurants & Bars
Get a taste of award winning bars and restaurants in Reno and Lake Tahoe, sink your teeth into classic steakhouses in Vegas, or treat yourself to a little (or rather a lot) of everything in the buffet capital of the universe. From all-you-can-eat-sushi joints and sophisticated craft cocktail bars to world-renowned celebrity chef restaurants and local favorites off the beaten path, tasty places to eat in Nevada tempt from every city and town across the Silver State. If you can crave it, the Nevada food scene can plate it.
Nevada Wineries, Breweries & Distilleries
From “Grain-to-Glass” and “Farm-to-Flask,” it doesn’t get more Drink Local than sipping on something a mere cork’s throw from where it grew. The Silver State is home to one of the only estate distilleries in the country, and all of Nevada’s wineries produce estate vino. And how about locally sourced meads made into honey-tastic cocktails? Yep, those are sippable staples, too. Nevada’s flavor always stands out, and our wineries, breweries, and distilleries are no exception.
Get to Know Nevada Basque
When you come to Nevada, bring your appetite. Get yourself to a classic Nevada Basque joint where you can discover one of our heartiest cultural influences one course at a time. Many 19th-century Basques emigrated to northern Nevada’s mountain ranges and valleys, often as sheepherders. When they returned to nearby towns for supplies, most would head to the familiarity of Basque-run boarding houses, where they could speak their unique language, share a damn good meal, play games, and drink with their fellow countrymen.
Today, many of these original Basque hotels and restaurants still carry on tradition—especially in Elko, Winnemucca, Reno and Gardnerville—serving up massive garlic-loaded steaks, the juiciest lamb shanks you’ll ever taste, and a smorgasbord of other Basque cooking and family-style staples like golden french fries, green beans, soup, salad, spaghetti—and, of course, the officially unofficial state drink of Nevada: the Picon Punch. There are many colorful ways to say that one is not enough, and three is too many—just ask a local—but you’ll have to test that hypothesis for yourself.
Travel Nevada Pro Tip
Silver State history tastes as pure as its pours in historic, real-deal western saloons found off many of Nevada’s backroads. From famous saloons where Mark Twain drank to regional staples nestled in some of the country’s most remote locales, these legendary watering holes have offered respite for 19th-century prospectors and modern road warriors alike. Whether you’re taking in 360-degree views of Big Smoky Valley from a bar counter, rewarding yourself with a frosty beer (and maybe a chili dog or two) after a day in Death Valley, or matching wits with the “Meanest Bartender in Nevada,” the Silver State’s classic Sagebrush Saloons will surely wet your whistle. But be warned: Nevadans are friendly; so be sure you show up thirsty for history, culture, and conversation with some newfound barstool besties, to boot.
Nevada Diners & Burger Joints
Don’t get us wrong. We love a good white truffle gnocchi or chrysanthemum martini as much as the next food lovers. And these days, Nevada’s cuisine scene is pretty damn haute. But venture beyond the neon and, on just about every Nevada road you cruise, you’ll probably discover some mom-and-pop cafe classics or one helluva tasty burger waiting for you at the end of it. Nevada’s metro areas certainly sizzle with daring vittle varieties, but beyond the neon, there’s no shortage of culinary masterminds behind the grill, whipping up flavor medleys of perfectly seasoned local beef (and of course, artisan black bean veggie burgers, too), sometimes topped with personally-harvested produce, slapped between made-from-scratch buns, fresh outta the oven.
And don’t forget about hand-cut steak fries, secret-recipe fry sauce, washed down with an ice cold beer. With monstrous burger challenges, decadent pies, handmade ice cream, milkshakes, and plenty more on the menu, do your taste buds a flavor favor at the damn good burger places and unforgettable small-town diners serving up the goods all across Nevada.
True Tales & Travel Tips