List your favorite foodie places close to Interstate 80 between SF and Utah

So when you’re driving Interstate 80 and want a quick bite or a place to chill out where can you go?

I’ll start with a few of my favorites. I think everyone has heard of Ikeda’s Fruit Stand in Auburn. But I prefer Newcastle Produce a few freeway exits west. The origin of their produce is labelled with much of it coming within 15 miles of the shop. They have a nice selection of sauces, salsas, bread and other food items. They have premade sandwiches they can heat for you. Sadly my last couple of trips there I have not seen the salami and cheese, my favorite. They also do lattes and coffee. WARNING: The desserts are killer.
Newcastle Produce
9230 Cypress St
Newcastle, CA 95658
(916) 663-2016
A nearby place I’ve never tried is Newcastle Cheese Shop. Their Rat Trap cheese sandwich sounds promising.
Newcastle Cheese Shop
455 Main St
Newcastle, CA 95658
(916) 663-3704

If you need a cup of coffee or a quick bite in Truckee, Coffeebar is a great spot…
10120 Jibboom St
Truckee, CA 96161
(530) 587-2000

A short drive off I-80 in Fairfield is Yo Sushi. I’ve eaten there twice but the last time was about five years ago. It was especially fresh and not that expensive. I think they buy their fish every day in San Francisco.
Yo Sushi
1430 N Texas St
Fairfield, CA 94533
(707) 425-1100

And for people driving west on I-80 looking for a good meal are hard pressed to do better than Vik’s Chaat in Berkeley. Lots of tasty Indian street food at cheap prices.
Vik’s Chaat
2390 4th St
Berkeley, CA 94710
(510) 644-4432

My favorite breakfast place in the Bay Area is Quince Cafe, which is a little drive off I-80. Interesting flavors and fresh food.
Quince Cafe & Grill
2228 San Pablo Ave
Berkeley, CA 94702
(510) 666-0094

Ah…a subject I am very familiar with:-) (I80, that is…).

If you get there early (when they are freshly made), its hard to beat the tamales at Lupita’s Carniceria on Pitt School Rd (just south of the freeway) in Dixon. A favorite breakfast with a bottle of Sidral from the cooler to wash them down (No tables; its really just a market. They also have decent tortas and tacos, but the tamales are the best…).

Now, once you leave Reno and head through the wilds of Nevada (and admittedly we might be getting into another board here), I have a few favorites. Recently moved from Reno to Elko, and I’ve been doing a lot of back-and-forth…which means I am well-acquainted with 300 miles of that journey. For any quick and casual meal in Lovelock, I suggest the Cowpoke Café (on the main drag). They have good food cheap, and the baked goods are home-made and always worth it. Good place for a burger or a cup of soup followed by a piece of pie.

But if its breakfast you’re after, hold on another hour or so as you head east and stop at the Griddle Café in Winnemucca (also on the main drag), about halfway through town on the left hand side as you head east. Best breakfast for at least 200 miles. EVERYTHING (right down to the jams and the preserves on the tables) is home-made and fresh. Some of the best hotcakes anywhere. HUGE omelets with your choice of fillings. Great baked goods (they also sell pie to go). If they have the red flannel hash go for it. One of my favorite breakfast spots anywhere. Good coffee and friendly waitresses. They are also open for lunch (the place closes at two), and there is outdoor dining in the summer with a view of beautiful downtown Winnemucca. About the only negative thing I can say about this place is that the tabasco bottles are personalized for Denver Broncos fans. But honestly, if that’s the worst thing I can say…Highly recommended, especially for breakfast.

If you’re unlucky enough to be stuck in Winnemucca after the Griddle Café closes, you have a few other options. Meat lovers will always enjoy the Martin Hotel (Basque food, served family-style). Some folks prefer other Mexican places, but I like Las Margaritas (A few blocks east of Griddle Café) for good home-style Mexican cooking that isn’t too Tex-Mex. The Pizzeria (on South Bridge St a block North of the main drag) is also an excellent option. They make a great bowl of Minestrone (my vegetarian husband loves it), the salads are huge (all the servings are huge, actually…), and the pizza is decent too. All fresh and made in store. Your favorite football games on the TV and some good brews on tap…what’s not to like?

I will save Elko for another day…


I haven’t eaten at the Martin in Winnemucca in 20 years but I understand Tuesday night is still liver and onions night. Delish, if you like liver.

I’ll give multiple thumbs up :slight_smile: to the Golden Dragon in Rocklin. Get the pink menu. It compares very favorably to what we get in SF.

In fact when we’re headed to Marin, we stop there and get food to go. We always eat a Sichuan spicy dumpling each right there in the parking lot. Love their spicy cumin lamb. Their tea smoked duck (eat that one on site) is insanely good. Actually we’ve never had anything that wasn’t.

Here’s an old post from that other place:

Great topic. and thanks for mentioning quick stops.

I’ll have to check out Newcastle. Also for snacks (fruit, nuts, etc.) are Pedrick Road Produce in Dixon and Ikeda’s at the Mace exit in Davis. Gas nearby. Neither have sandwiches like the Ikeda’s Auburn.

Chandos Tacos now has a Roseville location close to I-80

For a longer stop, Moody’s in Truckee is where we usually stop.

Also, check out an Elko thread

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One more review along this route (kind of):

Well, yes. And we DO love it. But it’s a pretty easy 30 minute drive from I-80. But if you’re just moseying along then sure. I guess I should talk about Truckee which is right at 80. Later, gators :slight_smile:

I missed this thread because I was searching for Truckee and such. When I’m on I-80 between the bay area and elsewhere, that elsewhere is usually either Tahoe for skiing, or maybe Reno for burning man related things.

This weekend it was burning man kind of stuff, & reno.

I am hoping by adding these to my responses the search-algos will pop up this for people travelling between the san francisco bay area, and either Tahoe, Truckee, or Reno. Which means somewhere between Sacramento and Auburn, I usually find Auburn good just in terms of gas-fillup and where I want a break :slight_smile:

Now - a find. I’ve always though Auburn should have a good place to stop, and should be about more than In n Out and Mels. There’s a few places that seem to change hands, and a well known breakfast place. Places that show up in Yelp are Ikeda, Smokey Pit, Awful Annie’s, etc.

This weekend, I tried a different place, and liked it.

The Club Car, on Lincoln.

First, it’s really just 2 minutes off the freeway, and it’s not in a strip mall. Or, it’s in a strip mall from 1890, which is more pleasant. The place has a really old bar ( old wood & furnishings ), and it’s NOT a new cookie cutter place.

the menu is varied, but american. Long burger list. Some mexican things. I got a steak, which for $21 was very solid. Nice and fatty like I like it, although slightly underdone ( it was french medium rare, not american medium rare - it was American rare ), the taste of the meat was solid, and well spiced. I didn’t manage to see C’s tacos, she ate all of them before I could snag a bite. The tacos were on the Sunday Happy Hour menu, which goes from 3pm till close.

Beer selection seemed interesting, there were a few taps I hadn’t heard of ( and that says something, I hear of most things ). Wine seemed a little more interesting than the usual suspects. However, we don’t drink much when we’re driving long distance, but if this was coming home on a ski trip and I had finished my driving shift, I would have been happy with the selection.

Food showed up FAST. Given that we ordered a steak and tacos, the fact that I think we had food in 10 minutes, which is about the same as In n Out, seemed amazing. We could have been in and out in 30 minutes, fully sated. The place just wasn’t that full.

I will admit that much of my happiness wasn’t amazing food, but good atmosphere. They guy sitting next to us at the bar was a good conversationalist, and we really felt relaxed after spending 30 minutes there. Coming over Donner Summit was pretty harsh, with heavy snow, so we just needed a stretch and unwind in a pleasant location, not a harshly lit chain.

The Club Car is kind-of across the street from the “fancy restaurant” Monkey Cat. Just from the front, Club Car seemed more our speed, given that the food was fast and quite tasty.

Would love to hear about other Auburn road-trip spots ( and Truckee / Reno, too ).