South Tahoe Trip Report

I attended a conference at Harvey’s (Stateline) a few weeks ago - I was looking for places to eat in walking distance that were low-carb friendly. Initial research was discouraging - it seemed like there was a bimodal distribution of fratty burger places and overpriced fancy restaurants - but found a couple of places I liked. Also, most of my meals were provided by the conference and their food was surprisingly good.

Lucky Beaver - I know, I know. But as I was researching restaurants in the immediate area of the hotel I saw that they get their meat from Pat Lafrieda and tout that all their burgers are a mix of chopped short rib and chuck. I ordered a special aged burger medium rare (no bun) - the meat was good but the strong gas char flavor marred it. Substituting a side salad for the onion rings cost me a few dollars, so the total for a burger with side salad was around $22. I feel like I live in the land of pricey burgers, and this was pricey.

Harrah’s buffet - we went on a Saturday night, when they do steak and seafood ($35 pp, I think their usual is $25 or $30 pp). Most of the online reviews are really bad but my friend had her family in tow and we thought they would enjoy the buffet. I was pleasantly surprised - I mostly ate prime rib and roasted vegetables, and I lucked out in that I got to the prime rib as they were cutting into a new one so I was able to request the rarest slices. This was actually a really good deal for me since I was low-carbing at the time, and a la carte steaks in the area seem to run $30-$45. The elderly Vietnamese folks in our party were very happy with the king crab legs and shrimp.

Azul Latin Kitchen - pleasant outdoor seating with live music playing much of the time. They bill themselves as Cal-Mex, and I think they do a good job. I had a Cali Saltado bowl (slow cooked beef, roasted potato/onion/pepper), green rice, queso fresco) and thought every component was done well. I let myself have some carbs and they were delicious. A carnitas pork bowl and an enchilada suiza were also well received. Entrees were in the $16-19 range which seemed reasonable.

The other place in walking distance that sounded good was Maya’s Mexican Grill. I didn’t make it there for a meal but it looked like it had a predominantly Latino clientele, and online reviews are pretty strong.

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“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold