What To Eat in Idaho
Its position in the Pacific Northwest makes Idaho a coffee-lovers’ dream; and its mountains, once plied by shepherds, mean that it has a legacy of bountiful Basque dinner halls. Up north in the panhandle, huckleberry mania is evident in jelly, syrup, candy and, best of all, pie – the making of which is a special talent in diners and cafes of the Gem State.
Wild huckleberries are the Great Plains' treasured fruit, found only in the high mountains and only late in the summer, and the favorite snack of grizzly bears as well as of human beings. They are similar to blueberries, but not quite as sweet, their wine-purple color hinting at a depth of flavor more satisfying than the richest chocolate. You'll find them in pies, fruit salads, ice-cream topping, and jam; and huckleberry milk shakes are a big deal, especially in Idaho and Oregon.
Idaho is known for its potatoes, and if you have any doubt that the state's chefs do good things with them, have a smashed potato at restaurant Dish on Lake Pend Oreille. Chewy-skinned, cream-centered, and bursting with flavor, it is one of the nation's great spuds.
West Coast coffee culture thrives in the Idaho panhandle, where masterful brews tend to be accompanied by such hearty vittles as pancakes, big muffins, and blue-ribbon pie. Our favorite coffee 'an is Java on Sherman in Coeur d'Alene, where donuts are served still too warm to touch.
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Sawtooth Luce's ia a roadhouse north of the Sawtooth Mountains serving the state’s famous Wagyu beef in the form of succulent cheeseburgers.
A down-home motel diner that celebrates famous Idaho potatoes and serves enormous cinnamon rolls.
In this conscientious Idaho coffee house, expect a masterfully poured cup of coffee made from beans of the world, which Evans Bros. roasts on premises.
A gleaming silver food truck parked at Sandpoint's Oak Street Court, the Old Tin Can is a jolly source of handsome burgers and hand-cut French fries.
Extreme Grilled Cheese is Meltz's motto: a fantastic array of sandwiches that include exotic combos of Asian, Italian, Mexican, and even German ingredients.
Huge portions of such hearty fare as biscuits and gravy and locally made sausage distinguish the fine breakfasts for which Hoot Owl Cafe is known.
If you are hungry near Craters of the Moon National Monument, Lost River Drive-In is the place for excellent burgers, fries & shakes made with real ice cream.
A friendly Idaho panhandle cafe serving hearty breakfast and lunch, Di Luna's is a good choice for carnivores and vegetarians.
Casual and yet sophisticated, breakfast and lunch at Idaho's Garnet are farm-to-table fresh. Eat at a leisurely pace either indoors or on a sun-dappled patio.