2011 Best of Truckee and North Tahoe Contest Winners

Below, you will find the 2011 Best of Truckee and North Tahoe Contest Winners, as reported by Truckee's awesome newspaper, the Sierra Sun.

Each year, the staff from the Sierra Sun and the North Lake Tahoe Bonanza conduct an online-only contest in 68 different categories. Locals and visitors can vote during a three week period, and the results of the contest are announced in August.

I think their categories covered just about everything, except I would love to know what is "The BEST Truckee or North Tahoe Cocktail". They have the Best Happy Hour, Best Bar, Best Bartender, but I'd love to personally know what everyone's favorite drink in the area is!

Personally, I think that THE ESCALADE from Sunnyside Restaurant & Lodge at Lake Tahoe is pretty outstanding! It is expensive - $12.50 the last time I was there, but it's a Cadillac Margarita, Sierra style. (Corralejo Reposado tequila, Triple Sec, sweet & sour, splash of orange juice with a Grand Marnier float) Big Sigh!!

This contest is great, because it allows people to recognize great businesses and individuals, and their great accomplishments. It also gives visitors or vacationers to Truckee and North Tahoe, who might not be familiar with the area, some great recommendations to start with.

Feel free to SHARE YOUR FAVORITES with the Truckee Travel Guide website, and become a part of the website!!!

I'll be referencing the 2011 Winners and runner-ups throughout my website on the relevant pages. Congratulations to ALL the winners!!

Best Food and Drink

Best Happy Hour:
1. Cottonwood Restaurant & Bar (Truckee)
2. River Grill (Tahoe City)
3. Lakeside Pizza (Tahoe City)

Best Breakfast:
1. Fire Sign Café (Sunnyside)
2. Squeeze In (Truckee)
3. Old Post Office Cafe (Carnelian Bay)

Best Fine Dining:
1. Cottonwood Restaurant & Bar (Truckee)
2. Wolfdale's Restaurant (Tahoe City)
3. Pianeta Ristorante (Truckee)

Best Barbecue:
1. Smokey's Kitchen (Truckee)
2. T's Mesquite Rotisserie (Incline Village)
3. Char-Pit (Kings Beach)

Best Bar:
1. Cottonwood Restaurant & Bar (Truckee)
2. Lakeside Pizza (Tahoe City)
3. Pete N' Peters (Tahoe City)

Best Outdoor Dining:
1. Cottonwood Restaurant & Bar (Truckee)
2. Sunnyside Restaurant (Sunnyside)
3. Lakeside Pizza (Tahoe City)

Best Restaurant View:
1. Cottonwood Restaurant & Bar (Truckee)
2. Sunnyside Restaurant (Sunnyside)
3. Lone Eagle Grille (Incline Village)

Best Fast Food:
1. Burger Me (Truckee)
2. Bill's Rotisserie (Truckee)
3. T's Mesquite Rotisserie (Incline Village)

Best Sushi:
1. Mamasake (Olympic Valley)
tied-3. Dragonfly Restaurant (Truckee)
tied-3. Drunken Monkey (Truckee)

Best Bakery:
1. Tahoe House Bakery & Gourmet (Tahoe City)
2. Treat Box Bakery (Truckee)
3. Coffeebar (Truckee)

Best Burger:
1. Burger Me (Truckee)
2. Cottonwood Restaurant & Bar (Truckee)
3. The Bridgetender (Tahoe City)

Best Asian Food:
1. Dragonfly Restaurant (Truckee)
2. Mamasake (Olympic Valley)
3. Thai Nakorn (Truckee)

Best Deli:
1. Full Belly Deli (Truckee)
2. Safeway (Kings Beach, Tahoe City, Truckee)
3. Tahoe House Bakery & Gourmet (Tahoe City)

Best Expresso/Coffee:
1. Coffeebar (Truckee)
2. Tahoe House Bakery & Gourmet (Tahoe City)
3. Wild Cherries Coffee House (Truckee)

Best Mexican Food:
1. Tacos Jalisco (Kings Beach)
2. Hacienda de la Sierra (Incline Village)
3. Las Panchitas (Kings Beach)

Best Vegetarian/Natural Food:
1. New Moon Natural Foods (Tahoe City, Truckee)
2. Uncommon Kitchen (Tahoe City)
3. Mamasake (Olympic Valley)

Best Pizza:
1. Best Pies Pizzeria and Restaurant (Truckee)
2. Lakeside Pizza (Tahoe City)
3. Front Street Station Pizza (Tahoe City)

Best Ice Cream:
1. Susie Scoops (Incline Village)
2. Tootsie's (Tahoe City)
3. Coffeebar (Truckee)

See some of my favorite Truckee restaurants!!

Share YOUR Truckee Restaurant recommendations with the Truckee Travel Guide readers!

Best Business

Best Gallery:
1. Gallery Keoki (Olympic Valley)
2. The Carmel Gallery (Truckee)
3. Riverside Studios (Truckee)

Best Ski/Board Shop:
1. Porters Sports (Tahoe City, Truckee)
2. Tahoe Dave's Skis and Boards (Kings Beach, Tahoe City, Olympic Valley)
3. Village Ski Loft (Incline Village)

Best Sporting Goods:
1. Porters Sports (Tahoe City, Truckee)
2. Mountain Ace Hardware & Sports (Truckee)
3. Village Ski Loft (Incline Village)

Best Catering:
1. D'Lish Catering Co. (Tahoe City)
2. Moody's Bistro (Truckee)
3. Full Belly Deli (Truckee)

Best Casino:
1. Crystal Bay Club (Crystal Bay)
tied-2. Hyatt (Incline Village)
tied-2. Biltmore (Crystal Bay)

Best Fitness Club:
1. A Sante Lakeside Fitness (Tahoe City)
2. High Altitude Fitness (Incline Village)
3. Performance Training Center by Julia Mancuso (Tahoe City, Olympic Valley, Truckee)

Best Garden Supply/Nursery:
1. Villager Nursery (Truckee)
2. Tahoe Tree Co. (Tahoe City)
3. Perennial Nursery & Landscape (Tahoe Vista)

Best Bank:
1. Bank of the West (various locations)
2. Plumas Bank (various locations)
tied-3. US Bank (various locations)
tied-3. Wells Fargo (various locations)

Best Gift Shop:
1. Village Toys (Incline Village)
2. The Potlatch (Incline Village)
3. Four tied for third.

Best Landscape Company:
1. Rock & Rose Inc. (Truckee)
tied-2. Blide Landscaping (Truckee)
tied-2. Green Envy Inc. (Tahoe City)
tied-2. Perennial

Best Tattoo:
1. Lucky 7 Tattoo (Kings Beach)
2. Truth Tattoo (Truckee)

Best Veterinary Clinic:
1. Sierra Pet Clinic (Truckee)
2. Burton Creek Veterinary Clinic (Tahoe City)
3. Pet Network Humane Society (Incline Village)

Best Auto Shop:
1. The Auto & Tire Doctor (Truckee)
tied-2. Big Bear Automotive Repair (Tahoe City)
tied-2. Stone's Country Tire & Automotive (Kings Beach, Truckee)
tied-2. Ward and Sons Automotive (Truckee)

Best Clothing Store:
tied-1. Dressed Boutique (Truckee)
tied-1. Mo, Jo and Zoe (Truckee)
tied-2. Cabona's Clothing (Truckee)
tied-2. Fine N Funky Clothiers (Tahoe City)

Best Marina:
1. Tahoe City Marina
2. Obexer's Boat Company (Homewood)
3. Beach Club Marina (Tahoe Donner)

Best Bike Shop:
tied-1. The Backcountry (Sunnyside-Tahoe City, Truckee)
tied-1. Paco's Truckee Bike & Ski (Truckee)
2. Olympic Bike Shop (Tahoe City)

Best Nail Salon:
1. Sassy Nails & Spa (Truckee)
2. T & T Nails (Truckee)
3. Exotic Nails (Tahoe City)

Best Hair Salon:
1. Urban Angels Salon (Truckee)
2. Studio 89 Hair Salon (Homewood)
3. Salon Bella Vita (Tahoe City)

Best Massage:
1. Clearwater Day Spa at Tahoe (Tahoe City)
2. Gem Mountain Massage (Truckee)
3. Trilogy Spa (Olympic Valley)

Best Martial Arts:
1. Tahoe City Martial Arts Academy (Tahoe City)
2. Charles Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Academy of Truckee-Tahoe (Truckee)

Best Golf Course:
tied-1. Northstar-at-Tahoe
tied-1. Ponderosa Golf Course (Truckee)
tied-1 Tahoe City Golf Course

Best Nonprofit:
1. Humane Society of Truckee-Tahoe
2. High Fives Nonprofit Foundation
tied-3. Boys and Girls Club of North Tahoe
tied-3. Pet Network Humane Society

Best People

Best Bank Teller:
1. Jan Close (Bank of the West, Tahoe City)
2. Lisa Fox (Bank of the West, Tahoe City)
3. Six tied for third

Best Bartender:
tied-1. Dennis Alexander (Mamasake, Olympic Valley)
tied-1 Sarah Hodson (Lakeside Pizza, Tahoe City)
2. Christopher St. Martin (Cottonwood Restaurant & Bar, Truckee)

Best Barista:
1. Stephanie McDonald (Tahoe House Bakery & Gourmet, Tahoe City)
2. Greg Buchesiter (Coffeebar, Truckee)
tied-3. Jeremy Frazier (Wild Cherries Coffee House, Truckee)
tied-3. Beck Gallaher (Starbucks, Incline Village)

Best Wait Person:
1. Kaitlyn Harrah (Cottonwood Restaurant & Bar, Truckee)
2. Shannon McKee (Lakeside Pizza, Tahoe City)
tied-3. Alicia Deaderick (JAX at the Tracks, Truckee)
tied-3. Leah Alfano (Cottonwood Restaurant & Bar, Truckee)

Best Hair Stylist:
1. Ali Gonzales (Studio 89, Homewood)
tied-2. Jessica Garcia (Balcony Hair & Nail Salon, Tahoe City)
tied-2. Lindsey Shontz (Urban Angels Salon, Truckee)
tied-2. Michelle Prado (Urban Angels Salon, Truckee)
tied-2. Nicholas Augustine (Sierra Bella Luxury Salon, Incline Village)

Best Auto Mechanic:
1. David Ward (Ward and Sons Automotive, Truckee)
tied-2. Brian Devlin (Tahoe City Auto Repair)
tied-2. Jeff Schaff (Jeff Schaff's Car Care, Truckee)
tied-2. Mark Pearson (Big Bear Automotive Repair, Tahoe City)
tied-2. Rigo Garcia (Tanager Street Auto, Incline Village)

Best Massage Therapist:
1 Jamie Gemme (Gem Mountain Massage, Truckee)
2. Jodi Hubbell (Glow Salon, Truckee)
tied-3. Karen Stubbs (Karen D. Stubbs, L.M.T., Truckee)
tied-3. Mary Beth Hamilton (Full Circle Movement, Truckee)

Best Chef:
1. David Smith (Cottonwood Restaurant & Bar, Truckee)
2. Elsa Corrigan (Mamasake, Olympic Valley)
3. Mark Estee (Moody's Bistro, Baxter's Bistro & Lounge, Truckee)

Best Teacher:
tied-1. Milt Hyams (Incline High School)
tied-1. Vicki Isacowitz (Clever Minds Learning Center, Truckee)
2. Nine teachers tied for second.

Best Volunteer:
1. Alanna Hughes
tied-2. Aaron Gaines
tied-2. Carol Fromson
tied-2. Dick and Nileta Morton
tied-2. Steve Wallace

Best Ski Patroller:
1. Jimmy Roberts (Sugar Bowl Ski Resort)
2. Five tied for second

Best Boss:
1. Mike Blide (Cottonwood Restaurant & Bar, Truckee)
tied-2. Brian Beehleer (Lakeside Pizza, Tahoe City)
tied-2. Dr. Jonathan Smith (optometrist, Incline Village)
tied-2. Jim Sturtevant (Tahoe Forest Hospital)

Best Local Artist:
1. Sara Zimmerman
2. Lorien Powers
3. Andrew Bolam

Best Local Musician:
tied-1. Dead Winter Carpenters
tied-1. Jeff Jones
tied-1. Kandy Xander

Best Places / Events

Best Summer Event:
1. Truckee Thursdays
2. Wanderlust California
3. Red, White and Tahoe Blue

Best Winter Event:
1. SnowFest!
2. Daron Rahlves Banzai Tour
3. The Great Ski Race

Best Concert Venue:
1. Truckee Regional Park Amphitheater
2. Crystal Bay Club Crown Room
3. Commons Beach

Best Beach:
1. Sand Harbor
2. Kings Beach
3. Speedboat Beach/Bucks Beach

Best Place to Boat:
1. Lake Tahoe
2. Emerald Bay
3. Donner Lake

Best Place to Ski/Ride:
1. Squaw Valley USA
2. Alpine Meadows/Homewood Mountain resorts
3. Northstar-at-Tahoe

Best Place to Golf:
1. Ponderosa Golf Course
tied-2. Coyote Moon Golf Course
tied-2 Northstar-at-Tahoe

Best Place to Hike:
1. Tahoe Rim Trail
2. Shirley Canyon
3. Donner Summit/Pacific Crest Trail

Best Place to Fish:
1. Truckee River
2. Donner Lake
3. Little Truckee River

Best Place to Bike:
tied-1. Northstar-at-Tahoe
tied-1. Tahoe Rim Trail
2. Tahoe City Trail along Truckee River

Best Place to Camp:
1. Jackson Meadows
2. Emerald Bay Boat-in Camp
3. D.L. Bliss State Park

Best Place to Picnic:
1. Donner Lake
tied-2. Sugar Pine State Park
tied-2. Truckee River

Best Place to Take a Date:
1. Cottonwood Restaurant & Bar (Truckee)
2. Soule Domain (Crystal Bay)
3. Pianeta Ristorante (Truckee)

Best Place to People Watch:
1. Truckee Thursdays
2. Squaw Village
3. Sunday concerts at Commons Beach


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