Nicknamed the ‘Potato State’, Idaho certainly does have a fondness for its famous export. However, there’s a lot more to the state’s culinary culture than just potatoes with more regional produce, like the much-loved Idaho trout, alongside a whole host of cuisines. From the vibrant buzz of downtown Boise to charming mountain towns like Ketchum, we take you on a culinary journey through Idaho’s best restaurants.
A fairly new addition to downtown Boise’s dining scene, The Dish has consistently received rave reviews since it opened. Located in the city’s historic Empire Building, built in 1909 in a Greek revival style, The Dish occupies a palatial space with a modern, vibrant design and warm neighborhood vibe. Chef and co-owner Jered Crouch creates imaginative, modern dishes like the Kobe beef brisket, which is slow braised for 48 hours. Meat lovers will enjoy the mild cheddar polenta cake, braised kale, pine nuts, horseradish and natural jus.
The Dish, 205 North 10th Street, Boise, ID, USA, +1 208 344 4231
Located on a particularly picturesque bend of the Snake River, Elevation 486 is a charming and modern Twin Falls bistro serving eclectic New American cuisine with global influences. Its beautiful dining room and patio terrace offer stunning panoramic views of Snake River Canyon, the Perrine Bridge and the surrounding Magic Valley region. Chef and owner Tom Nickel has created a concise but impressive menu of tasty dishes like grilled Idaho ruby trout with house-smoked red pepper butter and the fire-grilled Oregon quail with a honey, bourbon and jalapeno glaze.
Sangria Grille fuses the flavorsome cuisine of Peru with Northwestern produce resulting in dishes like the delicious local bone-in pork chop, over roasted and seared with garlic and red wine and served with sweet corn masa crumble, serrano peppers, cilantro and black beans. Wash it all down with a glass or two of sangria.
Sangria Grille, 2124 West Pullman Road, Moscow, ID, USA, +1 208 882 2693
The charming resort town of Coeur d’Alene, nestled around the beautiful lake of the same name in northern Idaho, is home to The Cellar at 317 Sherman. There’s a cozy and stylish interior, live jazz music and an extensive wine list of over 3,000 bottles in its cellar that has twice earned it Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence. Chef Adam Hegsted’s revamped American menu will not disappoint diners with dishes like grilled local steelhead trout filet with shaved vegetable slaw, jasmine rice and soy caramel.
Taking inspiration from the traditional osteria of Italy, Àlavita describes itself as a ‘locally inspired Italian joint’ and it certainly brings together the best of both Boise and Italy. Located in the former Boise City National Bank building, Àlavita’s casual downtown vibe has made it a favorite with local diners. Àlavita has an open kitchen where guests can see dishes like lobster and fontina stuffed black ravioli in a creamy shrimp and lemon-fennel-thyme sauce being prepared.
Àlavita, 807 West Idaho Street, Boise, ID, USA, +1 208 780 1100