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Evergreen Lodge: The Restaurant

The warm, inviting tavern at Evergreen Lodge; a great place for a post-hike meal.

 

Food is very important to me.  This is true if I’m home or if I’m traveling, and this is especially true after a day of being out on trails, subsisting on water and beef jerky.  So I don’t think I can be emphatic enough about this–the restaurant at Evergreen Lodge was amazing.

I don’t know what I was expecting from a restaurant in such a remote remote location, but it certainly wasn’t coconut curry squash soup with a raspberry port reduction and roasted pumpkin seeds.  Yet that is exactly what I found, and I could not have been happier.

During my three nights at Evergreen, I dined at the restaurant three times–once in the main dining room and twice at the bar.  I’ll get to why that is in a moment.  The menu is the same in both locations, and the selection was more than adequate for a three night stay.  In fact, beyond wishing I could have stayed longer because the resort was so beautiful and Yosemite was breathtaking, I would have looked forward to a few more meals at Evergreen as well.

My first night I went a bit overboard, ordering soup and a sandwich–the squash soup mentioned above and the black bean and quinoa burger.  The burger was also served with fries–which had some sort of amazing flavor I could not put my finger on but I’m willing to bet had a lot to do with whatever they were fried in–and was huge in and of itself.  I felt badly, but I didn’t even finish half of it.  The veggie patty was flavorful and filling, and the copious amount of pesto piled on top didn’t hurt either.  Oh–and the greens were arugula and the bun was warm.  I can’t name a single thing I did not love about this meal.

Night number two found me dining at the bar, and here’s why: the dining room is a classy joint.  Yes, you may have hiked all day, and yes, you may be starving, but unlike me, you probably should shower and change before going to dinner.  Personally, I love this concept–an upscale dining experience after a day in the wilderness.  But on this particular day I was so hungry there was no pausing to change–so I ate at the bar.  And I’m glad I ate at the bar, because had I not, I would not have seen the drink specials list and I would not have enjoyed a lemongrass, basil, and ginger beer cocktail with my gumbo.  The gumbo could not have been more from-scratch–even the sausage was house-made.  It was deep, smoky, and amazing; the rice was perfectly cooked for this rice snob.

Having had such a success with bar dining, I returned to the tavern for my final evening’s meal.  Another good call, as the tavern’s bar is a frequent hangout of Evergreen staff members.  Traveling solo, I’m always up for meeting new people, and I shared a lovely conversation with one of the cooks as I enjoyed my perfectly amazing coffee-rubbed pastrami on rye with house-made mustard.  I didn’t even take any notes on that dish because it was so good I didn’t want to stop eating it to jot anything down–in fact, I didn’t even take a photo before devouring it.  Imagine–a meal so good I failed to click before chewing!

Disclosure:  While Evergreen Lodge did provide me with a press rate for my lodging, all meals and drinks consumed were paid for by me and at full price.  And, as always, all opinions are always my own.  Oh–and the photos were taken with my iPhone, so sorry for the less-than-stellar picture quality.  Thanks for understanding!

Evergreen Lodge is located on Evergreen Road, which intersects with Rt. 120 one half mile outside of the Big Oak Flat entrance to Yosemite.  To access the trails at Hetch Hetchy, you will have to drive directly past the Lodge and the restaurant.  Please consider stopping for a meal.  

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