Think back to the summers of your childhood. Remember sunny hours just waiting to be filled with fun? No plans, just possibilities! Long school-less days probably included splashing in a pool, lake, or ocean, bike rides, adventuring, and exploring. There was time to daydream, time to try something new, time to simply be in the present and to be a kid. The days seemed endless and you wished summer would last forever. An old-fashioned, authentic, imagination and activity-based summer still defines the season in Sun Valley for children. With about 15 hours of sunlight during the high season, there is nothing but time to take advantage of all the ingredients...
Yes, it’s that wonderful time of the year. A time to hike and bike the trails, ride horses, fly fish, golf, and get outside into some of the prettiest weather of the year. But all that activity requires nourishment and it’s also time to enjoy some amazing food at the Sun Valley Lodge.
Two options will suit every palate and time requirement in the Lodge itself: Gretchen’s, located in the main lobby, and the Poolside Café, located adjacent to the beautiful year-round outdoor pool and next to the Spa at Sun Valley. At Gretchen’s, you can enjoy breakfast, lunch, dinner or all three! The Poolside Café is open every day from noon until 6 p.m. for lunch, snacks, and some pretty fantastic cocktails.
Gretchen’s Restaurant at the Sun Valley Lodge has fabulous food and is a great place to take a break from your busy Sun Valley day
The spacious floor plan at Gretchen’s puts you right in the middle of all the action. Gaze out over the busy outdoor skating rink and stay connected with the action in the Lodge’s public spaces with open walls onto the hallway featuring portraits of some of Sun Valley’s most famous visitors. And the setting has nothing on the food that is downright delicious.
I can’t say with conviction which meal is my favorite at Gretchen’s; I like them all. But lunch at the eatery is always festive and fun. The newly revamped menu features small plates and big plates to mix and match. My ‘go to’ lunch order is the Maine Lobster Caesar (a small plate) featuring roasted garlic dressing, romaine, cured lemon, radicchio, and parmesan reggiano. We also normally share a light tempura of green beans served with sweet hot sesame mustard dipping sauce. Other favorites are the Tuna Takaki salad, and wild caught prawns.
The fresh and new "Tuna Takaki" dish that was added to Gretchen's summer menu. Yum!
If you’ve been out all morning enjoying our outdoor playground, you may have worked up more of an appetite. Larger plates at Gretchen’s include divine fish and chips, the Lodge Reuben, and the new-to-the-menu King Salmon Terrine. This is prepared with watercress, apple, radish sprouts, pastrami spice aioli, poppy seeds, pickled red onion, and toasted country bread. This is definitely what I am going to have next time I eat at Gretchen’s. Another favorite sandwich is the super healthy kale and quinoa wrap. There are many great choices. Breakfast and dinner are equally delicious at Gretchen’s, too. The menu for each is available HERE. Please call 208-622-2144 for reservations or more information.
The vibe at the Poolside Café is decidedly casual and just feels like summer should. The café is open to the public and you should pop in for a light lunch or cocktail. Grab your friends and share a cheese plate or charcuterie platter while soaking in the beautiful view and relaxing in the comfortable room. Tuck into fresh summer salads, sandwiches, flat breads, burgers and, wait for it, wild shrimp tacos.
The Poolside Café at the Sun Valley Lodge is open to the public and serves great light food and some pretty fabulous hand-crafted cocktails
The Poolside Café is famous for its creative, hand-crafted cocktails. A long list includes offerings like the Buffalo Nickel (Buffalo Trace, Averna, Carpano Antica, Benedictine, and angostura), the Smoke on the Water (Aviation, Aperol, maraschino liquor, mescal, lime juice, and peach bitters), and the Leapfrog (Aviation, Grand Marnier, Carpano Antica, Baronjager, lemon juice, and orange bitters). They sound exotic and taste even better. Please call 208-622-2823 for more information on this wonderful dining option.
Don’t forget that the Duchin Lounge and the Bowling Alley also serve yummy dishes, whether you are just looking for a light appetizer to accompany a glass of a perfect summer rose or a beer and tater tots to keep your bowling game going strong.
We are entering a season of the freshest flavors of the year. Make a plan to stop into the Sun Valley Lodge to let one of the Resort’s talented chefs prepare locally sourced, seasonally influenced dishes to appeal to every palate.
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