Boise is not only the largest city in Idaho but also its cultural capital. In recent years, the city has undergone a culinary revitalization that has seen several new spots making their mark on the area’s vibrant dining scene. The Treasure Valley has a diverse culinary scene that combines the innovative approaches of cooking with the best of Northwestern tradition. Here are the 14 must-try restaurants in Boise.
14 Best Boise Restaurants
Located in downtown Boise’s Hotel 43, Chandlers is an upscale dining establishment that opened its doors to the public in 2007. It is run by award winning restaurateur Rex Chandler. Chandlers specializes in seafood and prime steaks that are flown from areas such as Alaska and Hawaii.
The menu also features fresh ingredients that are acquired from local sources. Some of the exquisite meals that can be savored by guests include the French classic seafood stew, steamed mussels in a white wine, ginger sauce, and green curry. With over 600 choices, an extensive award-winning wine list, and impeccable service complemented by smooth jazz music, Chandlers is without a doubt a top restaurant in Boise.
2. The Dish
The Dish has a unique menu inspired by both local and global flavors. This Boise restaurant has many notable choices that diners can take delight in. Soy roasted peanuts, red curry-coconut sauce, cucumber salad, and the quinoa burger topped with lemon-tarragon yoghurt, tomatoes, sprouts, and cucumber on a focaccia bun, to name a few.
To compliment the tasty meals, The Dish is located in a warm, downtown neighbourhood.
3. Wild Root Café and Market
The Wild Root Café and Market is located in the midst of Boise’s vibrant downtown. It offers a creative variety for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Start the day off with eggs and steak or brûléed ruby grapefruit.
Afterwards, move on to sandwiches, salad, and soups, including banh mi made with ginger-glazed vegan meatballs or candied bacon. Other popular choices include bone broth, seasonal fruit bowls, and grilled toast with natural or vegan butter or olive oil.
4. Epi’s Basque Restaurant
Epi’s should be the go-to place to eat in Boise for anyone seeking to sample the rustic fare of Northern Spain. The restaurant’s popularity has in the recent past risen making it an ideal dining point for Boise’s large Basque diaspora community. Specialties include pork chops, ham croquettes, lamb stew, baked cod, tongue and other homespun classics.
The restaurant came to life when two siblings – Sheila and Brad – came together and combined their culinary experience and passion for vegan cuisine and BBQ. Some vegan cuisine favorites include the vegaloaf – tempeh, vegan potato salad, and chocolate raspberry sauce grilled on Hawaiian bread.
BBQ lovers will appreciate BBQ4LIFE’s Big Foot sandwich, which is BBQ sauce, mac’n’cheese, and pulled pork from succulent baby back ribs in a thick Hawaiian bread.
Alavita is great for those looking for a restaurant in the midst of downtown Boise. It specializes on serving Italian cuisine and uses locally and regionally sourced ingredients. Curious diners can feast upon a variety of delectable meals, such as porcini tagliatelle with local parmesan, chives, cherry tomatoes, and mushrooms; squid ink linguini with a variety of green olives and seafood in a spicy arrabiatta sauce; and broiled halibut topped with gremolata accompanied by orzo and asparagus.
Also, a variety of handcrafted cocktails, wines, and vegetarian and gluten-free options ensures that different tastes are catered for.
Bardenay restaurant features a large menu that caters for a variety of tastes. Some highlights include the Charbroiled salmon fillet served with Caesar salad, sun-dried tomato butter; and the New York steak with fresh vegetables, garlic-mashed potatoes, veal demi-glace, and blue cheese butter.
To complement the meals, there’re a variety of handcrafted cocktails. A favorite is the cantaloupe cooler, which is a mixture of orange juices, lime, peach, watermelon liqueur, and Bardenay Vodka.
Bleubird is an eatery specializing in sweet treats, sodas, and mouth-watering house-made sandwiches. It is open on weekdays only and obtains most ingredients locally.
Some of the delectable highlights here include pastrami Reuben with Russian relish, and gruyere, purple cabbage slaw; and grilled cheese with gruyere, brie, fig preserves, caramelized onions, and cheddar.
10. Bar Gernika Basque pub & Eatery
This restaurant located in Boise, Idaho is a friendly dining establishment that has highlighted the Boise culinary scene for almost two decades now. Notable choices offered here include the lamb stew with green peppers, carrots, and potatoes; and the delicious chorizo sandwich.
Run by Mexico-born Enrique Martinez, Barbacoa is a stylish restaurant located in a stimulating environment. It is a haven for meat lovers and popular highlights include the cowboy rib eye – a 24 oz. rib chop served together with saffron rice, tomatoes, chorizo, chicken, borracho beans, and chipotle onion rings.
12. State & Lemp
This is arguably one of Boise’s top tasting menu restaurant. The restaurant is run by award-winning Kris Komori and features a variety of menus that cater for people with different tastes. Popular highlights include razor clams with celery, fresh wasabi, clams, and cherry tomatoes.
13. Masala Bistro
The Masala Bistro restaurant opened its doors just recently. Despite being new, its popularity has skyrocketed thanks to standout dishes inspired by Northern India culinary tastes. Delicious specialties include matar paneer, and goat cury made with fenugreek leaves, buttery pepper sauce redolent of garlic, and house-made cow’s milk cheese.
14. Le Coq d’Or
Run by Chef David Williams, Le Coq d’Or is an utterly elegant French-inspired restaurant that offers a combination of classic dishes with locally sourced French cuisine. It was opened in late 2015 and is set on a lavish property. Menu ranges from pork gorgonzola and truffle ravioli to feuillete d’escargot and coq au vin.
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