This Idaho ski town’s good eating and drinking might have you forgetting about the slopes.
The Cutwater on Payette Lake
Nestled within the iconic Shore Lodge by the lapping waves of Payette Lake in McCall, this fine dining restaurant offers a wide variety of classic dishes with a Western twist. The bison brisket sandwich features house-smoked and hand-chopped South Dakota bison complemented by cherry peppers and a tangy barbecue sauce infused with fresh Northwest huckleberries. For a new perspective on poutine, try the North Fork Cheese Fries. Made with locally grown Kennebec potatoes, tender steak, and garlic cheese curd, the secret to this dish lies in the French demi-glace that makes the dish a suitable entrée. thecutwatermccall.com
Steamers Steak & Seafood
For a landlocked state, Idaho has a surprising amount of world-class seafood. In McCall, look no further than Steamers Steak & Seafood, which operates out of the century-old Lake Street Station building overlooking Payette Lake. A salute to a favorite Idaho fish, the pan-fried ruby rainbow trout is complemented by a lemon-caper butter finish to give the flaky fillet a citrus punch. Western classics from the sea include halibut and sockeye salmon. steamersrestaurant.com
Salmon River Brewery
Named after the state’s longest continuous free-flowing river, this eclectic brewery serves up a healthy dose of Idaho culture plastered across each wall to pair with its more than 20 microbrews on tap. The wintertime-favorite Buzz Buzz Coffee Porter is an English brown porter that teases a potent coffee flavor and aroma to go with its light, malty taste. During the summer, pub-goers indulge in the Shiver IPA, a Northwestern-style microbrew that packs a powerful punch of hops accentuated by pine and citrus flavors. salmonriverbrewery.com
Evening Rise Bread Company
McCall may be a sleepy town outside of the summer tourism season, but Evening Rise Bread Company owner Corey McDonald never sleeps. McDonald rises each morning at 3:30 to make several breads for the day from scratch. Although the shop boasts more than 50 different types of bread, some of the most popular are sun-dried tomato and garlic, rosemary and garlic, cinnamon-raisin, jalapeño-cheddar, and nine grain. The shop also hand-slices fresh cheeses and meats daily, helping it live up to its billing as McCall’s best sandwich shop.
Photography: Courtesy The Cutwater on Payette Lake, Courtesy Salmon River Brewery
From the October 2019 issue