When you visit Lake Tahoe and see the sweeping mountain peaks surrounding you, you’ll understand why it is such a must-visit destination for ski enthusiasts. There’s truly nothing like a sunny winter afternoon spent zipping down a layer of fresh snow. With 11 different downhill resorts to choose from, winter sports enthusiasts of all kinds can enjoy the snowy getaway of their dreams. As the sun begins to sink below the horizon, everyone on the slopes begins dreaming of something to warm them up. Luckily, you’ll find no shortage of après ski in Lake Tahoe. Read on for our picks on how to enjoy après ski, Tahoe-style.
Après — Not Just for the French
Literally translated, “après ski” means “after ski.” It is originally a French turn of phrase, developed in the 1950s when skiing really became en vogue in the Alps. The phrase refers to any activities that might take place post-ski, such as sharing light bites with friends or enjoying a warm drink by a roaring fire. In Lake Tahoe, we take our après pretty seriously. Rather than simply an activity, it’s an aspect of the local culture in and of itself. Whether you’re after a high-end, champagne toast kind of après or a more laid-back, beers by the fire sort of vibe, the possibilities for a memorable après are endless.
Before you hit the slopes, take a moment to ensure that you are traveling responsibly and safely. Firstly, plan your transportation ahead of time. If you are driving, make sure to check and adhere to all snow chain guidelines in place, and keep a close eye on the weather and road conditions. You can also use the Lake Tahoe webcams to see the current conditions in real time. Or, go for a hassle-free public transportation option, such as TART. No matter how you are getting around, be sure you have a plan in place if severe conditions occur. Download all state and county alert apps so you can stay up to date with important emergency alerts.
The Best Places for Après Ski in Lake Tahoe
After an adrenaline-heavy day on the slopes, you may be in need of a little pick-me-up. One of the best ways to enjoy après in Lake Tahoe is with a warm cocktail next to a blazing fireplace. Some yummy bites wouldn’t hurt, either. To round out your evening, experience Lake Tahoe’s vibrant cultural scene by pairing live entertainment with your après. Here are some of the best places to après all day in Lake Tahoe.
Head to this scenic lakeside restaurant and lodging spot for a truly relaxing après experience. Enjoy a signature cocktail off of their “Lakeside Libations” menu, and be sure to give the fried zucchini a try — it’s a local favorite that even the staff can’t get enough of. If you can, plan to hit this spot on a Friday night, so you can enjoy some live music, too!
Whether you settle down indoors or on their lakefront patio, you’ll be able to cozy up next to a fire at this rustic, ski chalet-inspired restaurant. The lakefront fire pit is a great place to spend a few hours unwinding after your runs. There, you can warm your hands, take in stunning Lake Tahoe views and enjoy wine and cocktail service. If you’re feeling hungry, head inside and grab a table for dinner, and soak in the warmth from the huge stone fireplace featured in the dining room.
A longtime favorite of returning travelers, Wolfdale’s has been serving Tahoe City for more than 40 years, offering customers a menu infused with Asian and European flavors all prepared with freshness and quality in mind. Settle down at a table with a stunning lake view, grab a bite off of their seasonally-inspired food menu and recount the day’s impressive runs over a creative cocktail. Wine aficionados will be delighted by the award-winning wine list with a wide range of varietals to choose from. Top it all off with a mouthwatering dessert, and your après doesn’t get much better.
This boutique Tahoe City hotel is the definition of comfort. Head to their “Cozy Lobby” for Happy Hour, every day from 5 pm to 7 pm. Sink into their cushy leather couches and warm up those frozen fingers by a roaring fireplace as you enjoy locally crafted microbrews, wine and craft cocktails, all available at a discounted price. Pair your drink with a snack such as grilled cheese or homemade soup, and you have the perfect recipe for a comforting and hearty après.
Après your way at Northstar California Resort. Enjoy après ski in the heart of the Village at Northstar at the Cabana Bar, alongside the Village Skating Rink. Sip on a craft cocktail while you watch the ice skating from the cabanas, and cap the day by toasting s’mores over a roaring fire. Or, warm up with your group with drinks at the Bourbon Pub firepits and treat yourself to reinvented pub fare by internally renowned restauranteur, Michael Mina. Better yet, enjoy Lake Tahoe’s only ski-up, mountain view bubbly experience at Tost, where you can sip on Champagne or apple cider.
Pre Ski to Après Ski in Lake Tahoe
For a more in-depth look into Lake Tahoe’s après ski opportunities, take a look at our handy guide. A visit to Lake Tahoe is the perfect way to make your winter truly wow-worthy. As the year comes to a close, why not spend those extra vacation days on a Lake Tahoe ski adventure? Book your stay and start planning your trip today — you’re sure to find exciting activities for any occasion, whether you’re on the slopes or off.