Quintessential dining — Tahoe style

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Dining at Gar Woods is the well-rounded Tahoe package — beautiful views, a flavorful menu and luscious libations. My husband, Steve Caswell, most discerning when it comes to accompanying me on a dining review, graces me with his presence for the evening, as he shares my enthusiasm for this place.

We head in for an early supper so we can enjoy the amazing view, and Michelle, our server, starts us with a signature appetizer, Beer Battered Coconut Prawns. Served with a mango mustard marmalade and grilled pineapple this is an excellent combination of sweet and savory. Not too spicy. plus the crispy coconut makes for a heavenly start.

Both fans of the House Salad. we agree this is a must have every time we go there. The fresh spring greens are coated with the delectable roasted red pepper vinaigrette and topped with feta and sugar crisp walnuts. Easily one of the best house salads around, this appeals to vegetarians and carnivores alike. I also am tempted to order the Shrimp & Lobster Bisque, another favorite with it’s rich lobster cream, rock shrimp and sherry, but the entrées call and I will have to save it for another visit.

For the main event, Steve plows in to the Herb Roasted Chicken with garlic mashed potatoes, lemon zest broccolini and white wine rosemary jus. Crispy and golden on the outside, succulent, tender and juicy on the inside, he was more than delighted with his choice.

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For me, it is the Seared Diver Scallops on top of a Dungeness crab risotto, sautéed green beans served with a Meyer lemon buerre blanc. A perfect combination of tastes, the scallops melt in my mouth and the risotto adds further richness. The buerre blanc further complements the dish making it creamy and satisfying.

For dessert, we indulge in the Dark Chocolate Croissant Bread Pudding a-la-mode covered with Callebaut dark chocolate, vanilla bean anglaise, fresh raspberries and the most delightful vanilla bean ice cream. Easily big enough for two, this rich concoction is the definition of decadent.

Steve enhances his meal with a few Stella Artois draughts and although I desperately want the signature drink, the Wet Woody (fruity, yummy and one will pretty much kick your butt), I am the designated driver for the evening.

It’s hard to go wrong at Gar Woods, because they do everything so well. It also is a great place to take your friends when they visit. I guarantee they will be impressed.

Gar Woods is located at 5000 North Lake Blvd. in Carnelian Bay. They serve lunch daily from 11:30 a.m. (from 10:30 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday) and dinner nightly from 5 p.m. For more information, call (530) 546-3366 or visit garwoods.com.