PlumpJack Cafe Restaurant Review, Squaw Valley


PlumpJack Cafe

1920 Squaw Valley Road

Olympic Valley, CA 96146


530-583-1734 (Fax)

PlumpJack Cafe Website

Book Reservation

Plumpjack Restaurant Squaw Valley exterior decor

PlumpJack Cafe is a restaurant in the PlumpJack Squaw Valley Inn, at the Squaw Valley ski resort. They serve breakfast the hotel guests, lunch and dinner to all. A more informal bar right outside the cafe, also serves food. We were in the area and decided to drop in for a quick bite to eat.

Cuisine – American
Chef – Ben “Wyatt” Dufresne
Location – Squaw Valley ski resort
Opened – 1997

Plumpjack Restaurant Squaw Valley interior decor

Decor, Vibe – PlumpJack Cafe is a small restaurant with upscale decor and lots of windows looking out at the snow-covered surroundings. The restaurant and bar were packed with hungry skiers and snowboarders. Lots of affluent families were dining here.


PlumpJack Cafe menu changes seasonally, based on regional influences, indigenous flavors and locally-farmed ingredients.

Signature Dishes – Seafood cones

Website Menu

Full PlumpJack Cafe image set

Excellent homemade hot bread.

Plumpjack Restaurant Squaw Valley hot Rum punch

Hot rum punch ($10) sounded like a perfect drink on a cold winters night. The rum was strong and very evident. We feel that this drink could have been a little more sweet to mask the strong alcohol flavor.

Plumpjack Restaurant Squaw Valley warm spinach salad

Warm spinach focaccia salad ($16.00) Soft Cooked Farm Egg, Nueske Bacon, Maple Vinaigrette was recommended by our waitress and proved to be a good-sized salad with a large jiggly egg, Large bacon chunks, and focaccia bread croutons.

Plumpjack Restaurant Squaw Valley seafood cones

Korean spiced seafood cones ($15.00) Pickled Cabbage, Ginger, Tobiko Caviar is a signature dish, so we had to order it. It reminded us of French Laundry. The ahi tuna was fresh and the cone crispy with a little hint of heat.

Plumpjack Restaurant Squaw Valley chicken

Fulton Valley organic chicken breast ($26.00) Duck Confit Dumplings, Crispy Kale, Baby Root Vegetables, Miso Broth was an excellent piece of chicken breast, possessing a crispy outer layer and a perfectly cooked inside. The dumplings were stellar as were the vegetables in the accompanying broth. Eating chicken outside is almost a no-no for us, but this hit the spot.

Dark chocolates with Ginger were a nice closing touch.

OK: (Order if you like this dish)

Plumpjack Restaurant Squaw Valley kids pasta

Penne pasta – Butter & Parmesan ($7) was satisfying for kids, but wasn’t of top quality.

Plumpjack Restaurant Squaw Valley Apple terrine dessert

Fuji Apple terrine ($8) Maple Walnut ice cream, Lebanese date syrup, pomegranate was a complex dessert that was almost bread like in texture. Not too sweet and layered like a fancy Napoleon cake. This dessert is not for everyone.

Pans: (We would not reorder these dishes)

Service – PlumpJack Cafe had solid very good service but could have used a couple more helpers to enable it to reach excellence.

Value – Prices are comparable to fine dining establishments in San Francisco.

Alternatives – Nearby restaurants include slim pickings In the Squaw Valley Village. Try nearby Moody’s in Truckee or Baxter’s and Manzanita for some really good food.

Verdict – PlumpJack Cafe serves up some of the best food in this neck of the woods. If you’re in squaw Valley and want a great meal, this is a no-brainer. If you want to go a little more casual, eat at the PlumpJack bar, a fellow blogger’s review makes it look promising.
Extensive 20 page wine list with high markup, glasses of wine from seven dollars, bottles from $27, $15 corkage. 20% gratuity added to parties of 6 or more. Kids menu available.

PlumpJack Cafe on Urbanspoon

Restaurant Map:

PlumpJack Cafe Overall Rating: (Very Good 2.5)

Come Back?

Food Rating: (Very Good)
Service Rating: (Very Good)
Atmosphere Rating: (Very Good)
Value Rating: (Good)

Guide: 0 = poor, 1 = Below/Average, 2 = Good, 2.5 = Very Good, 3 = Excellent , 4 = Extraordinary

Alcohol:Full Bar
Hours:Fri-Sat 5-9pm, Sun-Thur 5:30pm-9pm
Parking:Free Lot
Prices:$23 - $32

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