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Need cheap lunch or dinner on way back from Desolation Wilderness off Hwy 50-Z-Pie Report w/ pics

I'm looking for cheap eats (under $20)-probably lunch or dinner back from Desolation Wilderness (we're hiking Lake Aloha) and we're taking Hwy 50 back to Berkeley.

What's out there-Placerville eats maybe?

links I found: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

Placerville: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

Apple Hill: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...



South Lk Tahoe: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

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  1. I've never eaten there but the St. Pauli Inn in Kaibob looks pretty interesting for German food. It's a great setting, overlooking the river. Don't know if it's open for lunch. Not sure of the prices either. You'll pass it before you leave the foothills. If you've never hiked Aloha, you will absolutely love it. Word of caution-I tried hiking there the end of June and couldn't make it all the way because of very deep snow. I didn't think it would melt till September. Check with the ranger station.



    2 Replies
    1. re: RevrendAndy

      >the St. Pauli Inn in Kaibob looks pretty interesting for German food<

      Where is Kaibob? Mapquest didn't recognize it.

      1. re: Mick Ruthven

        I think the "good Revrend" meant Kyburz, not Kaibob!

    2. We've enjoyed Z Pie in Placerville, visible from the 50 on a little side street just off the main drag there (across from a tall and hideous concrete parking structure that is also visible from the 50).

      Here's its website link: http://www.z-pie.com

      It's a comfortable little cafe and makes tasty pot pies and salads and the like. They serve some nice bottled microbrews too, if memory serves, that should hit the spot after days in the backcountry.

        1. any specific pie(s) I should get at Z-Pie?

          in an old post someone said: "One of my favourite spots in Placerville is Z-Pies. It's a funky little place that serves meat pies with salad. The steak and cabernet pie is wonderful."

          another poster said to try "High Hill Ranch, its the big farm right in Placerville just north of the freeway. (I think its one of the biggest farms). They have a crafts fair, a fishing pond, apples, cider and a pie house. Anyway, the pie at the pie house there is great. We always get a few frozen (unbaked) ones for later....Look for the fishing pond; the pie house overlooks it with big wooden decks. If you don't see a pond, you're at the wrong place. Haven't been there in a while, but for years it had some terrific pies. And great BBQ chicken.

          Another favorite stop is Boeger winery nearby. A nice (low key) place for tastings, and they have a few picnic tables in their own apple orchard which are great for a picnic.."

          Any recommendations on them?

          1 Reply
          1. re: hhc

            I like the apple pie at High Hill ranch...but I think its a seasonal thing....only really open (or at least only with locally picked apples) in the fall. Its really a little too early now.

            Boeger has a very nice orchard for picnics. Try their zins.

          2. Yes, I meant Kyburz. Sorry.

            1. You can get a great meal for under $20 each at our favorite restaurant, Redbud Cafe. Right off Hwy 50/Cambridge exit in Cameron Park. Next to Applebee's. It has a Napa feel to it, great local wines, exhibition kitchen and fantastic menu. You won't be disappointed.

              1. Updated Report w/ pics (8/13/06)
                Thanks to chowhounds my friends and I went to Placerville (after hiking in Desolation Wilderness Lk Aloha-which is amazing) just to try Z-Pie. It's pretty good. The size is a little bigger than the Frozen Swanson's but pretty filling. The pies don't come automatically with salad-salad is Extra!!

                One friend got Steak and Cabernet $5.15 It's supposed to have beef, onions, carrots, potatoes, peas, tomatoes, red wine, pearl onions, beef stock, flour, butter (unsalted), salt & pepper. He didn't see any tomatoes, but still liked it.

                I got the Chicken & mushrooms-chicken, mushrooms, garlic, red pepper, green beans, thyme, chicken stock, butter (unsalted), potatoes, flour, salt & pepper $4.95. I liked my pie-flaky crust which is Great. inside is good.

                other friend got the Southwestern chicken-grilled chicken, potatoes, chicken stock, black bean, red pepper, corn, cream, green chili, garlic, salt & pepper. $4.95. he liked it, said the flaky crust is good.

                The waitress was very nice and thought the service was fine, though a bit slow. Not too bad. One unisex bathroom available in the take-out portion of the building. Take-out pies are available.

                3182 Center St
                (Next to the City Hall, across from the Center Street Garage, seen from Hwy 50)
                Placerville, CA 95667
                (530) 621-2626

                my friend A's pics: http://www.kodakgallery.com/Slideshow...

                1. Thank you for the follow-up report and with pictures too! It's appreciated.

                  1. Wow! I'm suprised at the Redbud Cafe recommend. We ate lunch there Friday and were sorely disappointed. A pork sandwich (I think they called it ElCedro) was dry as a bone, tough, and in a stale ordinary Kaiser-type bun. In the center of the bun was a tiny dab of some kind of mayonnaise-type sauce. There was a "dipping sauce" that tasted like a roux that hadn't cooked long enough, was missing any seasonings, and used old fat of some sort as the base. Nasty stuff!

                    The Won Ton salad had two or 3 pieces of fried won ton skins and nothing else to distinguish it from every other salad I saw being served close by. And the bottled dressing on it tasted old, metallic, and just like the dressing on the salad my daughter had (Can't remember what they called hers.) The "baby greens" were 99% stickery bitter stuff that should be left in the weed patch.

                    How can you mess up "french fried onion strings?" They came in a very novel attractive container, but the off-taste on those was the same as the off-taste of the water......and the same as the off-taste at the Hoosegow in Placerville. It's so "off" that Hoosegow offers lemon slices with their water, to cut that chemical taste. Must be the water supply needs help.

                    My friend had a club sandwich of sorts, lots of avocado and bacon, but the chicken was so dry and tough .....well, there was so much food we couldn't eat, the waitress asked us 3 times if we wanted a box to take it with us. No point telling her we're hearty eaters but the food was inedible. The staff is very pleasant and the service reasonably quick, by the way.

                    There's lots of patio dining, but the outside is an unattractive mish mash of potted plants, as though someone dropped in at a huge nursery and bought one of everything that was in a pot.

                    We REALLY wanted to like this restaurant, since good food in this area is not easy to find. Maybe Redbud Cafe had a novice in the kitchen that day, but I think even a pro couldn't take the old and tough and stale out of the food.

                    Maybe we just made bad choices from a very interesting menu!