Recommendations for Drive from Reno to Denver
Chowhounder from Oregon will be driving from Klamath Falls Oregon to Lake Taho and Reno and then along I-80 from Reno to Denver (or is hwy 40 better for the Colorado section?). Looking for great food finds; all types and price ranges, as long as its good and priced right. Little "hole-in-the-wall" preferred but not a must.
Please post your query about the Tahoe/Reno portion of your trip on the California board where Tahoe and Reno are discussed.
If you do a search for Elko, I have posted several times about the Basque restaurants (and other options) in teh Elko, NV area.
Plan your drive to catch a meal at The Griddle in Winnemucca. Easily the best hound fare
on all of I-80 in Nevada.
If you're taking either 50 or 70 (and I would say that 70 through Utah and CO gives more majestic views than either 80 or 50), you can get exceptionally great biscuits and gravy (I swear the gravy's made with real cream) at Mom's Cafe in Salina Utah. I've been there for lunch (having accidentally missed the 11A cut-off for breakfast) and they sometimes have a homemade chicken soup with fresh noodles and "dumplings" that's comfort in a bowl, but you can't always get it. Salads are from a salad bar from which the servers snack between plate deliveries, fish and chips are predictably awful, and their "famous scones" are fried bread(!).
Bottom line for me: get there for breakfast, order eggs & hash browns with a side of biscuit&gravy, then enjoy the gravy on your hash browns.
Completely off the topic of food, Arches National Park is worth a visit if you have time for a little off-route spectacular scenery, and the "Trail Through Time" at CO mile marker 2 is an incredible collection of dinosaur fossils (in situ) and less than 1/4 mile off I-70.
If you are looking for the fastest way, its i80 to i25 in Wyoming. However, that's not to scenic. Winnemucca and Elko have some interesting places mentioned on this board. An alternative is i80 to SLC, then down through Price to Green River (and maybe 45 minutes south to Moab, as a detour). Here it hooks up with i70 into Denver. There's a place on the north side of Price, UT that is very good down home cooking, they have lot's of signs on the way into Price, but I don't remember their name. The only food in Grand Junction near i70 is just OK. Jucy Lucy's in Glenwood Springs, CO is very good (with one of the best wine lists I've seen in Colorado), but not very fancy. Its across the street from the Amtrak station. Search the board for Vail Valley suggestions. Don't drive this route, if its Sunday, the traffic back into Denver is very bad.
I've driven US 50 through Nevada and Utah, its name, rightfully, is the "loneliest highway in America".