HOME > Chowhound > California >


Pasadena to Northern California via the 395 - any good bakeries/natural food stores/fruit stands?

The bakery in Bishop is great -but that is the only thing I can remember on the 395. We are on a road trip and will stop by Mono Lake and then up by the Lava Tube National Monument - I hear the restaurants choices are pretty limited but do you have any suggestions for bakeries? Natural food or good grocery stores? Fruit stands and farmers' markets are also appreciated (though I know I am asking for the moon here!)

Thanks for your help! I will post anything good we come across when we return for the trip.

We are also traveling through Oregon so I will post to that forum.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Erick Schat's bakery is the one in Bishop on this route that looks enticing but personally I found it perfectly awful on all counts. It will beckon you for sure because of its kitschy appearance, but see if you can resist its apparent novelty on this road. Every single bread product they put out is wholly inferior and way overpriced.

    1. Don't miss the Whoa Nellie Deli in Lee Vining (it's in the gas station just west of the Yosemite turnoff. The Texas(?) BBQ in Walker is pretty good too.

      1 Reply
      1. re: BChow

        A couple of weeks ago we ate at Mountain View BBQ in Walker, is that the one you are talking about? The sliced beef was awful. It was tough as shoe leather. It appeared to need another 3-4 hours to cook. It was some of the worse brisket I've ever had. Luckily my husband had ordered that. I had a pulled pork sandwich or a chopped beef sandwich, can't remember which and it was okay, nothing great.

        However, the cheese and bacon fries were in the top 3 fries dishes I've ever had in my life. They were awesome and the dish was huge. Enough for at least 4 people. I would go back again in a heartbeat just for those fries.

      2. I've been to the Carson City Farmer's Mkt downtown, but in the fall. It is early there, lots of snow on the ground just a month ago. It may be just greens and things for now. That goes for the whole east side up into Oregon.

        try here for info: www.carsonfarmersmarket.com

        1. Thanks the suggestions - I will definitely stop in Lee Vining and check out the famers' market.

          On another trip, we ate pastries at the bakery in Bishop - and maybe they weren't the best in the world but they were 'good enough' given the paucity of choices east of the Sierras.

          1 Reply
          1. re: ekt_now

            You can get powdered sugar donuts in any supermarket along the way. They are good enough too.

          2. I like Walker Burger in Walker, of course! I believe they are open seasonally though.

            Walker Burger
            107008 US Highway 395, Coleville, CA 96107

            1 Reply
            1. re: shellsbutt

              30 minutes to get an overcooked burger on a nondescript bun with shredded iceberg lettuce, fairly tastless tomato and cheese is not a good deal. The onion rings were Sysco type frozen and the ranch dressing was right out of a bulk bottle... Was not impressed--It was about 2:30, so I was not there at prime time. Mt. View Barbecue is a much better stop in Walker.

            2. There has been a semi-permanent fruit/vegetable stand in either Lone Pine or Independence on the west side of the road. The Great Basin Bakery in Bishop is good--located about a block south of Line St. and a block west of 395. Whole Paycheck market in Reno is located just off the east side of the highway at Neil Road exit. Once you leave Reno headed north, it is pretty bleak until you hit Bend, Oregon...

              1. Good camping at Goose Lake, just south of Lakeview OR., also home to orchards of 'wild plums' We got some surprisingly tasty plum wine there years ago. (Goose lake is in both CA and OR.)

                1. Thanks to everybody who submitted a helpful, positive recommendation - I really appreciate your willingness and generosity!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: ekt_now

                    Don't miss the Mahogany Smoked Meats in Bishop north of town.
                    Best bacon and smoked pork and jerky anywhere.

                    Mahogany Smoked Meats
                    2345 N Sierra Hwy, Bishop, CA

                  2. If you turn up the Rock Creek Lake road south of Mammoth Lakes, you will find an array of freshly baked pies. Famous for them. They have about a dozen different types, depending on the season. http://www.rockcreeklake.com/resort/

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: glbtrtr

                      Great - thanks! Those sound like good items to follow-up.

                      1. re: ekt_now

                        Blackberry pie is always my favorite. And if you have the time, the hike at the end of the road to Gem Lakes hiking trail is one of the prettiest ever in California. About 4 hours to the most stunning string of glacial lakes to see in July for the most gorgeous wildflowers and huge rocks to sit on while you eat your Rock Creek Lake pie.

                    2. Post-trip report: we loved the Great Basin Bakery in Bishop - delicious cinnamon rolls, flakey croissants (my son devoured the chocolate croissant) and good, fresh bread (Thanks, NJJims, for the recommendation!!!). Drove to Rock Creek Lake (lovely area - we will go back to camp on another trip) but when we arrived at 4pm, the pies were sold-out - they said that 11am was a good time to come. I will save the other recommendations for our next trip - thanks, again!

                      Rock Creek Cafe
                      9100 Rock Creek Rd, Placerville, CA 95667

                      1. Friends just returned from the area and are raving about Pie in the Sky.

                        1. Whoa Nellie Deli is a must! Definitely not a deli, but a spectacular chef holed up in a Mobile gas station pumping (no pun intended) fabulous and unusual meals. FYI - snow is long gone and farmers markets are in full swing. Read an arcticle yesterday that first heirloom tomatoes are now available. There's a Schat's in Carson City now, too.

                          Whoa Nelly Deli
                          22 Vista Point Rd, Lee Vining, CA 93541

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: nancyhudson

                            Found Whoa Nellie to be more gimmacky than really a foodie place, but a welcome relief in this wasteland at least for novelty if you don't mind crowds and silly over-large portions. No fan of Schats where ever they are located, sorry.

                            1. re: nancyhudson

                              There's a Schat's in Mammoth Lakes also. Just a short scoot off of 395. Wonderful pastries!! My husband got an egg and bacon croissant and said it was absolutely delicious.

                            2. This is many years later but we just made the same trip so I wanted to update the information. The Great Basin Bakery in Bishop still has yummy crossiants (the scones were so-so) but get there early - we arrived at 10:30am and lots of items were sold out.

                              In Bridgeport, 6 miles north of the Bodi turn-off, there is a nice grocery store - not cheap but that is common in small towns- where we could buy supplies. Across the street we had great vegie burgers and delicious, crunchy fries at Rubio's, it looks like a biker bar but the food and service are great.