Groveland Hotel
Cellar Room at Groveland Hotel
Groveland Hotel Courtyard
Hotel Charlotte
Hotel Charlotte Dining Room
Cross Country Cafe
Two Guys Pizza Pies

Dining in Groveland

Being a small community, we are fortunate to have a variety of restaurants with some very talented chefs.  Here is a review of my favorite places for dining in Groveland:

The Grill at Pine Mountain Lake

Pine Mountain Lake Restaurant and Lounge overlooks the Pine Mountain Lake Golf Course and offers majestic views of Yosemite’s peaks.  The outside deck is perfect for outdoor dining & cocktails, and there is live music on most Saturdays.  Another bonus here is free wireless internet access customers. Restaurant Manager Jay Reis runs a great crew including Assistant Manager Ron “Azzo” Azzopardi, Chef Raul Melchor, and Dining Room Captain Andrea Mitchell.  Banquet Director Bambi Johnson can coordinate special occasions for 30 to 150 guests.  All of these folks have contagious smiles and the atmosphere is very relaxing here.  The menu is robust with a wide variety of pasta, chicken, beef, and seafood dishes; and the appetizer and salad choices are terrific.  They also offers a wide array of popular “small plate” entrees, priced from $16-$20. Entrees range from $16-$40, Burgers $11-$12.  Open Friday and Saturday from 5-9:30 pm; Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday from 5-9 pm.  Breakfast served Saturday 8-11 am and Sunday 8 am-12:30 pm. Lunch served Tuesday to Sunday, 11 am to 3 pm.  The “bar menu” also has a variety of choices and is available from 11 am until 9 pm everyday but Monday. 12765 Mueller Drive, Groveland, CA.  209-962-8638

Ellie’s Café and Pizzeria

Formerly “P.J.’s Café” and now under new management with Ellie, this café is quickly becoming a local’s favorite.  I particularly enjoy breakfast here.  Nothing fancy on the menu, just the basics; but they do everything right.  Including hash browns; not those “country potatoes”, but hash browns.  This is a big deal to me, and I order them extra crispy with melted cheddar on top!  Lunch and dinner menu includes a variety of burgers, sandwiches, salads, and pizza.  Other goodies on the menu include fish and chips and the wings  A nice menu and good satisfying food, with emphasis on fresh ingredients.  There is something very relaxing about the atmosphere here.  The service, like most Groveland restaurants, is not always the fastest.  That is just how it works in Groveland, life moves at a more relaxed pace and meals are not rushed; and if you move here you will come to really enjoy that.  Prices range from $10-30.  Open Monday to Thursday 7 am to 9 pm, Friday to Sunday 7 am to 10 pm. 18986 Main Street, Groveland, CA.  209-962-7501

Fork and Love Restaurant at The Hotel Charlotte

Recently opened by a very talented chef, Aaron Haas, Fork and Love offers great atmosphere and a fun menu.  They feature small, medium, and large plates to suit all appetites with a wonderful selection of local wines, beer on tap and a full bar including a handful of house specialty cocktails. The menu features many unique dishes and the focus is on fresh local ingredients and lighter healthier dining.  Some of the more interesting dishes include braised pork spätzle, miso pho (cute name for a large plate), wild red deer, crispy Brussel sprouts, and bittersweet salad.  And the deserts of Chef Haas are spectacular!

What we like about Fork and Love is that we can share a few plates without busting our budget.  The service is in a relaxed and casual environment, yet the meals feel upscale.  Planning a big hike at Yosemite tomorrow?  This is your place!  You will get a very satisfying meal but you wont go home feeling “stuffed”. small and medium plates are priced $8-$15, while large plates are priced between $14 and $25. Dinner is served Thursday-Sunday, 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm, but this is a seasonally run business which is closed in the winter. 18736 Main Street, Groveland, CA.   209-962-6455

Iron Door Saloon & Grill

Built in 1852 and reputed to be the oldest continuously operating saloon in California (since 1896), “The Door” is a fun place to take the family for some terrific charbroiled burgers.  As you enter through the iron doors, you will step back in time into a real old west saloon.  The saloon is monitored by the gaze of numerous hunting trophies including a buffalo, elk, moose, caribou, black bear, coyote, and a giant puffer fish.  In addition to a few stray bullet holes, there are several historic pictures of the area.  Additionally, historic mining, lumbering, and farming implements of the old west and thousands of dollar bills hang from the ceiling.  You can eat in this fascinating saloon, but if eating near the bar is not your preference, you can dine in the much tamer looking grill dining area to the right. The menu is loaded with typical bar appetizers and a variety of tasty burgers – this is what they are known for!  Also lots of specialty sandwiches and soup/salad barOn Fridays and Saturdays at around 9 pm, The Door fires up with live music, and quickly converts into a highly charged night club.  There is also an old fashioned Soda Shop adjacent to the Saloon which is open during the warmer months.  Whether you choose to eat at the door or not, please be sure to visit it. Burgers range from $10-$12.  Summer Hours: 11 am – 9 pm Sunday-Thursday; 11 am – 10 pm, Friday and Saturday.  Winter Hours: 11 am – 4 pm, Sunday-Wednesday, 11 am – 8:30 pm, Thursday-Saturday. 18761 Main Street, Groveland, CA.  209-962-8904

Cocina Michoacana

A local favorite, this place is usually packed for good reason; the food is awesome!   The ambiance is slightly lacking; but the service, pricing, and food more than make up for it.  The menu in this family run restaurant is extensive with every Mexican favorite that you can think of and many more tasty dishes to boot.  Very authentic Mexican food made with fresh ingredients, and if you want to get your meal fast (or quick take-out) this is the place. If the place is full, don’t despair.  They really get the food out quick, typically 10-15 minutes after ordering, and it is the fastest service for dining in Groveland.  Another option is to order your food to go, and it is typically ready in the same amount of time or less (just enough time to run across the street to the Iron Door Saloon for a quick drink!). Wine and Beer served. Entrees are reasonably priced from $9-$13.  Open for lunch and dinner daily from 10 am – 10 pm. 18730 Main Street, Groveland, CA. 209-962-6651

Two Guys Pizza Pies

This place delivers (literally) with excellent pizza.  The ingredients are fresh, the toppings are generous, and the pizza is delicious.  They also serve some very good calzones, oven baked subs, breadsticks, Buffalo wings, chicken strips, onion rings, and fries; and there is a salad bar. The atmosphere inside is typical of a pizza place; no frills beyond TV.  But if the weather is good the deck is very inviting for dining. In my book, Two Guys has the best “bang for your buck” pizzas in town, especially if you grab a coupon out of one of the local papers (PML News or Yosemite Highway Herald).  In the winter, you can’t beat their “All you can eat lunch special”, 11 am – 2 pm on weekdays; it includes pizza, salad, and soda for $6.95.  Medium sized (12″) pizzas are $17-$19, large sized (14”) pizzas are $20-23, Extra Large (18”) are $26-28.  Calzones $10-$13, Oven baked subs are $7.25.  Delivery is $4.  Open 11 am -10 pm daily.  18955 Ferretti Rd, Groveland, CA.  209-962-4897

Priest Station Café

Now in its sixth generation of family ownership, Priest Station has a long and interesting history dating back to the Gold Rush.  It was originally a miner’s store, and then under ownership of the Priest family, it became a stagecoach stop and 22 building hotel complex.  Everything was lost to fire in 1926.  The existing restaurant and cabins date back to the 1940’s. Today they are putting out some great food, making this a popular eatery for locals and tourists alike.  The breakfast menu has all of the traditional favorites as well as some great breakfast skillet dishes; most dishes are priced at $10 or less. The lunch and dinner menu offers a great variety of salads, burgers, and sandwiches as well as house specialties including zucchini pie, steak frittes, and German bratwurst.  Their is a generous selection of vegetarian dishes and some terrific desserts.  Most of the lunch/dinner items are priced under $12. Dinner is a one dish special each night, but with great dishes such as prime rib, spare ribs, jambalaya, German, or “old fashioned turkey dinner”. Pricing is in the range of $13 to $24. Open daily 8 am-8 pm, with breakfast served 8-11 am. 16756 Old Priest Grade, Big Oak Flat, CA.  209-962-1888

Dori’s Tea Cottage and Cafe

OK…not really dining in Groveland, but they serve an English-style tea lunch, and if you are into tea, you have to check this out.  Owner Dori Jones and husband Greg have created a quaint and charming tea room in a historic location, with no detail left behind.  The décor, the ambiance, the table settings, the tea cups, and everything else are a tea-lover’s dream. Dori’s offers a huge selection of teas, including extensive black, green, white, herbal, Oolong, Rooibos, decaffeinated, and iced teas along with numerous premium teas.  They recently added their “Candy Bar” tea selection, including selections such as Peppermint Patti, Milkie Way, and Almond Joyful!   A typical tea luncheon serving includes several finger sandwiches, some desserts like fruit and cake and, of course, a scone.  They also have a deli and serve full sandwiches and half sandwich and salad combinations. Everything is homemade and fresh, and there is a variety of unique and tasty sandwiches such as Roasted Garlic/Herb with Cucumber, Ham and Apricot Preserves, Pesto and Pine Nuts, and Sundried Tomato and Feta.  Dori’s also offers snacks, drinks, and lunches to go and has a boutique filled with a unique selection of teas, tea accessories, and gifts.  Whether you are served by Dori, Greg, or Dale, the service could not be any warmer or more attentive. Lunch servings range from $9-$16 per person. Open Thursday – Monday 8 am-5 pm (closed Tues, Weds); Lunch served 11 am-3 pm (closed Mon, Tues, Weds). 18744 Main St, Groveland, CA.  209-962-5300

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