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First impressions: My 7 favorite things in Reno after moving to Biggest Little City

Revision Brewery artwork inside
Revision Brewery artwork inside

I can’t believe I’ve lived in Reno for 4 months already. I must say, time flies when you’re busy doing what you love.

Being a newcomer to Reno (from San Francisco), there’s lots to learn. From the city's history and where things are geographically to where to shop and the best sites to see to what freeway to take if you want to visit Tahoe, there's definitely been a learning curve after moving to Northern Nevada. For all of you new to Reno like me, I thought I’d create a few "musts" that I’ve been able to experience thus far to help you.

Now remember, I’m only 4 months in and I've taken precautions about exploring everything because of COVID-19 restrictions. So I still have a lot more to do and see, but here are seven places I've learned to love so far.

1. Mexcal

First up, Mexcal restaurant. It’s at the top of my list because it’s that delicious! I can’t say that enough. From the drinks to dessert, you can’t go wrong. A perfect date night spot. The service was great, the staff was friendly and the restaurant overall felt very welcoming and clean. All of the food is ordered à la carte, which can be nerve-racking, however the portions were just the right size. Best part: it's affordable. The best places to go to eat are restaurants you can either get dressed up or dress casual and you know when you ask for your check it won’t break the bank.

Drink suggested: Pineapple Jalapeño margarita

Dish suggested: Quesabirria, shrimp enchilada

2. Pine State Biscuits

Breakfast galore! If you haven’t tried this restaurant, you absolutely need to. This place serves all different types of biscuit sandwiches, from breakfast to dinner. If you love biscuits and gravy, you’ll want to check out the Money Ball. It includes biscuits and gravy with an egg. Another popular item is the Reggie Deluxe. It includes a biscuit sandwich with egg, cheese, bacon sausage gravy and friend chicken. I know, I know, this sounds heavy. I suggest going for a hike before and treating yourself to a tasty meal after. Across the street, there’s also a local coffee shop you can grab a latte while waiting for your table.

Drink suggested: Bloody Mary

Dish suggested: Money Ball

3. Revision Brewing Company

Do you love a good IPA? This is the place for you. I prefer a sour, however they do carry stouts, my second choice in beer selection. Coming from the Bay Area, we have tons of breweries to check out, so finding Revision was a hidden gem. Inside are lots of tables spread out and fun artwork painted on the wall, a perfect "Instagram" photo opportunity. The staff is friendly, and there is a wide variety of different IPAs.

Another notable brewery is The Depot, which serves food (Revision does not; just snacks).

4. Outlets at Legends

Looking for a shopping center that serves all of your needs? I found that Outlets at Legends in Sparks might be your best bet. It seems as though everything in Reno is about a 15- to 20-minute drive from one place to another no matter where you live. The best part is traffic doesn’t seem to existent, especially coming from the Bay Area. If you can spare the time and make the trip out to Sparks, I promise you won’t regret it. And because the stores are outlets, you’ll get your steps in looking around. The outlets include clothes, sports equipment, house supplies, dining, movies and so much more!

5. Truckee Riverwalk

It's breathtaking, especially at sunset. The Riverwalk is located downtown along the Truckee River. I have a 100-pound husky who needs lots of exercise, which means finding hikes and walks to take him on. You can dress casual or in workout attire. The walk isn’t strenuous, so it's the perfect stroll.

6. Boreal Mountain

I realize this isn't in Reno, but if you're new to Reno and you're looking for a new winter hobby like skiing and snowboarding, this is the perfect place to learn. It's roughly a 40-minute drive from the Biggest Little City, so not too far. There are places closer, but I found that Boreal has lots of slopes that aren't at a steep incline making those who are terrified to ski (like myself) feel at ease. What I love about this place is it's affordable compared to different resorts. And the best part? You can ski and snowboard at night! While other resorts close at 4 p.m., Boreal closes at 8 p.m.. Check out the sunset views below! If you aren't a beginner like me, there's lots of jumps and multiple slopes to go down.

7. Homegrown Gastropub

Here is another brunch option that is on the lighter side compared to Pine State Biscuits, which I mentioned earlier. Inside is swanky and cozy, so if you have a larger party be sure to call ahead to make sure they can accommodate your group. I've been there twice since moving into town to give you an idea of how much I like it. They have a full bar that can accommodate any drink choice and boast a good variety of breakfast and lunch dishes. The first time I tried huevos rancheros, and the second time I had deep-fried French toast. Both were a delight.

Notable mentions of places I've tried that also are worth going to: Midtown Eats, Chickadee Ridge Hike, Pinon


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