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Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?

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Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
January 18, 2011 09:11AM
My girlfriend is a finalist/winner at the Yosemite Renaissance and I haven't actually eaten at the Ahwahnee since I was maybe 12 or 13, but I thought I'd treat her, her sister and her sis's b/f to the full-on, no-holds-barred, exit-in-a-wheelbarrow brunch in celebration after the big opening this year.

I'm not really worried about the cost, but rather does how it look on paper (superb, IOW) match up in reality to what they deliver?

Any opinions would be appreciated.

Thanks!

T3
Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
January 18, 2011 09:20AM
I had their Sunday brunch about 5 years ago, and I don't know, it wasn't spectacular. Just about as good as most Sunday brunches I've had elsewhere.
Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
January 18, 2011 09:29AM
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hotrod4x5
I had their Sunday brunch about 5 years ago, and I don't know, it wasn't spectacular. Just about as good as most Sunday brunches I've had elsewhere.

Thanks. The only real problem, of course, is that there really aren't any other options for a higher-end brunch other than the Ahwahnee or leaving the park and going....where?

There's nothing too spectacular in Merced (believe me, our family ranch is there. I've looked), Mariposa, Fish Camp, etc...
avatar Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
January 18, 2011 09:49AM
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tanngrisnir3
The only real problem, of course, is that there really aren't any other options for a higher-end brunch other than the Ahwahnee or leaving the park and going....where?


Perhaps the Wawona?
Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
January 18, 2011 10:14AM
We had the brunch at the Wawona for Easter about 7 years ago, it actually was pretty good. Of course, it was a holiday and therefore probably they went all out, compared to a regular day.
Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
January 18, 2011 02:27PM
Never had brunch at the Ahwahnee but my wife and I generally have dinner there about once a year. We used to like it VERY much and maybe it was just an off-night but last time we were there (May, 2010), the service was much poorer than we were used to (not substandard but substandard for a place like that) and the food, while quite good, wasn't up to their usual standards.

As for the Wawona, I've always found the food wonderful there. The staff is consistently friendly and the prices, while not cheap, are significantly lower than the Ahwahnee (and the food is as good if not better). The Wawona also has the added benefit of Tom Bopp! If you're not familiar with Tom, he's been playing piano in the Wawona lounge since the 80's. He's a walking encyclopedia of early 20th century popular song, a terrific pianist, a more-than-adequate singer and a generally very entertaining guy. He's also extremely knowledgeable about Yosemite history (especially in the Wawona area). This won't be an option for Sunday brunch but whenever we go to the Wawona for dinner, we eat extra early so we can catch as much of Tom's act as we can.

--David
avatar Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
January 18, 2011 11:10AM
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tanngrisnir3
Quote
hotrod4x5
I had their Sunday brunch about 5 years ago, and I don't know, it wasn't spectacular. Just about as good as most Sunday brunches I've had elsewhere.

Thanks. The only real problem, of course, is that there really aren't any other options for a higher-end brunch other than the Ahwahnee or leaving the park and going....where?

There's nothing too spectacular in Merced (believe me, our family ranch is there. I've looked), Mariposa, Fish Camp, etc...

Erna's Elderberry House in Oakhurst:

http://www.elderberryhouse.com/eehBrunch.html
http://www.forbestravelguide.com/ernas-elderberry-house-oakhurst-ca-restaurant.htm
http://www.yelp.com/biz/ernas-elderberry-house-oakhurst

Mobil Travel Guide 4-star rated in a rather unusual location for a fancy restaurant. The rest of Oakhurst doesn't exactly match up. Other options in town include McDonalds and Round Table Pizza. There are some opinions that it's the best restaurant in the Central Valley, athough that may depend on whether or not Oakhurst is in the Central Valley.
Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
January 18, 2011 12:50PM
Quote
y_p_w
Quote
tanngrisnir3
Quote
hotrod4x5
I had their Sunday brunch about 5 years ago, and I don't know, it wasn't spectacular. Just about as good as most Sunday brunches I've had elsewhere.

Thanks. The only real problem, of course, is that there really aren't any other options for a higher-end brunch other than the Ahwahnee or leaving the park and going....where?

There's nothing too spectacular in Merced (believe me, our family ranch is there. I've looked), Mariposa, Fish Camp, etc...

Erna's Elderberry House in Oakhurst:

http://www.elderberryhouse.com/eehBrunch.html
http://www.forbestravelguide.com/ernas-elderberry-house-oakhurst-ca-restaurant.htm
http://www.yelp.com/biz/ernas-elderberry-house-oakhurst

Mobil Travel Guide 4-star rated in a rather unusual location for a fancy restaurant. The rest of Oakhurst doesn't exactly match up. Other options in town include McDonalds and Round Table Pizza. There are some opinions that it's the best restaurant in the Central Valley, athough that may depend on whether or not Oakhurst is in the Central Valley.

Thanks, I hadn't thought of that!

I go through Oakhurst quite a bit, coming from Los Angeles, but it's just a place to get gas. I'll check into that.
avatar Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
January 18, 2011 01:27PM
Quote
tanngrisnir3
Quote
y_p_w
Quote
tanngrisnir3
Quote
hotrod4x5
I had their Sunday brunch about 5 years ago, and I don't know, it wasn't spectacular. Just about as good as most Sunday brunches I've had elsewhere.

Thanks. The only real problem, of course, is that there really aren't any other options for a higher-end brunch other than the Ahwahnee or leaving the park and going....where?

There's nothing too spectacular in Merced (believe me, our family ranch is there. I've looked), Mariposa, Fish Camp, etc...

Erna's Elderberry House in Oakhurst:

http://www.elderberryhouse.com/eehBrunch.html
http://www.forbestravelguide.com/ernas-elderberry-house-oakhurst-ca-restaurant.htm
http://www.yelp.com/biz/ernas-elderberry-house-oakhurst

Mobil Travel Guide 4-star rated in a rather unusual location for a fancy restaurant. The rest of Oakhurst doesn't exactly match up. Other options in town include McDonalds and Round Table Pizza. There are some opinions that it's the best restaurant in the Central Valley, athough that may depend on whether or not Oakhurst is in the Central Valley.

Thanks, I hadn't thought of that!

I go through Oakhurst quite a bit, coming from Los Angeles, but it's just a place to get gas. I'll check into that.

No problem. I haven't eaten there myself, but the place actually has a reputation as one of the best restaurants in California - even rivaling some of the best restaurants in the Bay Area and the LA area.

Supposedly the owner operated a place closer to Yosemite and decided on this location because of the proximity to Yosemite. It does seem a little bit out of place for Oakhurst. I've read some negative comments in some reviews that one can see the other stuff in town out the window, including the shopping centers and various fast food joints in town. I usually head to Oakhurst to stop for gas and maybe a cheap meal. There's also the full service supermarkets and drug stores in town. I just think of it as a small and nondescript foothill community.

I guess it's in as prime a location as you could get in Oakhurst. It's right next to the community medical center and across Highway 41 from America's Best Value Inn.

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=48688+Victoria+Lane+Oakhurst,+CA+93644&sll=37.0625,-95.677068&sspn=33.847644,59.326172&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=48688+Victoria+Ln,+Oakhurst,+Madera,+California+93644&ll=37.327393,-119.659342&spn=0.004146,0.007242&t=h&z=17
avatar Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
January 18, 2011 01:36PM
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y_p_w
across Highway 41 from America's Best Value Inn.

Is that the one with the paint color chosen by a blind person?
avatar Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
January 18, 2011 02:03PM
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eeek
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y_p_w
across Highway 41 from America's Best Value Inn.

Is that the one with the paint color chosen by a blind person?

At least color blind. I guess pink salmon is my best description. Still - we managed to book it for two nights around peak water flow season in 2009 using Priceline's "Name Your Own Price" system. The price was really good, but of course we couldn't cancel. I had an emergency at work and called in to see what would happen if we missed the first night, and was told that we could check in for the second night. Turns out we couldn't even make it for that. We did go camping in Yosemite later that year, but the water flow just wasn't the same as mid-spring.



http://www.americasbestvalueinn.com/bestv.cfm?idp=906
avatar Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
January 18, 2011 02:08PM
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y_p_w
At least color blind. I guess pink salmon is my best description.

That's the one.
avatar Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
January 19, 2011 06:07PM
i went about 3 years ago with my wife, the food was i'd say (on a scale of 1-10), a 6-7 at best... the only thing REALLY nice about it, was that we were sooooo lucky to have one of the best tables in the whole place (a window facing outside). the service was pretty good, the atmosphere was great if you've never been there. i think everyone ought to go once in their life just to say you did. it isn't over the top expensive.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 01/19/2011 06:08PM by forrestranger.
avatar Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
January 19, 2011 07:23PM
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forrestranger
i went about 3 years ago with my wife, the food was i'd say (on a scale of 1-10), a 6-7 at best... the only thing REALLY nice about it, was that we were sooooo lucky to have one of the best tables in the whole place (a window facing outside). the service was pretty good, the atmosphere was great if you've never been there. i think everyone ought to go once in their life just to say you did. it isn't over the top expensive.

I had breakfast there dining solo. I just ordered the basic two egg breakfast with potatoes and toast, plus coffee. It wan't busy and getting a seat next to the window wasn't a problem. I think it was about $13 with tax. Perhaps pricey for a basic breakfast, but the presentation was considerably better than Dennys and then there was the view. It was an above average breakfast at an above average price in a way above average setting. I could get a similar breakfast near home for about $11. The lighting is near perfect for breakfast, and the servers were extremely attentive with absolutely no attitude about ordering less expensive items.

Lunch with my wife at the Ahwahnee Dining Room was considerably more expensive. My credit card would have exploded if it were dinner.
Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
March 26, 2011 11:57PM
We had brunch there recently, pricey but great. All the food was fresh and very local. I recommend going there once again for the memories. Great lunch and spectacular views! The dining room isn't as grand as Grand Canyon's North Rim, but it has its own delights with Native American decor.
Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
March 27, 2011 12:39AM
We have eaten here probably 15-20 times, between brunches, lunches, breakfasts and dinners and have always had excellent food, excellent service, and excellent views. The Sunday brunch is something to do...it is the best brunch I've ever had, but it runs around $50 per person so be prepared for that.
Re: Has anyone recently had brunch at the Ahwahnee?
April 02, 2011 10:32AM
And make sure to make reservations if it is the summer months. The waits can be daunting.
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