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Basque Restaurants

The Basques are known for their amazing food. See our list of restaurants that serve Basque cuisine in the United States.

Click each link to see a list of the restaurants in different regions of the U.S.

Basque restaurants in Los Angeles area – Southern California

Basque restaurants in San Francisco Bay Area – Northern California

Basque restaurants in Idaho

Basque restaurants in Nevada

Basque restaurants in Oregon and Washington

Basque Restaurants in New York and East Coast

The traditional family-style restaurants that dominated the American West’s Basque restaurant scene for many years developed from Basque boardinghouses, which mostly housed single young men who had immigrated from the Basque region of Spain and France. The food for the boarders was served on big plates at long tables, and as former boarders and friends joined the dinner table on weekends, the tradition turned into popular restaurants.

If you wanted to find the location of the first Basque restaurants in the U.S., you simply had to find the train station in the towns where Basques immigrated. That’s because they originated from the boardinghouses or “hotels” that catered to the young Basque men who came to the American West to herd sheep. And since these men did not speak English, the best location was right next to the train stations where they got off after traveling west from New York. In California, the Basque boardinghouses were located in Fresno, Bakersfield, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Los Banos, Stockton and Susanville among others. In Idaho they were in Boise, Shoshone, Mountain Home and Gooding. In Nevada, the boardinghouses were in Elko, Reno, Winnemucca, Gardnerville, Battle Mountain and Ely.

These hotels and restaurants thrived as immigration from the Basque Country continued heavily from the 1880s through the early 1960s. But as immigration from the Basque Country ceased, and the immigrants married and moved out, the boardinghouses slowly went out of business as did their restaurants.

Only a few of the old family-style restaurants that were formerly hotels remain. They include Centro Basco, in Chino, Calif., Shepherd’s Inn in Fresno, Calif., Woolgrowers, Noriega’s and Pyrenees in Bakersfield,Calif., Woolgrowers in Los Banos, Calif., the Martin Hotel in Winnemucca, Nev., the Star Hotel in Elko, Nevada and the Santa Fe in Reno, Nev.

The Noriega Hotel, seen here in early Bakersfield, is located across the street from the train depot.

Click here to read how the contemporary Basque restaurant scene has changed from the boardinghouse days

Basque News.
Basque Restaurants