HIDDEN GEMS, WYOMING’S BEST EATS: At the Foot of Grand Targhee’s Slopes, Delicious Awaits

Hearty, casual fare and great drinks make the Trap Bar & Grill an ideal escape from the cold

“Tater” — the Trap Bar & Grill’s semi-official mascot — greets diners as they enter the eatery in the heart of Grand Targhee Resort in Alta. (Wyoming Truth photo by Melissa Thomasma)

By Melissa Thomasma

Special to the Wyoming Truth

Want to know a little-known fact about the best après-ski spot in Wyoming? You don’t have to ski before heading in. You’re welcome to slide into a table at the Trap Bar & Grill at Grand Targhee Resort in Alta anytime you like. 

Nestled into the heart of the Grand Targhee Resort, the Trap Bar & Grill sits at the top of a narrow staircase, whose walls are lined with posters boasting star-studded musical lineups from previous seasons’ Targhee Bluegrass and Rock Festivals. This is the second iteration of the Trap Bar & Grill; it opened its doors in 1991 after the first Trap and the original ski lodge burned down in March 1990.

The Trap Bar’s “Best Bloody Mary” lives up to its name: punchy, savory, generously garnished and ever-so-sippable. (Wyoming Truth photo by Melissa Thomasma)

Upon entry, you’ll be greeted by Tater, a looming taxidermied elk with massive antlers. The whole bar is decked in ski-themed decor, such as mountain maps, antique skis and vintage-style posters for the resort. If you’re a skier, the Trap Bar & Grill offers easy ski in/ski out access on the back deck, tucked right into the slope.

The day my friend and I visited for lunch, we couldn’t decide between nachos and our go-to favorite of perfectly spicy and crispy chicken wings. So we opted for the lighter Teton version of the nachos ($17) and half a dozen wings ($10). Both dishes were excellent — the nachos packing a punch of savory beans and cheese, fresh tomatoes, spicy pickled jalapenos and smooth sour cream. Similarly, the wings were crisp and juicy — with just the right amount of heat, especially when dipped in bleu cheese dressing.

Popular menu items include nachos and burgers, according to marketing manager Jordan Wilsted.  The former comes in two styles: the towering Teton, served on house-made corn tortilla chips, and the Wydaho, featuring a mountain of classic nacho toppings heaped onto a generous pile of waffle fries ($24). Wild Game Chili ($12), Mahi Fish Tacos ($18) and House Falafel ($17) are other customer favorites.

As the go-to après-ski spot spot at Grand Targhee, the menu’s sharable items tend to be popular.  The mountain of nachos on house-made chips is delectable, and the wings are always just right. (Wyoming Truth photo by Melissa Thomasma)

The Trap Bar & Grill also offers a tempting lineup of beer on tap:  locally crafted Grand Teton Brewing’s Deep Powder Pale Ale and Dreamcatcher IPA, Snake River Brewing’s Snake River Lager and Pako’s IPA, and Wildlife Brewing’s Mighty Bison Ale ($8 for a pint). For those who prefer handcrafted cocktails, the highlights include “The Best Bloody Mary” ($12), a Spicy Margarita ($12) or Sloshies (think Slurpee with a serious spike) in a rotating daily flavor ($11). 

I can attest: the Bloody Mary is exceptional, and the garnish alone demands attention. My friend opted for the Sloshie of the Day—huckleberry lemonade featuring huckleberry-infused vodka. 

There also is a tantalizing list of hot cocktails: the Targhee Hot Toddy, the Steep ‘N Deep featuring Irish cream and coffee, and the Skiers Edge with brandy, Irish cream and whipped cream ($10). 

At the center of the Trap is a small stage, which hosts live music most weekends from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. during the ski season, as well as occasional late-night parties. Perhaps that’s what makes this unassuming eatery so special: it’s a space where locals and visitors gather to enjoy mountain culture and unassuming great food.  

Trap Bar & Grill, 3300 Ski Hill Road, Alta, Wyoming; (307) 353-2300. Open daily, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. (21+ only before 6 p.m.)

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