New era under way at Moody’s Bistro Bar & Beats
TRUCKEE, Calif. – For a decade, Moody’s mix of music, dining and drinks has been a cornerstone of the identity of downtown Truckee. Now, a new iteration of Moody’s – with an updated interior, expanded menu and new investors – is taking the restaurant into its next decade of operation and sharing its same focus on local food, live entertainment and superb service with a much wider audience.Moody’s closed over the fall to work on the transformation, and re-opened as Moody’s Bistro Bar & Beats in mid January. Some of the changes are subtle, like new wood floors, a movie projector and new lighting. But big-ticket additions to the restaurant include a state-of-the-art brick pizza oven, a renovation of the bar and stage that has opened up the interior of the building, and a new private dining room. The restaurant’s new menu features daily happy hour specials, wine on tap that is served in liter and half-liter carafes, pizzas, calamari, bison burgers – all making the new Moody’s more approachable for a wide variety of patrons.The bar menu and happy hour specials compliment Moody’s continued commitment to quality dinner plates made with local ingredients that the restaurant has been known for since 2002. In fact, the Moody’s remodel made more room for dinner patrons, adding a private dining room with a fireplace on the ground floor of the Truckee Hotel.The Moody’s transformation has been well received by the public, with locals stopping by for an aprs ski beer, burger or pizza, and out-of-town visitors enjoying being able to choose between an appetizer, casual meal or sit-down dinner, said JJ Morgan, who has run Moody’s since it opened in 2002.”The things we wanted to see, we are seeing,” said Morgan. “The pizzas have been flying off the new brick oven, but people still also come to Moody’s for the same Moody’s experience they had before. The new Moody’s has tapped into the best of both worlds.”The new menu was painstaking crafted by Morgan and Executive Chef Guy Frenette, and the new Remco pizza oven, which can cook craft pizzas in as little as 90 seconds, was heavily researched by the Moody’s team.”Guy and I sat down for the entire months of November and December trying to perfect all of the new details of Moody’s Bistro Bar & Beats,” said Morgan. “And we are still brainstorming.”Frenette, Moody’s long-time chef, is joined in the kitchen by Will Burns, who previously worked with Traci des Jardins at the Manzanita restaurant at The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe. The two handcraft the pizza dough each day, bake fresh hamburger buns and continue to buy the best local ingredients from purveyors like Sierra Valley Farm’s Gary Romano, Heidi Wantanabe and Ernie the local fishing fireman. The new bar menu serves up shareable plates like Spicy Octopus Crostone, Ahi Poke, Maple-Glazed Pork Belly, and a variety of pizza, burgers, salads and soups. Menu items start as low as $4. The bar menu is an addition to the full dinner menu that has been the core of Moody’s since it opened.”Moody’s menu was crafted to appeal to everyone from the afternoon snacker to the sit-down diner, all while maintaining Moody’s emphasis on high quality local ingredients and inventive flavors,” said Executive Chef Guy Frenette.All of the changes at Moody’s have been made possible through the support of new investors. Leo and LaNise Burke, original investors at Moody’s, owners of the Truckee Hotel and close friends of JJ Morgan and Mark Estee, have brought in Chris Ryman and Betsy Cole of Booth Creek Ski Holdings to help with the overall project.And the changes are not over at Moody’s. The restaurant will launch sidewalk seating in the summer, and a new entryway to the private dining area and restaurant in the future.But much of what has made Moody’s what it is today, will continue to stay the same. Regular live music acts will still grace the stage, and the restaurant’s commitment to the community through programs such as Moody’s Jazz Artists in Residence, which brings in jazz virtuosos to teach young Truckee musicians, will continue.”It’s the beginning of a new era for Moody’s,” said Morgan. “We are excited to re-open a new Moody’s that retains our patron’s favorite portions of the restaurant, but re-invents the rest for its next decade of operation.”Moody’s Bistro, Bar & Beats is located at 10007 Bridge Street in Truckee. Call 530-587-8688, or visit http://www.moodysbistro.com, for information.