Tahoe restaurant owner lauded | SierraSun.com

Tahoe restaurant owner lauded

Tom Turner, the owner of Gar Wood Grill & Pier and Riva Grill, traded the sparkle of Lake Tahoe for the legislative tinsel of the state capital when he received an award there last week for being small business of the year.The honor was bestowed on Turner by Assemblyman Ted Gaines, R-Roseville, for Turners entrepreneurial spirit, success and community contributions to the 4th District. The sprawling district spans Sierra, El Dorado, Alpine, Placer and Sacramento counties in a state where 3.5 million small businesses operate.This is quite an honor, Turner said in a conference call from Sacramento with Gaines. Turner was in town that week for a conference hosted by the California Restaurant Association conference of which he served on the board.After vacationing at the lake as a child, the businessman arrived in Tahoe in 1980 and managed Fresh Ketch then Sunnyside. He recalled jumping at the opportunity to buy Gar Woods when it went up for sale.The Agate Bay resident intends to open a restaurant in Kings Beach called Caliente, meaning hot in Spanish. To quench the thirsts of area diners, hes pledged to introduce a drink that may rival the Wet Woody, the rum-based drink synonymous with the Tahoe lifestyle.I can tell you it wont have rum, he said.

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