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The Willo Steakhouse and Saloon

Vintage cars cruise to the Willo – michael byrne

ADA Accessibility Notes

ADA compliant.

An authentic California roadhouse located on Historic Hwy 49 between Nevada City and the South Fork of the Yuba River. The restaurant was established in 1969. The bar, or saloon, dates back to 1946 and has a lot of history. The Willo is a popular stopping point for visitors spending the day at the Yuba River, hiking the nearby trails or exploring the Sierra Buttes, dropping by to enjoy a libation, a hearty meal and meet some of the local folks.

The restaurant is locally owned and has been voted Best Steakhouse in Nevada County for past 13 years. Also named Favorite Roadhouse by Sacramento Magazine. Specialties include choice-aged hand cut New York steak, St. Louis ribs, chicken, fish and chops. Diners can watch the expert grill masters cook your steak over the front room grill or you can cook the steak yourself.- over 1 million steaks cooked on our grill ! A Nevada county institution.,

Eco-Friendly Notes

The restaurant recycles all materials, and uses energy efficient hvac and lighting systems, and non-toxic cleaning agents. It even has an energy saving foam insulated roof.

Locally or Family Owned Business Notes

The Willo is owned by Michael Byrne and his long-time significant other Nancy Wilson. Both Mike and Nancy were born and grew up in Northern California . Mike graduated from El Cerrito High and Cal -Berkeley. Nancy graduated from Albany High and San Diego State. They met in Berkeley in 1992 and moved to the Grass Valley-Nevada City area in 1996. They purchased the Willo in 2002 and together with Nancy's brother, Pete operate the restaurant. Former owner (26 years) Ken Hiebert remains on the staff. Many of our 19 employees have been at the Willo for more than 10 years and some close to 30 years. Mike has 4 children and 9 grandchildren that come to visit and Nancy has nieces and nephews that often visit. Mike and Nancy love to travel when they can but always find time to hike down to the Bear or Yuba rivers for a swim or take Loba, our Belgian Shepard, for a walk along the NID ditches. Incidentally, many folks enjoy morning or evening walks along the pathways that follow the Nevada Irrigation District water canals- a little known feature of the area. Much of the canal system dates back to the Gold Rush days. Nancy's brother Pete enjoys hiking the many alpine lakes in the Sierra Buttes and is an avid Kayaker having circumnavigated Lake Tahoe (it took him a week).

Pet Friendly Notes

Dogs are always greeted with pleasure but unfortunately they are restricted due to health code laws. We're always glad to provide fresh drinking water outside the bar. Its got a covered porch and is nice and cool during the summer.


Dinner house 5:00 - 9:00pm daily. Bar opens at 1:00pm.

Seasons Open



Price Style for this Establishment


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