Happy Hour

A weekly snapshot of Happy Hours around the region…

Everyday, open-7 p.m., $1.75 highballs, $2.50 house chardonnay, $2.00 drafts, $1.00 off everything else.
310 Cass St., Traverse City

Sunday-Thursday, 3-6 p.m., $1 off all drinks.
422 North 5th St., Roscommon

Lulu's Bistro
Thursdays, 5-9 p.m., $3 wells, $2 off drafts, select $5 wines.
213 N. Bridge St., Bellaire

Boyne River Inn
Everyday, 3-6 p.m., 1/4 off drinks.
229 Water St., Boyne City
Rendezvous Lounge, Odawa Casino
Thursday & Friday, $2.25 domestic drafts, $3.25 well drinks, $3.25 house wine.
1760 Lears Rd., Petoskey

Choice Bits!

Round-the-region snapshots of the dining scene. 

RUTHIE'S CHICKEN & DAIRY TWIST: Roasted chicken and ice cream, malts and shakes.
201 N. Bridge Ln., Bellaire. 213­-533­-8538.

Practically an Up North institution, the place to find out the latest fishing or snowmobile news from the locals and visitors who gather for their hearty breakfasts, steaks, burgers, soup & salad bar, & homemade desserts.
10921 Main St., Honor. 231­ 352­6585.

When you've worked up an appetite from all the bowling and karaoke that Boyne City Lanes has to offer, you'll find a selection of hearty fare to choose from, including homemade soups & desserts. Cocktails are served at the Lanes,with live entertainment and glow ­bowling nights.
1199 West Boyne Road, 231-­582­-6353.

Open 7 days a week for lunch & dinner. Full Chinese menu, as well as Hunan & Szechuan entrees.  Daily specials, special combination plates,  a lunch & dinner All You Can Eat Buffet. 
616 S. Mitchell St., Cadillac, 231­-876­-8888.

Take a trip back to the '50s where chili dogs & frosted mugs of root beer are still served up by carhops at this All ­American institution. Elvis has been known to make an appearance during their annual summer “A&W Cruise Night” in August, as do cars from the 50’s and 60’s that we remember well.
At the bottom of the hill, 21 Lake St., Frankfort,  231-­352-­9021.

From Antler Ale to Wolverine Wheat, Big Buck specializes in microbrewed beers. Offering the usual beef and buffalo burgers, steaks, and ribs, plus more unusual fare, like their portabella sandwich with red onion marmalade and provolone cheese.
550 S. Wisconsin Avenue, Gaylord, 989­-732-­5781.

A refined atmosphere, subdued lighting, and an appetizing selection of epicurean treats awaits the diner at this Harbor Springs corner landmark. Menu selections range from their smoked whitefish ravioli appetizer to their Atlantic salmon, baked polenta and eggplant, tomato basil fettuccine, or filet mignon ­ and their brunches include one of the best versions of Eggs Benedict around.
101 State Street, downtown across from Bar Harbor, 231­-526-­1904.

Pool tables, a full bar, friendly service and a varied menu make the Village Inn popular with families and locals.  Dinners include Lamb Skewers, Blue Corn Enchiladas, Charbroiled Whitefish, Lasagna and Ribeye.  Also burgers, sandwiches, salads, appetizers and pizza.  Lunch and Dinner.
Just north of the blinking light 116601 Lacorre Ave. on M­22,  Empire. 231-326­-5101.

One of Petoskey's first restaurants, Jesperson's is famous for homemade pies and fresh turkey. Breakfast and lunch.
312 Howard, Petoskey, 231­-347­-3601.
Located in Building 50, grilled panini's, soups, wraps, baked goods, specialty coffees and teas.
1200 W. 11th St., Traverse City, 231-­947­-7740.

Home · Articles · News · Dining · Tastemakers: Cabbage Shed Ritz...
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Tastemakers: Cabbage Shed Ritz Crusted Walleye/ Lagavulin

Rick Coates - January 24th, 2011
Cabbage Shed Ritz Crusted Walleye
The old adage “don’t judge a book by the cover” definitely is the case when you arrive to The Cabbage Shed in Elberta for the first time. Built in 1867, this building is a popular eating and entertainment destination in the harbor area between Elberta and Frankfort and definitely has character. At first glance, one might not expect to find exceptional food accented by a great wine list, a line-up of top shelf single malt scotch and a solid collection of craftbrewed beers.
Originally the general merchandise store and post office in town, it eventually became the farmer’s cooperative and the Benzie County Fruit Exchange before becoming a big cabbage shed in the 1930s. Current owner Jim Clapp acquired the building in 1972, and in 1985 he opened The Cabbage Shed, or simply The Shed as the regulars call it.
During a recent stop in the middle of a snowstorm, I found the place full of diners. There is not much to do in Elberta during the winter months and the fact that The Shed stays open at all is a tribute to their reputation of great food and entertainment. Over my 25 years of dining at The Shed, I have yet to have a bad meal and I was not let down on this particular evening.
My server suggested that I try the Ritz Crusted Walleye. Now, for whatever reason walleye does not get the respect on menus that salmon, whitefish or trout get -- or for that matter perch. But properly prepared, this sought-after sports fish is as good as any fish the Great Lakes has to offer.
The Ritz crusted walleye was sautéed to perfection. All four of my dining guests also ordered it for their first time ever eating walleye and it was the rave at our table. The garlic smashed redskins and sautéed vegetables were nice accents to the meal. I paired my dinner with The Shed I.P.A. brewed for them by the Michigan Brewing Company and this worked well, but a couple of Michigan white wines on the list would have also fit the pairing.
After dinner we enjoyed the homemade desserts, in particular the Midnight Delight, a homemade chocolate brownie served warm with scoop of vanilla ice cream and a generous drizzling of their homemade Kahlua hot fudge sauce.
It should be noted that The Cabbage Shed took home the honors of winning the first ever Green Plate Challenge, sponsored by Wild Leek Productions, The Cabbage Shed won by popular vote having scored highest in all categories: taste, presentation and originality. Each Green Plate had to be 90% by weight, locally grown or produced food found no farther than 100 miles from where it would be served. The Green Plate had to be a regular menu item that is regularly available.
The Cabbage Shed is worth the drive anytime of the year. Check their website for events and special seasonal hours www.cabbageshed.com or call them at 231-352-9843.
--Rick Coates


While sitting at the bar at The Cabbage Shed last week waiting for my dining guests to arrive, I noticed a pretty impressive collection of single malt Scotch whisky sitting along the top shelf of the back bar. In many ways it was like looking at a hall of fame line-up; names such as Macallan, Bowmore, Dalwhinnie, Talisker, Cragganmore, Glenkinchie and Lagavulin. These are some of the players that helped put single malt Scotch on the map.
But this was a blustery, snowy below zero wind chill factor night and only one Scotch on that shelf was a remedy for the conditions at hand: Lagavulin Single Islay Malt Whiskey aged for 16 years. As the bartender set the snifter (a generous pour I might add) down in front of me a warming sensation immediately came over me as the intense full-bodied peat-smoke aroma escaped from the glass. The secret to enjoying very peaty and smokey Scotch is to nose it several times. Try this at least a dozen times before taking that first sip; the first few noses gets you accumulated with that overpowering peat-smoke aroma and by the third and fourth nosing you will find the more subtle nuances of the Scotch. In the case of Lagavulin, hints of nuttiness and vanilla will permeate.
This process goes a long way in fully enjoying such a full flavored and powerfully fragrant single malt as Lagavulin. As this Scotch hits the palate a slight hint of sweetness helps to balance the robust complexity of a smokey, dry wood, charcoal and peat flavors that swirl about. If you are new to the world of single malt Scotch, Lagavulin is not a place to start, but rather a drink to work your way towards.
Lagavulin, like most single malt Scotches, is best enjoyed “neat.” Here is a good way to get started: use a snifter (brandy style glass) which helps to trap aromas in the glass. Swirl to aerate and nose a half dozen times and take small sips. Do not drink like a shot or take big gulps; single malts are best enjoyed in small sips swirled about on the tongue like wine. For some, cutting with water works. Most master distillers taste their Scotch by cutting with water, but never by more than 20%.
Lagavulin is available at most fine stores that specializes in high-end spirits. It retails around $75 a bottle and around $10 a glass in restaurants. --Rick Coates
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