Happy Hour

A weekly snapshot of Happy Hours around the region…


FireFly
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

Fred's
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.

MONEY'S PLATTE RIVER INN:
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.

BC LANES FAMILY ENTERTAIMENT CENTER:
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.

CHINA ONE:
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.

A&W:
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.

BIG BUCK BREWERY & STEAKHOUSE:
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.

THE NEW YORK RESTAURANT:
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.

EMPIRE VILLAGE INN: 
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.

JESPERSON'S:
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.
 
CUPPA JOE:
Located in Building 50, grilled panini's, soups, wraps, baked goods, specialty coffees and teas.
1200 W. 11th St., Traverse City, 231-­947­-7740.

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Dining

 
Monday, December 27, 2010

Tastemakers: Michigan Shrimp/ Blue Peligan Bubbly

Dining Rick Coates Michigan Shrimp
When PBS Chef (Fork In The Road) Eric Villegas told me about Michigan Shrimp at the Father Fred Foundation Cigar Dinner six years ago, I was waiting for the punch line. There wasn’t one, Villegas was serious as he told me about Okemos-based Russ Allen and his shrimp farm.
Allen launched his Shrimp Farm Market (Seafood Systems, Inc.) in 1994. After a 30-plus year career consulting for shrimp farms around the world, he had the vision of creating an industry here in Michigan.
Aquaculture, or aquafarming, is on the rise around the world and those who subscribe to this believe that ultimately aquaculture will be the way the world is fed in the future. According to Corinna Borden, an Ann Arbor based author and writer who also manages the Westside Farmers Market (where Allen sells his shrimp and works at the family
 
Monday, December 20, 2010

Dining with Gusto

Dining Al Parker Dining with Gusto! in Suttons Bay
By Al Parker
Just for the record, the colorful Italian eatery in Suttons Bay is pronounced “Goose-tow,” not “Gus-tow.”
“I don’t care how they say it, as long as they come in,” laughs Sam Hybels, owner of Gusto! on M-22 just a couple of doors north of Suttons Bay’s south blinker light.
In a prior life, the building housed Hattie’s, operated by noted restaurateur Jim Milliman. In 2003, Milliman decided to sell Hattie’s and Hybels, who had worked at the eatery, saw an opportunity. He bought Hattie’s, changed the menu and reintroduced the restaurant as Samuel’s.
About 18 months ago he transformed Samuel’s into Gusto!
“It’s been a good direction for us to go,” says Hybels, who comes from a family of self-proclaimed foodies and has been a chef for 20 years. “I really modeled Gusto! after a couple of Italian restaurants in Kalamazoo where we went when I was growing up.”
Hybels devotion to authentic Italian cuisine goes back many years and was sparked when he spent two weeks visiting Sicily. “I had been a corporate chef for 10 years and was burned out,” he recalls. “The Italian people are food people. They emphasize freshness and quality. That’s the way I do it.”
 
Monday, December 20, 2010

Tastemakers: Grandma‘s Perogies/ Tyskie Gronie

Dining Rick Coates Grandma’s Perogies
Petoskey’s Marcie Newton had built quite a reputation for herself as the “Perogie Queen of Ohio.” Residing just outside of Cleveland, she began making this traditional Polish style dumpling (pastry) for coworkers and patrons at the tavern where she was a popular bartender. Her perogies became so popular that before she knew it she was getting orders for hundreds each week. With a business partner she launched Grandma’s Perogies and started producing over 100 dozen orders a day to keep up with demand.
Newton returned to Petoskey 10 years ago to care for her mother and left behind her successful perogie operation to become the manager of the Goodwill Inn retail store. As her mother needed more care, Newton quit her job, but needing an income, she re-launched Grandma’s Perogies in Petoskey. Leasing a commercial kitchen, Newton is now reclaiming her reputation as the Perogie Queen, but this time in her hometown.
 
Monday, December 13, 2010

Bay View Grille

Dining Danielle Horvath Bay View Grille offers harborside dining in Frankfort
By Danielle Horvath
When Dale Evans and Jill Weide were looking for a place to retire and play golf, they considered warmer climes like Virginia, North Carolina, Arizona, and even checked out Costa Rica, before settling for the small town ambience of Frankfort.
“We walked around the town in December, with the snow coming down, and it was so peaceful and beautiful. We decided this was where we wanted to be,” Dale said. They also changed their minds about playing golf and decided to purchase a restaurant with a great view of Betsie Bay. “The view was there, all we had to do was add the good food and affordable price.”
 
Monday, December 13, 2010

Tastemakers: Hudsonville Ice Cream Lake Affection/ Great Lakes Brewing Company Christmas Ale

Dining Rick Coates Hudsonville Ice Cream Lake Affection
Hudsonville Creamery & Ice Cream (located between Grand Rapids and Holland) started in 1895 as a farmers’ cooperative in Hudsonville, MI when a group of area farmers joined together to create a better way to sell their dairy products.
Today the Hudsonville Creamery & Ice Cream Company is synonymous with great ice cream and is one of the top producers in the Midwest of this frozen treat. In 2010 they launched three new Limited Edition flavors (Blueberry Cobbler and Country Apple Pie) to this popular series with the latest addition released last week Lake Affection, made with Lake Michigan Blue mint ice cream swirled with snow vanilla ice cream.
“As Michigan residents, we wanted to poke a little good-natured fun at how much we all tolerate the winter weather – and just how changeable living on the shores of Lake Michigan can be,” said Anne Sukup, spokesperson for Hudsonville Ice Cream. “So we created Lake Affection, our homage to an otherwise dreaded weather phenomenon of lake effect snow.”
 
Monday, December 6, 2010

Tastemakers: Cafe Sante Steak Diane (Holiday Menu)/ Basil Hayden 12/6/2010

Dining Rick Coates Cafe Sante Steak Diane (Holiday Menu)
If you were looking for signs of economic resurgence, look to downtown Boyne City and in particular the new One Water Street building that is home to Cafe Sante. Part of the successful portfolio of restaurants owned and operated by Magnum Hospitality (Red Mesa, Pearls), Cafe Sante opened late last spring (opening a new place during the Great Recession -- what were they thinking?) and has been the talk of the Northern Michigan culinary scene since. I stopped recently on Wednesday night during the middle of deer season at 8 pm and it was a 30 minute wait, but after the dining experience my 13-year-old son and I enjoyed, it was worth the wait.
Cafe Sante features classic European fare with an impressive 16 beers on tap (unique English, Belgium and local micros) along with a something for everyone bottle selection. Add in the top shelf spirits (see Bottoms Up) and a wine list crafted by sommelier Ed Brehm, along with the ambiance and service and Cafe Sante definitely falls into the destination dining category (sorry, Boyne City, this place is too good for you to have it all to yourself).
 
Monday, December 6, 2010

Union Cantina

Dining Al Parker Union Cantina offers South of the Border style
By Al Parker
You might say restaurant entrepreneur Matt Davies has come full circle.
“I started early on (in the restaurant business) at Taco Ed’s in
Findley, Ohio,” says Davies, an Ohio native whose family summered in
Northern Michigan when he was a boy. “I was just a kid.”
 
Monday, November 29, 2010

Tastemakers: Hermann‘s Austrai Christmas Buffett/Samichlaus Bier

Dining Rick Coates Thanksgiving Reflection
According to historical accounts, the first “Thanksgiving Dinner” (as we know it today) in America was 389 years ago when the pilgrims celebrated a feast with Native Americans following their first fall harvest near Plymouth, Massachusetts. But this feast was never repeated and actually, most pilgrims during that era observed a day of thanksgiving by fasting instead of feasting.
There were earlier celebrations going back to 1541 when Spanish explorer Francisco Vasquez de Coronado, led a “thanksgiving” celebration in what would become Texas. In 1789 President George Washington declared November 26, 1789 as a national day of “thanksgiving and prayer.” But the tradition ceased in 1818 and was restored again in 1863 by President Lincoln and has been observed annually ever since. In 1941, President Franklin Roosevelt established the fourth Thursday of November as the official Thanksgiving Day.
 
Monday, November 22, 2010

Tastemakers: Thanksgiving reflections

Dining Rick Coates Thanksgiving Reflection
According to historical accounts, the first “Thanksgiving Dinner” (as we know it today) in America was 389 years ago when the pilgrims celebrated a feast with Native Americans following their first fall harvest near Plymouth, Massachusetts. But this feast was never repeated and actually, most pilgrims during that era observed a day of thanksgiving by fasting instead of feasting.
There were earlier celebrations going back to 1541 when Spanish explorer Francisco Vasquez de Coronado, led a “thanksgiving” celebration in what would become Texas. In 1789 President George Washington declared November 26, 1789 as a national day of “thanksgiving and prayer.” But the tradition ceased in 1818 and was restored again in 1863 by President Lincoln and has been observed annually ever since. In 1941, President Franklin Roosevelt established the fourth Thursday of November as the official Thanksgiving Day.
 
Monday, November 15, 2010

Tastemakers: Art‘s Tavern smelt basket/ Grand Rapids International Wine & Food Show

Dining Rick Coates Art’s Tavern Smelt Basket
Art’s Tavern in Glen Arbor (corner of Lake Street and M22) has been a longtime fixture on the Leelanau Peninsula. Opening prior to Prohibition as the Blue Goose Saloon, it became known as Art’s in 1934. In 1986 Tim Barr took over the management reins and in 2000 became the owner. Most people assume he is Art. In many ways Tim’s presence and personality are as important to Art’s as the ambiance, food and drink.
Art’s was among the first to get behind the Michigan craftbrew movement by adding Bell’s Beer in 1986 and has continued a long tradition of offering assorted Michigan craftbrews on tap and by the bottle. Art’s menu is rooted in traditional pub-fare. While they have several specialties, the tater tots are always a favorite.
 
Monday, November 15, 2010

Yooper recipes

Dining Harley L. Sachs Yooper Recipes: A taste for porcupine, beaver & rotten pheasant
By Harley Sachs
We just went through our book shelves and gave a box of cook books to Goodwill that we had acquired but never used. Someone will no doubt snap them up.
One is my favorite is the 1978 edition of “Favorite Recipes” published by the local Copper Country chapter of the National Federation of Business and Professional Women’s Clubs. It may be a national club, but the recipes are clearly Yooper. This is not your hamburger and steak cook book. This is not about Cajun spices or things kosher. You won’t fine New York style clam chowder in this book.
You won’t find chocolate covered ants or fried grasshoppers, either. No smoked oysters, No Mississippi crawdads. No Chicago style hot dogs. No Scottish haggis.
 
Monday, November 8, 2010

Alden Bar

Dining Al Parker In Alden: a facelift revitalizes the ‘AB’
By Al Parker
In many communities, the largest employer is a factory, hospital or
maybe a school.
That’s not the case in Alden, according to Walt Owens, who owns and
operates the newly-remodeled Alden Bar & Grille in the friendly little
village that hugs the east shore of Torch Lake.
 
Monday, November 8, 2010

Tastemakers: Traverse Bay Farms Fruit Salsa/ Toast the Season

Dining Rick Coates Traverse Bay Farms Fruit Salsa
Traverse Bay Farms, based in Bellaire, is the latest Northern Michigan company to clean up at an awards competition. The makers of fruit and gourmet salsas took home seven awards at the 2011 Scovie Awards last month. It’s an annual competition that recognizes the top fiery foods products in the world.
Over 800 products were entered and go through rigorous tastings from over 100 food industry experts to receive the top honors. It is one of the most competitive blind-tasted food competitions in the world.
If “Scovie” sounds familiar it is because it comes from the Scoville scale which measures the spicy heat in peppers. The scale is named after its creator, American chemist Wilbur Scoville, who developed a test for rating the pungency of chili peppers. Traverse Bay Farms took First Place honors for their Pineapple Salsa, Corn Salsa and Red Raspberry BBQ Sauce; and Second Place for their Red Raspberry Salsa, Black Bean Salsa and Apple BBQ Sauce. There was also one Third Place award for their Peach Salsa.
 
Monday, November 1, 2010

Tastemakers:Dylan‘s Candy Bar/Ole George Whiskey Grand Travers Distillery

Dining Rick Coates Dylan’s Candy Bar
Dylan’s Candy Bar, the newest store in the Gallery of Shops at Grand Traverse Resort & Spa in Traverse City, opened this week. Created by CEO Dylan Lauren, the daughter of fashion icon Ralph Lauren and photographer and author Ricky Lauren.
The first Dylan’s Candy Bar opened in 2001 but the concept for the candy emporium began on Dylan Lauren’s fifth birthday. “I went to see a showing of Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory,” said Lauren. “I was so awed by the candy land of Willy Wonka’s factory that it inspired me at that moment to open a candy store.
During college, Lauren traveled Europe studying art, fashion and sampling the best candies along the way. She took notes and Dylan’s Candy Bar combines her love of candy and passion for art, music and fashion to create gifts for “kids” of all ages.
 
Monday, October 25, 2010

Murray‘s

Dining Kristi Kates Do-it-yourself is on the Menu at Murray’s
By Kristi Kates
Doing things themselves is one of the main ways that the owners of Murray’s Bar and Grill in East Jordan keep their restaurant unique.
“Murray’s uses only the freshest ingredients and many Michigan-made products,” Murray’s co-founder Emily Welsh says. “We slice all of our own meats and cheeses, cook our own ribs, and pull our own pork. We make our salsas, dips and sauces from scratch. And Murray’s buys fresh Angus beef, local fish and local fruits and vegetables when in season.”
Founded in 2003, the restaurant/bar was part of the fulfillment of an “Up North” goal, and a way for Murray’s other co-founder, Welsh’s husband Owen, to recover from a serious illness.
 
 
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