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The Manor

Ross Boissoneau - June 27th, 2011
The Manor carries on a Glen Lake tradition
By Ross Boissoneau
The Manor. Sounds kind of stately, which it is. And kind of pretentious,
which it decidedly is not.
Overlooking Glen Lake beyond M-22, The Manor is both a testament to days
gone by and to today’s fine cuisine. A family heirloom, it looks toward
both the past and the future, with white table cloths and class, yes. But
there’s a decidedly welcoming, casual vibe to the place as well.
It starts with the setting among tall trees overlooking Little Glen Lake’s
southern shore. The porch, which runs the length of the restaurant, can
host drinks or dining.
Less pretentious by half than something like Mackinac Island’s Grand
Hotel, it nevertheless evokes thoughts of gracious accommodations of
yesteryear. First, there’s the Victorian architecture. Then there’s the
white table cloths and genteel atmosphere inside, not to mention the views
of the lake.
But this is still Leelanau County. Boaters are welcome to tie up at the
dock and come on in, or if they call ahead, they can have a meal delivered
right to the boat.

Owner Nancy Wright said the restaurant has been in her family since 1954.
The inn’s upstairs rooms are no longer in use, but she has refurbished the
dining area downstairs, including the main room and smaller private dining
areas. It reopened six years ago after several years of inactivity.
The veteran restaurant owner previously owned Le Bear on Glen Lake with
her partner Janet Niewold, as well as the restaurant on M-22 at the
Narrows on the north side of the Glen Lake bridge most familiar to
residents and visitors as the Dairy Bar.
But it’s the Manor that now has all her attention.
Now patrons can relax with a cocktail on the porch and watch the cars on
M-22 and the sparkling waves of Glen Lake beyond. Or they can partake of
salmon with maple sauce, whitefish almandine, steaks, and other dinner
As far as the dinners go, prices are not inexpensive, but they’re not
extreme. New York strip steak runs $28 and roast duck with plum sauce,
$26, while spring chicken is $18 and four-cheese ravioli with Alfredo
sauce is $16. That does include soup or salad, sorbet in between, and
The menu changes regularly, Wright says. “There’s always beef, chicken, a
couple fish, and a vegetarian selection,” she said.
The restaurant often hosts special gatherings, from rehearsal and
anniversary dinners to its own Chef on the Porch program, theme nights
(French, Polynesian), even a photography seminar complete with breakfast
and lunch.

To accommodate those who like to eat before 6 p.m., and who might like to
save a buck or two, the early bird specials are served from 4 to 6:
Broasted chicken, meatloaf, parmesan white fish with roll, soup or salad,
and vegetable.
Then there’s the Sunday brunch. Some restaurants offer breakfast and
dinner items for brunch, while others offer both as part of a buffet. At
the Manor, they do both. You order your entree, anything from blueberry
pancakes to prime rib, and then you can select from a variety of salads
and desserts. Oh, and don’t forget the champagne included in the price
(which varies from entree to entree).
As to the inn portion upstairs, don’t hold your breath waiting for it to
“There are 15 rooms upstairs. My parents ran it as a summer hotel,” Wright
But while it may look and sound romantic, Wright remembers it as anything
but. “Saturday was a horrible day. I had to clean the cottages and the
rooms. This way when the restaurant closes we’re done till tomorrow.”

The Manor on Glen Lake is located at 345 West Glenmere Road, (231)
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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