March 3, 2024

Janice Binkert | Author

B&B Breakfast at Home

Jan. 15, 2022

Visitors to Northern Michigan — and often locals looking for a nearby getaway — are drawn to Bed & Breakfasts throughout the region for their cozy, comfortable ambiance but really, just as much for their fabulous breakfast and brunch offerings. We asked the innkeepers of t... Read More >>

Smoke & Porter Public House

Jan. 1, 2022

Whether you’re a camper or not, if you are from Northern Michigan, you probably have fond memories of sitting around a campfire on a beach or in your own backyard around a cozy wood fire — either roaring or glistening with dying embers — captivating your senses with ... Read More >>

Forrest – A Food Studio

Nov. 27, 2021

Everyone knows what an artist’s studio is, but what about a food studio? For Forrest and Nicole Moline, it’s a creative hub for the culinary arts. Swap out paintbrushes, canvas, and a gallery showroom for chef’s knives, a stove, and a dining room, and you have the same c... Read More >>

Left Foot Charley

Oct. 2, 2021

Nearly 40 wineries can be found nestled among the vineyards dotting the picturesque, hilly slopes of the Leelanau and Old Mission peninsulas that jut out into Traverse City’s East and West bays.

By contrast, for 17 years Left Foot Charley has been firmly ensconced in the his... Read More >>


June 26, 2021

Vicente and Anna Serrano were both raised — he in rural Mexico and she in Traverse City — knowing the value of hard work and expecting nothing to be handed to them. But along the way in their lives, destiny intervened just at the right times to help them fulfill their dreams a... Read More >>

Common Good Bakery’s Muffuletta

May 22, 2021

Meet the muffuletta, a sandwich that might just become your new favorite. An iconic New Orleans specialty, it predates even the city’s famous Po’Boy.

By most accounts, the muffuletta was created in 1906 by one Salvatore Lupo, owner of the legendary Central Grocery ... Read More >>

Black Truffles at Pepe Nero

May 15, 2021

They aren’t pretty to look at, with their gnarly, inky exterior, perhaps most suggestive of small fossilized dinosaur eggs. But the beauty of the black summer truffle — tartufo nero — lies within, in its cream-colored core. The pride of Italy’s Umbria regi... Read More >>

Chefs’ Secret Weapons

May 8, 2021

My own “secret weapon” is a birthday gift I received from my husband some time ago (after several hints had been dropped by me). It’s a Cuisinart Smart Stick hand blender, and I’m sure I sound like a carnival hawker when I start telling friends and family how g... Read More >>

American House Wood Fired Pizza

May 1, 2021

Many Siren Hall fans initially mourned the fact that the popular Elk Rapids seafood restaurant morphed into American House Wood Fired Pizza in December 2020. But they soon realized that since owner-chef Michael Peterson — one of northern Michigan’s most respected culinary ... Read More >>


April 17, 2021

No matter the weather, Traverse City’s newest breakfast and lunch restaurant, Benedict, radiates a welcome as warm as the sun with its light-filled, bright yellow-flecked interior and the smiles (recognizable even behind masks) of its owner, Leslie Elsen, and her friendly staff.... Read More >>

Traverse City's Hexenbelle

Feb. 13, 2021

One of Traverse City’s newest and most innovative restaurant/cafes, Hexenbelle, launched in November 2020, is the concept of Christian Geoghegan (head chef), Hanna Lane (head baker), and Heather Webber (head of the coffee/espresso program). The members of this young trio are alr... Read More >>

Fuel My Life

Jan. 30, 2021

The shopping, chopping, preparing, and portioning of mindfully nutritious food are perhaps some of the most daunting and time-consuming tasks in our daily efforts to eat and live healthfully. But what if you could get some of that time back? Time with your family and friends. Time for... Read More >>

Little Traverse Inn & Gastro Pub

Jan. 16, 2021

How often, especially in northwest Michigan, do you have the chance to sample both classic English pub fare and an array of authentic dishes from India — all in one place? Now picture yourself doing just that in a quaint, custom-built, private (and heated) dining “shanty&r... Read More >>

Chefs' Holiday Table

Dec. 5, 2020

One might imagine that professional chefs go all out for holiday meals at home with family, preparing all manner of elaborate festive fare, plated and garnished exquisitely. That’s not always the case, most say, but when they do cook on these occasions, what is more important to the... Read More >>

Farm Club

Oct. 31, 2020

To paraphrase the famous line from the 1989 film Field of Dreams, “If you build it, they will come.” That’s certainly what happened with the dream that Little Fleet’s Gary and Allison Jonas and Loma Farm’s Nic and Sara Theisen realized upon launching... Read More >>

Hopscotch Brick Oven & Taproom

Aug. 29, 2020

The menu is innovative, carefully curated and diverse. Yet there is no stove, grill, flat top, or fryer in the compact kitchen at Hopscotch. Head chef Justin Shafer and his crew cook everything in the restaurant’s double smoker or its 800-degree brick oven, with tantalizing resu... Read More >>


Aug. 15, 2020

Cynthia Henderson has been involved in the restaurant industry in one way or another since the age of 14, first in her native state of Florida, and as of 1999 in her adopted home of Leelanau County. After working for others for many years, she started the Bayside Grill in Northport and la... Read More >>

Small Batch at the Cupola

July 11, 2020

Adorning the Small Batch logo is a friendly-looking bee, wings outspread. It could be a symbol for Lauretta Reiss, creative director and owner of the restaurant, bakery, and catering service that falls under the Small Batch heading. Reiss is the essential heart and soul of the whole opera... Read More >>

The Tale of TC's Taste of India

Feb. 15, 2020

While its cuisine is exotic by Northern Michigan standards, Taste of India’s location — namely, the food court at Grand Traverse Mall — is quite the opposite. However, judging by the number of customers who line up daily at the ordering counter to feast on everything... Read More >>

Cook Up a New Valentine's Tradition

Feb. 8, 2020

Valentine’s Day is a time where we’re urged to splurge on fancy chocolates, an extravagant bouquet of flowers, dinner out at an elegant restaurant, and/or an appropriately embellished greeting card filled with sweet declarations of affection.
That said, it sur...