July 8, 2020

Janice Binkert | Author

Raduno's Butcher's Lunch

May 19, 2018

Andrea Deibler is the butchery specialist among the highly talented trio of chef-owners at Raduno delicatessen and café in Traverse City. “We source locally and humanely raised whole animals, and I make a variety of products from them,” said Deibler. One of her specialt... Read More >>

Stella's Perfect Negroni

May 19, 2018

It’s not vanity that prompted the owners of Trattoria Stella and The Franklin in Traverse City to include the word “perfect” in naming its proprietary negroni cocktail, explained Stella bartender Andy Betka, but rather, the perfect classic balance of strong, bitter, and ... Read More >>

Eat Your Way from Mackinaw to Manistee: Summer's Restaurant Road

May 12, 2018

The 150-mile section of US-31 that stretches from Mackinaw to Manistee is one of the most scenic and historically interesting routes you’ll find anywhere. And our warm-weather months are a great time to experience its timeless allure. Winding through forests and fields, along the La... Read More >>

Mammoth Distilling’s Wooly Rye

May 12, 2018

First, let’s get the technical stuff out of the way: Mammoth Wooly Rye Reserve is 92 proof, 46 percent alcohol, and contains 88 percent pure Michigan rye — the rest is brewer’s malt. The elegant (yet if you look closely, whimsical) label on its flask-shaped bottle flaunt... Read More >>

Glen Lake's Trattoria Funistrada

April 28, 2018

Out in western Leelanau County, on the eastern edge of Big Glen Lake, lies Funistrada, a charming restaurant housed in a historic cottage-like clapboard building surrounded by, in summer anyway, by greenery and flowers. Looking at the menu, you immediately think of Italy. But the food... Read More >>

Oryana Lake Street Café Smoothies

April 28, 2018

“The Ultimate is at the top of our blackboard smoothie list for a reason,” said Oryana Natural Foods Market’s Lake Street Café barista (and all-arounder) Dave Fenlon. “There’s a lot going on in there, which is generally what people are looking for when... Read More >>

Moomers' Ice Cream Flights

April 28, 2018

Moomers, situated on a knoll overlooking the Plummer family dairy farm just west of Traverse City, makes over 160 flavors of premium ice cream. Granted, the shop’s display case can only accommodate about 20 of those daily, but still…it’s so hard to choose! The happy sol... Read More >>

Bella Arancina

April 21, 2018

PepeNero Italian restaurant and Ballaró wine lounge chef-owner Giorgio Lo Greco has a wicked sense of humor, but he takes his arancina seriously, emphasizing that this is the correct word for the famous Sicilian snack in the north, in his native Palermo, but noting with disdain tha... Read More >>

White on Rice

April 21, 2018

For the past three years, husband and wife team Eric and Amy Kolden have been on a mission to make high-quality sushi and other Japanese specialties easily accessible to a wider audience in northern Michigan.

Deftly wielding the appropriate gleamingly sharp-edged Ja...

Traverse City's Omelette Shoppe

April 7, 2018

One of 2017’s most notable food trends was “put an egg on it.” It was the year that eggs topped everything from arugula to ziti. Well, here’s a news flash: The Omelette Shoppe has been putting an egg on it — and around it, and under it, and beside it, and... Read More >>

Taproot’s Madagascar

March 24, 2018

Officially, its name is Madagascar Vanilla Bean Bourbon Barrel Aged Cider. Quite a mouthful. That’s why, explains bartender Chris Lemanski of Taproot Cider House, “We just call it the Taproot.” However, fans of this high-octane (12 percent!) “liquid gold” sti... Read More >>

Maxbauer’s Jerky

March 24, 2018

Love jerky? Well, you’re not alone. Recent statistics show it’s more popular than ever. People today want an on-the-go snack that is portable (no refrigeration required), tasty, protein-rich, and nutritious, and jerky fits the bill. Maxbauer Specialty Meat Market, a fixture in... Read More >>

The Many Faces of Larb

March 10, 2018

Is it larb, laab, laap or larp? That depends on where in the world you are. In the U.S., it’s often just called lettuce wraps. This particular version — from Samsara, the new Southeast Asian restaurant in Traverse City — has its origins in Laos, where it is the unofficia... Read More >>


March 10, 2018

Respect. Aretha Franklin wasn’t getting enough of it, and these days, neither are medium-bodied, elegant red wines like Blaufränkisch. Which is puzzling, because this traditional Austrian cool-climate red is infinitely approachable, delicious, and food friendly — compleme... Read More >>

American Spoon Foods' Whole Seed Mustard

March 3, 2018

It’s not too early to start thinking about Easter menus, and when it comes to versatility in the kitchen, American Spoon Foods’ Whole Seed Mustard is the Swiss army knife of condiments. Dubbed “the caviar of mustards” by its creators, its yellow and black seeds are... Read More >>

Snow Blossoms Martini

March 3, 2018

Pining for snow, but somehow weary of the winter cold? Red Ginger bartender Jeremy Trick has a remedy for both with his Snow Blossoms Martini. This delicious, rosy cheek-hued chiller is as refreshing as a brisk day on the slopes, but you’ll be sipping it in the warm atmosphere of th... Read More >>

Traverse City's Centre Street Cafe

March 3, 2018

If you haven’t yet discovered this somewhat-off-the-beaten-path-but-totally-worth-the-short-detour lunch spot in Traverse City, it’s time to get your Google and GPS in gear and put some excitement back on your midday plate.

While it’s not easy to pin down the bes... Read More >>

Super Duck

Feb. 17, 2018


Valentine’s Day may be over, but S2S/Sugar2Salt in Traverse City is still stealing hearts, as it has been since opening in June 2017, with an inspired, locally sourced menu of sweet and savory indulgences that will have you falling in love with bre... Read More >>

The King Bourbon

Feb. 17, 2018

One true harbinger of spring for those of us lucky enough to call Northern Michigan home is the tapping of maple trees for sap. Grand Traverse Distillery believes that’s something to celebrate – with a maple syrup-infused craft cocktail at its downtown tasting room. Dubbed the... Read More >>

Traverse City's Milkweed

Dec. 30, 2017



How two eminent Traverse City chefs teamed up with the owners of an innovative bar to take street food inside — and out of — the box.


Jennifer Blakeslee and Eric Patterson are well known to a wide audience in northern Mich... Read More >>