2010 Traverse Magazine Best Eats Nomination

The editors of Traverse, Northern Michigan’s Magazine are taking nominations for the March 2010 Best Eats issue.

Tried a dish at a Northern Michigan restaurant that has you licking your chops just thinking about it? Tell us what it is and where you had it in the comment box below.

Picked up a food product at a Northern deli or specialty store that changed your life?Describe it and let us know where you bought it in the comment box below.

Found a locally-produced food that is out of this world? Put the info in the comment box below.

Click on the links below to get an idea of the range and products we are looking for:  Northern Michigan Best Eats 2009
Best Eats 2008 in Traverse City, Petoskey, Charlevoix and more

Note: If your nomination is accepted we will interview you about it, so feel free to keep your comments brief. Also, make sure to CREATE AN ACCOUNT (if you don’t have one already) when you comment so that we can contact you by email.

Article Comments

  • Anonymous

    Opa! Coney and Grill has the absolute best baklava I’ve ever had anywhere. No lie.

  • upnorthjh

    Way too yummy – The Emerson Salad at Silver Swan…
    And of course the famout Gobbler Sandwich at Mary’s Kitchen Port!

  • upnorthjh

    The Emerson salad at Silver Swan and the Gobbler sandwich at Mary’s Kitchen Port!

  • suessinmi

    The black bean soup at Catch Island Grill in Traverse City is to die for!!! It and the whole dinner my husband and I had there made our weekend getaway!
    Also Mummer wine from Left Foot Charley Winery is terrific. I only wish I could buy it where I now live. Just another reason that I am sorry that I ever left the Grand Traverse region!

  • Anonymous

    Opa Coney and Grill has fantastic food overall…especially, the OPA! mmmm good

  • ppotter1115

    Opa’s ROCKS!!!! Paul is a fantastic chef!!

  • Lissa Edwards

    What would you recommend from Opa’s?

  • beccamac9

    Chicken Jalapeno soup and grilled cheese at Art’s Tavern. Best ever.

  • ilbaristaprovvisorio

    Without a doubt, morsels in Traverse City offer the very best espresso drinks and drip coffee. More and more people are finding this out and agree with me that morsels’ coffee is above and beyond anyone else’s coffee in the Traverse city area.

  • ilbaristaprovvisorio

    Martha’s Leelanau Table in Suttons Bay is a fresh, new restaurant offering for Leelanau County. Her breakfast and lunch offerings are wonderful, and her dinner menu, although limited, is excellent. Add the fact that she has a full bar and excellent wine selections, with an emphasis on local wines, and you have a great, new, bistro-like restaurant in Suttons Bay. 20 seats; sophisticated service. Can’t miss food.

  • muddyhoney

    Morsels coffee is the best. I travel all over the US and have not found anything comparable.

  • sheri

    I love the fried artichokes at Serenity Tea Bar. The dipping sauce is vegan and to die for…

  • sheri

    the fried artichokes at Serenity Tea Bar are wonderful.

  • vikin

    Misha at Morsels makes the best cappucino in town… picture the flavor of a lightly roasted marshmallow sitting on a pool of rich espresso…the foam is perfectly smooth and creamy… mmmmm…gotta go get me one!

  • vikin

    Misha at Morsels makes the best cappucino in town… picture the flavor of a lightly roasted marshmallow sitting on a pool of rich espresso…the foam is perfectly smooth and creamy… mmmmm…gotta go get me one!

  • Anonymous

    The Sourcream Sorbet at Hanna Bistro. It comes with a flourless chocolate cake and balaton cherry compote! Delicious!

    Also the pastries at Martha’s Leelanau Table. Susan McConnell makes the best fresh pastries in Northern Michigan.

  • Anonymous

    The Sourcream Sorbet at Hanna Bistro. It comes with a flourless chocolate cake and balaton cherry compote! Delicious!

    Also the pastries at Martha’s Leelanau Table. Susan McConnell makes the best fresh pastries in Northern Michigan.

  • wicker

    Morsels Intelligentsia coffee is my all-time favorite. No bitterness, very smooth. The perfect start to my day!

  • Anonymous

    Went to 45th parallel for Sunday brunch and had the Unparalleled Skillet. It was all the best items of breakfast layered in a tasty combo. It comes in two sizes and unless you have time for nap, you might consider the smaller size.

    Scott North

  • Anonymous

    FRIDAY NIGHT FISH FRY AT DINGHY’S IN FRANKFORT IS THE BEST PERCH GOING, BAR NONE.

  • Anonymous

    BEST WHITEFISH WITHOUT A DOUBT IS AT THE WEATHERVANE IN CHARLEVOIX

    BEST SCONES I HAVE EVER HAD ANYWHERE ARE AT TRUFFLES IN CHARLEVOIX

  • oneotherspeed

    Raspberry pancakes at Paula’s in Indian River are to die for. The pancakes are so light and the combination of sweet/tart raspberries with the rich pancakes make this dish an absolute favorite. They serve two pancakes that cover the plate sprinkled with powdered sugar. The service is so fast, you think the cook must be eavesdropping on the table as you place your order.

  • oneotherspeed

    I must also reccommend the garlic pepper jelly from Pond Hill Farms north of Harbor Springs. Just serve it over cream cheese with crackers. We ship this to friends and relatives everywhere. It is the best–spicy hot and sweet.

  • ringman

    We love Cousin Jenny’s Pasties…they are the best around..and their salads are #1 as well!

    It’s great to take home (downstate) some partially baked pasties and freeze them for a “treat” at a later time!

  • Anonymous

    The chicken pot pies at the Good Hart General Store, in Good Hart, are absolute comfort food…you can pick them up to go, or order them online delivered to your door (or your friends). They come in 2 sizes also…never, ever had a better chicken pot pie.

  • Anonymous

    Chef Eric at the Boathouse at Bowers Harbor in TC has a superbly decadent wild mushroom/truffle oil bisque. The last I had was loaded with almost more morels than creamy soup…no kidding!

  • Anonymous

    No question on the best dining in this area… Dinghy’s in Frankfort excels on any offering on their menu. And, the atmosphere is always warm, friendly and cheerful. Well worth the trip from surrounding communities.
    Jack Drew
    [email protected]

  • Anonymous

    Clancy’s Kitchen in Interlochen has these wonderful signature pancakes made from oats, shredded sweet potatoes, and dried cherries (or blueberries.) They are fantastic! Plus, the Black Bean Delight is amazing with diced sweet potatoes, tomatoes, black beans, and 2 eggs served with pita chips. So tasty! Always fresh and hot.

  • Live2Eat

    The Cooks’ House – period. The menu changes with the availability of local and sustainable food throughout all 4 seasons. I can’t name just one dish, because it’s all amazing!

  • malmill

    FUSTINI’S OILS & VINEGARS in Traverse City is by far one of the best “food experience” around Northern Michigan. The atmosphere along with the phenomenal products and service make Fustini’s the best in town!

  • Karen H

    We have been in TC for just a yr. now. I have taste tested my way through the towns great cherry products. By far the products at Benjamin Twiggs have me so hooked, I keep going back for more.The Cherry Festival Preserves are outstanding. I started putting it in my plain yogurt, then it found its way on angel food cake, English muffins, pound cake, cheesecake, brownies, pancakes, and lets not forget the ice cream! I bought the Cherry Berry trail mix and now that goes in my yogurt as well as on ice cream when I’m not just eating it right out of the package as a healthy snack. The Milk Cherry delights are to die for, but sometimes I must have the Dark Chocolate Covered Razz Cherries.
    I am sending gift boxes to everyone to try to get them to move up north. My family has told me not to come back down state without bringing them a jar of the Cherries&Raspberries Foster after I gave them all one for Xmas last yr.
    We have subscribed to the Traverse Magazine for yrs. even tough we lived down state. We have come up north to try the suggested vacation spots and restaurants and have never been dissapointed.
    Hats off to the fine job and quality of your wonderful magazine! We are so, so excited and happy to now live up here in the great up north!

  • eveire

    I love Fustini’s! Everytime I visit everyone is so friendly and the oils and vinegars are so tasty, I have purchased many different flavors and have yet to find one that doesn’t compliment my food excellently.

  • Anonymous

    Dinghy’s Restaurant in Frankfort – Best Friday Night Fish Fry and my all time favorite, and last year’s nominee, Sandwich of your Dreams. Absolutely delicious!

  • Anonymous

    Dan’s pretzels and Salsa dip from the Covered Wagon Market & Bakery in Sutton’s Bay are a treat we can’t do without when we visit Leelanau County. Whoever thought that a quick stop for rasberries in July would uncover a snack that I can’t stop thinking about in December!

  • Anonymous

    Dingy’s has the best food in Frankfort, MI. and the best prices.

  • Anonymous

    Outback Steakhouse-yummy! cheese & bacon fries!! Crave them when I’m pregnant!!

  • Anonymous

    Dinghy’s in Frankfort has a great Friday fish fry. Reasonable and quality food.

  • brookehm

    I second the gobbler sandwich at Mary’s Kitchen Port–it’s the salt on the bread that does it for me. I also love the omelottes at Frenchie’s. Lastly, I ADORE the almond pear tarte at La Becasse. (Although I am extremely biased, given that my husband makes it, and the restaurant is my livelihood. Problematic, perhaps, but there you go.)

  • playpack

    The crab cakes at “Coho Shores”, Frankfort are absolutly the best ever. My wife and I (52 years wed.) you know we have sampleed quite a few, including “Emile Legasse i8n Las Vegus. The cakes are fried or broiled just right, the lump meat is fresh and tasty and the cream sause that you want on the side is perfect.

  • Anonymous

    Dinghy’s in Frankfort has the best cod

  • Anonymous

    The Pot Roast Dinner at Schelde’s is out of this world. Super tender and lots of flavor. Wow!

  • Anonymous

    We LOVE the Cherry Salsa’s at Benjamin Twiggs! ALL of them! I have sent them around the country to friends and they ask for more!

  • Shoe

    The shrimp cocktail (soup) at Agave in TC. It’s more like a thick tomato gazpacho with chunks of jalapeno and avocado with a big pile of whole shrimp. Be prepared to share. It’s huge. Wash it down with a monster margarita. YUM.

  • Peter_mitc

    We recently dined at Hanna Bistro Bar and our waitress pointed out the new pastry menu created by their new Austrian pastry chef. We are normally not into sweets but figured we should give it a try. We had the warm apple tartlet with buttered pecan ice cream. It was outstanding. The ice cream was the best we ever had! Congrats to the new chef! Please keep those warm apple tarts on the menu till we get back to Traverse City next year!

  • Anonymous

    The apple and raspberry crisp dessert served with the Aonach Mor Moonlight Dinner on the mountaintop at Boyne Highlands… it’s to die for!

  • czarjenny

    I along with many friends and family simply MUST have the Original Thin from LAKE STREET MARKET in Boyne! If someone goes up there and has one everyone else is jealous! We make sure to go there everyday on every trip we are up there for this sandwich! It’s the BEST!!!!

  • Anonymous

    You must go to Port City Smokehouse in Frankfort and try their Smoked Whitefish Pate! It is absolutely out of this world delicious! PCS is a smokehouse and specialty food market with many products made locally and on-site. That is my favorite but their other spreads are in close competion!

  • Anonymous

    We go to the Frankfort area twice each summer and we have to go to the Port City Smokehouse for their Whitefish Pate(one to eat while there and one or two to take home)and the Mephis Style BBQ. Sooooo good.

  • Anonymous

    The Port City Smokehouse is our family’s favorite place to stop and load up on goodies for our vacation in Frankfort. The Whitefish Pate is my favorite and the Memphis style BBQ sandwich is my boys’ favorite sandwich. We’ve tried to duplicate it at home but it just can’t be done!

  • Gramma Sue

    River Front Deli in Glen Arbor – Cream of Mushroom soup with Brie. Smooth and creamy and warm! Cozy and Earthy

  • sxyblond49

    Sisson’s Main Street Specialties,located in downtown Leland,MI. They offer a scrumptious roast beef submarine on Cracked pepper & Sea salt roll that is so tasty and their Cheese Wookies are melt-in-your-mouth delicious. This is a delightful new bakery & deli for the fishtown area.

  • Anonymous

    Port City Smokehouse in Frankfort has been a wonderful find for us. Their smoked whitefish pate is out of this world. Try the Memphis-style pork BBQ sandwich. Wow!

  • animalheaven

    Port City Smokehouse has my favorite, can’t live w/o whitefish pate. My dog/horse sitter waits for my return from Frankfort with it. The smoked whitefish is another favorite, must try.

  • karma

    I love the whitefish pate from Port City Smokehouse of Frankfort! Whenever I buy a tub of it, it never lasts longer than one sitting. My wife and I love it, our young daughters love it, and everyone we’ve shared a tiny bit with love it too!

  • Anonymous

    Check out the Port City Smokehouse for the best Smoked Whitefish Pate ever!….and the best smoked fish and Memphis Style BBQ pork sandwich too!! Seriously the best!

  • MapleCityGal

    Riverfront Pizza and Deli in Glen Arbor. Homemade sub buns are the best. Best Greek pizza ever. The soups are the best. Love Chicken tortilla and the french onion. Bad Sue’s Good Food.

  • Anonymous

    Riverfront Deli and Pizza in Glen Arbor, owned and operated by a husband/wife team,has the best pizza and grilled cheese sandwiches! I don’t know how they get the bread to be browned and crispy and the cheese melted to perfection?!? They will also allow special requests…like adding tomato & salami to your grilled cheese!!

  • Anonymous

    Morsels’ lattes are the best in town. The espresso is never bitter and so rich in flavor. The steamed milk is smooth, creamy, and never scalded. They even pour latte art on top to show what experts they are! The “morseletto” is like a mini-latte, with one shot of espresso and steamed milk in a 4 oz. cup. It’s the perfect complement to one of their bite-sized treats!

  • fancypants

    The most underrated spot for lunch in Traverse? Home Grown Organic Eatery, hands down. Fresh, delicious, and non-preachy food that is also reasonably priced (esp. considering the high-quality ingredients). I’ve savored every morsel from this place, but the burritos are high on the list. YUM!!! 🙂

  • cindym19

    Dinghy’s in Frankfort has the best Friday night fish fry. All of their food is fantastic but the fish is wonderful.

  • Steph

    Bellaire Smokehouse has great everything! Best cuts of fresh beef, fresh fish, huge crab legs, beef jerky and their world famous smoked whitefish pate. The pate rules, my six year old loves it, I love it, the whole house loves it. The Bellaire Smokehouse 508 N Bridge St, Bellaire, Michigan check them out on the web http://www.bellairesmokehouse.com/
    Oh and a great selection of import and micro brews.

  • Anonymous

    The Sticky Toffee Pudding at Hanna Bistro Bar in Traverse City. Skip the Appetizer and make sure to leave plenty of room for dessert

  • Anonymous

    Riverfront Deli in Glen Arbor has the best food in town. Cherry chicken salad is my favorite in the summer. Their lemon cupcakes are to die for with a delectable lemon curd in the middle and lemon zest frosting. The homemade soups are always right on to warm me up on a cold winter day.

  • iheartnomi

    The scones at Lake Street Market in Boyne City. The technique is unusual: the dough is rolled jelly-roll style instead of being cut into blocks, which keeps them light but still incredibly rich. And you can buy them frozen to bake at home. They never fail to generate raves from our houseguests.

  • Anonymous

    The buffalo burgers at Bubba’s in Traverse City are the best! The burgers are made with ground beef (not buffalo meat), but the sauce that they drench the burger in is hot buffalo wing sauce. The burger is also topped with bacon and blue cheese and served on an awesome tasting bun. Have this with their seasoned fries or onion rings and a Bells Oberon on tap — can’t beat it anywhere in northern Michigan!

  • Anonymous

    If you like a rueben done right, nothing fancy just a rueben the way it was ment to be. Clancy’s Kitchen in Interlochen. Had them from Arizona to New York City. Clancy’s is the top of the list.

  • Anonymous

    Ok spelling was never my strong point. Reuben is the corret spelling. sorry. Clancy’s Kitchen has the taste right.

  • Anonymous

    WOW! Andante in Petoskey!! An Amazing find!
    Butternut Squash Bisque-Same recipe for over 20 yrs!!! Outstanding!!

  • mylesjb

    Perhaps the finest restaurant in Northern Michigan is Andante of Petoskey. I recently had the privilege of eating a 4-course meal there that was wonderful beyond words. The butternut squash bisque–topped with pecans and gorgonzola–was smokey and sweet, a combination I had never expected but is as stellar as it is unique. The salad tasted unlike anything I had had before (refreshing and delicious), combining southwest flavors with a whitefish dressing and a Brie “crouton” that still makes my mouth water. My entree was beef medallions served TWO different ways: one with a mild demi-glace coupled perfectly with foie gras, the other with grilled onions and a gorgonzola cream sauce, and all atop grilled homemade polenta. Finish that with molten chocolate cake, a generous portion of ice cream, and cognac caramel sauce…and you’ve had one of the finest meals of your life.

  • stark1ka

    As I read through these reviews, I was astonished to see that no one had yet mentioned Centre Street Cafe, located in Traverse City. They have, by far, one of the largest and greatest sandwich, soup, and salad menus that I’ve come upon. The variety is great, and the staff is top-notch. I had a great sandwich called the Madagascar, which is hummus, avocado, turkey, bacon, swiss, asiago, sunflower seeds, crushed smoked almonds, onion, lettuce, tomato,ranch, and sicilian dressing all inside a whole wheat wrap. But, the little surprise you get with your sandwich is what takes the cake for me. They have a black bean dip that is absolutely fabulous and once you have it, you’ll never go back to any other. This is a lovely place, from the food to the people.

  • Anonymous

    I would like to nominate the new Pastry Chef Daniela Weiner from Hanna Bistro Bar in Traverse City. Her creations are to die for, especially the Sticky Toffee Pudding. A dense cake served warm with Butterscotch Sauce. My friend had the Hot Chocolate with housemade Marshmallows: outstanding!

    We hope the owner of Hanna Bistro realizes how lucky he is to have such a talented chef in his kitchen.

  • Anonymous

    The smoked whitefish salad, tossed with field greens and veggies at Hessel Deli and General Store is unusual and fantastic! Also, the Wildwood Salad with Michigan cherries and Maytag blue cheese is a rare gem up here in the Eastern UP. Hessel remains true to its general store roots, while it has revamped it deli, expanding its menu to offer authentic Michigan fare without bending customers’ budgets too far. Pizza, hot dogs, and amazing array of sandwiches share the menu with other neat items like breakfast “all day,” offering special items like cinnamon-swirl French toast. Bravo Hessel Deli!

  • Anonymous

    Ang-Gio’s restaurant in Cedarville (way up north in the UP!) makes its own Italian sausage, a recipe passed down through three generations of the Autore family. Try their family legacy in the Italian sausage omelete, or on a pizza. This Italian-American eatery has been around for nearly 50 years.

  • Anonymous

    Grey Gables(Charlevoix) beef pot roast along with their John Cross Fisheries Whitefish-so good. Julienne Tomatoes sticky buns-yum. Mitchell Street Pub-best veggie sandwich and best onion rings(both in Petoskey). Also, Howse’s Candy Haus peanut butter fudge (freshest and creamiest I’ve ever had) in Harbor Springs and any sandwich(the fresh baked bread made daily is fantastic) at Gurney’s Harbor Bottle Shop-also Harbor Springs.

  • sandytoes

    Anything at Wellington St Market….the chorizo and potato omelette,and thai peanut rice salad are just two of my favorites. They use local ingredients as exclusively as they can, and it really makes a difference. They have lots of ethnic choices, nice curries. My favorite dessert is the carrot cake…can you say “chunks of fresh pineapple”? not to mention the cream cheese frosting..:-)