We’ve been so impressed by the creative—and absolutely delish—ways in which Northern Michigan restaurants and local food and drink businesses have continued to safely welcome us throughout the pandemic. We know the word “pivot” has taken a lot of heat this past year, but honestly, if it’s served with tacos and margs, we’re at peace with it. Here are three pivots we think you’ll enjoy.

Featured in the March 2021 annual food and drink issue of Traverse, Northern Michigan’s Magazine. Check it out!

When this magazine went to print in early February, we had no idea what March would bring, or heck, even next week. Some of these businesses may no longer be offering these items, but we still want to offer a hearty thank you to them for giving us special treats and sustenance when we needed it most. We’re confident that whatever’s on their menus this month will be truly fantastic.

Take-and-Bake Meals + Kits

These restaurants certainly made staying home a whole lot tastier.

Mama Lu’s // Traverse City
Mama Lu’s customizable taco kits are dope. For $60, diners get 20 tortillas, a choice of two meats (crispy pork belly, yes please), pickled red onions and jalapeños, limes, house-made hot sauce, chips, salsa and Spanish rice. Add on a canned margarita and it’s a party.

Around the Corner Food & Fun // Northport
This food trailer is one to watch in 2021. The property, where the trailer is located, at 115 S. Waukazoo St. is being redeveloped, with plans for outdoor games, free movie nights and a building with indoor seating and a beverage area. But, back to take-and-bake meals. Around the Corner’s “Freezer Menu” has a rotating lineup of comfort food like chicken Kiev, apple fritter pull-apart bread and Scotch eggs. Pre-orders required.

To-Go Cocktails

For those of us who don’t know a jigger from a muddler, these distilleries kindly kept our whistles wet.

Mammoth Distilling // Central Lake, Traverse City, Bellaire, Bay Harbor
Mammoth makes it delightfully easy to order a craft cocktail to go from each of its tasting rooms. Head to their website, click the cocktail icon, choose location and BAM— you’re presented with 10+ craft beauties. I’m partial to the Whiskey Tango Foxtrot (whiskey, pineapple jalapeño mixer, Northwoods spicy ginger beer), but you do you.

Traverse City Whiskey // Traverse City
Order a ready-to-pour Manhattan or old fashioned from TC Whiskey’s online store. Or, for a simple addition to your favorite bourbon or rye, try the Craft Mixer Variety Pack for easy ginger mules, whiskey sours and old fashioneds. The mixers are made with fresh juices, aromatic bitters and cane sugar.

Virtual Cooking Classes

Gathering with friends and family to share a meal is always special, even when it’s virtual.

Fustini’s // Petoskey, Traverse City
Pizzarama, Winter in Paris and Moroccan Marvels are just a few of the many tempting themed cooking classes Fustini’s has been virtually hosting via Zoom this winter. Ten days before the class, guests receive the recipes, ingredient list and discount code to use on Fustini’s products. View the upcoming schedule and register online.

Find this and more articles celebrating Northern Michigan food and drink in the March 2021 annual food and drink issue of Traverse, Northern Michigan’s Magazine; or subscribe and get Traverse delivered to your door each month.