After traveling miles of Lake Superior coast … rocketing down rugged, calorie-burning hills … hiking to roaring waterfalls … skiing down twisty slopes … you are bound to get hungry.
Whatever you do, don’t rip open a packaged energy bar and call it good.
Pull over. Walk into a decades-old diner, step out on a picturesque lakeside restaurant deck or pore over the tubs of colorful ice creams and pots of jam in our cozy shops. Quench your thirst in our craft breweries or pubs. Strike up a conversation with the locals. They’ll help you find your next adventure and a memorable meal along this unforgettable peninsula.
Gemignani’s Italian Restaurant in Hancock, MI
The Fitzgerald’s (or the Fitz) seats you only feet from Lake Superior where the dramatic view battles with the real Keweenaw barbecue for your attention. This restaurant has won several accolades including Lake Superior Magazine‘s Best of the Lake for restaurants a number of times. And its Fourth of July Party brings in over 1,000 people to hang out on the beach, watch fireworks, eat great BBQ and drink wine, mixed spirits and 20+ different brews. Copper Harbor’s Keweenaw Mountain Lodge is worth the drive to sample their rustic, authentic food with a craft beverage after a relaxing round of golf or a day outside experiencing the Keweenaw wilderness.
In the mood for a taste of Italy’s countryside? Spend an evening with a bottle of wine while dining at Gemignani’s Italian Restaurant in Hancock. Family-owned since 1982, you will savor the traditional recipes handed down over generations.
Bonfire Bar and Grill provides a fantastic, bird’s-eye view of the Portage Canal. Enjoy an upscale dining environment while listening to live music and watching boats traverse the local waterway.
Traditional pasty from Toni’s Country Kitchen in Calumet, MI
Pasty. Pronounced (pass-tee). This is THE food of the U.P. and the original fast food on the Keweenaw Peninsula. Its roots are in Cornwall, England. During the Copper Boom, immigrant miners and lumberjacks would take to work these hand-held pastries filled with diced beef, pork, potatoes, onions, swede (rutabaga) or turnips and seasonings. Finnish recipes call for carrots. Take the challenge to find your favorite traditional or non-traditional pasty at Roy’s Pasties & Bakery in Houghton, Pasty Central and The Hut Inn in Calumet or Toni’s Country Kitchen in Laurium.
Thimbleberries. These scarlet berries grow wild on the Keweenaw. Their unique tart flavor is similar to a blend of currants and raspberries. You can pick up jams at The Jampot in Eagle Harbor, the Thimbleberry Shoppe in Copper Harbor and the Wood’n Spoon in Mohawk. Or try the original thimbleberry margarita or thimbleberry cosmopolitan at Carmelita’s in Calumet.
Want to pick your own? Thimbleberry season runs from later summer to early fall and the fruit grows along many of the public recreation trails.
Enjoy freshly caught whitefish from the cold waters of Lake Superior.
Lake Superior Trout and Whitefish. Caught from very cold Lake Superior, our freshwater trout and whitefish are firm-fleshed and delicately flavored. Whether served on a plank or in smoky dips, our fish will delight your taste buds. Stop in at Peterson’s Fish Market/4-Suns Fish & Chips Outdoor Cafe in Hancock where the family rises before dawn to reel in today’s catches. Houghton’s Joey’s Seafood & Grill is famous for its fish and chips, whitefish and trout and the city’s Pilgrim River Steak House tempts you with its house recipe Lake Superior mini-fish cakes, a specially baked whitefish, and lake trout almandine. Quincy’s in Dollar Bay is a great local fish destination throughout the week but if you’re nearby on Friday, don’t miss their fish fry.
Dreamland Restaurant & Bar in Lake Linden serves lunch and dinner throughout the week and is also a Friday fish fry destination. Built in 1913, it’s been in the family ever since and its décor is steeped in history. In the summer, boaters dock close by and walk to the restaurant; when the snow flies, snowmobilers park out front, grab a bite to eat before riding nearby groomed trails. Fun Fact: The award-winning indie film Superior was shot here.
Live music and craft beer at the Keweenaw Brewing Company in Houghton, MI
Craft brews. Michigan is gaining national attention as a beer destination and you will be quick to toast Keweenaw’s brewmasters. Include Keweenaw Brewing Company in Houghton and the Michigan House Cafe and Red Jacket Brewing Co. in Calumet on your beer tour. While at the Michigan House, look up at the ceiling mural (circa 1906) as well as be awed by the ornate fireplace and massive wood bar.
A view of Lake Superior from the deck at Fitzgerald’s Eagle River Inn and Restaurant – Photo credit: Mike LaMotte
Several Keweenaw Peninsula restaurants provide gorgeous water views:
Ambassador Restaurant in downtown Houghton is regionally known for its pizza, historic gnome murals and an amazing view of Portage Lake and the Portage Lake Lift Bridge.
Bear Belly Pit Stop at The Lac La Belle Lodge overlooks Lac La Belle (beautiful lake) and serves up macaroni and cheese, many burger choices and homemade ravioli.
Roy’s Pasties & Bakery is also located on the Houghton Waterfront.