A Dining Guide to Petoskey, Michigan

If you’re traveling through the northern side of Michigan, be sure to stop in Petoskey. Located on the southern side of Little Traverse Bay on Lake Michigan, it boasts having one of the most treasured downtown areas in all the United States. The shops and residents bring a blend of future innovations while still respectfully showcasing the true beauty of the past. (Click here to see all Petoskey, Michigan homes for sale)

With several marinas at your disposal and plenty of docking space, you can spend the day enjoying the wild waters of Lake Michigan on your boat or yacht. Or you can strut around the heritage square and see what treasures you may find as you walk the same steps as some famous people of history. But, be sure to save some time to enjoy one of the many different dining experiences Petoskey has to offer.

1911 Restaurant at The Terrace Inn

For a casual fine dining experience, head to the Terrace Inn to enjoy the seasonally crafted menu by Chef Jordan. Foods are brought in from local farmers as well as the fishermen at the nearby lake. Enjoy sipping some well-crafted cocktails while relishing the spectacular views of Fair View park, especially at sunset. The elegant atmosphere is a great selection for celebrating big moments, family gatherings, or a romantically intimate meal with someone special.

Back Lot

Are you looking for a fun place to get together with friends? Perhaps you all can’t agree on what kind of food to eat? Well, don’t let that stop you. Head to this unique dining experience where everyone can find something to enjoy. The setup is an open area with benches for seating and an open-air bar. For food, you have a selection of food trucks that bring their many different, unique cooking styles to satisfy all.

Bayside Restaurant

Located across the street of the Little Traverse Bay, this is a great destination for someone looking for some comfort eats. Whether looking for a filling breakfast or a soul-enriching lunch, the menu has a vast array of options that you might find in diners all across America. Plus, you can enjoy the sights of the leisure boats sailing by as well as the fishing boats from your table as you dine on some amazing dishes.

Beacon Bistro

With the atmosphere and fine dining rolled into one, you can enjoy a specially crafted menu with some artistically designed plating. Being located near the Petoskey Municipal Marina, their seafood dishes are the freshest and possess amazing flavors for all the waters have to hold. From their salads to their deserts, this is a great pick for date night or family gatherings or perhaps for something a bit more intimate. This is truly a must-experience place if you are in the Petosky area.

Beards Brewery

Local craft beers are found in this rustic setting. Their selections are matched by the jugs that don the walls. Outside the windows, you will see some amazing landscapes while within your dining options are upscale bar foods. Cleverly crafted burgers and fried foods will pair great with your drinking selections. Enjoy your time with friends over a few pints and breath in the cool air coming off of the nearby bay.

The Bistro

For the late-night eater, this is the place to find some good meals after working a long hard day or after spending all night dancing in the local clubs. The prices are modest compared to the big plates that you receive. Their breakfast menu carries a lot of classic dishes while also having some fun crafted options. And their lunch menu, containing some hearty familiar options, is available for most of the day until they close at 2:00 AM.

City Park Grill

A member of the Wineguys Restaurant Group collection, it is located in one of the oldest buildings in Petoskey. It was built to be a males-only billiard parlor. Now it contains one of the best fine-dining restaurants with great recipes using local, seasonal items. Be sure to try their award-winning burger or their fudge cake from a truly amazing experience. Also, take in the live entertainment they offer as well as a spin on the dance floor. Karaoke is on Friday nights for those wanting to take a chance at the spotlight.

Duffys Garage and Grille

Located in the downtown area, stop in for an after-dinner drink or enjoy an evening with friends and family at this amazing spot. Their menu features some mouth-watering pizzas, burgers, and finger-friendly eats. This rustic setting provides a calming atmosphere, great for gatherings. Be sure to take up a seat outside on the terrace if you want to enjoy the soothing winds that come off of the nearby bay.

H.O. Rose Room

Located in the Stafford’s Perry Hotel, this restaurant showcases some of Michigan’s classic meals with elegance and sophistication that can only be found at this landmark location. You can enjoy a stunning breakfast or lavish lunch while being able to enjoy the scenic view of Little Travers Bay. Come indulge in a sense of history as you eat in an opulent setting with some amazing selections from their menu.

J.W. Filmores

Found in the heart of the Petoskey downtown area, this family diner is a great place to stop and enjoy a hearty meal while spending your time doing some window shopping or enjoying an exciting trek through the historical sites. Their menu features some of the comfort food classics paired with homemade biscuits. Take some time to lounge about and enjoy the relaxing, homey atmosphere of Filmores before heading off to continue your adventure of the Little Travers Bay area.

Joses Authentic Mexican Restaurant

Family-owned and operated since 2005, this restaurant features some familiar Mexican-style dishes with a few unique ones thrown in for fun. They are known for their vast menu and handmade meals. They bring the spice of life that can only be found south of the border, but also offer an array of items who find their palates unable to handle the heat. Plus, their prices are easy on the wallet. Enjoy some festive eats and be sure to get a big bowl of cheese for your complimentary chips.

Knot Just a Bar

Wanting to enjoy some crafty cocktails in a seaside setting? Then head here for a chance to enjoy some great dining located by the Bay Harbor Marina. You can overlook the waterfront while munching down on some pizzas and burgers. Then, head out towards the downtown area, which is within walking distance from this popular spot. This is a wonderful idea for family and friends’ gatherings if you are looking for a casual and fun setting. Click here to read our First Timers Guide to Bay Harbor.

Mancinos Pizza & Grinders

A family-friendly restaurant, this is the place to go if you are looking for good Italian meals. From their grinders, pizzas, and pasta, Mancinos is a wonderful place to go if you are wanting a nourishing meal that won’t drain on your budget. Be sure to try their calzones, which are made from scratch and to order. Feel the welcoming spirit of the family that owns and operates it since its opening.

Mims Mediterranean Grill

(Body)Located off of US 31 North, Mim’s is a small, charming setting to enjoy some made-to-order Mediterranean meals. Their fair prices and quick service make them a place to go to if you need to eat in a hurry but don’t want to compromise on quality. They have both indoor and outdoor seating that is both equally enjoyable to have a flavorful meal. Both their wraps and plates are great to eat there or on the run with their to-go options.

Mitchell Street Pub

Known for their nightly specials, this is where you should go for some upscale diner food. Between their burgers, chilis, and nachos, you can find anything you like to tickle your tastebuds. They also have an array of salads and other less fattening options for those wanting a yummy meal but without the calories. Also, take a chance to indulge in their yummy desserts that will complete your eating experience. And don’t forget to pair it with a beer or cocktail from their rotating menu.

Noggins Room Pub

Found in the lower level of the Stafford’s Perry Hotel, this comfortable atmosphere is a great place to get off of your feet after some window shopping. They feature a selection of award-winning beers, both domestic and imported, while also having some upscale bar food. Also, be sure to try one of their two unique sundaes that will complete the truly unique experience.

Sazón Latin Cuisine

For those who are looking for something a bit off the beaten path of typical restaurant food, be sure to try Sazón’s Puerto Rican cuisine. Just an hour drive’s north of the Little Traverse Bay area, the food is truly an authentic experience of this South American culinary delight. Their flavors are bright and bold in each of their handmade dishes, but those not as adventurous will find some familiar Mexican-style dishes on their menu. Perhaps even try your hand at their unique Nutella coquito, which is like a “Puerto Rican egg nog” but better.

Side Door Saloon

Located within walking distance of the Little Traverse Bay and marinas, you will find a cozy-looking restaurant with a green exterior that invites all (friends, family, sports fans, and more) into a relaxing and fun environment. Their menu is filled with some mouth-watering burgers and incredible seafood dishes. They even have some fun appetizers that one would not normally think of trying but give it a chance and you will find some amazing things to eat. Plus, their prices are budget-friendly. Make sure to stop in and a family meal or get together with your buddies and watch the latest sports match.

Tap 30 Pourhouse

Found in downtown Petosky, this pub serves over 30 craft beers that are rotated throughout the seasons. They are also paired with foods that are locally harvested and go great with what they have on tap. Their rustic setting of exposed bricks and wood only sets enhances the experience. You’ll also enjoy their patio setting which offers a great view of the downtown area. Spend a relaxing evening with a beer and good friends.

Thai Orchid Cuisine

For a healthy alternative to most mainstream foods, check out this great restaurant where you can try some authentic Thai meals prepared from scratch to order. They import ingredients straight from Thailand and use them to bring an authentic experience to their flavors that one can only get from it. Also, they use true heat woks, that are kept at around 700-degrees, to ensure that all meals retain their nutritional value while filling the space with the smells of some amazing dishes.

Up in Smoke BBQ and Catering

Opened by Pit Master John Beach, this place features only the freshest and prime select cuts of meat that are all hand-trimmed and smoked in their in-house smoker for the best quality of barbecue Michigan has ever seen. Their special recipe BBQ sauce contains the perfect balance of both sweet and tangy flavors, making it great for beef, chicken, and pork dishes. Plus, their handmade sides are just the perfect complement to everything they make. Be sure to keep an eye out for their mouth-watering daily specials.

Vintage Chop House

A classic all-American steakhouse and bar that has all of the charm and appeal of a vintage-style retreat where you can indulge and unwind from a long day of site seeing. Be sure to keep an eye on their seasonal menu for some new creations while also enjoying a few of their classic dishes. Each piece of meat is hand-picked by the chef and cooked to perfection as it is ordered. This is a wonderful place if you are looking for a romantic evening of splendor and indulgence.

If you're looking for the perfect place to eat in Northern Michigan, click here to contact the Northern Michigan Escapes concierge

Posted by Brook Walsh on


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