My husband and I are headed to Door County next week. We're staying in Fish Lake. Ideas for fun restaurants with good views, patio seating, other??
I don't care for Shipwrecked either. My favorite Door County restaurants, in no particular order:
-Al Johnson's (most touristy restaurant in Door County, but it does have good food and very fast service, once you're seated)
-Trio (great bistro-style meals; feels upscale, but isn't too pricey)
-Wild Tomato (Door County's answer to California Pizza Kitchen)
-Mission Grille (wonderful food, service and atmosphere, but kind of expensive; not a place to take the kids)
-JJ's (inexpensive casual dining, great place to take the kids, great service, average to good food)
-Summer Kitchen (IMO this place is unfairly bashed. Food is overpriced but good. Great sandwiches and soups.)
-Village Cafe in Egg Harbor (service can be slow, but this is one of the best breakfast/lunch spots on the peninsula)
-Door County Deli, Sister Bay
Best coffee shops:
-Glas in Sturgeon Bay
-Leroy's in Ephraim (is it still open?)
-Blue Horse in Fish Creek (get their red iced tea and chicken curry sandwich)
-Red Cup, Washington Island (friendly doesn't even begin to describe it)
Best ice cream:
-Door County Ice Cream Factory
-That frozen custard place near the water in Fish Creek; I can't recall the name
Restaurants I think are overrated/over-hyped:
-Not Licked Yet frozen custard
-Sister Bay Bowl (don't listen to anyone who tells you this place has great food; compared to the other restaurants in Door County, it doesn't.)
-Pelletier's (they give you a piece of bread from a cheap bagged loaf as the bread to go with your fish boil meal, and the service is spotty.)
-Sister Bay Cafe (I admit it's decent, and the service is good, but I don't understand the raves and glowing reviews -- I think it's over-hyped for what it is. I liked it better when it was Johnny's Cottage Restaurant. I know, I'm old and cranky.)
-Julie's Park Cafe in Fish Creek
-The Viking, Ellison Bay
The one place in Door County where you'd better lower your standards about what constitutes a good restaurant meal:
PC Junction is worth skipping I agree. It is dark, and too small to enjoy the train, and crowded at 2:30PM in very late August....not what I'd hoped for. We could have skipped it but needed lunch at that point. Wilson's the dessert is great and the only way to go as I've heard the food is not great. It makes a great dessert meal. We enjoyed it very much and the location.
Maenad, I confess I didn't want to come across too negative as we really do enjoy the area, but you've laid it out accurately in my opinion. But we all do have different ones, don't we.
Friends LOVE PC Junction and took us there, we were underwhelmed. I was looking forward to the Sister Bay Cafe so much last year, but was disappointed. It's really just a diner with a somewhat limited menu. (But I had fun in the gift shop). Wilson's? Worst burger ever.
Yes to Village Cafe, Door County Deli (we thought we "discovered" it two years ago). Now that I know we've got the same taste (unless you happen to like Illinois sports teams which will be nameless...) I'll have to try Trio and Mission Grille.
We've gotten burned on nicer meals so tend to go more casual. Someone raved about the Log Den. The building was really neat but the food was only so-so. Maybe we're a bit spoiled, but when we've gone to St. Augustine, Washington DC or Destin FL, we've consistently very good food. (Wow, I somehow feel really disloyal, after reading this post, but I stand by it.)
Frozen Tundra, I can only guess what your favorite football team might be ;) Will it help if I admit I'm a Bears fan but rooted for the Packers in the Super Bowl?
Let me know if you run across any other hidden gems in terms of Door County restaurants. I'm headed up there again in August. I appreciate the heads up on the Log Den; I had considered trying it. Next up on my list to try is Donny's Glidden Lodge; I've never been there.
Definitely go to Trio; you won't be disappointed! I have never had a bad meal or poor service there.
Well....I guess it helps a little bit. Donny's is an interesting place, a definite throw back to the traditional supper club. Very friendly, when we were there definitely a much older crowd. Lots of steaks, baked potatoes etc. We really liked the resort itself. It's a beautiful location, on the water, lots of trees but open areas also. It was higher than we usually pay but we may try and stay there sometime in the future. The location is a bit tricky to find, just because it's off the main drag.