The Border Grill: Fresh and Inexpensive Mexican
I'll never eat at Taco _ell again! The Border Grill specializes in tasty fresh and reliable Mexican dishes, rapidly served but individually prepared. The owners have recently relocated to Marquette from California, and are proud of having neither microwaves nor fryers in their restaurant. Many people in Marquette say that this is their favorite local restaurant.
Border Grill has two locations in the city of Marquette. One is on Washington Avenue, next to Walgreens and across from ShopKo. It's the larger of the two. The other location is on Third Street, in the Village Shopping District, and is very popular with the students and staff of NMU. The Third Street location has Rotisserie Chicken available after 5 pm.
Favorite Dish: My favorites are the Veggie Quesadilla and the Gournet Chicken Burrito. None of the entrees on the menu are more than $5.00!
- Food and Dining
The Coney Joint: Great dogs, great fries!
These dogs have got the snap. You know...that perfect bite that a great hotdog has! It can be hard to find, but when you do find it, you appreciate it.
My husband and I have come here several times: the dogs rock! Their Chicago Dog is spot-on, down to the poppyseed buns and even the celery salt; The Detroit Style Coney Dog is just as you'd suspect: messy, cheesy, coney goodness; but watch those Kraut Dogs...make sure the kraut is nice and fresh (apparently, they're not that popular up this way). The onion rings & fries are perfect! Surprisingly - there's a couple of salads and some Greek specialties on the menu as well (not to mention sliders and chicken sliders). Plus, if you can't get out to get them, they'll deliver to you!
Favorite Dish: It's all good - love it!
- Family Travel
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Elizabeth’s Chop House: A Gourmet Treat
Open for lunch and dinner, Elizabeth’s Chop House is the place to go for that special meal. This restaurant is run by Certified Executive Chef Tom Wahlstrom and his wife Elizabeth, with the Chop House offering a fine dining experience with fresh seafood and steaks. You will also find pork chops, lamb chops, and chicken breast. For your salads, you will find a variety of in house made dressings. The presentation of the food is beautiful, and the quality is excellent. With Prime grade beef you can be sure that that your steaks will be excellent. Their prime rib is slow cooked in the traditional manner, and is outstanding. Go early if you are a prime rib fan, as it is available only as long as that day’s quantities last. If you love decant desserts, Elizabeth’s has some wonderful choices to choose from. Be aware, however, dessert cake portions are huge, so you may wish to get one cake with two forks if your appetite is not up to a large dessert.
The lunch menu offers appetizers found on the dinner menu, as well as some of the entrées and salads found on the dinner menu, along with sandwiches and burgers.
During warm weather you have the opportunity to dine outside on their back deck with a view of the lower Lake Superior Harbor.
Elizabeth’s is open Monday through Saturday 11AM to 10PM., and since there is no dress code, you do not have to worry about if you have brought appropriate clothing to dine at Elizabeth’s Chop House.
Favorite Dish: My favorite dinner is the slow cooked prime rib. For desert I like to share a moist, delicious carrot cake with my husband, or Crème Brulee, one of my all time favorite desserts.
- Food and Dining
The Vierling: Great Beer and Fresh Delicious Whitefish too!
A Local Brewery and Restaurant that has excellent beers and a beautiful old fashion bar that is a great place to hang out. It is a very busy place, I would recommend reservations on Friday and Saturday nights, and anytime there is an event in town.
Favorite Dish: The whitefish (cooked any way they prepare it) and of course the Beer-The Stout and the Blueberry Wheat are my favorites!
- Beer Tasting
The Portside Inn: Best Pizza and Breadsticks in MI
Small Local Restaurant/Bar that has that hometown comfortable feel, and very efficient service. Always has Bell's Beer on draft!
Favorite Dish: The Breadsticks are the BEST thing on the menu, and if you like breadsticks (who doesn't?) you can't miss these. Not only are they awesome, but the cheese spread that is served with them is to die for.
Coachlight: Greasy Spoon "Mom & Pop" place downtown
1950s Americana - and not in a museum, but on the main street of our small town. This is a place that really deserves to be in the formica hall of fame! When I see people wandering around downtown Marquette in the morning, looking for an inexpensive place for breakfast, I direct them to the Coachlight. Yes we do have a Perkins out on the highway, but why support corporate restauranting when you can go to a place where the waitress will call you "honey". NOTE FOR OLD-TIMERS: The Coachlight has voluntarily gone completely no-smoking. Yes, the times they are a-changing.
- Food and Dining
The Rubaiyat: For Something More Unusual
The Rubaiyat features Mediterranean, Indian, and Middle Eastern style foods. I have not eaten in many Middle Eastern restaurants, and I found the different flavors and combinations of food delicious and interesting. There are even some interesting beverages to choose from such as the Ruby Pomegranate Spritzer, which is delicious, and Basil Lemonade. Or try Masala Iced Tea, which is a sweetened black tea, cinnamon, cloves, and fruit juice. The menu includes appetizers, salads, full dinners, variety platters, sandwiches, and wraps. There is also a children’s menu that will give your child a choice of more common foods that he or she is use to eating, in the event that they do not wish to try something more unusual.
Favorite Dish: I haven’t eaten here enough times to pick a favorite entrée, however I absolutely love the Ruby Mixed Salad. This is a combination of mixed greens topped with Gorgonzola, strawberries, red onions, caramelized pecans, and pomegranate vinaigrette. Although you will find this listed under salads on the menu, when you order a dinner, you can choose this as your side salad. For appetizers I love the Briouats, which is deep-fried Moroccan pastry filled with ground lamb, pine nuts, and spices served with a spicy roasted red pepper dipping sauce. I enjoyed the Balti Shrimp last time I was there. This shrimp is simmered in a spicy coconut, tomato, and chili curry sauce and served over basmati rice.
- Food and Dining
Donckers!: Old school ice cream/sandwich shoppe
Bravo! After undergoing extensive (and expensive) renovations, Donckers Old Time Fudge shoppe is now an ice cream and sandwich shoppe as well. The new owners have poured a penny or two into restoring this place to its early 20th century look, with a marble-top ice cream counter, traditional pumps for syrup and soda, and real milkshake machines. Upstairs there is a sandwich counter with a large and comfortable seating area. It's great to see these old-time places flourishing - Donckers is a welcome addition to our lunch and snacking options!
- Food and Dining
L'Attitude Cafe: Interesting, but not that special.
It's cute and quaint in it's own way, but exceptionally loud; the wine bottles are stored for show and not for sale; and an air conditioner would be much appreciated. Overall the food is pretty good, and somewhat unique for the area, but overall it is not that inventive. My husband and I decided that the dinner options might best be experienced as tapas. We decided to go with the Jammin Fig Bruchette, the Cracked Olive Tapenade, the Sicilian Spicy Sausage, and two of the Steak Kabobs.
The Steak Kabobs had lovely grilled vegetables, but the steak was a bit tough even though it was only cooked medium. The twisted slaw that went with it was not very appetizing in appearance and had much too much sauce with it. The Sicilian Sausage was not very spicy, seemed like it could have been a local brand known as Mama Russo's and came with a couple of meatballs that were rather flavorful; however the arugula, walnut, apple, and mint relish seemed more like an overdressed arugula salad heavy on the red wine. The Fig Bruchette did have good flavor, although it greatly overpowered the goat cheese. A slightly tangier cheese would have been preferable. The Olive Tapenade was actually pretty good (even for someone who is not a fan of Olives). It was well balanced with the Feta in flavor although could have been a bit lighter on the tapenade.
We would go back for the appetizers (they have a nice cheese plate and a sausage tray that I would love to try) and possibly move on to another locale for dinner. I would suggest they become a full-on tapas bar and bring additional variety to the menu.
Other information (unfortunately, they have not yet bothered to create a virtual footprint for themselves):
Upfront & Company: Skip the dinner menu, but love the rest.
I've only had the pleasure of eating at the Upfront twice, but I would definitely go back. It's a small music venue (no bands during the lunch hour, but an eclectic mix of music over the sound system that seems to work - everything from country to classic rock to 1940s standards) with a stone and brick interior, unique tile work on the floors, and impressive stained-glass sconces on the walls.
The waitresses have been great, but the hostesses could brush-up on their abilities to make their patrons feel welcomed. The menu is traditional with a few unique twists (dinner menu includes all the lunch options) like Thai calzone, Pork Adobado, or an Asian Duck Salad. The appetizers are superb and the lunches lovely. Honestly, I could take or leave the dinner entrees (if you're looking for a great steak go to Elizabeth's): my porkchop was not quite cooked through and the macaroni & cheese is either Kraft or a Kraft substitute (seriously). Come as you are and enjoy...but leave the dinner menu to another locale.
Lunch items will cost about $9-10, dinner entrees about $13-20, appetizers $6-10.
Favorite Dish: The Spinach & Artichoke Dip is wonderfully presented with multicolored tortilla chips and shaved almonds sprinkled across the dish. This is the #3 best I've ever had...and I've tried many across the US.
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
- Business Travel
Chocolay Café and Bakery: You're not missing anything...
Note: This restaurant no longer exists, there is a new restaurant at this location.
There are private coves to be quiet in and a large sun-room to relax in. While the ambiance isn't bad, the food isn't great. My husband and I stopped for brunch one day and were rather disappointed. The homemade bread wasn't very tasty and the sample we were offered of some baked goods was lacking as well. We were excited that cappaccino was on the menu but were disappointed to discover that it came from a powdered envelope.
Although I haven't been, I understand that they are open all night on the weekends and cater to the student crowd.
L'Attitude: Cafe & Wine Bar in a great location
It's a Euro-cafe by day, stylin' and "scene-ish" bar at night: L'Attitude. Newly opened in December 2007, this place has swiftly established itself as a local favorite. At lunch, try out the generously portioned salads or the scrumptious pot pie. For dinner, L'attitude serves smaller plates that are tasty such as a plate of California rolls or Shrimp Scampi. The design and layout of the cafe is excellent: this used to be the ground floor of a warehouse, and before that, the waiting room for a commuter train! Exposed brick and original tiled flooring are complemented by soft-toned woods. And enormous picture windows look out over Elwood Mattson Park and Lake Superior!
- Food and Dining
The Vierling: Local Favorite: Brewpub and More
The Vierling Brewpub and Restaurant
The red brick walls and assortment of antiques create a warm ambience, much welcome on cold winter nights! The Vierling brews its own beers, and they also have a surprisingly good winelist.
Favorite Dish: The locally caught Whitefish, in a variety of different preparations; my favorite is Whitefish Almondine. (If that's not on the menu, try the Whitefirsh Picatta.) Of if you're not a fish person, the filet mignon is good.
Lagniappe: The New Cajun/Creole place
So far everyone I know is very impressed with the new Cajun/Creole place that opened in spring 2006. Myself included - if they keep up the quality, this will certainly become a staple of the U.P. dining scene. The food is quite good, the service attentive, and the atmosphere is charming in its own way.
Lagniappe - a creole word - is located in the basement of the "Matrix" nightclub in downtown Marquette. There was an Italian/pizza place here in the 1970s and 80s, but for the last 20 years the space was vacant. Recently, however, the young owner of the nightclub entered into a business venture with a local restauranteur, and the results seem very promising.
The large menu features favorites from the Gulf Coast, and the portion sizes seem to be enormous. Monday nights the restaurant features Louisiana-style music.
Notice: Lagniappe is open Monday through Friday, and is closed on the weekends. That's the way the owner-chef likes it. So be it!
- Food and Dining
Lagniappe: Now Serving, just not on Tap
Lagniappe now has a liquor license, but nothing on tap as of yet. Wide selection of beer, wine and spirits. The food is excellent, and really holds it's own against larger Cajun resteraunts like Poppadeux. The seafood fondeux as an appatizer is incredible and full of seafood as well as the crawfish nachos. The crabcakes are very flavorful. N.O.La (New Orleans, Louisianna) BBQ Shrimp are really good peel and eat shrimp in a buttery sauce. For those who like it a little lighter, the shrimp and bowtie pasta is a favorite. This is a great place for special occassions and well prepared dinners, and you can figure $30-$40 per person with an appetizer and drinks.
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