Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Eating your way through Door County, Wisconsin

Driving through coastal communities with names like Sister Bay, Egg Harbor, and Fish Creek was my first clue that Door County, Wisconsin would be a delightful destination with plenty of small-town friendliness and intriguing dining experiences. The Door does not disappoint.
Taste the cherry jam!
While visitors come for the peninsula’s 300 plus miles of shoreline, state parks, historic lighthouses, art galleries, wineries, theater, and shopping, Door County offers a variety of culinary options. For example:
  • Lautenbach’s Orchard Country Winery and Market—Everything’s coming up cherries here. Take a tour of the 50-year-old orchard and cider mill.  See how the fruit is picked and packaged, sample pies still hot from the oven, and then buy scrumptious cherry jam, dried cherries, or cherry wines to take home. Better yet, have a cherry picnic on premises.

Cream cheese filled cherry French toast
  • An authentic fish boil at the Old Post Office Restaurant in Ephraim is an experience unique to Door County. Whitefish freshly caught by local fishermen is cooked with onions and potatoes outside over a wood fire just as it was by the Scandinavian settlers.  A spectacular ending involves a “boil-over,” with flames shooting in the air to expel oils from the fish. The result is a delicious, mild-tasting main course, served with plenty of local sides and cherry cobbler for dessert.
  • White Gull Inn in Fish Creek is home to “America’s Best Breakfast” as voted by Good Morning America a few years ago.  Order the specialty, cream cheese-filled cherry French toast, for a sweet morning treat.  Beats pancakes any day. In winter, cozy up to the fireplace to start your day with a warm heart and full tummy--as visitors have done since 1896.
  • Wilson’s Restaurant and Ice Cream Parlor in Ephraim features home-brewed draft root beer. A Door County landmark since 1906, Wilson’s specializes in ice cream treats like Cherry Berry Delight, Classic Turtle Sundae, thick floats and malts—and music from old-time jukeboxes. Sit outside under classic red and white striped awnings and bask in remembrances from years past—or just pretend you’re living in the good old days.
  • Sip Fred and Fuzzy’s famous cherry margarita while listening to live music at the Waterfront Bar and Grill in Sister Bay. It’s the perfect way to while away a summer evening.
  • Feel like splurging?  Head to Harbor Fish Market and Grill in Baileys Harbor for an evening of exceptional waterfront dining. Wander the garden area outside, or just enjoy the view from large windows indoors. Cherry martini, anyone?
  • Fine dining is also available.
    Relax by the bay with a cherry
  • Be sure to sample the whitefish chowder, a menu item at The Cookery Restaurant and Bar in Fish Creek since 1977. It’s a homey place, but the food is superb. Their bacon wrapped dates basted in maple syrup and Dijon are to-die-for.
  • Photos by Larry and Beverly Burmeier

1 comment:

Rosemary said...

Fantastic! I'll be teaching an art workshop in Door County in August - I'll have to check out your suggestions!