I went in June on a package deal to the Grand Hotel which (unfortunately) included breakfast and dinner in the main dining room -- seating what looked to be 300-400 people at a time. The food at the Grand, to put it nicely, is what I imagine nursing home food to be. Our hotel room, the view and the pool were beautiful though.
We had two lunches outside of the Grand's main dining room. The first was at the Grand Hotel's Gate House restaurant. We had a bowl of cream of whitefish soup and split the Waygu beef burger with fries. Both were delicious. (And sadly the only good food we had on the island.) We had two drinks, the Michigan Cherry Martini and the Mackinaw Blueberry Martini. Both drinks were great, but the cherry martini with macerated cherries was exceptional.
The other lunch we had was at the Pink Pony. Nothing you couldn't find at any Big Boys. And Big Boys probably does
1 Grand Ave, MacKinac Island, MI 49757
I second the St. Ignace ferry suggestion.
My wife and I spent a few days of our honeymoon on Mackinac Island. Meals we remember and enjoyed:
Carriage House Dining at the Iroquois hotel - wonderful meal, great service... highly recommended for a "fancy" dinner. Cool sunken bar with well-made cocktails. Only downside (if you're not staying at the Iroquois) is they restrict the outdoor dining area to guests of the hotel. (This might be the place GoalieJeff recalls...)
Yankee Rebel - Another good dinner spot, more casual than the Iroquois.
Pub & Oyster bar - had lunch there... good selection of beers, tasty pub food.
The "Irish Pub" mentioned by CW1201 is Patrick Sinclair's - I remember having to decide between this place and Pub & Oyster for a lunch... it was a tough call!
We stayed at the Lake View, which I understand had renovated and changed their restaurant(s) since we were there, but at the time of our visit we weren't impressed at all with the Pilot House ("wasted" a breakfast there) - their restaurant at the time.
We had drinks at the Pink Pony, which i was hoping would be something a little more special. Oh well. Live music was fun, though.
Agree on the Carriage House. Good, classic cocktails, excellent water views (we watched the moonrise) and perfectly cooked steaks. I was expecting so-so because of the island setting and limited choices but I was really pleasantly surprised by all the deliciousness. The menu is pretty traditional, yet it felt special. A good Ender to the meal: homemade hot fudge sundaes and letting us take our drinks to the room.
Just eat fudge the whole time!! lol Think there is bout 10 fudge shops. We like Patrick Sinclair's Irish Pub.
The Irish Pub is a great place for laid-back fun. They have tons of paraphanilia involving the Irish, and there is often live entertainment. This is quite possibly my favorite restaurant on the island, just because of its lively atmosphere and the friendly wait staff. It's even one of the few restaurants open during the winter, and the people there are as cheery in December as they are in July.
The Potato Soup in a Sourdough Breadbowl-- their potato soup is amazing (in true Irish fashion) and the breadbowl is just an added bonus. I've been eating this for years and it hasn't got old; in fact, it may have gotten better.
Don't remember the name of the place , but the big white resort/hotel on the left of the main docks as you pull into the harbor had some pretty good food when we went there B.K. ( before kids ) They have a casual dockside grill which is ok and much like the rest of the touristy fare you are stick with on an island , not bad , but nothing to go out of your way for . The main dining room of the hotel was a step above . Other than a whitefish pate appetizer and a great bottle of summery Leelanau white , I don't remember exactly what we ate , but I know it was good , and , again , a step up from the pub style burger fare it was surrounded by . If you want to slum it up , please try Scalawag's in Mac City . Excellent fried whitefish , very casual , but seriously good .
The Irish Bar on the main drag has a nice selection of beers and a good atmosphere (we didn't eat there). We did eat at a place sort of across the street that advertised giant burgers, very mediocre. We loved the Island. We took the ferry from St. Ignace, way less crowded than in Mackinaw City.