Cherry Pie in the UP
We'll be visiting Marquette, MI for a week or so. I am thrilled to relax and, more importantly, to enjoy all the regional foods (cudighi, pasties, whitefish, nisu......) discussed on Chowhound.
I have seen no mention however of cherries in the area. Whenever I think of Michigan I think cherries, and cherry pie and dried cherries. Is this not a culinary tradition of the UP, or is it so commonplace as to be unremarkable? Any suggestions would help.
Also, is fish fry on Fridays a tradition that extends to the UP?
Thanks for all your patience with naivete.
Nope, the cherry trees are in the more temperate northwestern L.P. Not saying you won't find a cherry pie, but the roadside cherry stands, etc., are all farther south. Fruit delicacies in the U.P. tend more to berry products, including the expensive-but-worth-it jam made from the elusive thimbleberry.
As for local specialties, I went once again to The Italian Place in downtown Marquette recently and was again impressed by it. You might not think of an Italian restaurant as a place for local U.P. foods, but they claim that they'll cook whitefish in a greater variety of ways than anywhere else in the U.P.--however you want it cooked, basically--and they use other local ingredients.
The homebrewed beer and root beer at the Vierling are also good.
New York Deli & Italian Place
115 W Washington St, Marquette, MI 49855
re: Jim M
You'll find everything cherry related in Traverse City, but the UP is not cherry country.
But you will definitely find whitefish in every form and at every meal. If someone offers you whitefish spread, that's heaven on a cracker. As for sauces, I've even had whitefish with cherry sauce.
Very good pasties at Muldoon's on the approach to Munising in case you're out that way. Much better than the disappointing versions at Jean Kay's in Marquette. Did not have a chance to try Lawrys. Great breakfasts and baked goods at Sweet Water Cafe. Also, check out the terrific ice cream at Jilbert's on the W side of town.
Fish fry is very big in the UP. I like to go to the Northland Pub, which is in the Landmark Hotel on Third Street (just up the street from the Italian Place.)
Locals love the fish fry at Vango's, which is on Third Street in "the Village" - it's a little more "greasy spoon" - but a real community tradition.