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Oct 13, 2008 02:19 PM

Recommendations for Northern MI: Harbor Springs, Petoskey, Good Hart, etc.

Hi. My family and I are spending some time in Good Hart this week/weekend and would love your recommendations for dining in the area. We're renting a house and will do some cooking on our own, but will also eat out fairly often. Also, my husband and I are going to try to have a nice dinner (without kids) one evening --- any suggestions? Thanks in advance.

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  1. Drive up to Cross Village and eat at Legs Inn. A one of a kind Polish restaurant on a spectacular site. Check to be sure they are open as they do close for the winter. In Harbor Springs you can't go wrong at the New York or the Pier. The Pier is one of the Stafford places and the New York does more of a "gourmet" approach. We liked taking our kids to the Crow's Nest when they were young because it had good pIzza and also good whitefish, but I haven't been there in years. Kids would also like the pizza at Turkey's in HS. Petoskey has lots of great places as well - e.g., Two other Stafford places, The Perry Hotel, which has a very nice dining room for your night without kids, and a sports bar type place in the basement with good adult food and appropriate for kids., and The Bay View Inn, a romantic old inn on the bay. Another nice spot for the family is the City Park Grill, with a historic bar where Hemingway hung out. The food is good and pretty reasonable. Finally, north of Harbor Springs, the Fish has reopened. I haven't been there but maybe someone will opine. You should have a great time and the color (and food) will be spectacular.

    6 Replies
    1. re: sammy o

      Thanks very much for the recommendations. It looks like we have plenty of options from which to choose. Are you in the area? Should we expect most of these places to be open this late in the season? Also, can we still expect good color?

      1. re: angiemail

        Unfortunately,I am not in the area. We have a condo near Harbor Springs that we don't get to often enough. Of the restaurants I mentioned, only Legs Inn closes for the winter. Tapawingo and Rowe Inn would be quite a drive from Good Hart, so I didn't mention them. I am not sure of the status of Tapawingo - the chef left and they were closed for a while. I think there will still be color depending on the weather. Enjoy and report back on your dining.

        1. re: sammy o

          City Park Grill is a great casual spot with more than decent eats. They serve freshly made biscuts that are wonderful.

          Tapawingo is open and there has been a change in chefs. Dinner at Tapawingo is really, really worth the drive from Good Hart and the setting is incredible.

          1. re: luckygirl

            We're really enjoying our visit and the colors are outstanding. We're even getting some sunshine as I write. Coincidentally, my husband picked up carry-out from City Park Grill last night after searching for something open late. The biscuits (and the fish and the cobbler) were delicious. As we were able to get a babysitter, we are making the trek to Tapawingo tonight. Looking forward to it (and to trying some of the closer recommendations). Thanks again, everyone, for taking the time to reply.

            1. re: angiemail

              Glad to hear that the color is still there. Its a wonderful time to visit Northern Michigan. Be sure to take the drive on119 from HS to Cross Village even if you don't eat at Legs Inn. It is rated as one of the 10 best fall drives in the US>

            2. re: luckygirl

              I'm so glad you (all) pushed for Tapawingo. We had an outstanding evening that we wish we could have repeated. Still, we're grateful that we were able to enjoy the restaurant before it closed.

      2. For the nice dinner, one of the best restaurants in the state is close by - Tapawingo, in Ellsworth. Rowe Inn, also in Ellsworth, is pretty darn good, too.

        1 Reply
        1. re: nsxtasy

          Thanks for these additional recommendations. It seems like quite a hike to Ellsworth from Good Hart. Judging from the web sites, it must be worth it!

        2. You were asking about color. We were treated this past weekend to a color tour, by air, of lower MI. The best colors, by far, were in the area that you are staying. They were just spectacular! Hopefully the weather will cooperate for you.

          1 Reply
          1. re: grouper

            Thanks for the info! We don't mind the chill as long as the trees hold some of their leaves...