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Anything New in the Leelanau Area? [Peninsula/Traverse City]

My boyfriend and I vacation in the Traverse City/Leelanau Peninsula area every summer. We haven't been there in a year. We have our favorite spots (A Cook's House, Black Star Farms, La Becasse, Stella's and Art's Tavern) but were wondering if anything new and tasty has opened up over the past year? We are pretty much open to any type of cuisine and are willing to go anywhere on the Peninsula or in Traverse City.


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  1. Have you been to Mission Table/Jolly Pumpkin on the Mission Peninsula? It's not new, but seems like it would fit into your favorites list.

    1 Reply
    1. re: tokyo

      Yes we've eaten there before and it's good. My boyfriend lives in Ann Arbor and we go to the Jolly Pumpkin there a lot so we usually avoid it Up North.

    2. Haven't been yet, but there is a new Italian place in Lake Leelanau (the narrows) on the hill above Dick's Pour House. The setting is great, the wine list all Tuscan and the menu looked on the expensive side. Will try it soon.

      La Becasse is the favorite in the area, especially when the weather permits dining on the porch. Cook's is excellent also. Stella has been very disappointing on the last two visits.

      3 Replies
      1. re: jock

        The name had escaped me when I first posted. It is called Bella Fortuna North, apparently unrelated to another place with the just the name Bella Fortuna. Both Becasse and Cook's are somewhat lacking in atmosphere while BFN excels. If the food is up to snuff it will be a real winner.

        P.S. If you go or if anyone else has been yet, please report. TIA

        1. re: jock

          For reference, here's their website:


          The paparadelle with boar ragu sounds awesome.


        2. re: jock

          Oh that sounds right up our alley! Please let me know if you try Bella Fortuna.

        3. I heard the folks that own Le Becasse just opened a new french bistro in Traverse City. I think it's called Bistro Foufou. We loved Le Becasse so we are hoping this is equally as good. Here's an article: http://glenarborsun.com/country-bird-...

          Has anyone tried it?

          2 Replies
            1. re: jock

              Please make sure to report back. Their website doesn't have a menu or anything.

          1. Just posted a long report on BFN in a separate thread. Bottom line - wait until next year to before giving it a try.

            Foufou tonight. Will report.

            1. Foufou report posted in a new thread. Do not miss Foufou - it ROCKS!

              1. Just realized the former exec chef and sous chef from Bay Leaf are now at Bistro FouFou. Much as I cringe at the name of the place and fear the owners' strong French-ness will limit the North African accent I so relished at Bay Leaf, FouFou has now risen to the top of my "must try" list.

                I mean, FouFou, really? Brings to mind the children's song "Little Bunny Fou Fou," or snickering at some guy out walking a pink poodle ...

                1 Reply
                1. re: ak994

                  foufou is french slang for flighty or scatterbrained. think it is also a term for hummingbird. Becasse translates to woodcock but it also is used to describe a woman as silly. becassine was/is a comic book charater who was/is a silly girl.

                2. Anyone tried Georgina's in TC? I've seen the photos, but wonder what all is in some of the dishes. Lasagne made with plantains sounds great, though not so much if it also involves traditional Italian red sauce. Some of the asian dishes look very ordinary, though of course the flavors may surprise.

                  7 Replies
                  1. re: ak994

                    I know this is an old thread but I had to answer. I had the misfortune of dining at Georgina's. We were on vacation, the reviews were stellar, I was excited. I grew up on plantains, rice and beans and this was right up my alley. I didn't care if the place was small, I just wanted a good meal.

                    First the food is over priced. I know the area costs, but part of the cost is the atmosphere. $5.95 for two diet cokes was crazy. Second, the food was just bad. Did we catch the chef on a (real) bad night? The rice in both dishes tasted as if it was reheated several times, it was old. The beans, while tasting okay, were very watery. My husbands carne asada wasn't grilled but looked gray and oily. The tortillas were greasy, wet and disintegrated as we tried to eat them.

                    Like I said, off night? Overhyped? Padded reviews? I was left speechless as I never had a more disappointing, bad meal.

                    1. re: libgirl2

                      Thanks for bumping this thread actually since we are heading back up to Leelanau at the end of August and hear that there are a ton of new restaurants in Leelanau area/Traverse City.

                      Anyone try anything delicious?

                      We've been hearing good things about 9 Bean Row.

                      1. re: Elyssa

                        My manager who comes from Michigan highly recommended Amical and Red Ginger both in Traverse City. Though Red Ginger might still be closed. They had some structural issues that occurred during some remodeling. We seemed to gravitate more toward pub food places especially after the Georgina's fiasco. I think that experience scared us off of trying anything different, even though we are adventurous eaters. We really enjoyed North Peak Brewing Company.

                        1. re: libgirl2

                          Red Ginger is open.
                          Amical is great food. It's a scene though. Well Red Ginger is a scene too.

                          1. re: Markcron

                            Have you tried anything NEW new. The Franklin? Big Papas? 9 Bean Row? etc

                            1. re: Elyssa

                              Sorry, no, I haven't even been to TC area since January.
                              Planning to go later this month.

                            2. re: Markcron

                              I think DH and I are too old for the scene :)