Monday, May 26, 2008

Good Eats Up North

We ate very well indeed up north -- even our do-it-yourself breakfasts with locally baked bread and black cherry jam -- but two restaurants stood out for us.

One morning we changed up by having breakfast at the Good Harbor Grill in Glen Arbor. FT had a Greek omelet, seasoned with Greek spices and filled with feta, tomato and spinach. I had crabcake eggs Benedict. These were both absolutely fabulous, and the cafe atmosphere is very cozy and charming, with the work of local artists and fun fishing and beach motifs on the walls. I also found myself eyeing our neighbors' wholegrain pancakes with some envy. The breakfast menu also includes egg or tofu scrambles of various kinds, and traditional egg/bacon/sausage plates with vegetarian meat analog options. We'd definitely eat breakfast here again; and the lunch menu looked promising as well.

En route home today we stopped in Frankfort to eat lunch at The Fusion, an Asian-fusion restaurant we really enjoy. Sadly, it was closed for the holiday -- but we did find a place to eat at a local institution that, amazingly, we've never visited before: The Betsie Bay Inn , an historic hotel and restaurant in downtown Frankfort, near the beach. The charming building has recently gotten a new paint job that's restored it to what I suspect nears its original Victorian glory; and the casual dining room is also vintage-cozy, done up in nautical colors and a maritime motif featuring model ships and framed antique postcards of the Benzie County area. We had a simple meal -- a corned beef rye panini with sweet-sour red cabbage and cheese. I had cream of pimento soup; FT had the house onion soup; both were outstanding. I appreciate restaurants located in lovingly restored old buildings; I also appreciate small touches like high-quality potato chips on the side of a sandwich, instead of the smashed and stale food- service chips that usually accompany lunch plates, that hint that if we ever visit the formal dining room for dinner we'll also get a good meal.

Two thumbs up for both of these restaurants.

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