This Lake Huron town sorely needed an eatery like this for people who love organic, fresh, flavorful, locally sourced food.
Longtime vacationers in this area don't come for the dining scene. Until recently, your choices included McDonald’s, a Thai-Chinese place, several locally owned family-style restaurants with mediocre food, and a pizzeria.
So it was with great anticipation that we walked into the Chicory Cafe, and it did not disappoint. Large plate glass windows let in enough daylight to make the Mason jars repurposed into light fixtures unnecessary. Floral sprigs in bottles sit on tables of reclaimed barn cedar logs, and oversize photographs done by a local artist dot the walls along with an herb-filled wall garden. The artwork, on loan from the Domici Gallery next door, was available for sale.
Patrons scan chalkboard menus before placing their orders. The Chicory accommodates meat eaters, vegetarians and vegans, which is a rarity in this part of northern Michigan. You have two choices for breakfast: egg, bacon and cheeses on sourdough or a cream cheese and jelly panini. For lunch, choose from two soups, one always vegetarian, and sandwiches made with deli meat, hummus, salmon and Michigan bison meat loaf (served with a side of potato salad, pasta salad or cole slaw). The prices are fair: $8.75 for full sandwiches and $4.95 for half. We tried the Italian Cheesy Panini, Lake Huron Smoked Whitefish and the breakfast egg sandwich. All were delicious.
Have a sweet tooth? Pies, muffins, pastries or scones prices range from $2.25 to $4.50. The white chocolate cherry scones were delightfully light and flaky. Wash everything down with fair-trade coffee, lemonade, iced tea or organic soda. Work off your meal or snack by strolling to the lakefront or browsing in nearby art galleries and gift shops.