Your culinary adventure starts at Meuer Farm in Chilton just north of Brothertown. Late spring and summer pick your own strawberries, fall brings an amazing corn maze, shop at the Busy Bee Store for maple syrup, honey and specialty grains. Book a farm fresh, field-to-table dinner May through September prepared by a local chef. In the fall pick your own apples at Heritage Orchard offering award-winning apple cider and “addictive donuts.” Make a stop at Scoops Ice Cream House for award-winning ice cream. Explore the area for cheese shops, organic and natural health food stores, an old-time meat market and fresh produce farm markets. Two worth special mention are Grassway Organics, a certified organic dairy farm in New Holstein and Vern’s Cheese in Chilton where you can stock up on Wisconsin cheese, wine & craft beers and souvenirs. Did we mention a cooler is a requirement on this road trip to take home all the local goodies?
What better place to continue your sampling into the local foodie scene but in Calumet County – The Supper Club Capital of the Midwest! If you need to ask what is a “supper club?” then you are in for the surprise of your life. Words can’t describe it – you’ll just have to experience these multi-generational family-owned restaurants with popular menu items such as Old Fashioneds (a Wisconsin tradition), relish trays, mouth-watering steaks and seafood entrees, blended ice cream drinks – all at ridiculously affordable prices. Some of the local favorites are;
- Roepke’s Village Inn
- Schwarz’s Supper Club
- The Altona Supper Club
- Cobblestone Creek
- The Granary
- High Cliff Restaurant
- The Red Ox Seafood & Steakhouse
Rest and rejuvenate at one of the local motel/hotels, campgrounds or houses for rent.
Put the day in gear with breakfast at Mud Creek Coffee Café in Stockbridge for a latte and delicious breakfast sandwich. To understand the local food scene you need to know a little history of the area. While you may not recognize the term “Niagara Escarpment” you will certainly see for yourself the region’s unique typography locally known as “The Ledge.” The cool temperatures make grape growing possible which brings us to your next stop Quinney Estate Winery in Chilton. This small family-owned winery is open by appointment only so be sure to plan ahead. And be sure to stop at Rowland’s Calumet Brewing Company located in a historic firehouse in Chilton. Rowland brews over 35 varieties of beer and homemade root beer. Growlers make it possible to take home your favorite.
Stop for a pint at Dublin’s Irish Pub with 30 beers on tap. Then check-in to one of the many lodging options in Oshkosh – Wisconsin’s Event City in Winnebago County. After some R & R you’ll have a hard time choosing were to go to dinner. One spot in particular is worth mentioning – The Source Public House in Menasha where they work with local farmers, ranchers and fisherman on what they have to offer and then develop a menu around those items.
Here are some other local recommendations:
Up early for a home-cooked breakfast at Schreiner’s Restaurant, Bakery and Bernie’s Pub in Fond du Lac. Wisconsin Foodie featured this landmark for scratch-made meals. Don’t forget to have pie! Then head out to Ripon to make stops at Vines & Rushes Winery and the Knuth Brewing Company. From there head south to Waupun to shop at the Tom Dooley Orchard (open late August thru November) and Marshview Honey and Alpaca Farm (call for an appointment). Stop for lunch in Theresa at Confections for Any Occasion by Joel, a blind chocolatier who makes all the amazing treats and sandwiches plus houses an old-fashioned candy shop. Nearby stop at Widmer’s Cheese Cellars to see close-up the making of some of the Dairy State’s best classic cheese. Don’t forget that cooler!
As if you aren’t full enough no afternoon in Fond du Lac County would be complete without a stop at Kelley Country Creamery in Eden. Voted the Best Ice Cream in America by Good Morning America you have to try Leo’s Butter Pecan, along with many other delicious flavors crafted in the family creamery on the original homestead. It’s time to take a break and check-in to one of Fond du Lac’s hotels. No rest for the gourmand – it’s on to La Clare Farms in Malone to see the 400 goats being milked (4:30 pm). The Shoppe carries Wisconsin wines, craft beers and over 80 different cheeses. This one-of-a-kind goat milking facility and on-sit creamery has won international awards for their goat cheese.
To pick up on your supper club sampling we recommend a progressive dinner starting with a Bloody Mary, cold strawberry soup and fritters at Cedar Lodge in Brothertown, an Old Fashioned and appetizer at Jim & Linda’s Lakeview Supper Club (stay for the spectacular sunset over the lake) and on to Sunset On the Water Grill & Bar for the house specialty – prime rib or the family’s homemade gyros. Enjoy homemade desserts or an after-dinner drink while enjoying the lake views and breezes.