If you’ve been following our adventures across Michigan over the years, you know we like to take a trip or two up North every summer. In planning our latest culinary journey, we realized mid-Michigan was criminally underrepresented on our interactive map and in our spotlights. We’re equal opportunity eaters and drinkers, so we decided this needed to be remedied.
While planning our latest journey through the heart of Michigan, Lake City became a target for an overnight visit for the nostalgia factor. One-half of the Michigan Chews & Brews crew vacationed in the quaint little town as a child.
After spending nights in Lansing and Cadillac, we brimmed with anticipation as we arrived in Lake City to flashbacks of sunburns, sandcastles, bonfires, and ice cream cones.
What’s a team of fun-loving foodies to do when they arrive in a lakefront town? Grab a beer and some local grub, of course!
We targeted the Food Factory & Pub in Lake City for two reasons: It was walkable from our motel (fairly important) and they had an outdoor deck facing Lake Missaukee (a necessity).
The sun was shining and it was Friday afternoon, so an ice cold beer was in order. We took our time sipping suds on the Food Factory’s spacious deck facing the water.
After working up an appetite — hey, drinking beer is hard work — we decided to order some food. The menu seemed fairly standard for a casual restaurant or pub, but our Perch Basket and Grilled Shrimp appetizer impressed us with their freshness and quality.
After sparking up a conversation with our waitress, we got to meet the owner, John Miller. We always love chatting with staff and owners (don’t be shy, y’all). He has owned the Food Factory & Pub for 20 years and was the brainchild behind the tasty menu and fabulous deck.
Miller saw that our table was missing an order of the Food Factory’s famous Frickles, so he sent out some for us to try.
We have to be honest: Their Frickles are one of the best appetizers that we’ve had in Michigan. The egg roll shell is a crispy capsule for the melted Swiss cheese, ham, and pickle. Miller said that people come from near and far to get their Frickle fix; folks passing through will make a special stop just to devour them. They actually have an employee just to make Frickles over the 4th of July weekend because it’s so hard to keep up with demand.
During our chat with Miller, we learned that they had their own beer in the works with help from Mountain Town Brewing Company in Mt. Pleasant. By this time next year, the Food Factory & Pub plans to have three of their own brews on tap.
Needless to say, our Lake City 2.0 experience started out on the right foot at the Food Factory & Pub. Next time you’re in the vicinity, we recommend you stop by for an order of Frickles and a pint of their new brew.