These Are the Best Hole-In-The-Wall Bars in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula
Visiting Michigan's Upper Peninsula and want to spend some quality time with real Yoopers? Check out these authentic and best-in-the-UP obscure hole in the wall bars as suggested by reddit users.
Longbranch Saloon in Faithorn
Turn off US 2 at Main Street in Hermansville and several twists and turns down County Road 388 takes you to the crossroads of Faithorn just before the the Menominee River and the Wisconsin border. Faithorn's claim to fame is the Longbranch Saloon. Fans on Facebook say:
The Longbranch is a must stop! The burgers are delicious, the beer is cold, and the perch fry is outstanding! DeeDee is the BEST bartender in the north woods! Be sure to ask for her! The service and food never fails to deliver!
Best food in the World, best service in the world. It's not stuffy in there. Awesome prices. My favorite place and I know food!!!!!
Gay Bar in Gay
Let's get this out of the way first: "The town was named for Joseph E. Gay, a director of the Mohawk and Wolverine Mining Companies. He explored the area that was eventually used for mining and milling."
Gay in the Keweenaw Peninsula way off the beaten patch about 15 miles outside of Lake Linden. As /u/Germfask62 says, "You really have to want to go to the Gay Bar to get there, but it's worth a trip."
From a fan on Yelp:
Dive bar heaven! Get the onion rings no matter what else you order, they are homemade and delicious! Hamburgers were cooked perfectly. Bun was fresh! They make their own pizzas! They are known for their hot dogs. One whole page of their menu is hotdogs done different ways. Generous pour on the mixed drinks.
Out of the way but worth it if you are into good dive bars.
Bear Belly Bar in Lac La Belle
Elsewhere in the Keweenaw is Lac La Belle and, like Gay, is well off the state highway system. Actually its Gay-Lac La Belle road that is the only road along the southern shore of the Keweenaw. Curve around the lake for the Bear Belly at the dead-end of Superior Street.
If you are looking for a place with that true north woods feel this is the place. The dining area over looks the Lake and is surrounded by pine trees. The burgers were homemade and very tasty. We had the Greek burger and the haystack and a couple of craft beers. It was not crowded for lunch, but I can imagine this place can be a fun time in the summer weekends with boaters and cabin guests as well as the trail riders. - Yelp
Rainbow Bar in Ishpeming
Shelly's Rainbow Bar is a quintessential neighborhood hang-out in Ishpeming. It might get a little cramped when a band is playing. And if you get hangry over that, Buck's Subs is the Rainbow's Canda Street neighbor.
Rusty Saw Blade in Amasa
Blink and you'll miss Amasa when passing by on US 141. Turn off the highway on Pine Street and you'll see the jumpingist joint in town is the Sawblade. This Yelp reviewer raves
Friendly bar staff, excellent hot roast beef sandwich with real good Yukon Gold mashed potatoes. This place has been here for many years but I have to say this the best food it has ever served.
Wooden Nickel in Iron River
Well not Iron River, but outside of town and the city's former suburb of Mineral Hills, the Wooden Nickel is on Gibbs City Road a hike from US 2. It's close enough to the Wisconsin border to have some on-point cheese curds.
Wooden Nickle is by far the best place in the UP. The service is beyond compare. The staff is one of the reasons we attend regularly. Finally, the food is excellent! Recommend burgers, chili, steak sandwiches and fries! - Yelp
Randville is on the beaten path, M-95, but nowhere near much of anything about 12 miles north of Iron Mountain.
I think it is one of the best burgers in the U.P....what could make it better ? Quality beef, flavorful, incredible baked bun, good 1/2 pound size, crisp fresh toppings.... definitely a great burger. - Yelp
Neighborhood Bar in Laurium
Here's another place to check out if you're in the Keweenaw. But know before you go, that it might not be open all the time. /u/dapa4 says,
Well, it's about the most pathetic excuse for a bar I can think of. It's only open sometimes. Not much selection for drinks. Don't ask for a glass. Pool is free though and it's a nice table
Knotty Pine Bar in Arnold
The Knotty Pine might be the most out of the way bar in the entire UP, perhaps easier to reach via a snowmobile trail than a road. It's on County Road 426 or Trail 33. The little hamlet that can claim the Knotty Pine is Anrold and it's somewhere in the central UP south of Marquette and Gwinn.
But if you can find it, this Google review says,
Just an all around great bar, way out in the middle of nowhere. Very good food and generous drinks at a good price.
Rosseau Bar in Mass City
Rosseau is south of M-32. You know it's out of the way when their slogan is "it's never too far to the Rosseau Bar." The Rosseau was featured by MLive as one of Michigan's best neighborhood bars. This reviewer raves:
Awesome dive bar in the middle of nowhere! Great place to stop for food, nice burgers, huge nachos and a nice selection of beer. Keweenaw Brewing Co. is available. Rocco the dog will come visit your table.
T-shirts are available as well as hats. Stormy Cromers too! The pool table is up on wood blocks of varying sizes because the floor is so unlevel! An unbelievable place but worth the search!
JJ's Yale Bar in Bessemer
JJ's might be within the Bessemer city limits, but old-timers still consider the south-side neighborhood of Yale, built up around a mine first active in the 1890s. Expect a mix of locals a few adventurous tourists looking for some local flavor.
Honorable Mention - Chuckwagon in Spread Eagle, Wisconsin
Travel across the Upper Peninsula on US 2 and you dip out of Michigan for 14 miles between Iron Mountain and Crystal Falls. Along that stretch in Cheeseland, you'll find the Chuckwagon.
Walking up to the place it has a smell that you just know your about to get good food. It reminded me of a place back home with some of the best burgers I have ever had. That being said these were better! We got the pickles, and the trail blazer both amazing. My kiddos got a cheeseburger and the hot dog again they didn't disappoint. My burger was the whistle stop and I loved it. This place is totally worth the short drive outside of Iron Mountain. The best part? The prices are super reasonable. This place is one you shouldn't miss. I would give it more stars if possible!!!! - Yelp
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