As many of you know, I'm from Grand Portage, MN. The border crossing into Canada is less than 5 miles from where I grew up. So we travel up the North Shore of MN quite frequently. We often stop to eat in Grand Marais, a beautiful little town right on Lake Superior, about 37 miles from Grand Portage. Dining options in Grand Marais vary from the great little breakfast spot (we like South of the Border) to several fine dining options. One of my favorites is My Sister's Place.
My Sister's Place has been open since 1998, and current owners Paul and Cara Sporn have owned the restaurant since 2005. Located at 401 E. Hwy 61, My Sister's Place is sort of at the edge of town on the way toward Grand Portage.
It's a laid back spot, with a funky decor. You'll see everything from tree trunk bar stools to fishing nets on the ceilings. There's a lot of north woods stuff everywhere.
See what I mean?
We ordered up a beer and took a look at the menu. There are lots of choices at this place.
The menu is pretty extensive - in the summer they have specials like fresh Lake Superior herring, which is an all time favorite of mine. You can't get fresher fish anywhere - it's usually caught that morning!
But the reason I like to stop at My Sister's Place is the burgers - their specialty - you'll find 24 unique burgers on the menu. There are some freaky ones, let me tell you - how about the Goober Burger, with peanut butter and mayo? My brother tried that one once and said it wasn't half bad. Andrew Zimmern of Bizzare Foods fame also had this burger and featured it on his show. They even have their version of a MN favorite, the Juicy Lucy. You'll also find 10 different hot dogs on the menu, including the North Shore Dog with Minnesota Wild Rice and mozzarella cheese.
There's a wide variety of appetizers, also salads, homemade soups, and lots of different sandwiches. They also serve a really good pizza and homemade calzones. Definitely something for everyone.
We started off with a big basket of onion rings. My mom just loves these, though she hardly eats onions in anything else. Go figure. They were hot and crispy and very tasty.
My mom ordered the Patty Melt. Instead of bread, they used a squished down hamburger bun - and they also put a lot of homemade thousand island dressing on this sandwich, so make sure you have lots of napkins - it's really messy!
I went with my usual burger order, a bacon cheeseburger. The burgers are 1/3 pound ground sirloin and they are huge. Cooked to order, the meat is very flavorful and they don't skimp on the toppings. Excellent fries, too.
Grant decided on the chili burger with the soup of the day, vegetable beef. Lots of chili and cheese on the burger, but not enough onions, he had to get more! The homemade soups are a treat, for sure.
It's quite the drive from central Iowa to Grand Marais, MN (takes me 9 hours to get all the way to GP), but when you get past Duluth it's so worth it - that Lake Superior view is something else. So if you ever find yourself in Grand Marais, MN, stop in for a burger at My Sister's Place. These Iowa Foodies have been doing just that for years.
Let us know if you've been 'up north' and where you've eaten. We can compare notes!
My Sister's Place
410 E. Hwy 61
Grand Marais, MN 55604
Open daily 11am - 9pm
Menus and more information at www.mysistersplacerestaurant.com