Mt. Pleasant, located in the middle of the mitten, is an easy drive from just about anywhere in Michigan. Being a college town, Mt. Pleasant is home to Central Michigan University and offers dining experiences suitable for college students. More importantly, however, parents of college students will find a wide range of dining encounters that are not to be missed.
The Mt. Pleasant area and Isabella County farms yield fresh produce for weekly Farmers’ Markets in the summer and fall and for local restaurants that promote buying and eating local. I can personally attest to the delicious fact of Michigan-grown cherries and Pure Michigan Maple Syrup.
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7 Must-visit Restaurants in Mt. Pleasant, MI
125 E Broadway St, Mt Pleasant, MI 48858 //+19897727460
Max and Emily’s, is one of the best restaurants in Mt. Pleasant, MI founded in the early 1990s, has grown into the centerpiece of excellence in sandwiches and community involvement. They consciously provide locally grown produce in their meals and offer breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
In the summer, Max and Emily’s organize a summer concert series that draws over 2,000 attendees per show.
On Sundays, People Helping People, funded by Max and Emily’s, The Brockman Family (the owner), The Walton Family (the general manager), and countless other volunteers, serve those who need a meal in the community. They consistently serve over 4,000 meals a year.
They like to think outside the sandwich at Max and Emily’s and love trying new things. Taking suggestions from their customers, unique taste sensations end up on the menu in creative and delicious ways.
You won’t find these sandwiches anywhere else. Several of their items, dressings, and mixes are made on-site, and they are constantly experimenting with more.
When my sister found out I was on an assignment to find the best restaurants in Mt. Pleasant, MI, Max and Emily’s was at the top of her list. With so many appealing items on the menu, it was hard for me to decide what to order.
The pick-by-numbers menu boards with almost 100 selections on the wall enticed me with #49 Dary’s Original—a smoked turkey and hand-pulled chicken salad concoction. Then, there was #51 Grilled Italian—hickory smoked ham, salami, pepperoni, provolone, and peppers on ciabatta flatbread.
I got my sister’s favorite, Anna’s Wrap–warmed salmon filet, raspberry vinaigrette, dried cherries, chopped pecans, lettuce, and slow-roasted tomato on a spinach tortilla. It was scrumptious. I understand why it’s her favorite.
2157 S Mission St, Mt Pleasant, MI 48858 //+19897727386
The authentic atmosphere at Hunan House, and its clean, colorful décor, appealed to my craving for an Asian meal. Bright green chair cushions and crimson lanterns hanging from the ceiling put me into a festive Asian mood.
Because my relatives were open to any cuisine, the Hunan House was an excellent choice. We all seem to have our favorites on a menu and order the same thing every time we dine out. It was no different for my group.
The spring rolls appetizers were crispy and a hit with everyone, as was the Crab Rangoon, cheese-filled dumplings. The entrée plates, delivered quickly to our table, contained generous portions. Perfect for healthy appetites.
Hunan House offers Japanese Sushi Rolls, Thai, Vietnamese, Singapore, Korean, and Chinese dishes. Chef Specials are served with fried rice and chicken egg rolls. Our group had Japanese sushi, Thai noodles, and Sesame Chicken Lo Mein.
General Tso’s Chicken which is stir-fried chunks of dark meat chicken, tender inside, crunch outside, and prepared with the chef’s special sauce, rounded out our selections. I always order Pad Thai when it’s on the menu. It’s my benchmark for Thai cuisine.
The meal ended with a fortune cookie, of course. My fortune read, “There is a massive opportunity sitting right under your nose.” I haven’t discovered that opportunity yet, but I bought a lottery ticket with the numbers on the fortune. No, it wasn’t a winner.
With easy handicapped access to the restaurant and tables that offer good wheelchair-accessible dining, the Hunan House Asian Cuisine is one of the best restaurants in Mt. Pleasant, MI.
105 E Broadway St, Mt Pleasant, MI 48858 //+19897757723
Midori is the Japanese word for green. It is also the name of an upscale sushi bar and one of the best restaurants in Mt. Pleasant, MI. Popular with the after-work crowd in the early evening, I enjoyed a craft cocktail, a saké flight, and fresh sushi.
Committed to using the freshest ingredients and environmentally responsible practices, Midori Sushi & Martini Lounge has elevated the dining experience with high freshness and quality standards.
The handcrafted cocktail I ordered, Rosemary Paloma, was made with Jose Cuervo traditional tequila, fresh grapefruit and lime juice, and house-made rosemary syrup. It was crisp, tart, and herbal.
Because saké sampling is a bit unusual, I relished the saké flight, including the Hakutsuru draft, Snow Maiden, and Shirakabe Gura. One cannot eat sushi without drinking saké.
Midori Sushi & Martini Lounge offers soup, salads, sides, shared plates, wok-prepared dishes, and main plates of flat iron steak, scallops, and grilled salmon. The extensive menu of traditional maki rolls, modern sashimi, and the nigiri and sashimi combinations took a side seat next to the Specialty Rolls.
I ordered the Dragon Specialty Roll, shrimp tempura, cucumber, and topped with eel, avocado, and eel sauce. It was colorful and paired so nicely with the saké flight.
120 S University Ave, Mt Pleasant, MI 48858 //+19894004120
While I didn’t eat at every pizza place in town, Vin Trofeo’s Pizzeria & Pub is at the top of my list. They say it’s the best pizza in Mt. Pleasant. With 15 beers on tap and a full bar, this is a lively place to experience if you don’t take your order to go.
Have you ever heard of a Pickle Pizza? This specialty pizza is made with a creamy house-made dill sauce, pickles, and a blend of four kinds of cheese.
At Vin Trofeo’s, pizzas come in three sizes–personal, small, and large. Choose your crust from regular, thin, and stuffed. Countless toppings allow you to build your own pizza any way you like.
There are lots more meals to choose from at Vin Trofeo’s. Appetizers, soups, wings, and salads are tempting. You can dip sides of yummy, freshly baked breadsticks, cheese bread, and Cinnasticks in limitless sauces like Citrus Explosion Sauce, Caribbean Jerk Sauce, and Flaming Honey Garlic Sauce.
I opted for the lasagna. The large portion was nicely crisped on the top, cheesy, gooey inside, and served with breadsticks. If I were watching my carbs, I would have ordered the Carb-Friendly Hot Bakes on Zoodles.
And, of course, the Cannoli for dessert will make this one of your favorite Restaurants in Mt. Pleasant, MI.
2336 S Mission St, Mt Pleasant, MI 48858 //+19899663747
Wood Shop Social is a recent addition to the Mt. Pleasant scene. This American gastropub uses a meat cleaver in its logo and the real thing on the entry wall. With a family-friendly space, bar and lounge, private rooms, and posh dining, the laid-back atmosphere is designed to be enjoyed by all.
When I was there, I had a seat in the Bourbon Bar and received an education about an unusual and sumptuous straight bourbon whiskey called Horse Soldier.
The Green Berets, who answered America’s call just days after 9/11, completed a daring insertion into Northern Afghanistan on horseback, earning them the moniker, The Horse Soldiers. These nine Green Berets answered another of America’s calls by carefully crafting this exceptional bourbon whiskey in Ohio.
The front tin label of Horse Soldier depicts a man on horseback carrying a military rifle. There’s a piece of the Twin Towers in every metal plate.
I ordered a lighter dinner from the Shareables and Greens & Broth menu. The Burrata was a Mozzarella shell with a creamy curd interior, pistachio pesto, balsamic, mint, tomato confit, fresh blueberries, arugula, and toasted bread.
The giant blueberries in the salad were crisp, sweet, and fresh. The peppery crunch of the arugula with the balsamic drizzle was delightful.
The Tomato Bisque was a light creamy soup made with San Marzano tomatoes, vegetable broth, cream, and buttered croutons. The salty, buttery, crunchy croutons complemented the rich tomato flavor.
506 W Broadway St, Mt Pleasant, MI 48858 //+19897752337
Camille’s Prime, located in the renovated train depot in Mt. Pleasant, is a five-minute drive to the Central Michigan University campus. Known for its upscale comfort food, fresh seafood, and Certified Prime Grade Black Angus steaks, Camille’s features an extensive wine collection and a 65-seat intimate restaurant. Dark wood, club chairs, and a sophisticated ambiance make this one of the best restaurant experiences in Mt. Pleasant.
The wedge salad, served with a crisp Sauvignon Blanc wine, was one of the best I’ve tasted. The creamy blue cheese dressing was outstanding because of its richness and big chunks of blue cheese.
I ordered a Small Plate of Seafood and Mushroom Risotto. The rice was dense, thick, and flavorful, with Parmesan cheese curls on top. The bacon was crispy, salty, and savory. The scallops, done perfectly, were moist inside and a little crisp outside.
While I didn’t have room for dessert, the party next to me offered me a taste of their Key Lime pie. The small pie was artwork on a plate and served with flair. It made a beautiful presentation and created a mouthwatering appeal.
894 S Mission Rd, Mt Pleasant, MI 48858 //+19897757210
The Diner is located on the north side of Mt. Pleasant, almost on the banks of the Chippewa River. The friendly folks at The Diner serve a bountiful breakfast that will stick with you for the entire day.
They serve breakfast anytime except Fridays after 4 pm. That’s when the famous Friday Fish Fry happens from 4 to 9 pm.
Voted Best Breakfast by Central Michigan University, #1 for Home Cooking and Friendliest Service in 2020, and awarded the People’s Choice Award in 2019, The Diner should be on your best restaurant list when you’re in town.
The casual and friendly atmosphere is a great way to start the day. Farmers, enjoying a hearty breakfast before hitting the fields, talked about the weather.
When I was there at breakfast time, several “regulars” met around large tables and caught up with each other’s lives for breakfast. I overheard a young couple discussing what was good on the menu at the next table because a friend recommended it.
The breakfast portions were so large that I couldn’t finish what was on my plate. Oh, how I tried, though. My favorite breakfast meal is biscuits and gravy, which is on the menu at The Diner.
However, I selected one of the specialties—Loaded Hash Browns. The hash browns are cooked with ham, bacon, and onion, topped with cheddar cheese, and served with two eggs and toast.
Of all Restaurants in Mt Pleasant MI, this one offers the biggest selection of burgers, salads, sandwiches, home-style entrees, and three Mexican dishes.
The Friday Fish Fry is the all-you-can-enjoy fish dinner with catfish, cod, lake perch, and walleye. Jumbo Shrimp and Clam Strip dinners are also available. The Sampler, aptly named, includes a mix of all four fish. You can mix and match only on re-orders.
Final Thoughts about the Restaurants in Mt. Pleasant, MI
Mt. Pleasant, MI has a wide selection of dining experiences for all tastes and budgets.
For tourists and locals alike, the city of Mt. Pleasant is a great destination for anyone looking to enjoy a delicious meal. With its wide array of restaurants offering tasty cuisine from all over the world, it’s no wonder why this small town is becoming increasingly popular with foodies everywhere.
From classic Italian eateries to modern Asian fusion spots, Mt. Pleasant has something for everyone to enjoy. Whether you’re looking for an intimate dinner setting or an adventurous take on traditional dishes, these restaurants are sure to please even the pickiest of eaters.
The best part about dining in Mt. Pleasant? All of the restaurants boast friendly service and fresh ingredients that make each dish stand out from the rest. The chefs in this vibrant town show off their culinary skills in every bite—making Mt. Pleasant one of Michigan’s most pleasant places for dining out!
Visiting other cities in Michigan? Check out our foodie guides to the following cities:
- 7 Best Restaurants & Things To Do In Ludington
- 5 Must Try-Restaurants In Holland Michigan & 10 Fun Things To Do In Holland MI
- 7 Must-Try Lansing Restaurants
- 11 Must-Try Upper Peninsula Restaurants & Bars
- 7 Best Traverse City Restaurants
- 15 Michigan Dishes You Must-Try
- 10 Must-Try Grand Rapids Restaurants MI
- Best Mexican Food In Holland MI
- Best Sushi In Holland MI
- Best Thai Food In Holland MI
Julie Diebolt Price is a professional photographer, educator, travel writer, and journalist. She helps corporations and solo entrepreneurs establish their brands with imagery and business training. She educates and mentors aspiring photographers. As a journalist who loves to travel, she creates memorable experiences and shares them with words and pictures. Learn more at linktr.ee/PhotoTravelWrite.