Looking for some great places to eat in Sister Bay, Wisconsin? Look no further! I visited every one of these eateries in Door County and have some favorites. They all offer good eats and good times.
While Destination Door County sponsored some of my dining, the opinions are my own.
How To Get to Door County
Located in the “left thumb” of Wisconsin, the peninsula is on the east-central side of the state, with Lake Michigan to the east and the bay of Green Bay to the west.
It would be best if you planned on driving to Door County because public transportation is not available. Ride-sharing services are just getting started in Door County.
To reach Door County from Milwaukee, it’s about a 2.5-hour drive. From Chicago, it’s about a 4.5-hour drive north or east from Minneapolis.
Sister Bay is 2/3 of the way up the peninsula in the north part of Door County.
The Sister Bay restaurants run the gamut from upscale restaurants, supper clubs, family restaurants, and sports bars to cafés serving adults, children, locals, and travelers.
Come along with me to see what you’ll enjoy.
Seven Best Sister Bay Restaurants
10698 N. Bayshore Drive // 920-854-2626
I came for the meal and stayed for the spectacle.
Known worldwide as the “restaurant with goats on the roof,” this popular, busy Sister Bay restaurant and gift shop is a must-see.
In Sweden, many roofs are made of sod. These roofs are a Scandinavian style that began when farmers built their houses into the side of a hill so the animals and goats could graze on the roof.
Winkie Larson, a friend of Al Johnson’s who always played jokes on Al, attempted to put a goat on the roof in 1973. The goat had other ideas at the time. A bit later, Winkie tried and succeeded in getting that goat on the roof. Soon after, more goats were seen on the roof, and that’s how the tradition began.
There are usually 5-7 goats grazing on the roof daily from 9 am until 5 pm, keeping up the tradition. You can see them by goat cam when they are on the roof at the start of the tourist season in late May and continue through mid-October. I had hoped to see the goats climbing onto the roof, but I was enjoying my meal then. They did pose for all the other tourists and me when I got outside.
All the tables were full when I arrived shortly after 8 am, so I chose counter dining. It allowed me to connect with the server and the owner.
When I told my waitress that I wanted to sample their signature dishes, I got this:
An assortment of Swedish crispbread crackers. Meant to be eaten as a crunchy base for sweet and savory toppings, you can eat these rye crackers with a simple smear of butter or sweets like lingonberries or lay on the pickled herring that was served cold in a separate dish with a lemon wedge.
The generous portion of pickled herring made it into a container to go with me. The depth of flavor in this Omega-3-rich fish is created first by curing it in a salt brine and then immersing it in a vinegar-based mixture that gives it a tang. It’s a great combination of salty, savory, and tart with a chewy texture.
Swedish pancakes are very similar to French crepes. Known for their richness, Swedish pancakes are fluffier and lighter than American pancakes. The pancakes, topped with lingonberries, are memorable, delectable breakfast goodies.
My waitress said I couldn’t leave without trying a Swedish meatball, which she added to the extensive array of food. It was delicious!
Of course, I put the lingonberries on everything except the pickled herring. It was an exciting array of Swedish fare at one of the best Sister Bay restaurants.
2345 Mill Road // 920-854-2700
Chop offers upscale dining with classic American Steakhouse cuisine–steak, seafood, and cocktails. While the setting is sophisticated, Chop is comfortable and relaxed. They have a fun dinner menu with crayons for kids to stay entertained while awaiting their meal.
Reservations are recommended, but I was seated promptly when I arrived at the dinner hour.
The Specialty Cocktail list sounded so appealing. The Passionfruit Jalapeno Margarita tantalized the tastebuds in my mind. That’s My Jam! made my mouth pucker just thinking about the rye, Cointreau, fig jam, simple honey, and lemon combination. I envisioned myself at the Kentucky Derby with A Horse A Piece in hand with the ingredients including Tattersall gin, crème de fleur, Luxardo maraschino liqueur, and lemon.
Yorkshire Pudding was served as the bread before my meal. The pudding is made with milk, flour, and eggs and cooked in animal fat. More like a popover than a kneaded bread, this Yorkshire Pudding was light and yummy.
My meal started with a cup of savory mushroom soup topped with fresh chives. The flavors blended so well with the Yorkshire Pudding and were delectable. I didn’t leave a drop in the cup when I finished.
The entrée, Crispy Duck, was deep-fried to make it crisp and served with a Seaquist cherry demi-glace on a bed of garlic mashed potatoes.
I paired the meal with the Chasing Venus Sauvignon Blanc from the Marlborough region in New Zealand. This region produces my favorite wines, so I choose them whenever I find them on the menu. This is one of the best Sister Bay restaurants for fine dining, so enjoy!
10641 N. Bay Shore Drive // 920-854-2624
Husby’s is a popular bar with pub food and is an iconic watering hole in downtown Sister Bay. They are family-friendly with a kid’s menu, outdoor patio seating with the full menu, and offer live music every summer weekend in the spacious Garage Bar right outside.
When I arrived late in the day, a waiting line of patrons was out the door, and available seating was only at the bar.
The sports bar, separated from the dining room by a half wall, offers drinks and dining on high stools at the bar. They have an unbelievable 14 flatscreen TVs inside and outside, so you don’t miss a minute of NFL games, the MLB package, and NHL Center Ice. I chose this spot, so I didn’t have to wait in line for a table.
The bartender at Husby’s knows how to make a great martini!
The prime rib was on special that evening when I sat down at the bar. I wanted a few minutes to make up my mind about selecting their pub grub, burger, or wrap.
The DC Cherry Chicken Wrap came with fresh crispy green lettuce, cherry-marinated chicken, dried cherries, and bleu cheese crumbles. The prime rib was sold out when I was ready to order. So, I called my second choice and was not disappointed.
While there is a pile of Sister Bay restaurants to choose from that cater to families, this is one of the best.
10677 N. Bay Shore Drive // 920-854-4685
Offering some of the best pizza in town, this affordable, family-friendly restaurant specializes in made-from-scratch, hand-tossed pizzas.
I watched the cook press out the pizza dough for my pizza and then tossed it the old-fashioned way. He was a showman and an expert at pizza making. I never worried that the dough would end up on the floor.
I ordered an eclectic pizza with toppings like no one has made before (said tongue in cheek)–wild mushrooms, cheese curds, and caramelized onions.
One of my missions on this trip was to find the best Wisconsin cheese curds. Is it common to put cheese curds on pizza? Apparently, in Wisconsin it is. I found the cheese curds overpowered by the other spicier pizza ingredients and wouldn’t add them again. I preferred eating the warm, fresh cheese curds from the bag purchased at Renard’s Cheese Store in Sturgeon Bay.
Wild Tomato has two locations in Door County–Fish Creek and Sister Bay. Their hours are seasonal, which is the case with many Sister Bay restaurants. You’ll find the current hours on their website.
2445 South Bay Shore Drive // 920-854-7997
The Carroll House Family Restaurant, located at the top of the hill in Sister Bay (the locals know where to find the top of the hill), specializes in waffles.
The Chef’s Special (highlighted in red on the menu) is the Door County Cherry Stuffed French Toast or Waffle. It comes with housemade cherry cream cheese topped with Door County Cherries. You can get a half or full order.
Comfort classics like pork chops, steaks, or Country Fried steak, with eggs, hash browns, and toast, tempt traditional eaters.
The pancake order comes with one or two pancakes served golden brown with butter and warm syrup. Toppings include chocolate chips, blueberries, Door County cherries, strawberries, whipped cream, and vanilla ice cream. I thought about ordering every one of these toppings, but the cost would be about $10 per pancake. So many choices! For an additional 75 cents per pancake, you can get them gluten-free.
While my mouth was watering for the Bread Pudding French Toast topped with caramel, the Huevos Rancheros and Chilaquiles caught my eye. However, I decided to go with my favorite, German Potato Pancakes. One doesn’t often find them on a restaurant menu, and I couldn’t let this opportunity get away. These crispy, not soggy pancakes filled the plate and were accompanied by traditional applesauce and sour cream.
If all the sweets on this menu aren’t enough, you might end the meal with a shake, sundae, or malt.
Carroll House Family Restaurant is open every day for breakfast and lunch and it’s of the few good Sister Bay Restaurants.
10653 N. Bay Shore Drive // 920-854-3388
Who doesn’t want a nice bowl of gelato after a delicious meal and libations in the neighborhood?
I chose Salt and Olive Oil gelato and enjoyed every refreshing bite. It was hard to imagine I would want something savory and sweet for dessert. But it sounded good, and I wasn’t disappointed.
Door County Creamery has a wide selection of gelato and will give you tasting samples to help you decide.
It wasn’t busy by the time I got there after dinner. A few people were strolling up and down the street, enjoying their gelato or just being with family and friends in this easily walkable town.
10640 N. Bay Shore Drive // 920-854-2841
Supper clubs are popular in Wisconsin. The Sister Bay Bowl was no exception, with a 45-minute wait for a table when I was there. They don’t take reservations; you hope for nice weather while you wait. Or you can bowl in one of the lanes of their six-lane bowling alley that replaced the dance hall in 1958.
Supper clubs started in the 1880s in London, where memberships were required, and theater-goers went for after-performance dining, drinking, and dancing. In America, supper clubs flourished in the days of Prohibition at remote roadhouses and speakeasies and into the 1950s and 60s.
Losing popularity into the 1970s and 80s throughout the United States, supper clubs in Sister Bay restaurants remain devoted to their fans today. Vacationers visiting the state for recreation know what to expect from a supper club and enjoy the nostalgia and affordable experiences there. Do you remember the relish tray of olives, pickles, and sliced vegetables or the chicken and dumplings with gravy and green beans?
The Willems family purchased the Sister Bay Hotel in 1950. The third generation of the Willems family still operates the classic Sister Bay Bowl today. Locals and visitors give five-star reviews for the meals and the staff, some of whom have worked there for 30+ years. It’s definitely one of the best Sister Bay Restaurants.
Thanks for reading my Sister Bay Restaurants Guide. Visiting other destinations in Wisconsin? Check out our other delicious guides:
- 8 Best Mequon Restaurants | Where to Eat in Mequon, Wisconsin
- 5 Best Pizza Restaurants In Mequon
- The 10 Best Restaurants In Superior Wisconsin
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.