"A computer can't understand a handshake," says Jack Schwindler, explaining why he retired after 32 years as a food broker. He missed the face-to-face aspect of the business, which diminished as technology swiftly advanced. So when he and his wife found a defunct marina on Lake Lotawana, where Jack spent his childhood, he found his calling. In 1993, Jack and his wife opened Marina Grog & Galley, and now, Jack says, "I'm shaking hands again."
Marina Grog and Galley is run by a tight-knit crew of longtime employees, including servers who have worked there since 1996. Their menu boasts dry-aged steaks from a local purveyor and fresh fish flown in from Hawaii three times a week. The smell of steaks searing over mesquite charcoal drifts out to the front driveway, creating an aroma that attracts passersby and envious traveling steak peddlers. Other specialties include baby-back ribs crafted from a recipe Jack penned when he was 21 years old, and a range of fried, boiled, and stuffed shrimp.
Every night, Jack visits with guests at the tables arranged around the dining room, which look out at the lake or a 1,500-gallon saltwater tank that houses a 48-foot living reef. Leather seats in cobalt blue comfort backs, and stone fireplaces warm the stone walls and light wood around the restaurant. Outdoor tables along the water seat up to 150 people, and on-deck fireplaces keep diners comfortable. "Something happens every night in the restaurant business," says Jack, and he doesn't want to miss a minute of it.
Lunar Bowl casts a nebular net across rounds of pin punishment, which unravel daily across 32 state-of-the-art synthetic bowling lanes. Built in 2001, the 38,000-square-foot facility has played host to the PBA National Tour twice, including the tour's nationally televised finals and nontelevised slip 'n' slide experiments in the 11th frame. The center's celestial theme soars over into The Blue Moon Lounge, where bowlers can take a break from strikes and spares to watch big games or create deep-space shadow puppets on a 150-inch HD projector screen. Guests can visit the newly built arcade, and the facility will be non-smoking as of June 3. On weekends, Lunar Bowl drifts further into intergalactic realms with laser-lit cosmic bowling, and, buzzing with the chimes of new high scores, an arcade provides various digital challenges.
Fun House Pizza’s cooks have been tossing craving-satisfying pizzas since 1964, catering to families with their shareable fare and friendly staff. Gooey pizzas arrive topped with Fun House Pizza’s secret sauce recipe, sprinkled with toppings that include kraut, mushrooms, and Italian or Polish sausage. The kitchen crew gets creative with their specialty pizzas, which play dress up to create pies of the taco, bacon cheeseburger, and mexican variety. The restaurants cater to kids with a slew of entertainment options, from Thomas the Tank Engine rides to game rooms with air hockey and video games to the cheerful servers who are ready and willing to eat homework assignments.
Salt-encrusted prime rib and a 10-ounce top sirloin, created from certified Angus beef hand-cut in house, depart the kitchen of Rumors Steakhouse daily to delight diner palates. Filet mignon can enter the dining room stag or accompanying crab legs or lobster. Sandwiches, entree salads, and four desserts round out Rumors Steakhouse's extensive menu, which diners can savor while sinking into the red leather seats surrounding the dining room's circular tables. Guests can also recline in a private dining area, a flat-screen-television-equipped lounge, or two outdoor patios boasting uninhibited amounts of oxygen.
Profiled in the Pitch and reviewed on Check, Please!, brothers Joel and Sergio Palacios opened Real Jalisco to serve the authentic cuisine their mother—a native of Jalisco, Mexico—taught them to cook. The two pride themselves on introducing diners to the traditional Mexican dishes—including more than a dozen shrimp dishes—that cull flavor from ingredients such as sautèed squash blossoms and cactus.
For 70 years, Winstead’s has garnered a myriad of accolades and praise for its scrumptious hamburgers and other drive-in eats. Poke through the menu to find the joint’s signature Double Winstead steakburger, grilled with U.S. Choice Steak and topped with all the sloppy-tasty fixings––mustard, ketchup, pickle, and onion ($3.35). The Fifty-Fifty puts hot and crisp french fries and crunchy onion rings side by side in the most delicious peace pact since ketchup and mustard ended their hot-dog feud ($2.19). Scarf a chili cheese dog ($2.79) or grilled-cheese sandwich ($2.05), and then focus on Winstead’s old-fashioned desserts. Creamy milk shakes and malts ($2.45–$4.55) immerse taste buds in flavors such as chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, banana, and butterscotch, and Winstead’s beloved skyscraper shake ($7.25) packs enough iced delight to quench the thirsts of four people or one André the Giant. Other desserts include a root-beer float ($2.45) and apple-dumpling à la mode ($4.60).