Sometime around the dawn of man, a human discovered that dough is worth more when tied into intricate shapes. Fast-forward a couple millennia to the present, and you’ll find that Nautical Knots has taken the next step in pretzel innovation. Since 2001, the Grand Haven boardwalk has benefited from the skillful tying of the eatery’s pretzel knots, which come in 11 sweet and savory varieties such as asiago cheese, frosted raisin, and sesame seed. In addition to stretching the dough into traditional pretzel shapes, staffers also twist it around frankfurters to make a signature treat they call the Nauti Dog, served with reckless amounts of ketchup and mustard. The waterside stand, which is open from May to September, also loads baked potatoes with cheese, chili, and salsa, and whips up frozen strawberry and mudslide drinks that combat the summer heat nearly as well as turning off the sun.
Over the searing hot coals of a traditional clay oven, skewered cubes of meat and veggies retain a tender interior while the heat imbues each morsel with a smoky crust. Discs of dough, pressed against the tandoori's walls, bubble and rise, baking into the fluffy Indian bread known as naan.
At Curry Kitchen, the family of chefs crafts flavorful, aromatic dishes in this traditional fashion, from tandoori-baked shrimp and chicken to fresh-pressed cheeses and crispy pakoras. During buffet hours, diners can build their own meals from a spread of locally sourced, from-scratch entrees and garnishes.
Muskegon Athletic Club simultaneously tantalizes taste buds with its menu, cleanses palates with its libations, and appeases peepers with its 23 high-definition sports-centric TVs. Appetizers, including fried calamari ($9), lime jalapeño hummus ($7), and bacon and cheese potato cakes ($5.50), kick off marathon meals and stretch out stomachs for the next leg of the feasting frenzy. Main courses center around club specialties, including a london broil ($14), a heap of house-made meatloaf ($10), and a septet of savory mac 'n' cheeses. The house mac comes fromaged with white cheddar, provolone, and parmesan ($7), and the mac florentine sates artistic appetites with a handsome hoard of white cheddar, spinach, and basil served personally by the statue of David ($9).