Perkins began as a single humble Ohio pancake house in 1958. More than 50 years––and 440 national locations––later, each Perkins restaurant stays true to its roots by keeping those signature buttermilk pancakes the focal point of a 90-plus-item menu. Cooks layer the popular flapjacks in stacks of two, three, or even five and make the fluffy towers all the more tempting with toppings such as glazed strawberries, whipped cream, or flavored syrups. Breakfast favorites—including hearty omelets and country benedicts—are served all day, meaning kids and adults can order short stacks to accompany their jumbo-shrimp or steak dinner, instead of smuggling them in under a stovepipe hat. Unlike most other chain restaurants, Perkins also features in-store bakeries that churn out the shop's real fruit and cream pies, muffins, and chocolate-chip cookies.
Back in the 1830s, the building that now houses Colden Mill functioned as a grain mill. These days, the scent of grain no longer wafts over the facility’s hardwood floors and original solid-beam construction. Instead, one finds the alluring aromas of executive chef Matthew Webb’s upscale take on American food.
Drawing on the experience he gained while working past gigs everywhere from Chicago to the British Virgin Islands, Matthew woos vegetarians with mains such as gnocchi with roasted wild mushrooms, so named for the crazy pranks they’ve pulled on unsuspecting portobellos. At its core, however, Colden Mill is a shrine to carnivores. Lobster meat and lobster gravy join the cheddar curds of poutine, buttermilk enriches free-range chicken, and a blue-cheese crust and port-wine demi-glace lend extra flavors to succulent filet mignons.
The Scallywags Grub & Spirits dining room is a treasure-trove of nautical knickknacks, from the colorful fish that speckle the walls to the gnarled wooden buccaneer that waits by the door with a bowl of mints. Diners marvel at the festive pirate-themed decor before ordering rounds of martinis and turning their attention to the menu—a seafood-centric compilation of crispy-fried-fish dinners, juicy burgers, and tender steaks. One of the eatery’s signature dishes—the Drum of the Scoundrel—features a hearty 2-pound smoked turkey leg seasoned in specialty sauce and served grilled or fried.
Chanderson’s Steak & Seafood plates up fine American cuisine in a casual, charming atmosphere fit for family dinners and special nights out. Six days per week, the restaurant serves lunch and dinner, loading both spreads with succulent and artfully arranged options. The fish Harold, for instance, features broiled haddock festooned with Italian herbs, tomatoes, and provolone, while the pot roast entrée fills bellies with tender, slow-roasted beef and gravy.
At Hideaway’s, chefs prepare half-pound burgers, grilled chicken dinners, and fried seafood from ingredients that have never been frozen or preserved in a museum laboratory. Each Friday, the eatery hosts a fish fry that serves breaded, battered, or broiled fillets as well as the Fisherman’s platter teeming with fried fish, scallops, and shrimp. To enliven the ambiance, the restaurant features Thursday- and Friday-night karaoke and live music on Saturdays.
A bubbling fish tank beckons diners in the doors of New Shanghai Buffet, where they kick off a culinary expedition with classic Chinese dishes that range from general tso's chicken and sweet-and-sour pork to littleneck clams and artfully crafted sushi. Covered buffet stations flaunt crab legs and barbecue spare ribs in their gleaming metal vessels, and an expansive takeout menu keeps diners from wheeling buffet tables home when the staff's back is turned. Amid a mélange of leafy plants, grand prints of Asian landscapes pair with traditional Chinese baubles to adorn the dining room's floral walls.