Restaurants in Norwalk

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Inside the former mill that is now Mill Street Bistro Bar, servers deliver entrees of buffalo, beef, and elk sourced directly from the owner's farm. In addition to handcrafting locally sourced entrees that have included pan-fried Lake Erie perch and beer-brined, center-cut pork chops, the chefs also flambé cherries jubilee tableside for dessert. Post-dinner patrons may meander to the outdoor patio to smoke an imported cigar from the restaurant's humidor.

21 Mill St
Norwalk,
OH
US

In 1939, Al Berardi was working 60 hours a week selling ski-ball tickets in a Penny arcade. Then he built a french-fry stand at Cedar Point Amusement Park, a decision that changed his life changed forever. One stand became two, and soon, as many as two tons of potatoes were being sold in a single day. The rapid growth forced Al to move his potatoes into brick and mortar restaurants, including Berardi's Family Kitchen, now in the family for generations.

More than 70 years after Al cut his first potato, the chefs use his same recipe, serving the fries as an appetizer or a side to barbecue pulled pork sandwiches, fried green-tomato burgers, and buttermilk-fried chicken breasts. Diners can wash all of this down or help put out fires around the city with various beers and wines. The menu also includes house-made dressings, soups, and pies?all of which helped earn the eatery a Certificate of Excellence from the stomachs at TripAdvisor.

1019 W Perkins Ave
Sandusky,
OH
US

Microbrews, fresh Lake Erie perch, bistro-style flatbreads, live music, and a blue lagoon set the scene at J.F. Walleye’s, offering guests a vacation-like respite from their daily lives. Guests dine on the patio alongside cascading waterfalls in the lagoon-style pool, where revelers enjoy afternoons splashing in the sun and picturesque sunsets. They can wade in or look on from patio seats while digging into baskets of pub fare and island-inspired cuisine, including coconut tilapia, blackened grouper, and steak, salads, and shrimp. On weekends, DJ sets and live music from local bands serve as the soundtrack to the aquatic merrymaking, making the island transformation complete. And at J.F. Walleye’s tiki boutique, guests can pickup gifts, work by local artisans, and T-shirts to commemorate their time if they’re unable to catch an elusive pool fish.

1810 Fox Road
Middle Bass,
OH
US

In the 1930s, a glimpse inside the brick building at 2350 Cleveland Road might have revealed Al Capone and his associates sipping coffee in the midst of a tense conversation. These days, though, the atmosphere inside Red Gables Mesquite Grill is relaxed and intimate, with white tablecloths and the scent of a mesquite fire drifting through the air. Over that fire, chef Jamie Pribanic grills Certified Black Angus steaks that he claims are the finest in the world. The Plain Dealer writer Debbi Snook stopped by to taste them herself, and came away impressed: “The medium-cooked rib-eye instantly became one of my all-time favorites”, she wrote. “Hearty structure but tender chew, pepper-rubbed, vaguely charred and whispering of cowboy terrain.”

The seafood at this grill is no afterthought. Diners can slurp oysters flown in fresh from Cape Cod, dip steamed Alaskan King Crab legs into drawn butter, or slice into the crimson flesh of wild Chinook salmon. Pours of wine or beer and a slew of house-made desserts complete the dining experience.

2350 Cleveland Rd
Sandusky,
OH
US

Nagoya Japanese Steakhouse & Sushi's well-traveled owners, Mel and Barb Ayers, unite the culinary artistry of Japan with chefs selected from around America for their talents and showmanship. The result—set in a convivial restaurant with an outdoor patio and tableside hibachi grills—draws a bridge between the artistic elegance of Japanese cuisine and the family-friendly atmosphere of an American steakhouse. Meats sizzle on hibachi grills as chefs perform knife and spatula tricks for dazzled onlookers, who must refrain from leaning in too close lest a tower of onions suddenly catches fire. The spectacular dance of flames results in entrees of filet mignon, sea scallops, and lobster tails, all of which pair nicely with sushi such as a crab-filled california roll or a Volcano roll drizzled with fresh magma.

3975 E Harbor Rd
Port Clinton,
OH
US

• for $7, you get $15 worth of casual American fare during breakfast • for $10, you get $20 worth of casual American fare during dinner

801 E Bayview Dr
Sandusky,
OH
US