Inside The Wild Goose, which won the people’s choice award from the Taste of Willoughby, a stone oven bakes pizzas laden with eclectic ingredients, including elbow noodles, celery, and potatoes. Chefs top the Galway Bay pie with alfredo sauce, rock shrimp, crabmeat, cheese, and a sprinkle of parsley, and they slather the That’s A Buff Chick pizza with chicken, cheese, celery, crumbled blue cheese, and a drizzle of buffalo sauce. When not customizing crusts, they ladle up bowls of irish potato soup and fill hoagies with saucy meatballs as pro football games and amateur potato-peeling competitions play on televisions propped behind a granite-topped bar.
The name Burgers-N-Beer is straightforward. That’s why first-time visitors may be surprised by the scope of the eatery’s offerings. Cooks sculpt juicy half-pound patties by hand, piling on toppings such as fried eggs or marinara sauce. They also stuff burgers with fillings such as gorgonzola or creole-inspired olive tapenade, and they sometimes go to extremes by crafting burgers that weigh in at a full pound.
Patrons can also opt for slabs of ribs, corned-beef sandwiches on rye, and Italian specialties such as fried ravioli or italian wedding soup. But the food isn’t the only reason to stop by. Burgers-N-Beer exudes what one Cleveland Scene writer described as "old-time charm, cheery atmosphere, and prompt, friendly service—all seemingly designed to make a midweek dinner feel like a getaway at a lakeside resort.” On Friday and Saturday nights, the restaurant stops eager patrons from abandoning still-rolling cars with complimentary valet service.
Any Irish pub worth its weight in Guinness can make a mean corned beef. It takes a special kind of visionary, however, to stack that corned beef on top of a towering American hamburger. Like most of its regular patrons, Croagh Patrick's Pub has a thick streak of green in its lineage. Willoughby's premier neighborhood hangout finds common ground between its Irish ancestry and its American present, creating such crossover dishes as Celtic egg rolls and the aforementioned Irish-American burger.
A red-and-white-striped awning welcomes patrons into Burger Nuts, where more than 35 toppings—all available for no extra charge—adorn seven types of patties and three varieties of bready encasement. Egg, multigrain, and pretzel buns clasp never-frozen certified Angus beef, bison, turkey, Kobe, bratwurst, chorizo, and veggie burgers, which patrons can decorate with such eclectic ingredients as pepperoni, peanut butter, sauerkraut, and pepper jack cheese. Burger-free fare includes grilled-cheese sandwiches, chicken fingers, and hand-dipped milk shakes that are served at the exact same temperature as that of a healthy polar bear's nose.
On the shady patio or inside the low-key, date-friendly dining room, visitors to Noosa Bistro can kick off their experience with one of more than 75 martinis from the vast, boozy list. Open for both lunch and dinner, the menus span an eclectic selection of European–influenced American dishes, ranging from pan-seared scallops to petite fillets, cooked to order and served with a petite fork on a petite plate. Like the martini list, the wine menu spans an impressive length and includes such interesting bottles as a 40-year-old port.