Posted on February 23, 2022 by Indiana's Cool North
Any foodie worth their salt knows the best part of traveling is exploring local cuisine. The editors of Midwest Living took on the daunting—yet delicious—task of compiling their favorite foodie experiences in Northern Indiana. We’ve highlighted one stop in each of our diverse counties this time around. Also check out our Top 10 Food War Winners, picked by the locals, and our Top 15 Unique Eats.
Need to satisfy your sweet tooth? Look no further than Designer Desserts in Valparaiso! Owner Adam Wiltfang creates incredible cupcake concoctions like root beer float, holy cannoli, green tea and honey, and dozens more. With splashes of electric pink and turquoise and exposed brick walls, this a stylish space to savor some sweet treats.
You’ll need to bring your appetite for this hidden gem in La Porte. Family owned for over 30 years, Heston Supper Club is a down-to-earth local joint that doesn’t hold back with hearty portions. Beef is the specialty here, but don’t miss out on hand-cut steaks, Colorado lamb chops, sautéed lake perch, and Canadian walleye. Think you could handle a two-pound portion of prime rib?
The Carriage House serves up elegant American fare created with classic French techniques. Inside this restored 1851 church, the cozy dining room has a soaring ceiling highlighting original exposed beams. The furniture is antique, the art is museum quality, the service is attentive, and the food is excellent. When it’s warm enough, take your dining experience al fresco surrounded by beautiful gardens and 10,000 blooming peonies.
Get ready to throw it way back at the Original Root Beer Stand on the shores of Lake Maxinkuckee. For over 55 years this Culver landmark has been slinging classic burgers and serving up refreshing root beer brewed daily! Get served car side by friendly staff and enjoy serene lake views. Chow down on Chicago-style hot dogs or try the breaded pork tenderloin sandwich for a true taste of Northern Indiana.
In the mood for sushi? Leaning towards something a little more Mediterranean? You’ll find both at Cerulean Restaurant in Winona Lake. Their lunch menu is comprised of super-filling bento box combinations and fresh sushi creations. By night, the Asian-inspired menu carries over, plus a wide selection of savory dishes like gnocchi, trumpet mushroom agnolotti, and Sitka salmon over lemon dill fettuccine.
Blue Gate Restaurant seats 750 diners—enough to fit the entire town of Shipshewana and then some. But, don’t think such a big space skimps on service. You’ll find portions as generous as the hospitality with traditional Amish and Mennonite fare like fried chicken, meat loaf, and beef and noodles. Don’t forget to stop by the famous Blue Gate Bakery before you leave. They even have online delivery!
We’ll be featuring more stops on the Northern Indiana Foodie Trail over the coming months. Have you visited any of the restaurants we’ve mentioned? Let us know in the comments! Explore our Things to Do page to find more fun in Indiana’s Cool North.