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Nonna Lisa’s Italian Restaurant

September 27, 2021

  • 312 S. Huron Street
  • Mackinaw City, MI 49701
  • (231) 436-7901
  • Website
  • Menu

There are quite a few more restaurants than I remember there being in Mackinaw City. I’ve traveled to the tip of the mitten for work several times over the past ten years and finding something new has always been a challenge. Either I haven’t been looking or there are more places opening up.

Day 2 of work on Mackinac Island ended like Day 1. We got back to the ferry docks around 7:30, co-worker didn’t feel like going out to eat so I walked to a place not too far from our hotel.

Nonna Lisa’s Italian Restaurant is part of a complex of businesses inside the Mackinaw Bay Trading Company Shopping Center on Huron Street. There is parking right in front of the restaurant as well as a parking lot behind it. I walked from my hotel so I entered off Huron Street and that just created all sorts of confusion.

This restaurant is pretty large. I followed another couple in from the Huron Street sign and found several signs pointing us back to the “Main Dining Room and Bar.” I followed them but then got curious.

I really don’t understand this space. There is a bar up front and a bunch of bottles of beer for sale. There’s also a dining room here where it looked like people were just hanging out. I did what the signs said and headed toward the main dining room.

The host stand is actually off the back entrance but there was someone up front who saw us come in. He seated the couple in front of me and came back. I was going to ask to sit at the bar but there was no one else there and the bartender appeared to be cleaning up so I let him take me to a table near the back entrance.

Nonna Lisa’s does not look like an Italian restaurant at all. There is a much more rustic look to the place. There are no red and white checkered table cloths or Italian flag themed paint on the walls. This is all Northern Michigan with antlers used for coat hooks and a log cabin feel to the main dining room.

Heck, there’s even taxidermy all throughout the space. Definitely not Italian.

I started with a beer and was excited to see a couple brews from the nearby Mackinac Island Brewhouse on the menu. I asked for one…but they were out of both. I thought that was weird…until I stopped in to the Mackinac Island Brewhouse a few days later (separate blog). I ended up just ordering a Two Hearted because that’s my go-to.

I knew what I wanted before I sat down. I had considered a pizza but I wanted pasta. I picked the Lasagna. It took less than ten minutes for my waiter to come back with a plate of a super delicious lasagna. The portion size wasn’t huge but it was really tasty. The super tender home made lasagna noodles were layered with ground beef, ricotta, mozzarella, and marinara. The plate came with a really crispy on the outside but light and fluffy on the inside garlic breadstick on the side.

The price was pretty steep at $20 for my plate but home made pasta takes time. I was actually expecting a little more food for the price but what I got was really good.

A couple of different people had recommended Nonna Lisa’s to me including my co-worker who ate there a few years ago. The food was top-notch Italian but it’s not a cheap dinner. Sometimes, you have to treat yourself. I can make my own pasta but it’s worth it to let someone else do it. There’s just no comparison between fresh and dried pasta.

One Comment leave one →
  1. September 28, 2021 7:06 am

    Are the animals/heads on the walls real? Taxidermied?

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