Woods Restaurant is so much more than “just” a restaurant. From the moment guests arrive at Woods, which is tucked away from the main crowds of the lower part of the island, the attentive staff greet them (often by name if they’ve visited before) and make sure that every guest feels comfortable and right at home. Woods is decorated in a very relaxed, homey manner and features several tufted couches and high-backed chairs, needlepoint pillows grace almost every sitting surface, and numerous awards, medals, ribbons, and trophies decorate each wall throughout the hunting-lodge themed hall.
Location: Mackinac Island, Michigan
Address: 8655 Cudahy Circle, Mackinac Island
Hours: [Seasonal] Luncheon from 11 am – 5 pm
Dinner Sunday – Thursday 5:30 pm – 9:00 pm &
Friday & Saturday 5:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Food Type: American-European Light Luncheon & European
Price: $100+ per person
Dress Code: Smart Casual
Reservations: Recommended for Dinner
Special Diets: Gluten-Free, Vegetarian, Pescatarian
Read more about Mackinac Island & Grand Hotel:
The Ultimate Guide to Lilac Festival on Mackinac Island
The Lilac Suite at Grand Hotel
Grand Hotel Bucket List (Quiz)
The Jewel Golf Course
Woods Restaurant on Mackinac Island
10 Best Places to Grab a Drink at Grand Hotel
Stunning Rooms and Suites at Grand Hotel
12 Things to Know Before Visiting Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island, MI
What to Wear at the Grand Hotel
Jockey Club Restaurant on Mackinac Island, MI
10 Reasons to Visit Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island, MI
A Guide to Dining at Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island, MI
To find Woods Restaurant, guests may either take a horse-drawn taxi back to where to back nine of The Jewel golf course begins, near The Inn at Stonecliff, walk there on foot through a few different routes (my favorite is along the West Bluffs!), or enjoy a brief bike ride to the restaurant. There is space to park bicycles near the restaurant.
The main dining area of Woods is romantic. It reminds me of our cabin because it is decorated with muted reds and greens, ginghams, and floral patterns that give the entire restaurant a luxurious and comfortable feeling. There is also a large bar area with both booth seating and bar seating, called Bobby’s Bar, which serves handcrafted specialty cocktails from 11:00 am until close. Near the bar, guests can enjoy freshly popped popcorn and an assortment of light refreshments such as boxed lunches and hot dogs. Woods is also home to America’s oldest duckpin bowling alley, where guests may play against each other to see who gets the highest score and win bragging rights or when I visit with friends, the one with the lowest duckpin score buys the rest of us drinks at Bobby’s!
Woods has a vibrant menu that features locally sourced lake fish, exotic seafood, and meat dishes, as well as several delightful European-inspired soups, appetizers, and daily specials. We’ve been dining at Woods for more than 6 seasons now (plus many more when I was younger and with my family), and dining at Woods has always been one of the highlights of our visits. This past year we sampled many fantastic dishes such as:
Herb Crusted Mackinac Whitefish Filet with tomato jam, Yukon mashed potatoes, and lemon butter
Lobster Macaroni with aged white cheddar, smoked gouda, penne pasta, porcini mushrooms, corn bread crumbs
Poached Scottish Salmon with Yukon mashed potatoes, chili coconut cream, and ratatouille provencal
Heirloom Cherry Tomatoes & Watermelon Salad with feta cheese, mixed greens, pickled shallots, and white balsamic dressing
Roasted Butternut Squash with toasted pumpkin seeds
Smoked Mackinac Trout with fresh dill aioli, pickled radish, and pumpernickel slices
Each dish was beautifully plated, exceptionally well balanced, and delightful to all five of our senses. We typically visit Woods after a round of golf at The Jewel golf course, but we’ve also made special trips to the island from Petoskey to enjoy a meal here – it’s THAT good! When visiting, request outdoor seating if you’d like to enjoy your meal outside on their patio garden area. My husband and I love dining beneath the large tree behind the restaurant, surrounded by fragrant blooms. It’s truly the best way to enjoy a meal at Woods! If outdoor dining doesn’t tickle your fancy, there are also plush, high-backed chairs at the tables indoors that are some of the best seats in the house and make us feel positively pampered and posh each time we dine in them.
Adult guests of Grand Hotel each receive a $20 meal credit to Woods Restaurant as part of their Modified American Plan meal plan. If you’re a guest of Grand Hotel, it’s worth noting that while tipping is neither expected nor allowed at the hotel itself, tipping is customary at Woods. In addition to the wonderful food options on their menu, Woods also serves up some fantastic desserts, but I won’t spoil the surprise and tell you which ones (they’re not listed on the main menu), you’ll have to go there and taste them for yourself!
Woods is one of the most beautiful and luxurious, not to mention relaxing dining experiences on the island, because of its fantastic atmosphere, a delightful menu that emphasizes the freshest, most delightful ingredient combinations, and the staff that goes out of their way to ensure that every guest has everything they need to enjoy their time at Woods. The restaurant is also available for private events.
Have you enjoyed a meal at Woods yet? Tell me all about it below!
Farewell, fellow adventurers!