Harbor View Cafe, Norton's, and Nosh are great road-trip restaurants

Finish with dessert at Stockholm Pie Company—pie so good you'll cry

The restaurant's striking visual mashup seems to reflect Sarah Norton's bold cooking style (Greg has transitioned from the kitchen to the front of the house). We tried Sarah's seared duck breast with a cassoulet-like side of giant white beans with roasted red peppers and chorizo, fresh goat cheese, and candied carrots, whose sweet-salty interplay was as crazy as it was comforting. The menu does offer several straightforward American items, such as steaks and BLT sandwiches, but the majority have global inspiration, such as Mexican roast pork, Alsatian choucroute garni, and several Asian dishes. Among the Vietnamese meatballs, kimchi-topped burgers, and scallops with shitake mushrooms and fermented black beans, we tried an unctuous Japanese pork belly with a mirin-tamari glaze that could have fit right in at one of New York City's famed Momofuku kitchens. We also liked the Saigon Sub, a tasty báhn mì-Jimmy John's hybrid in which thin-sliced ham and smoked pâté were stuffed into a crusty baguette with carrots, cilantro, jalapeño, and mayonnaise and served with a side of fish sauce.

Many dishes may be ordered in half-portions (lucky for those of us on meal number five), so diners are encouraged to pair a few small plates with a glass of wine or one of the boundary-pushing taps, including a funky, limited-edition beet beer made by Wisconsin craft brewer Furthermore. Those who like what they're drinking can buy take-home bottles from Norton's off-sale shop in the back of the building. Its boutique offerings were just one more reminder that outstate Minnesota isn't lacking culinary gems.

The Harbor View specializes in old-time charm and hospitality. Sauces simmer for the cafe's classic family dishes.
Robert Meyer
The Harbor View specializes in old-time charm and hospitality. Sauces simmer for the cafe's classic family dishes.

Location Info

Map

Harbor View Cafe

314 First St.
Pepin, WI 54759

Category: Restaurant > American

Region: Wisconsin

Details

THE HARBOR VIEW CAFE
314 First St., Pepin, Wisconsin
715.442.3893; Web site

NORTON'S DOWNTOWN AND LUCKY CAT LOUNGE
307 Main St., Red Wing, Minnesota
651.388.2711; Web site

NOSH RESTAURANT & BAR
310 1/2 S. Washington St., Lake City, Minnesota
651.345.2425; Web site

THE STOCKHOLM PIE COMPANY
N2030 Spring St., Stockholm, Wisconsin
715.442.5505; Web site

Most restaurants' hours change seasonally. Call ahead for more information. 

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