By Denice Ryan Martin
Special to TravelWisconsin.com
The “water-to-table” dining experience is making waves with foodies and fishing enthusiasts. The concept is simple. You reel it in. Restaurant chefs cook it up. It can’t get any fresher than that!
Here are some restaurants that offer this unique meal during fishing season, along with charter services waiting to help you fill your platter. It’s a fun way to dine and celebrate a great day of fishing.
Nestled on 80 acres of the Kettle Moraine State Forest, the trout farm and restaurant provide a tranquil fishing and culinary experience.
It's open year-round, and no fishing license is required. Poles, bait and cleaning are included.
The Shore lunch menu, offered Wednesday through Saturday, features your fresh-caught rainbow trout (battered and fried or pan seared), seasonal vegetables, potato pancakes and applesauce.
This lakefront spot has a dock for boats and plenty of outdoor/indoor seating for gazing at the water. The chef will prepare up to one pound of fish per person, serving it fried, blackened, or lemon pepper broiled. Fries and coleslaw come as sides.
Owned by U.S. Coast Guard-licensed Capt. Rich Tanner, the service offers two sport fishing boats and welcomes beginners. Fishing for salmon and trout is their full-time business.
Located in the Simmons Island Marina, the service employs more than ten USCG-licensed captains, providing charters to groups of all sizes.
A wall of lakefront windows at this bustling, friendly establishment practically takes your breath away. Chef Joel Wheaton will prepare your catch broiled, Cajun-style or deep fried, along with sides and rye bread. Order their yummy seasonal pies for dessert.
Located in the picturesque Port Washington Marina, the charter service offers four large, clean and fully-equipped boats. Their USCG licensed captains have more than 90 years of collective experience.
Located on the banks of the historic Oconto River on the bay of Green Bay, this favorite area eatery offers its “You Catch, We Cook” option for local anglers and charter boat guests. The chef prepares and seasons your catch as you prefer it. Potato and coleslaw is included. A fish-cleaning station is on-site if needed.
USCG-licensed Capt. Steven Paulsen has been fishing for walleyes for 25 years and is an avid fishing tournament competitor. He loves to share his techniques on how to catch the monster walleye.
Stadium Diner and Bar
Home to hundreds of celebrity autographs on sports memorabilia, this cute little dining spot in Kewaunee County prepares your catch blackened, lemon pepper broiled or with Cajun seasoning. Two sides and bread are included.
Experience fishing magic in the quaint town of Algoma with its long maritime history. This charter service has four USCG-licensed captains working seven days a week during the trout and salmon seasons. Check out the “Catch & Cook” link on their website.
Captivating guests for more than 80 years, this resort is tucked away on quiet peninsula between North Bay and Lake Michigan. The restaurant prepares six tantalizing entrees featuring your catch, including a broiled salmon with Door County cherry barbecue sauce. Your fish comes with the starch of the day and a seasonal vegetable. Lunch is a grilled fresh catch on a toasted bun with homemade tartar sauce and coleslaw.
Gordon Lodge Resort is the port of call for this popular Door County charter. USCG-licensed Capt. Jeff Steffen takes you fishing for king salmon, steelhead and brown trout in his 20-foot Grady White fishing vessel that’s equipped for a safe big-water time.
If you're a fan of the fresh dining experience, here are seven farm-to-table restaurants to visit this fall.