6705 Woodland Rd., Brutus, MI 49716
About twenty miles south on U.S.-31 in the town of Brutus is a place called The Dam Site Inn, and not only do they claim to serve the best chicken on the world (and have a haunted table), they just might have one of the coolest retro bars in the world, too. Oh, and if you’re wondering where the name came from, you can see an old dam right outside the back windows of the restaurant. Pretty clever!
Four generations of the East Family carry on a tradition at the Dam Site that’s brought in the likes of astronaut Buzz Aldrin, our own Michigan rocker Bob Seger, and yes, even the fantabulous Tom Daldin from UTR.
The bar at the Dam Site Inn is like something right out of a Hollywood movie. It’s circa 1960s, totally looks like a place George Jetson would stop for a martini after work and was made partly of Naugahyde car upholstery. The groovy chairs in the bar were designed by Eero Saarinen, who also designed the St. Louis Arch and the JFK airport. It’s a must see.
The kitchen there is also completely open to all patrons for inspection. And I have to say, it was one of the biggest, cleanest kitchens I’ve ever encountered.
As promised, they sat us at the haunted table, but to be honest, we were so hungry and the food was so good, I don’t remember ever seeing a ghost. I barely saw the food it was so good.
If your dream restaurant has great fried chicken, a funky retro bar, a haunted table, an awesome family and a dam right outside the back window, take a trip to the Dam Site Inn. You’ll be darn glad you did… Ha!
You know, last time we drove through the tunnel of trees in northwestern Michigan, we blinked and totally missed the tiny town of Good Hart. But this time, we kept our eyes wide open. Good Hart is little alright, but it’s big on both quaintness and creativity. It’s nestled halfway between Harbor Springs and Cross Village on Lake Shore Drive, and it’s a favorite place for travelers to stop, shop and find something tasty.