Get to know Saugatuck through its food with Hungry Village Tours

hungry village tours

Michigan is the second most diverse agriculture state in the United States, known for its cherries, apples, blueberries, Christmas trees, and more. Allegan County, home to Saugatuck, holds several titles for its many farms including blue ribbons in crop production, number of farms, and average farm size in Michigan. So it’s no wonder Saugatuck and its surrounding area are brimming with delicious, locally made produce and goods. Delight your taste buds and experience it all with Hungry Village Tours.

Explore the lakeshore’s plate with Hungry Village Tours

Hungry Village Tours gives you the opportunity to explore West Michigan’s farms, organic fruits and vegetables, artisan cheese producers, wineries, orchards, and handmade goods. Offering two styles of tours, you have your choice of exploring the area on foot or in an air conditioned coach.

Your tour guide is David Geen, who started giving culinary tours in Europe in 1995. After years of showing people Italian, French, Spanish and Irish cuisine, Geen decided it was time to offer tours of his hometown in 2010. Ever since, his guests have enjoyed tastes of the lakeshore’s eclectic plate.

Tours to try

Hungry Village’s “Culinary Walk” is a 3-hour tour on foot through the restaurants and shops of Saugatuck and Douglas. Small groups of participants take part in demonstrations and free tastings, getting a crash course in the food and drink scene in Saugatuck. The cost for this tour is $30 per person, or $15 for those under the age of 18.

The “Delicious Drive” is a 6-hour tour of farms, wineries, restaurants and artisans along the lakeshore in an air conditioned coach. It changes seasonally to highlight the area’s freshest offerings. Taste blueberries, wine, ice cream and enjoy an included lunch at Fennville’s Salt of the Earth, a popular farm-to-table restaurant with delicious offerings. The cost of this tour is $90 per person, $75 per person for groups of 8 or more, or $50 for those under the age of 18.

All tours depart from the Saugatuck Center for the Arts. Learn more about Hungry Village Tours on their website, and book your own tour for your next trip to Saugatuck!

How to master vacation rental cooking

vacation rental cooking

Cooking for friends and family is a joy. Good food is a force of connection, and the conversations had over preparing and eating meals become some of the most memorable. For many, vacation often means eating at a lot of restaurants. But when you stay in a vacation rental with a gorgeous kitchen, you can bring those good meal making feelings with you. Vacation rental cooking requires a little planning, but it can be remarkably rewarding.

We’ve got some tips that will help you make the most out of your vacation rental cooking experience.

Vacation rental cooking tips and tricks

vacation rental cookingPack the essentials

Vacation rental kitchens often have a basic selection of tools and equipment, but if you have some holy grail tools you can’t live without, pack them! And if you have a favorite seasoning or condiment that you aren’t sure you’ll be able to find at your destination, make sure you bring it along. Plan on purchasing fresh ingredients when you arrive.

When you arrive: Take stock of your rental’s offerings

Before you go grocery shopping, explore your vacation rental’s cupboards. Find out what seasonings, condiments, and tools are at the ready. Plan your meals around what you have, and make a list of what you’ll need. This way you can avoid purchasing a surplus of groceries, and your menu is kind of shaped by the space you’re spending vacation in.

vacation rental cookingKeep it simple

When it comes to vacation rental cooking, simplicity is key. You’re on vacation—don’t stress over a complex meal! Plan on using fewer ingredients so grocery shopping is quick and easy. You want to avoid ending up with too many leftover, unused groceries. And plan meals that don’t require a lot of tools. You won’t want to be bogged down with a lot of dishes to clean up.

Plan ahead

Plan all of the meals you’re going to make during your stay in advance so you can limit the amount of time spent in a grocery store. When it’s time to shop, get the essentials at a local supermarket or take advantage of a grocery delivery service like Shipt (now available in both Saugatuck and Douglas!).

vacation rental cookingWelcome serendipity

Add local flare to your meals with things you find in your travels. Visit the local farmers market, buy supplies for your own artisanal cheese platter at a local shop, and forage for herbs in the wild or in your vacation rental’s garden. Spend the day at a U-Pick orchard and make a dessert from what you gathered. These are the kind of things that will make your meals unique to your vacation and totally unforgettable.

Enjoy the process

Cooking is fun. Take your time when you’re putting together your meals and relish in the process. Get everyone involved by assigning different people to chop vegetables, cut bread, or prepare appetizers. Make an event out of cooking your meals, and you’ll make loads of delicious memories while you’re at it.

5 farm to table Saugatuck restaurants to inspire your palate

Choosing to eat locally produced food has a bevy of benefits. The most obvious being that your food is guaranteed to be fresh–none of it will have spent days traveling cross country in a truck. For that reason, eating locally is also ecofriendly, because it reduces emissions from shipping. You can experience the difference yourself at a variety of farm to table Saugatuck restaurants.

Farm to table restaurants strive to source their ingredients locally. They develop personal relationships with the people who produce them and are invested in the freshness and quality of the products they use. That means you don’t have to wonder where your food is coming from, and you get to enjoy a fresh, delicious meal you can feel good about. These are our favorite farm to table Saugatuck restaurants to support.

Experience farm to table Saugatuck

Growfarm to table saugatuck

Grow is a great spot for breakfast or brunch. Their menu is filled with inspired plates made with locally sourced ingredients, making it an obvious choice for a farm to table meal.

Everyday People Cafe

This Douglas restaurant is a long-time favorite. Its diverse menu features farm-sourced ingredients where possible. It’s a great spot for brunch or dinner, and their diverse selection of fine wines and craft beers make this cafe a must visit during your stay in the area.

farm to table saugatuckSalt of the Earth

Salt of the Earth is located in Fennville, a rich farming community. The restaurant invites visitors to “savor the bounty of the Michigan farm, beverage, and roots music communities.” If a taste of the local terroir is what you seek, Salt of the Earth is the place to go.

The Southerner

Located right on the river, The Southerner serves up great views, warm hospitality, and spicy southern inspired dishes. They source ingredients from a variety of local producers, which you can read more about on their website.

the southerner farm to table saugatuckKismet Farm Bakery

For ethically produced breads to pair with your home cooked meals or desserts to follow them up with, Kismet Farm Bakery is a must visit.  They pride themselves on using all organic dairy and fruit, sourcing them locally whenever possible. Their website proclaims: “ecovore and locavore customers can rest assured that we have made the best choices for each ingredient, in each amazing product.”


What’s new in Saugatuck

saugatuck on the water

Saugatuck will always be a quaint small town perfect for a quiet vacation–but that doesn’t mean we never change. In fact, there’s lots of new places to discover every year. Visit us to find out what’s new in Saugatuck. Here are some new spots we think you shouldn’t miss.

Discover what’s new in Saugatuck

Shop Saugatuck

Kindel & Company

Find quality home goods and gifts at this lifestyle mercantile on Culver Street. Founded in 2004 in Howard, Michigan, Kindel & Co is brand new in Saugatuck.

Saugatuck Art Traders

Take a bit of Michigan’s Art Coast home with you. Saugatuck Art Traders sells “original paintings, limited edition signed fine art prints, sculpture and a few rare finds.”

Kismet Farm Bakerybreakfast in saugatuck new in saugatuck

Previously near Glenn, Kismet Farm Bakery has moved right into downtown Douglas. Stop by to treat yourself to hearth-baked goods. Be sure to taste their famous Seedy Salt bread–it’s a local favorite.

Dine out

Borrowed Time

Look for the iconic blue house on Water Street. This quaint restaurant opened in Saugatuck in 2016. Enjoy unique wine, craft beer, small plates, and homemade desserts–served right in the living room. It’s one of the spots on our Saugatuck bar crawl, too.

Lucy’s Little Kitchen

This restaurant started as an outdoor patio and hot dog stand and quickly became a favorite spot for lunch among locals and visitors alike. Its new Saugatuck location offers indoor and outdoor dining, a menu full of fresh, locally sourced dishes including a vibrant seafood selection.

bourbon new in saugatuck coppercraft distillery Grow

Breakfast and brunch in Saugatuck was taken to the next level when Grow came into town. With notable dishes like carrot cake pancakes, lavender lemonade, and fish tacos, Grow is a must visit the next time you visit.

Grab a drink

Coppercraft Distillery

This distillery first started making its premium spirits in Holland in 2012. In 2016, they opened a new tasting room in Saugatuck, where visitors can sample all of their handcrafted spirits: vodka, citrus vodka, gin, rum, applejack, bourbon, corn whiskey, and rye whiskey. Enjoy batch cocktails as well!

Guardian Brewing Company

retro boat rentals new in saugatuck

Saugatuck will be getting a new brewery in January 2019. Guardian Brewing Company is slated to make its home in the Red Barn Theater, where it will host a full restaurant, brewery, and events center.

Hit the water

Retro Boat Rentals

Ever wanted to drive a classic boat? Retro Boat Rentals lets you live out that dream. This new Saugatuck business opened in 2017 and quickly became wildly popular. Cruise the Kalamazoo River in style! Be sure to reserve in advance, these rentals get scooped up quickly.

For your mind & body

Redefine Medspaencompass wellness new in saugatuck

Saugatuck’s premier, luxury medical spa. Redefine Medspa offers everything from facials, to special occasion makeup applications, to therapeutic massages. Visit this new spot to pamper yourself or ease some aches and pains.

Encompass Wellness

Work out and have fun with one of Encompass Wellness’s diverse exercise courses. From yoga, to barre, to cardio drumming. You’re sure to find a class that will change up your hum-drum exercise routine, and your body will thank you.

Get a ride


Get from A to B with ease with Uber, now available in Saugatuck. Uber started offering its services in Saugatuck in summer 2017. Getting around Saugatuck just got easier!

The Best Reasons to Visit the Butler in Saugatuck

the butler in saugatuck

When you venture to Saugatuck for your spring or summer vacation, an array of fabulous restaurants greets you, enticing your taste buds to try something delicious! The Butler in Saugatuck is a quintessential dining experience you’ve got to try. Serving fresh takes on classic American food with a view of Lake Kalamazoo, you were meant to discover this gem. Come, relax downtown at the Butler in Saugatuck!

It’s important, especially during a vacation, to make sure everyone in the family is happy with the restaurant choice for the night. The Butler in Saugatuck is just the tip of the iceberg. Want to know more? Then, check out our restaurant guide! Here at Lakeshore Lodging, we’re the experts because we’re local. The experiences we recommend will make your vacation the best one yet!

Here are Our Best Reasons to Eat at the Butler in Saugatuck

If there was a reason for every year the Butler in Saugatuck has been a fixture in the community, there would be 55 of them! And, that’s just too long of a list. So, instead, let us guide you through the menu highlights! They’re the best reasons to visit the Butler in Saugatuck!

To Start

Crab-stuffed mushroom caps are a savory and rich way to start your dining experience at the Butler in Saugatuck. Crab, stuffing, garlic butter, and Monterey Jack cheese melt in your mouth for an experience you’ll want to try to make at home later!

Spinach and artichoke dip may be a classic appetizer you’ve had elsewhere, but this dip is special. A customer favorite, the warm, housemade flatbread is only topped by gooey, delicious spinach and artichoke dip.

On the Lighter Side

The cherry, chicken, and walnut salad is a customer favorite! Crisp romaine with grilled chicken breast, walnuts, cherries, onion, and topped with bleu cheese crumbles make this a delicious option on the lighter side. The cherry vinaigrette dressing brings it all together in a way you’ll remember!

The Butler in Saugatuck offers some exceptional soups, too! Try their soup of the day, spicy Butler chili, Butler New England clam chowder, or, on the first Friday of the month, their cream of crab soup!

Boardwalk Burgers

Our Famous Butler burger is a unique take on a burger. A half-pound ground sirloin burger, topped with grilled ham, American cheese, lettuce, and mayo combines for a juicy combination you can’t put down!

If you’re brave enough, try the Maple Bacon Waffle Burger! It’s a half-pound ground sirloin topped with cheddar cheese, bacon onion tanglers, with a maple bacon glaze served open-faced atop a sugar pearl waffle. Don’t count the calories on this one!

The horseradish peppercorn burger is a zesty, spicy take on a burger, topped with pepper jack cheese, A1 Steak Sauce, bacon, lettuce, and tomato. The horseradish peppercorn sauce really kicks as you bite through the burger garnished with an onion ring on a pretzel bun! Savor the flavor!

Ward Room Entrées

The crab mushroom chicken is a savory, rich take on chicken of which you’ll love every bite. Baked chicken breast crowned with an incredible combination of crab meat, shrimp, mushrooms, and Monterey Jack cheese will have you stuffed just like those mushroom caps you had earlier!

The pan-fried walleye is a Butler specialty you’ve got to try! The simple fried walleye is a no-frills dish that lets the walleye speak for itself. Pan-fried and served with tartar sauce and lemon, you’ll love it!

The Butler Prime Rib is such a special dish, it’s only available on Fridays and Saturdays after 4 p.m. But, get there early! It’s first come, first served! Available in 18-ounce, 14-ounce, and 8-ounce cuts and served with sauteed mushrooms and au jus.

Pair Your Dining Experience with a Fantastic Place to Stay

The Butler in Saugatuck is a wonderful place to introduce yourself to downtown. Here at Lakeshore Lodging, many of our beautiful vacation rentals are just minutes from downtown Saugatuck! You’ll love feeling the comfort of home when you stay with us. Plus, there’s plenty of room to spread out! Browse our available rentals today and see for yourself how great a stay in Saugatuck can be!

Can You Taste the Love at The Southerner in Saugatuck?

the southerner in saugatuck

The Southerner in Saugatuck brings the best of Southern hospitality to the North. Chef Matthew Millar offers up soul food fried and cooked with love using his southeast Tennessee family recipes. If you’re in the mood for fried chicken, barbecue ribs, shrimp and grits, and that happy feeling you get from feeling stuffed, then the Southerner in Saugatuck is a must try!

Make memories with incredible experiences like dining at the Southerner in Saugatuck when you visit the area! Let our Vacation Plan tool lead you to the best things to see and do on Michigan’s Art Coast. Here at Lakeshore Lodging, we’re the experts on the area. You can trust our expertise to make lifelong memories during your next visit to the area!

What Should You Try at The Southerner?

Putting a Michigan flair on southern fare is the chef’s specialty, and you’re invited to taste the love at the Southerner in Saugatuck! Here’s what you ought to try there!


For breakfast at The Southerner, Nana’s cinnamon rolls are a great accompaniment to a cup of coffee. Try their chilaquiles verde, two eggs topped with salsa verde, chorizo verde, queso fresco, scallion, and Southerner baked beans. Their shrimp and grits are another chef’s specialty. Shrimp, grits, Benton’s ham, shrimp broth, scallions, grits from South Carolina, and two sides are an exceptional way to start the day. Or, if you’re the eggs benedict type, Benton’s benedict is their signature interpretation of the dish with the main twist being whole grain mustard-based hollandaise. Lastly, if you love a good breakfast sandwich, then you’ll love the selection The Southerner offers, including their Nashville hot chicken biscuit.


The Southerner’s lunch options are a great combination of favorites, sandwiches, and salads. Whatever you order for lunch kicks with flavor, you can rest assured of that. Try their fried whitefish sandwich, a beer battered Michigan whitefish topped with housemade bread and butter pickles and a creole remoulade, plus a side. Nana’s fried chicken is a signature dish and a family recipe you would be remiss to not try!


Dinner is a special experience at The Southerner in Saugatuck. There, you’ll find yourself in the middle of a homestyle feast you won’t soon forget! Start with blue crab calas with Carolina Gold rice fritters and a creole remoulade or their horseradish pimiento cheese. Then, move on to a sandwich or entree. Choose between their famous whitefish sandwich or chicken biscuit sandwich or a specialty like their mac and cheese with two kinds of smoked, aged cheddar, topped with queso fresco, brown butter crumbs, and two sides. Give their bobwhite quail a try. The Tennessee-mopped fowl will have your mouth watering! Or, for a Michigan twist, order the creole walleye pike over Carolina Gold rice grits with swiss chard and two sides. Oh, and don’t forget the signature Nana’s fried chicken! Whatever you order at The Southerner will be an unforgettable dining experience.

Bowdies Chophouse is the Best

bowdies chophouse

If you’re looking for a classy spot to enjoy top-quality food and fare, then Bowdies Chophouse in Saugatuck, MI, is the place for you. Featuring exceptional steaks, contemporary cuisine, and American eats, there’s something for everyone in your party. Not convinced? Here’s why Bowdies Chop House is one of the best restaurants in Saugatuck.

Are you looking for the best things to do and places to eat in Saugatuck? Then, check out the “Area Information” page from Lakeshore Lodging. It has everything you need to craft the best Saugatuck, MI, vacation or getaway!

What to Expect When You Walk In

Bowdies Chop House is the type of high-class quality you’d expect to find in Lower Manhattan. The thing is, it’s in cozy Saugatuck. So, you’re surely in for a treat when you book a reservation. When you walk in, you’ll first notice the rustic elegance in the woodgrain and leather appointments. The more rustic elements are perfectly contrasted, and therefore complimented, by the elegant tableware and white linens. This should be your first signal that you’re in for incredible quality food. To start, you’ll want to try any one of their excellent appetizers. From escargot to ceviche to seared pork belly, there’s something to whet your appetite. Then, for those seeking something a little on the lighter side, a selection of soup and salads as well as lighter entrees like pan-seared trout or a roasted half chicken are available. But, for the true essence of Bowdies Chop House, you’ve got to experience the wonder that is their steak.

Bowdies Chophouse Has Incredible Steak

Bowdies Chop House steak is famous for being some of the best in all of Michigan. They serve only 100% USDA Prime beef that has been dry-aged for 28 days. That means, that with every bite, your meal will be bursting with incredible flavor. Though their steaks may cost a pretty penny, that doesn’t mean they’re not worth the price. Take, for example, their Filet Mignon. This customer favorite, 10-ounce choice cut is perfectly seasoned with a house-blended mixture of herbs and spices. And, most importantly, it melts in your mouth for, quite possibly, the best steak you’ve ever had. Or, if you’re looking for a test, Bowdies’ Cowboy Ribeye is 20 ounces of amazing steak flavor, again seasoned to perfection with their blend of herbs and spices. The experience you’ll have at Bowdies is one unlike any other in Saugatuck!

3 Reasons Why You Need to Eat at Wicks Park Bar & Grille

wicks park bar & grille

Take a trip to western Michigan to the town of Saugatuck, and there you’ll find an abundance of little shops and delicious local food. Wicks Park Bar & Grille is a local favorite serving up great food in a comfortable atmosphere. It’s the perfect place to grab lunch or dinner during your trip the Michigan’s Art Coast. What separates Wicks Park Bar & Grille from the rest? Here are three reasons why you should grab a table!

Are you looking for the best things to see and do in western Michigan? Then, look no further than the recommended attractions from Lakeshore Lodging! Our recommendations are guaranteed to make your getaway or vacation the best it can be!

Top 3 Reasons to Check Out Wicks Park Bar & Grille

1. Local Favorite

Wicks Park Bar & Grille in downtown Saugatuck has made quite the impression on the community. You’ll fall in love with the elegant ambiance, warm lighting, and overall excellence. Friendly, knowledgeable, and quick service makes dining out a convenience at Wicks Park. Plus, the variety on the menu means that there’s something for everyone in the family. The bar’s extensive drink menu makes it a great place to get a cocktail or margaritas with dinner, too.

2. Live Music

If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to catch some live music with your meal or bar experience! Wicks Park Bar & Grille brings in some of the best local live music acts around. Everything from rock to funk to country to blues, you’ll love the energy the local music brings! It’s a great way to experience the western Michigan music and mingle with the locals!

3. Delicious Food

Of course, their food is one of the top three reasons you need to go to Wicks Park! To start, you’ll want to try the succulent bacon scallops. Three bacon-wrapped scallops seared in molasses butter adorned with an apricot chutney are a great way to begin your Wicks Park experience. Their hot crab dip is another one to try! Blue crab in melted cheese served with crispy wontons makes a great shareable starter for the whole table. At most restaurants, offerings like soup are overlooked on the menu. Here, you don’t want to skip out on their famous New Orleans-style gumbo. Though they’re far north of the bayou, this soup has gained quite a reputation in the area! For you entree, you’ll definitely want to consider the pasta carbonara with chicken, shrimp, or scallops. Or, if you’re in the mood for a good burger, they’ve got plenty of great options, including a delicious salmon burger. Other notables include their Mahi Mahi fish tacos and Over the Top mac and cheese. Whatever it is you decide to order, you’re guaranteed to get a delicious meal out of it!

Wicks Park Bar & Grille is One of the Many Great Things About Saugatuck

There are so many great things to do in and around Saugatuck, MI, you may run out of time to do them all! One thing is for sure: Lakeshore Lodging will be there for all of your lodging needs. Our beautiful vacation rentals make the perfect getaway, vacation, or get-together. You’ll love our luxurious amenities and proximity to everything, too. So, check out our available properties and contact us today to book your stay!