Dining To-Do List
When you need…
Christianos has been a local pizza, pasta and panini institution since opening in 1996. Its flagship restaurant is in Wautoma, but the family-owned restaurant also has locations in Green Lake and Oshkosh. You can’t go wrong with any of the pies on the menu, but the gourmet pizza with mozzarella cheese, Italian sausage, fresh mushrooms, red onions, roma tomatoes, bell peppers and fresh garlic is a sure bet. Pizzas can be ordered medium, large or personal size, but just go big. You can always save the leftovers for your midnight snack. FYI: Onlyinyourstate.com recently included Christianos in their Ultimate Pizza Bucket List of 19 must-visit pizza places in Wisconsin. While you’re in Wautoma, make sure to cross it off your list.
A killer sandwich or salad: Heath Farm Market
This unexpected foodie favorite serves breakfast, sandwiches, wraps, Mexican entrees, salads and delicacies by the pound. The multi-page menu is epic, so make sure to give yourself a few extra minutes to gather your bearings. The Fall Farm to Table sandwich is a customer favorite served on cranberry wild rice bread with roast turkey, white cranberry cheddar and raspberry honey mustard. Pair your lunch with a pitcher of the earl grey and orange iced tea for a summer lunch fit for a garden party. Bonus: the cheeky names of menu items (like the Don’t Go Breaking My Artichoke Heart melt) will have you chuckling. Open March through November.
Something spicy (or not): El Popo Mexican/American Restaurant & Grocery Store
Get the best of both worlds at El Popo where authentic Mexican dishes are served alongside American classics. This makes it a perfect option for groups with diverse tastes who can never agree on where to eat. From breakfast favorites like omelets and french toast to huevos rancheros and breakfast burritos, El Popo offers a delicious start to your day. Stop by for lunch or dinner and choose from the large Mexican and American menus including burgers, steak, seafood, burritos, tacos and tostadas.
A quick pick-me-up: Candle Freak
One part boutique, one part coffee and wine bar, this little gem has it all. Need a caffeine fix? Stop by the espresso bar and order a latte like the Lady Lavender with espresso, lavender and honey. Want something a little more spirited? Take a seat at the cozy wine bar for a free tasting then order a glass of your favorite varietal. Guests can enjoy their beverage in the upstairs coffee lounge with several seating arrangements or outside on the patio. If the weather is iffy, snag a seat in the so-cute-it-hurts garden shed that’s been repurposed into the sweetest gathering spot.
Got a hankering for a traditional Wisconsin meal? Indulge the craving at Moose Inn’s all-you-can-eat family-style fish fry on Fridays. With nightly specials every day of the week, the restaurant offers a casual atmosphere paired with upscale entrees making it a vacation-friendly dining option. The menu offers everything from parmesan-crusted salmon with dill sauce to genuine certified angus beef New York strip steak and a kid’s menu so the whole family will be satisfied. After dinner, stop by the bar which offers more than 40 different beers. Not a beer drinker? Go for a grasshopper or just another old fashioned.
History buffs and foodies will be equally accommodated during their stay in Wautoma. One of the most storied local establishments began as a log cabin resort and has emerged as a beloved supper club, motel and entertainment destination for both locals and visitors alike. The Silvercryst, nestled in a grove of virgin pine trees overlooking Silver Lake, has roots dating back to 1894. Dine in the supper club’s lakeside or hillside dining rooms for the classic experience. The full menu offers signatures such as a 14-ounce top sirloin and one-pound pork chop. The bar and lounge area offers a more casual atmosphere and menu including crispy thin-crust pizza made from a 60-year-old secret recipe. Diners can relax with a drink on the sandy beach and live entertainment is offered year-round. The lounge opens daily at 9 a.m. during the summer and June through August lunch is served from 11:30-2:30 p.m. Dinner is served nightly.
Keep heading down Highway 21 to discover another of the area’s classic dining icons, Milty-Wilty Drive-In. This all American drive-in celebrates its 70th season this year and is a tradition for a reason. Milty Wilty’s has a vintage 1950s vibe (that means they accept cash and check only) with a neon sign that attracts tourists like bugs to a light. The local love for Milty Wilty also runs deep. How many restaurants can say they have a Facebook fan club? Search “The Milty Wilty Fan Club” to see for yourself. Famous for their frozen custard and old-time milkshakes, Milty Wilty also serves burgers, hot dogs, fish and pizza. Visitors can order at the window or a carhop will take your order carside.
On the Horizon: Living Stone Bistro & Coffeehouse
The long-awaited Living Stone Bistro & Coffeehouse plans to officially open its doors by early August if construction continues as planned. The bistro, which has been in the works for several years, will offer various stations including a build-your-own salad bar, a hot bar with soups, burgers and flatbread pizzas and a grab-and-go cooler of pre-made items (similar to the upscale cafeteria-style setup at Zuppas in Neenah.) The beverage lineup includes fresh juices, handcrafted espresso drinks, bottled sodas and a selection of alcohol-free “mocktails.” For dessert, select from fresh bakery, ice cream treats and even a non-dairy version of Dole Whip, a frozen dessert popularized by Disney theme parks. Live entertainment will be scheduled at the indoor stage as well as on the outdoor patio. Swing by the drive-thru for a quick bite or coffee before embarking on the day’s adventure. The bistro will be open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner.