Are you ready to savor the flavor? If you’re a foodie seeking unforgettable dining, these are Winona, Minnesota’s best restaurants.
Prepare to embark on a delectable journey through the charming city of Winona, Minnesota, where culinary delights await at every corner. Whether you’re a local foodie or a traveler seeking an unforgettable dining experience, this article unveils the crème de la crème of Winona’s restaurant scene.
From cozy cafes to upscale eateries, we’ve scoured the city to curate a list of the top 6 restaurants that promise to tantalize your taste buds and leave you craving more. Get ready to savor the flavor as we delve into Winona, Minnesota’s gastronomic treasures that simply cannot be missed.
You might like reading: “Discover the Enchanting Charm of Winona, Minnesota: Unveiling the Top 5 Cutest Shops You Can’t Miss!” Step into a world of whimsical wonder in the picturesque town of Winona, Minnesota! Prepare to be enchanted as we unveil the hidden gems nestled amidst its charming streets. From delightful boutiques to cozy cafes, Winona boasts a collection of the top 5 cutest shops that will steal your heart.
Winona, Minnesota’s Best Restaurants
Are you visiting Winona, Minnesota and looking for some suggestions for a great meal? Well, our little town is a foodie paradise…and here are our top picks for eating in Winona!
I’m excited to share with you some fun food options to make your next visit to Winona a delicious one. Hehe…
1. Bloedow Bakery
451 E Broadway St, Winona, MN 55987
First up, Bloedow Bakery. Seriously, this is the most beloved institution in all of Winona. Folks love Bloedows more than they love the Mississippi River, Winona State University and their own moms! Well, I’m kidding, but ask any Winonan about Bloedows and they’ll start talking…and talking…and talking. WCCO even named Bloedows the “Best Donut Shop in Minnesota”.
In 1924, Ernest and Mary Bloedow had a dream to start their own bakery in Winona. By 1925 the bakery moved to its current location: the corner of Broadway and Laird. The building was a former saloon, complete with a hitching post outside. There it flourished and was passed down through the family.
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They feature original recipes for donuts, breads, and rolls along with new favorites. Some of its most popular items include the caramel rolls, long johns, and peanut butter-filled donuts.
Here’s a tip: skip the long lines at Bloedows by a visit to the local grocery store HyVee. They carry Bloedows donuts in their bakery and it’s a quick way to get your sugary breakfast fix.
2. Lakeview Drive Inn
610 E Sarnia St, Winona, MN 55987
My next pick is the Lakeview Drive Inn, they are Winona’s oldest restaurant…and have been a family favorite for over eighty-five years now!
Lakeview Drive Inn was founded in 1938 and is an original family owned and operated drive inn restaurant. They are not a chain, theme, or “fast food” restaurant, as their food is made to order and of a very high quality.
Lakeview employees are friendly hometown kids that want you to get the best meal and service they can provide. Lakeview’s Root Beer is made from scratch with their very own exclusive recipe. When eating at the inside counter, the outside picnic tables or in you car, Lakeview serves their root beer in old-fashioned frosted mugs.
Dining is an experience at the Lakeview Drive Inn. It truly is like a step back in time. Lakeview Drive Inn is located on the shore of Lake Winona, has a great view of Sugarloaf and is a true taste of days gone by.
3. Great Hunan Restaurant
11 W 3rd St, Winona, MN 55987
This was my favorite sort of restaurant when I was a kid. A small, family-owned and operated place specializing in Szechuan, Mandarin and other tasty Chinese dishes.
It’s not fancy or pretentious. They do one thing and they do it well: make amazing Chinese food for dine in or carry out. Plus, it’s affordable. So affordable you’ll often see Great Hunan packed with hungry Winona State University students grabbing a tasty, yet cheap, dinner.
My favorites are their Curry Vegetables with Tofu and Jack likes their Veggie Lo Mein.
4. Muddled Thyme
75 W 3rd St, Winona, MN 55987
You might be surprised to learn that the tiny river town of Winona has an upscale cocktail bar with great food, wine and beer all crafted with high attention to detail and taste in an atmosphere to match.
Muddled Thyme hired a mixologist consultant to help train their staff on classic cocktails, and worked with Tattersall to curate a special cocktail menu for our space. Wine suppliers in the area bring a variety of wines from around the world.
They specialize in homemade Neapolitan artisan brick oven pizza. Their ingredients are local whenever possible. Cheese from Burnett Dairy in Wisconsin, basil from the owner’s garden and produce from a family farm just north of Rochester. Everything is made from scratch.
Muddled Thyme invites you to relax, slow down, and enjoy the finer things in life…like food, friendship, and community. Plus, the pizza is super good!
5. Cafe Sapori di Sicilia
211 Main St, Winona, MN 55987
You also may be surprised to learn that Winona has a Sicilian-style bakery and café.
You can stop by and grab a loaf of bread to take home, or order a plate of pasta to dine-in. Many Winonans enjoy getting a scoop of gelato to savor out on their patio during a warm summer evening.
Cafe Sapori di Sicilia offers Sicilian breads, pastries, pastas, sauces and gelato all made in house in low quantities from recipes brought from Sicily. They’ve taken the time to send folks from their team to Sicily to learn or renew their sense of what is authentic Sicilian fare, and that dedication to quality shows in their work.
You know Jack and I performed in Sicily years ago, and of course fell in love with its food and people. Visiting Cafe Sapori di Sicilia brings back so many memories…oh, and their food is delicious!
6. Penguin Zesto
602 E 3rd St, Winona, MN 55987
Ask most Winonas and they’ll agree: Penguin Zesto has some of the best ice cream and burgers in all of Winona County. Penguin Zesto has an adorable building on 3rd Street that’s oh-so Instagram-worthy. They also have a place in nearby Goodview.
They have been around for over 60 years. Generations of Winonans have grown up loving Penguin Zesto. This is a seasonal restaurant that’s very popular on warm summer nights, check their website for hours and more details.
Oh, and did I mention that besides being delicious, it’s affordable? A medium ice cream cone is just $3.00, hot dogs are only $2.50, and their infamous burgers? Well, they’ll cost you just 3 bucks.
Finally, I’d love to mention that the sammies at Acoustic Cafe are amazing. And if you’re looking for a quick and healthy, grab and go meal be sure to check out Bluff Country Co-op, they are a great health food grocer located in the heart of downtown Winona.
Well, guys, there you go…a few recommendations for eating your way around Winona. There’s so much to see and do in our little town…your tummy will thank you for a stop at any one of these great foodie destinations. Let us know if you have any fave restaurants…either here in Winona, or in your hometown. We travel a lot, and are always looking for tips from locals.
As our culinary expedition through Winona, Minnesota comes to a close, it’s evident that this picturesque city is a hidden gem for food enthusiasts. From the mouthwatering dishes served with warm hospitality to the diverse range of flavors that grace the menus, Winona’s top 6 restaurants have truly captured the essence of exceptional dining experiences. Whether you’re seeking a cozy brunch spot, a romantic dinner destination, or a place to indulge in local delicacies, these restaurants have set the bar high. So, venture into Winona, savor the flavor, and allow yourself to be captivated by the culinary treasures that make this city a haven for food lovers.
Have a super day!
Love Minnesota? You betcha!
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About the Authors
Jack and Kitty Norton are Emmy Award winning travel experts. They have spent a lifetime on the road: as traveling musicians, documentary filmmakers and television producers. They now focus on writing for their travel blog (JackAndKitty.com) and making fun videos for their YouTube channel. Jack and Kitty offer travelers fun and quirky things to do in Minnesota, the Midwest and beyond. High school sweethearts turned married soulmates, the couple lives in the small college town of Winona, Minnesota and would love to have you over for some hotdish.