Oshkosh, WI Restaurants Known for Their Character as Well as the Cuisine

May 6, 2011 at 5:01 pm EST


From dock-side convenience to historic ambiance, Oshkosh restaurants serve up plenty of local flavor.

Offering Boat-In Service

Fratello’s & Fox River Brewing gives new meaning to drive-up service. The restaurant, located on Oshkosh’s Fox River offers 40 boat slips for customer who’d rather boat in than drive in for their meal. The slips are a welcomed sight for hungry customers who often find themselves circling the river looking for a slip on a weekend night.

Fratello’s, which is Italian for “brother,” can seat close to 400 in its two-tiered dining room. Most diners come for the restaurant’s signature white chicken chili or to sample the eight beers that are brewed in-house. But many come to relax and watch as boats pass by on the river or listen to the “rhythm and brews” house band kick up a few tunes.

The two-tiered eatery offers seating for 150 outside and 240 inside. Diners choose from lunch and dinner menus; white chicken chili is a signature dish. Eight beers are brewed in house.

Home Maid for More than 60 Years

Who can resist chocolate candy? Not many, and when people in Oshkosh hanker for chocolate they’re likely to head for Hughes Home Maid Chocolate Shop.

It’s been that way since 1940 when William Hughes began making chocolates in the basement of his home at 1823 Doty St.
Now, 62 years later, grandson Tom Hughes makes candy in that same basement, selling the hand-dipped goodies from September to May and working over the summer to stock up for the Christmas rush.

Tom operates the old-fashioned way. No advertising except word of mouth. No Web site. No mail orders. Just yummy chocolates sold right where they’re made in 1- to 5-pound boxes, along with novelties like chocolate bunnies.

Cranking Out Fine Cuisine

Massive, long-silent milling machines. Soaring 20-foot-high ceilings. Sturdy wooden beams. Thick stone walls.

This unusual ambiance, combined with outstanding cuisine, has attracted patrons to The Granary at 50 W. Sixth Ave. since 1984 when the transformation of the then-vacant H.P. Schmidt Mill, an Oshkosh landmark since 1883, into an upscale restaurant was completed. The renovation even garnered a mention from Architectural Digest magazine.

With two dining rooms seating 100 each, the restaurant also features intimate nooks and crannies, a banquet room and a two-tiered lounge with a huge ladder-backed bar that displays 250 bottles of spirits.

The Granary is located near the Fox River and the Experimental Aircraft Association facilities and convention center and is open for lunch and dinner.

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