We were at the Fitzgerald about a year ago (as well as in 2019) but this time we stayed on the second level in the newly re-done large rooms. The view and sounds of Lake Superior are fabulous and with so many hot places, the cool breeze here was refreshing. The staff are super friendly and there’s plenty of parking out front. The restaurant does get full, so reservations are a must. Guests at the hotel have first grab at reservations and I found out they hold the window tables for guests. This visit the fires in Canada were making a haze on the horizon but last time we were at the windows and the sun is so bright I believe I prefer the inner tables. It’s a small place though, so there aren’t any tables without a great view. Another thing I learned is to come early as they have limited quantities of some items and the later in the evening the more they’ve run out of. Unfortunately, they were out of ribs again when we arrived and no ends were available. They did look large and meaty from what I saw on earlier tables. Service is friendly and helpful but their wine list is small, especially compared to the array of whisky that is available. It’s a fun lovely place but the food is mixed. Some of the desserts looked and sounded good but those were all gone by the time we finished.
Coconut shrimp rolls contained coconut, carrot, ginger, soy and gochujang (red chili paste). They are fried and served with sweet chili sauce. The shrimp was so mashed up in these you couldn’t taste it or recognize it. The wrappers were too thick and not that crisp. It was more like a wonton wrapper than an eggroll one. The sauce was lovely with some spiciness to balance the sweet but I found myself drenching the roll in it to give it flavor. I didn’t care for the coconut inside the filling instead of as a coating on the outside. These were a failure for me.
Garlic Udon Noodles were tossed in butter and garlic sauce, then topped with cabbage, scallions, peanuts and your choice of smoked brisket or mushrooms. We asked for a combination of the two. This year the large brisket chunks were on the dry side and so didn’t add the great flavor I had with them last year. The mushrooms were a tasty addition in my opinion but my husband didn’t like them in the mix. It was a good-sized portion and I loved the large noodles but the dish tended toward the salty end of things and generally didn’t seem as savory as last year’s bowl.
A nightly special was a smoked half chicken with green beans and one side, for which we chose Jim’s Baked beans. The chicken was nicely cooked but tasted more grilled than smoked. It was good. The green beans were too undercooked for me. The baked beans were slightly sweet and smokey and I liked them a lot.
Breakfast is available at 8:30 or 10:00 and is brought to your room or available for pick-up. We tried the Breakfast Burrito which was made with smoked brisket, scrambled eggs, roasted red skin potatoes, avocado, poblano and red peppers. It came with a slightly spicy dipping sauce. It was cut in half and half would have been plenty for one for breakfast. I liked the sauce and overall the burrito was a winner.
Brisket Fat Fried Rice was dressed in soy, fish sauce and sesame oil and made with bacon, egg, corn and peas and then topped with a ginger scallion oil. The egg on top was more over-medium than I would have liked so the yolk didn’t get to add richness to the dish. However, it was a good mix of ingredients that all had flavor. It was a tasty combination but I would have liked a hot sauce for it too.