Chef Shack Bay City

4.8
98 reviews
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$31 to $50
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French
2017 James Beard semi-finalist "Best chef midwest"

The jewel in the Chef Shack empire crown, this historic bar & restaurant has been around since 1920, in the tiny Wisconsin river town called Bay City.

Chef Shack companies purchased this fine property in 2012 and have lifted it to the next level in cuisine & service in a rustic natural country setting.

Guests traveling the Great River road experience this special destination in delight and turn into believers of what a restaurant in the middle of nowhere can deliver. Chefs & life partners Lisa Carlson & Carrie Summer have brought their New York City training to this small 40 seat establishment.

Sourcing organics and creating a French focused menu for the publics delight weekends only each year through New Years eve.
Creating a" hidden and hard to find" secret dining experience and exceeding expectations.
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S
1 review
Dined on June 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Chef Shack Bay City is a bona fide 'diamond in the rough'.
There is little to note from the outside of the building that houses the Chef Shack, and you'd be right in assuming that it appears to be nothing more than a typical small town lunch counter. However, once you open the door, you immediately sense how delightfully wrong that assumption was.
The ambiance has a light, fresh rustic quality that is in perfect harmony with the seasonal foods that are wonderful examples of farm to table thoughtfulness. With this in mind the menu rewards both new and regular diners with a choice selection of mindfully prepared courses that showcase the flavor of freshness and the creative skill that resides in the kitchen.
We feel lucky to have such a unique place to frequent and always look forward to the next visit.

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k
Minneapolis
7 reviews
Dined on June 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful! Carrie and Lisa are very welcoming, and service very professional. Food great too.

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S
Seattle
2 reviews
Dined on June 22, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 4

We love that little place. It felt a bit chaotic this time, because most of the tables were filled and staff were rushing around, apologizing. I got elbowed in the head by one. We had a reservation and waited at the bar until a table was ready. We were not asked if we wanted a cocktail by the bartender. The food flavor was great, but the portions were very small, and I left there hungry. They had run out of two of the offered entrees by 6:30 as well as wine that was on their list.
We would go back for a cocktail. It’s just too pricey for the amount of food you get.

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w
Minneapolis
5 reviews
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Chef Shack Bay City is a treasure. Must visit and always on my day trip go to list...brunch, dinner, whenever I have the time - it's MORE than worth the trip.

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KM
1 review
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

We celebrated Father's Day at the Chef Shack and followed our dining experience with a walk along the lake. Although this little gem is only about 20 minutes from my home, I'd never been there. Now that I have been, I'm pretty certain I'll be back.

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C
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Best food in the area. Chef driven, local, preparation, presentation is perfect. Always something new to try and favorites remain. Love the seasonal choices. Good coffee.

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BE
Minneapolis
2 reviews
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is our favorite restaurant. We enjoy taking out-of-town guests here.

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CF
1 review
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was great...would suggest they include bread with the meals as paying extra for the small pieces of bread and butter, which wasn't anything out of the ordinary, seemed a bit beneath such an establishment!

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B
Minneapolis
48 reviews
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had intended to dine at another one of our favorite restaurants in the area we have been going to for @ 30 years but decided to try the Chef Shack tonight instead. I was surprised to be able to here reservations on short notice. From the time we entered the restaurant and were warmly greeted by the hostess in had a good feeling we had made the right choice. There is a limited selection menu, but all the options were excellent. We enjoyed a beet salad and smoked salmon for appetizers and then moved on to our main courses of Trout and rac of lamb. Both were excellent!
We had great food and excellent service. I would recommend this gem in Bay City!

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OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on May 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Ever since learning of Chef Shack, it’s been on the “must visit” list. This was the weekend....The 4 hour drive was worth every bit of the experience. From the moment we walked in to the moment we left, the service was impeccable. And the food? A feast for the eyes as much as for the body. If you’re looking for something special, this is the place.

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s
1 review
Dined on May 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our friends had not eaten there before. They congratulated us on this gem of a restaurant complete with a long, long wooden bar that dates from the 20s. Our table was historically appointed with old china, silver and an enticing menu. The place has an interesting flair, the music was wonderful and turned low. We could actually talk easily to our friends. We 4 tried all of the small plate items and a couple of the entrees along with 2 desserts. There were no disappointments. We can’t wait to go again, such fun to introduce friends to this lovely and satisfying dining experience! Did I mention the service? Again, 5 star.

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L
Tampa
110 reviews
Dined on May 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I travel constantly and eat out all of time around the country, however this was one of the best restaurant experiences I have had recently. Restaurant is in a tiny town on the Mississippi River in Bay City, Wisc. The place is an old converted bar, and is very rustic. However, don't let the little town or the rustic look fool you. The chef(s) here know how to make some terrific food. We were given a delectable aperitif when we arrived, and then seated when we finished those. Great selection of cocktails and a decent wine list. We ordered a sampler plate of appetizers and they were spectacular. We also had the two salads on the menu, and they couldn't have been fresher or more tasty. They had 4 entrees on the menu and we ended up ordering all four, and each was spectacular. The trout, lamb chops, brisket, and the thai curry shrimp were so delicious and full of flavor, with each being cooked perfectly. We also had the baked Alaska and crème brulee and they were also just perfect. We will definitely come back again when we travel back to this part of the country. HIGHLY RECOMMEND, YOU WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED.

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AC
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Much as I’d like to keep this gem of a restaurant a secret for myself and my close circle of epicures, these chefs deserve popular success. There should be a line out the door every night they’re open. I’ll be in it.

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ES
1 review
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Such a fantastic dining experience. This was my second time, and will certainly be back for more. Thank you Chef Shack!

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ND
1 review
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

A delightful evening was enjoyed with friends at CSBC! As always the owners and staff are welcoming and oriented to providing a good dining experience. We were welcomed at the door,our table was ready for us and we were served a delicious aperitif. We recommend the artichoke dip and salmon for starters. The salad course is always good and the cucumber-dill soup was fabulous!

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BA
Chicago
9 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

The setting and service at Chef Shack is great. The interior and ambiance is warm and welcoming. The menu is limited, at least on Sundays, but the presentation is attractive and the flavors are excellent. It was a big surprise however, when we got our bill to see that coffee costs $10!! No wonder the price wasn’t on the menu!

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LH
1 review
Dined on April 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was our first visit and we absolutely loved it! I have already highly recommended The Chef Shack to my friends and co-workers! Wonderful establishment! The trout was amazing!

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OT
1 review
Dined on April 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Really comfortable, fun atmosphere. Service was outstanding, as was the food. Great bar with lots of beer, wine and mixed drink offerings. The owner stopped by our table to ensure everything was great (it was). Strongly recommend!

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E
Minneapolis
2 reviews
Dined on April 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Charming restaurant. Wonderful food.

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CO
Minneapolis
2 reviews
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is our favorite restaurant. It does operate on the small menu concept, and it changes each day. However, we've never been disappointed, and it's always a delightful culinary experience.

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KL
1 review
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The staff and ambiance are always very welcoming and the food delicious. We try to go to this restaurant once a week and have done for many years.

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w
Minneapolis
5 reviews
Dined on April 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Loved it. They always do a great job. My favorite place for a lazy-Sunday brunch.

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OT
Milwaukee
1 review
Dined on December 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Ok it was a road trip and it was a special stop. Perfect in many ways. Hospitality and great food. We will make the journey again in the future.

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SL
1 review
Dined on December 7, 2018
Overall 3food 1service 5ambience 5

Great ambiance and service. The cocktails were lovely. With such a limited menu, every dish should be knocked out of the park good and unfortunately the food missed the mark. The baked artichoke dip was mostly garlic cloves with a little artichoke. The curry cod lacked visual appeal and the taste depth that I was expecting having had some dishes from the food truck. I will try it again though.

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s
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on November 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food and ambiance are always awesome at Chef Shack in Bay City

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OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on November 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We went on a quiet night so I can’t really say what it’s like when it’s busy. My guess is it’s a very friendly positive buzz in the air. My wife is pregnant and the staff was so thoughtful. Made her a bunch of small non alcoholic drinks and juices for her to experiment with. The food was incredible. Small menu but done so well. We will be back again and again.

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K
Minneapolis
4 reviews
Dined on November 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The hospitality was a team effort from owner, wait staff and bar. Definitely all on the same page from welcoming through service. Food was exceptional with a creatively simple approach that would be welcomed by the foodie or general dining enjoyment. Definitely worth the planned visit or any opportunity.

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t
Minneapolis
3 reviews
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

LOVE LOVE LOVE everything about this place. Food is first rate; chefs are beautiful, warm women. Place is cozy with a wonderful atmosphere. Everyone is so attentive and friendly and craft cocktails are delicious. This is a true gem and oh so worth the drive. Can’t recommend it enough!!

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OT
Charlotte
9 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were greeted with a wonderful smile and the happy service continued. Food was excellent and perfect portions. Service was well timed and not rushed. We will definitely go again....

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OT
Milwaukee
1 review
Dined on October 26, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Our dinner was an enjoyable experience in a rustic shack on the Mississippi. Staff was welcoming, helpful, and attentive without being overbearing.

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s
Milwaukee
10 reviews
Dined on October 13, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

As always, C.S. did not disappoint! Saturday's lucky find was the bartender. Creative drinks and interesting conversation. I believe we had almost everything on the menu. The appetizers were to die for (escargot!!) and my curry outstanding. Take money when you go, but always always worth the price. Can't wait to go again, maybe New Years!!

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CN
Minneapolis
3 reviews
Dined on September 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is our “go to” place. We try to go once a week! Their menu is innovative and tasty.

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OT
1 review
Dined on September 14, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 1

We didn't like sitting so close to the other tables. The rib eye steak was tough.

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CM
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on September 9, 2018
Overall 2food 1service 3ambience 4

very disappointing, fruit not ripe and meager; had better quiche from Costco

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CO
Minneapolis
3 reviews
Dined on August 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It's our favorite restaurant, and we've been going there for years. It never disappoints.

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OT
1 review
Dined on August 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Fabulous!!!!

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AG
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2018
Overall 1food 3service 1ambience 2

The food is good but the service was atrocious. There was confusion about what server had our table resulting in unacceptable stretches between anyone coming by. We told them we were unhappy and the offered us NOTHING as a remedy, this with haute cuisine prices. Too bad because it is a cute spot in a location where nothing much is available, but the service and lack of concern about it left such a bad taste we won’t be going back.

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MJ
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 4

At nearly a $200 tab for wine, appetizer, 2 salads , 2 entrées, one scoop of ice cream and two coffees, this meal was not a good value. Also, I don't think you become a semi-finalist for James Beard Best Chef Midwest with the way the Steak Frites was plated Saturday evening!

But given the proximity, I'm sure we'll be back one day to try again.

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JS
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This trip to Bay City expressly to eat what Lisa and Carrie have prepared, tho this year we invited friends to join us. Everything, from the amuse bouche to the desserts was fantastic!

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MM
1 review
Dined on July 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Attentive, high quality, the place should be packed each weekend!

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