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Diners' Choice: Lively restaurants in South Bend

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OpenTable
Updated June 05, 2024

Looking for restaurants that have the most vibrant bar scenes in South Bend? You’re in the right place. Each month, OpenTable analyzes nearly 2 million global diner reviews from the past four months. We sort the results by location and category to help you discover new favorite restaurants. It's a great partnership: you reserve, eat, and review. We listen...and deliver the results for all to benefit. Enjoy!

A photo of Essence Restaurant + Bar restaurant
5.0
5 (262)
$31 to $50
American
Elkhart
About the restaurant
A culinary playground centered around unwavering hospitality and creatively curated cuisine, wine and spirits.

Welcome home.
Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined 2 days ago
Food was delicious and change from ordinary Few more Dumplings on app would make it worth it
A photo of Cafe Navarre restaurant
4.8
4.8 (2685)
$31 to $50
American
South Bend
About the restaurant
Specializing in modern American cuisine, fresh seafood, and USDA prime steaks, Cafe Navarre is celebrating its 12th year in historic downtown South Bend. Located in a bank building in the heart of our city with the fusion of Old World architecture, natural light, and the contemporary furnishings. Join us for dinner or enjoy a cocktail in our bar or on our outdoor patio.

As a locally owned establishment, we strive for excellence in producing and serving the finest cuisine. We are excited to provide you with top-shelf service, world-class recipes, as well as local and fresh ingredients. Every part of your experience at Cafe Navarre is important to us, right down to the last detail.

Café Navarre brings you modern American cuisine with European influences, distinguished by its simplicity, flavor, and respect for ingredients. Cafe Navarre offers fresh seafood and steaks, along with dishes created with seasonal elements from local farms that are unmistakable in flavor and quality.
Top review
ArleneMvip
Dined 2 days ago
After years of visiting Notre Dame, we were lucky enough to have a free night to find this gem of a restaurant! We loved the vibe, the outstanding service and the delicious food and creative cocktails. Everyone involved in the restaurant has great pride in its wonderful transformation and restoration from a bank in a previous life. We so enjoyed our night and will be back!!
A photo of Rohr’s restaurant
4.8
4.8 (995)
$31 to $50
Contemporary American
South Bend
About the restaurant
Rohr's is a modern tavern- a casual, warm gathering place with focus on bright, flavorful food. Imagine a classic steakhouse with a twist highlighting colorful vegetables, fresh fish and of course, signature steaks. Good food, excellent service and the warm smiles of familiar friends. This is Rohr's.

Please be aware that campus is undergoing multiple construction projects this summer that may impact
how you navigate campus by vehicle and on foot. A renovation project to the Main Circle on Notre
Dame Avenue has begun, closing the roundabout to traffic. Access to North Notre Dame Avenue will be
limited until mid-August and you may experience delays upon your arrival to campus. We apologize for
any inconvenience this may cause and look forward to welcoming you to campus.
Top review
BrianS
Dined 7 days ago
This was one of the most enjoyable and delightful experiences. I have had at a restaurant in quite some time. The experience was second to none because we had an extraordinary server named Denise. She was well-versed on the entire menu and you could tell that she was the best at her craft. The chef prepared every course with precision and layers of flavors. I’m a foodie and a tough critic at this place and blew me away.
A photo of The Lauber restaurant
4.8
4.8 (359)
$30 and under
American
South Bend
About the restaurant
A modern restaurant in the East Bank Village helping bring new life to the area
Top review
TomS
Dined on Apr 19, 2024
Food always good here. Great service. Always enjoy the Lauber
A photo of Rocky River Tap and Table restaurant
4.5
4.5 (301)
$30 and under
American
Granger
About the restaurant
Welcome to Rocky River Tap and Table!
ocated in Granger, Indiana and named for a tributary of the St. Joseph River in Michigan, Rocky River provides a farm-to-fork experience featuring sustainably farmed products from nearby growers and a casual atmosphere. Partnerships with local farmers, brewers and winemakers paired with culinary creativity yield brilliant results. From the table enjoy anything from small plates and unique bar snacks to entrees and a variety of handheld sandwiches.
And from our taps…Indiana and Michigan are home to some of the best breweries in the country. From these, we’ve handpicked a menu of over 30 draft beers to enjoy with a snack or accompany your meal. Our wine list, along with many organic West coast wines, includes carefully selected wines from Southwest Michigan and Indiana wineries, enjoyed by the glass or bottle
Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined on Jun 11, 2024
Birthday celebration for a friend. Delicious meal! Loved the cauliflower appetizer.
A photo of BRU Burger Bar - South Bend restaurant
4.5
4.5 (161)
$30 and under
Burgers
South Bend
About the restaurant
Bru Burger Bar is an ode to our love, the burger! We offer shareable appetizers, fresh salads with in-house dressings, gourmet chef burgers, daily cut fries, plenty of vegetarian/vegan options, and mouthwatering house made desserts. All of which pair well with our list of 16 local draft beers and hand crafted cocktails.
Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined on Jun 14, 2024
BRU Burger always delivers! Enjoyed a delicious cocktail, the Triple Dip & chicken tenders never miss! The fries & house ketchup are a must. The full-size Gorgonberry Pecan salad with salmon is enough for two meals. Thus our go-to spot for a quality meal that doesn’t break the bank. Our server was friendly & attentive. Great service.
A photo of Kankakee Grille - South Bend restaurant
4.4
4.4 (1580)
$30 and under
Unspecified
South Bend
About the restaurant
Enjoy rustic cuisine, hearth baked pizza, a variety of craft beers, and live entertainment every weekend. Kankakee Grille South Bend is the hottest restaurant in Northeast Indiana and features a beautiful outdoor patio to enjoy during the warm weather season.
Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined 2 days ago
The food was amazing. They were very welcoming and accommodating. I would definitely recommend reservations. We went previously and couldn't get in so I knew. It was our 28th anniversary and I was surprised at how many people congratulated us. Made us feel very special.
A photo of Legends of Notre Dame restaurant
4.3
4.3 (532)
$30 and under
Contemporary American
South Bend
About the restaurant
Legends, our refreshed tavern offers a new menu featuring shareables, burgers, salads and sandwiches. Located just yards from Notre Dame Stadium on its sound side, Legends is open for lunch and dinner Tuesday through Saturday. The University of Notre Dame is a cashless campus. Please be aware that campus is undergoing multiple construction projects this summer that may impact how you navigate campus by vehicle and on foot. A renovation project to the Main Circle on Notre Dame Avenue has begun, closing the roundabout to traffic. Access to North Notre Dame Avenue will be limited until mid-August and you may experience delays upon your arrival to campus. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and look forward to welcoming you to campus.
Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined on Jun 13, 2024
Friendly service and steak was excellently prepared as ordered. Not a long wait for our meals, but they were not terribly busy on a Thursday at 6:45pm. It would be convenient though if they had a rear entrance - it's a bit far to walk to the main entrance when the sidewalks have standing water in a downpour!
A photo of LaSalle Kitchen & Tavern restaurant
4.3
4.3 (148)
$30 and under
American
South Bend
About the restaurant
LaSalle Kitchen & Tavern is located on the Third Floor of LaSalle Grill. Join us, Pull up a chair and take your time to review our drinks menu. This could take a while, since we offer 120 whiskeys and scotches, dozens of craft brews, wines, and craft cocktails. Our selection is unparalleled, so tap into our staff’s expertise to help you choose. Settle in for some civilized refreshment and a break from the ordinary.
You probably noticed that this isn’t a brand-new building. That’s no coincidence. In fact, our twenty-first-century establishment is housed in the oldest commercial structure in South Bend, built in 1868 as the Second St. Joseph Hotel. No fake historical patina here–like everything we do, this is the genuine article.
At LaSalle Kitchen Tavern we take food and drink service seriously so you can keep the focus on what matters: relaxing with friends over drinks and a meal.
Top review
TamiH
Dined on May 31, 2024
Great food & service! Definitely recommend. We will be back!
A photo of O'Rourke's Public House restaurant
4.0
4 (21)
$30 and under
Irish
South Bend
About the restaurant
Located in the shadow of the Golden Dome and Nestled in the heart of Notre Dame's Eddy Street Commons, we provide delicious Irish pub and American fare in a lively and fun environment! O'Rourke's Has the largest selection of Irish Whiskey in the state, as well as 30+ draft beers, signature cocktails, and rotating seasonal taps. The perfect place to grab some delicious grub and a pint before the game or celebrate an Irish victory afterwards! Perfect for Private events, Birthdays, Corporate Gatherings, Rehearsal Dinners and MORE!
Top review
ElaW
Dined on Jun 7, 2024
The staff was nice - professional, friendly and attentive. The beer and cocktail selection was awesome - both local and Irish beer was available - like the local brewery selection. The food, it was good but nothing to write home about - we have the fish & chips, stew, and the shepherds pie. I would come back, and we did, for the beer.
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