The Waterfront Restaurant and Tavern

4.7
371 reviews
icon/ic_price_rangeCreated with Sketch.
$31 to $50
icon/ic_cuisineCreated with Sketch.
American
Top Tags:
  • Waterfront
  • Scenic View
  • Special Occasion
The Waterfront Restaurant and Tavern is a seasonal American restaurant with a commitment to serve the best quality product offered at the height of each season. Our seasonal seafood is noted as the market’s best – always fresh, line-caught and hand-selected. All our beef selections are USDA Prime – the highest level of grading based on the quality of marbling and aging, hand-selected and cut specifically for our guests.
Local and organic foods are incorporated into all menus as best appropriate. Each menu is designed and created with our guests in mind. Enjoy the results of hard work and high standards. Please note, patio tables are first-come first-seated only. Thank you.
Dining Style
Fine Dining
icon/ic_cuisineCreated with Sketch.
Cuisines
American
icon/ic_clockCreated with Sketch.
Hours of operation


Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:00am - 2:00pm; Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:30pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm
Summer patio open for lunch and dinner service. Reservations not accepted for patio dining. For large party inquiries, please contact the restaurant directly.
icon/ic_phoneCreated with Sketch.
Phone number
(608) 782-5400
icon/ic_new_windowCreated with Sketch.
icon/ic_paymentCreated with Sketch.
Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
icon/ic_dress_codeCreated with Sketch.
Dress code
Casual Dress
icon/ic_private_diningCreated with Sketch.
Private party facilities
The Cargill Room
The largest of our event spaces, The Cargill Room is a grand, light-filled ballroom with panoramic views of the river and park. The subtle elegance of the Cargill Room makes it a stunning venue for wedding receptions, conferences and banquets. Dedicated amenities include two private bars, coatrooms, powder rooms, Wi-Fi, customized lighting and projection systems.

The Banquet Room
Designed as a stylish, comfortable venue for 24 to 100 guests, The Banquet Room showcases breathtaking views of the Mississippi River and Riverside Park. Amenities include a private bar, coatroom, powder rooms, private parking lot and complimentary presentation technology.

The Private Dining Room
A secluded dining or meeting space for a small group, The Private Dining Room looks out over a spectacular river scene. Adjacent to the restaurant and tavern, it seats up to 16 guests.
icon/ic_cateringCreated with Sketch.
Catering
Four unique dining spaces plus outdoor patios offer an elegant backdrop for any event from a private business presentation over lunch, a bustling conference with 300 guests, a wedding, or a relaxing cocktail reception. Your guests will feel at ease with every need artfully met.
Open Google Maps
icon/ic_locationCreated with Sketch.
icon/ic_neighborhoodCreated with Sketch.
Neighborhood
icon/ic_cross_streetCreated with Sketch.
Cross street
Jay Street
icon/ic_parking_detailsCreated with Sketch.
Parking details
There is a private parking lot located between the restaurant building and Riverside Park that is free of charge to all Waterfront guests. There are also reserved spots on the first floor in the parking ramp located on the corner of Front Street and Jay Street that are free to restaurant guests.
icon/ic_entertainmentCreated with Sketch.
Entertainment
A baby grand piano hosts a selection of music, including jazz, blues and rock variations in the lounge. Local and regional musicians fill the tavern with classic and contemporary tunes. In the warm season, enjoy our casual entertainment on the patio!
Additional
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Entertainment, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Outdoor dining, Private Room, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 371 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.7
service
4.8
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Quiet
96% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
2
1
Sort by
Newest
Filters
RD
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Excellent dining experience , service was outstanding.

Report
Helpful
JM
Minneapolis
3 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Best restaurant we have been in for a long time. All aspects of the service were very professional, food was top quality and pricing was very competitive. Overall this restaurant is one of the best in the region.

Report
Helpful
MP
Tampa
3 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food and service. View of river was outstanding. We could not have been any happier.

Report
Helpful
LW
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Husband has been a cook for years ,so going out to eat and impressing him is difficult but finally found the one place he has no critiques for! We both love the food and felt like our waitress was personable and so friendly! Great nite out and can't wait till the next time!

Report
Helpful
OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on September 12, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great quiet spot

Report
Helpful
DT
1 review
Dined on September 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent Restarant , one of the areas finest! Highly recommend!

Report
Helpful
OT
Milwaukee
3 reviews
Dined on September 1, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Why does this reservation not count towards opentable points? Would have given 5 stars if the points would have been applied. Was a very nice restaurant though.

Report
Helpful
CA
1 review
Dined on August 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing service, waitress was extremely knowledgeable and gave great recommendations on everything from wine choice to dessert.

Food was excellent, well presented and delicious.

And the view of the river along Lacrosse’s waterfront is beautiful.

Report
Helpful
SS
1 review
Dined on August 26, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 2ambience 5

Our reservations were for 8:45pm, which we set up at 7pm, so we could go out for dessert after supper at The Pearl, which closed at 10pm. We arrived at 8:30pm, and our table wasn't ready until 9pm.
Once we were seated, the view was magnificent! We ordered crab cakes and oysters on the half shell for appetizers. The crab cakes had good flavor, but were soggy. The oysters were good, but very small.
For dinner, I had the walleye and my wife had the shrimp and scallops.
The walleye: Presentation was... sloppy. A large piece of fish, covered with a soggy pecan crust, was very sweet. The plate was then spattered with broccoli, cauliflower, and small, soggy batter-fried mushrooms. (At least I think those were mushrooms) I've had fish in the past that didn't need tartar sauce to enhance the flavor, but, until now, I've never been served fish WITHOUT tartar sauce.
The shrimp and scallops: the shrimp was delicious... both of them. The scallops were also delicious... both of them. The pasta served with them was so sweet, I could only force down one bite.
The service: obviously a Saturday night is generally busy... but we couldn't tell whether service was slow because it was so busy, or to add to the ambiance of the dining experience, but it was very slow. Needless to say, by the time we were able to get out of there, The Pearl had been closed for a half hour. We settled for McDonald's twist cones.
We will not be returning to The Waterfront.

Report
Helpful
OT
Denver
1 review
Dined on August 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing steaks!

Report
Helpful
HH
Greensboro
3 reviews
Dined on August 23, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

We were visiting from out of town and were looking forward to a special dinner with family and friends.
Location is great but the food and service were just OK. No problems but nothing special. Our dinner was early and the restaurant was not busy at all.

Report
Helpful
P
1 review
Dined on August 22, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 3

Underwhelming food and service but really good dessert!

Report
Helpful
OT
Minneapolis
2 reviews
Dined on August 22, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

We rated the food a 4 star because the the filet and garlic mashed were extremely over seasoned. Very salty! I couldn’t eat more then a few bites. My husband ate some of my food and said the same about the seasoning.

Report
Helpful
BM
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on August 17, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent dining experience overlooking the Mississippi River. Friendly service and excellent food made a memorable time. Try the bacon wrapped dates for an appetizer, they are amazing!

Report
Helpful
DG
Minneapolis
30 reviews
Dined on August 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

What an amazing meal we shared with friends on our recent visit to LaCrosse. Everything was perfect.

Report
Helpful
VC
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on August 16, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

We waited 5 minutes for the hostess to greet us. She was not very friendly and was hesitant to offer us patio seating. Other than that the experience was great.

Report
Helpful
MK
1 review
Dined on August 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was great, Service was on top of everything. Really enjoyed our time and plan on going back again soon!
Thanks for making our night special.

Report
Helpful
M
Chicago
129 reviews
Dined on August 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful dining experience. Excellent fish options. Very good wine list.

Report
Helpful
BN
Baltimore
1 review
Dined on August 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was a fantastic, romantic place with all the amenities of a 5 star restaurant, but not the prices. Perfect.

Report
Helpful
JH
1 review
Dined on August 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The staff made the dining experience. They were friendly, patient and efficient. The food was amazing. Glad I saved room for dessert as it was also amazing. Very relaxing place to dine.

Report
Helpful
TS
1 review
Dined on August 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of my favorite places to eat in La Crosse WI. Love brunch on the patio. Great happy hour.

Report
Helpful
B
St. Louis
7 reviews
Dined on August 7, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We sat on the patio. It was a very enjoyable experience. I would recommend to anyone to go there.

Report
Helpful
DL
Naples
8 reviews
Dined on August 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

First time back since returning north for the summer. great meal, great service.

Report
Helpful
JG
Milwaukee
13 reviews
Dined on August 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We started with cocktails and an appetizer and the beautiful outside patio. When it was time to be seated outside it was getting cloudy but we thought we could get dinner in before the storms. Unfortunately we couldn’t so we moved inside for a delicious dinner. I had the salmon and my husband had the chicken and they were both outstanding. Service was excellent and the ambience is ideal. We enjoy this restaurant every time we come to La Crosse.

Report
Helpful
JV
1 review
Dined on July 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

While driving a car across the country we Zagat searched a lunch option in La Crosse WI and found the Waterfront. What a delightful stop. The staff was super friendly and accommodating. The setting is beautiful. We dined on the Mississippi River and loved our amazing food. This neighborhood gem is worth the effort to get there! Bravo!

Report
Helpful
DH
Milwaukee
1 review
Dined on July 28, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 5ambience 5

Our reservation was at 5pm,we arrived at 458,and the front desk host said the kitchen is not ready. So I said,we will wait in the bar,ordered drinks and at 5pm said to the bartender we will take our drinks at our table,then returned to the front desk to be told to wait. So we sat on the couch and others came through the door and got seated. 2 other couples before us. Made me wonder? In European restraunts the staff does not come to the table as often,they leave you alone to enjoy your meal and company,I find the staff interferes to often. Took forever to get the bill though.

Report
Helpful
J
Tampa
2 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Food is always good here, in our opinion, best in la crosse area. If u can get outside seating it is a great place to dine and watch the Mississippi meander by. Inside is also nice with views of water. It’s pricey dining but u get what u pay for. Good wine selection as well.

Report
Helpful
OT
Milwaukee
4 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Incredible

Report
Helpful
AK
1 review
Dined on July 26, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 5

This was a lovely restaurant with outstanding food. We celebrated my husbands birthday and had a very nice evening. John was our server, and he was very polite, friendly and professional. My only complaint would be that service was very slow. We waited 15 minutes for them to seat us, even though we were on time with a later reservation and from seating through dessert, we were there for three hours. Just very slow. Otherwise we were very impressed.

Report
Helpful
NM
1 review
Dined on July 25, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 4

Great ambiance. Wish there were more vegetarian options. Service was great but extremely slow.

Report
Helpful
VE
Minneapolis
12 reviews
Dined on July 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Spectacular food and best service we have EVER had anywhere (and I am 'old' and a former server). A very memorable evening, with special thanks for never feeling rushed, having had a later reservation. Everything was perfect.

Report
Helpful
BL
Milwaukee
1 review
Dined on July 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

First time to the Waterfront for us and we will definitely be back! Best steak I have every had. I had a filet and my husband had a Rib eye. Cooked to perfection!
Waterfront has a cool bar/lounge area where you can have a drink before dinner. We sat in the dining room for dinner. Well lit and decorated. There is also a neat outdoor patio dinning area.
Can't recommend this place enough!

Report
Helpful
MP
1 review
Dined on July 12, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always a great meal! Staff is always courteous and informative. Love the group effort they display. Great food!

Report
Helpful
OT
Milwaukee
2 reviews
Dined on July 12, 2018
Overall 5food 2service 3ambience 5

Always a lovely place to meet friends and enjoy a meal.

Report
Helpful
OT
Milwaukee
1 review
Dined on July 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The patio is absolutely gorgeous for a girls night! Love the view of the water

Report
Helpful
H
1 review
Dined on July 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Beautiful and memorable experience. Delicious dishes and wonderful service. We celebrated our anniversary here and were very pleased with everything!

Report
Helpful
OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on June 30, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

The food was very good and the wait staff were very friendly and competent. Although I expect this level of restaurant to give you a leisurely dining experience things did seem to take a bit too long. Dinner turned out to be about a 3 1/2 hour adventure. Although we had plenty to talk about while we waited it got a bit too long for my 97-year-old mother.

Report
Helpful
B
Minneapolis
7 reviews
Dined on June 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were so pleased with the restaurant - the service was the best we have every had in years - we were not rushed to leave - food was excellent - wish we didn't live so far away we would go there more often - all four of us love the place

Report
Helpful
MP
1 review
Dined on June 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This place was so amazing. The staff were fantastic and very attentive and the food was delicious!!!

Report
Helpful
PE
1 review
Dined on June 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

superb service, gorgeous view, romantic ambiance, and the food is worth a drive. The cuisine was creative and prepared as described. The food is the star, fresh, beautifully prepared, and artistically plated. Will definitely return!

Report
Helpful
1
2
3
10