Our Story Retold

March 18, 2018


What eating out should be.


One word: experience

Why eat out of a paper bag when you can eat with a beautiful view. Being a family restaurant, we cook our meals homestyle because this is our home. We believe that eating out should be an experience that is worth your money. If you have to resort to fast food, you shouldn’t be eating out at all. Our theory is: eat somewhere exceptional, or eat at home. 


Going into a little bit of history, we have to tell you how we began, and have thrived for more than 35 years.


In 1956, the Kelly family owned this restaurant and it was called Bill’s Waterfront Restaurant.  It was famous for sock hop, 50’s style atmosphere, burgers, shakes, and fries. There was a jukebox in the middle of the dining room that attracted a lot of after school dancing. The Kelly family ran this successfully for nearly 26 years. 


In the fall of 1982, a new chapter was born. Our family, the Burke’s (pronounced with a long E) purchased the restaurant from Mickey Kelly. The man who started it all, Larry Burke, already an accomplished chef, followed his dream. He wanted any hungry patron to be invited in to have a delightful experience. He embraced homestyle cooking, breakfast, lunch, dinner, and eating with a view. Larry, the entrepreneur, later passed in 1992, and will always be remembered for his friendly, ‘people helping people’ attitude about life. 


Our family is still involved in everyday operations because we want to continue the legacy which Larry has built. We have many staff members who have been here for many years as well. 


Why choose us?


We want you to stop into our place, feeling extremely accommodated, and experience something remarkable. We want you to be able to take your family or friend(s) here, and all be able to find an item on our menu that suits you, because everyone is different. One common belief among many of us would be: fast food is rubbish. We are a superior option to fast food by providing a personal dining experience, which can also include many healthy choices from our menu…not to mention our scenic view.


When you dine with us, we will provide the following:


  1. An experience with a view. We believe that you should dine with some amazing scenery. What can be more relaxing than the view of the lake? By eating with the view we have, you will be forced to put down your phone, and really take-in the pure beauty of threarth. It will reduce your stress, it will help you appreciate the simple things in life, and it can even motivate you to do things outside. WE BELIEVE THAT WE HAVE THE BEST LOCATION IN CADILLAC, MI. NO DOUBT. We are directly located on Lake Cadillac, surrounded by forestry-woods atmosphere. We force you to get in touch with nature, and this will help you enjoy your meal by having something other than your cell phone in your line of sight. Our staff actually care and don’t view our customers as a number. By pairing a stunning location, and having staff that care about you, we believe we have something great to offer, providing you with the utmost atmosphere in Cadillac, MI.

  2. We have something for everyone. Did you know we have breakfast, lunch, dinner, alcoholic beverages, and a kid’s menu? We also have one of the largest menus in Cadillac, MI. We have over 90 different items!!! 90!!! “Nine-ohhh!!!” We believe that having a large menu with breakfast, lunch, dinner, a kid’s menu, American, Mexican, Italian, seafood, sandwiches, steak dinners, alcoholic beverages, and MUCH MORE… is very beneficial to you. (Ex: slow roasted prime rib, all you can eat fish and chips, burgers and sandwiches, breakfast, soup and salad (salad bar), craft and domestic beers, cocktails, and fine wines). No other place in Cadillac offers such a selection. Maybe one day you’re feeling an omelette, and another you’re feeling a steak. What if you’re craving a beer? What if you brought your kids? What if you’re vegetarian? Then choose us.

  3. Homestyle cooking (a meal without loads of MSG). We take a lot of pride in our homestyle cooking. Many places receive all of their products from a distributor, not making ANYTHING from scratch. This baffles us, and leaves us confused. When you go to a restaurant you should be getting fresh food that was designed with attention to detail, and has personal thought go into it. It shouldn’t all be pre-made like fast food. We order some things from distributors, but we try to make most of our dishes from scratch (it’s almost impossible to make EVERYTHING from scratch). Many places microwave things that come out of a box, for EVERY ONE of their meals. We’ve seen it. We have been in this business for over 35 years. You don’t deserve that. You deserve high quality and high value,  and that’s what you’re getting. 


To wrap it up. 


We’ve been around for a while. We’ve watched the fast food industry evolve into something inferior. We decided to open a real restaurant, one with real food. Larry started this venture for a few reasons, and those reasons to this day, still stand strong. You shouldn’t eat low quality food out of a bag. Instead, make time to eat here for a beautiful view with an experience. Don’t be burdened down by only 1 or 2 menu options. Choose us because we have over 90+ options, and that’s not even including buffets, the kid’s menu, or beverages. Eat a a place where you know that the food is handled with sincerity. (Good luck finding that at most fast food chains). Our job is to make you happy- we truly believe that we can. Us believing in ourselves, has kept us alive and thriving to this day. We have even noticed an increase in business recently because we’re always trying to improve, and make a genuine impact. Transparency wins the marathon, and we want you to know about us. We want you to be happy. 



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