Chef Shack Bay City
This ultra-charming weekend-only restaurant — the pride and joy of pioneering food truckers Lisa Carlson and Carrie Summer — is the place for an inspired, ever-changing seasonal menu that relies upon ingredients culled from local producers. Go for the warm and engaging service, stay for the creative cocktails. Yes, you should make a reservation. The restaurant’s 2017 season includes Friday and Saturday dinner and Sunday brunch, and begins on April 14.
W6379 Main St., Bay City, Wis., 1-715-594-3060, chefshackranch.com
Harbor View Cafe
Forget about daffodils. A true sign of spring’s approach — for the past 38 years, anyway — is the return of this popular destination for Twin Cities day-trippers. After eons as a cash-only institution, the restaurant began accepting credit cards a few years ago. Alas, the no-reservations policy remains. Lunch and dinner served Friday through Sunday. Plug these dates into your calendars: Thursday hours begin April 20, and Monday service launches May 29.
314 1st St., Pepin, Wis., 1-715-442-3893, harborviewpepin.com
Sea Salt Eatery
Sure, Minnehaha Park has those famous falls. But its second-best asset is surely this casual, seafood-obsessed restaurant. The place for oysters, calamari tacos, fried crawfish po’boys and soft-shell crab sandwiches (consider it your lucky day if New England clam chowder is on the specials menu) is kicking off its 13th season on March 31. Open 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily, through Memorial Day; during the summer, the closing hour moves to 9 p.m.
4801 Minnehaha Av. S., Mpls., 612-721-8990, seasalteatery.wordpress.com