On the shores of Lake Superior, alongside the iconic Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge and in the Canal Park area, sits a restaurant that is also considered a landmark. Grandma’s Saloon & Grill, commonly known as Grandma’s Restaurant, has been serving customers since 1976, with an interesting beginning. Legend tells us that an Italian immigrant, Rosa Brochi, came to Duluth and opened a boarding house, which is a polite way of stating it. Pleasing their customers with companionship, great meals and fine beverages was a high priority. Her goal of pleasing customers one at a time (along with her photo and reference to) is the basis for which this restaurant was built.
Grandma’s Duluth MN
Times have changed and the original Grandma’s Restaurant was turned over from a boarding house and is a classier place today. It is widely known for homemade Italian and American food as well as the warm and friendly service. It has become a favorite tourist spot. One of the most-served items on the menu is the “made from scratch” Chicken and Wild Rice Soup. If you go to the Grandma’s Restaurant website, you will find the Grandma’s Store, where you can purchase a variety of soups, sauces, spices and wild rice. Grocery stores in five Midwest states carry their frozen food products. Their web site also shares some of their recipes, which is almost unheard of.
There are three restaurants in the Duluth area that bear the name Grandma’s Saloon & Grill. All of these restaurants have some amazing memorabilia, area antiques and collectibles on the walls and ceilings for you to enjoy. There is of course, the original, which is located in the Canal Park area. Then, there is one on top of the hill near the Miller Hill Mall. The other is in Denfeld Plaza in West Duluth. All three of these offer the great food and lively atmosphere that their name has become synonymous with.
The Sports Garden
If you are looking for a place to spend a few hours and have a lot of fun, look no further than The Sports Garden in Canal Park. No joke, you could probably spend an entire day looking at all the stuff they have on the walls and coming from the ceiling! There are some amazing pieces of local history inside the walls; this is a place you just need to visit, because anyway I describe it, I couldn’t possibly do it justice. Located very close to the original restaurant, it is known for its fun and exciting atmosphere. This is a multi-level restaurant with games to play everywhere. It’s the place to bring the whole family for a great time and a great meal. It also turns into a nightclub at night and is one of the hot spots in Duluth for the younger crowd, with a large dance floor and high end sound system. It’s also a great venue for fundraisers, boxing matches, and banquets.
Grandma’s owners have three other restaurants in the city of Duluth, with the first two also being located in the Canal Park area. Bellisio’s is a fine dining Italian restaurant with a large selection of wines. Little Angie’s has a Mexican style menu and atmosphere; it’s a lively place to be. The Great American Grill is located inside the Miller Hill Mall and specializes in good old American food.
Grandma’s Restaurant is the main sponsor of the yearly Grandma’s Marathon, held every June. This 26 mile run begins in Two Harbors, Minnesota and ends at Grandma’s in Canal Park. Thousands of entrants from every country imaginable take part in Grandma’s Marathon; attendance is huge no matter the weather. Needless to say, Grandma’s Restaurant becomes the place to be during the entire marathon weekend. Large tents are alive with a variety of music, food and fun!
Whether you run the marathon, enjoy superb cooking, or just like people-watching, Grandma’s Restaurant in Canal Park is the ultimate hot spot in Duluth. Also, check out the fun and exciting Adventure Zone of Canal Park!
See where Grandma’s Restaurant is on the map