Discover Clear Lake’s Food Scene: Summer 2024 Dining Highlights!

Hello, foodies! As we experience sunny days and later nights, it’s the perfect time to explore the ever-evolving culinary landscape of Clear Lake, Iowa. From new dining destinations to local favorites celebrating milestones, plus a sneak peek at new menu items at your favorite places, there’s something to tempt every tastebud this summer season. Let’s dive into the delicious tastes awaiting you with our summer dining highlights.

New Kids on the Block:

  1. Fizz Co. Sips & Sweets: Already well-loved as a specialty beverage trailer at events throughout North Iowa since 2022, Fizz Co. has expanded to a brick & mortar location on Main Avenue. Quench your thirst and satisfy your sweet tooth at Fizz Co. Sips & Sweets, where the fizzy fun never ends! Swing by to sample their custom sodas, plant-based energy drinks, plus a mouthwatering selection of candies and curated goods (including gluten-free). With extended hours after Memorial Day, it’s the perfect spot to kick off your summer evenings. May Hours: Wednesday-Friday 4:30-7:00pm, Saturday 12:00-4:00pm. Hours will be extended after Memorial Day. They may also “pop” up on Sundays so keep an eye on their social media!
  2. Surf Galley: Set sail for culinary adventure at The Surf Galley, Clear Lake’s newest culinary hotspot in the vibrant Surf District. From chef-crafted dishes to handcrafted cocktails, this modern American restaurant and cocktail bar promises a feast for the senses. Join them for lunch, dinner, or indulge in their scrumptious brunch buffet on lazy Sundays. Hours: Tuesday-Saturday lunch 11am-5pm, Dinner 5-9pm, bar until 10pm. Sunday Brunch 10am-2pm. Reservations recommended for smooth sailing!
  3. The Surfside: Under new management with Chef David Baruthio, a French master chef trained in culinary techniques by the finest restaurateurs.  He believes in seasonal, fresh, farm-to-table food that has been sourced locally but with flavors from around the world. Their menu changes with the seasons to ensure that guests are getting everything at the peak of flavor. The Surfside will have a beach style party during Memorial Day weekend with shared appetizers, lobster paella, wood fired & grilled meat selection and full bar Friday, May 24 4pm-9pm & Saturday May 25-Monday, May 27th 11am-9pm.  Grand Opening May 28 and open 7 days a week 11am-11pm Memorial Day-Labor Day with Saturday & Sunday Brunch from 8am-12pm.

Milestone Celebrations:

  • The Muskie Lounge: Let’s raise a margarita glass to The Muskie Lounge as they celebrate an impressive 50 years of lakeside dining! Located in Ventura on the scenic shores of Clear Lake, this family-owned treasure invites you to savor their legendary fish fry, juicy burgers, and refreshing beverages. Whether you’re dining in or lounging by the outdoor bar, it’s the perfect spot to soak in the summer vibes.
  • Starboard Market: The crew at Starboard Market has been dishing out deliciousness and serving up smiles since June 29, 1999 and is looking forward to opening soon for their 25th summer at the lake! In addition to their lineup of old school favorites, they’re thrilled to introduce some exciting new selections across all categories: soups, sandwiches, salads, and desserts.

Second Year Success Stories:

  • Portside Pop-Up Picnics: Elevate your lakeside dining experience with Portside Pop-Up Picnics, back for their second season of crafting unforgettable memories. They offer a variety of charcuterie boards, boxed lunches, lemonade, and new this year will be hot meals, all catered by their friends at CharcuteMe! Portside Pop-Up Picnics also help clients by arranging non-alcoholic beverages, other types of snack items, desserts, florals, and photography. The possibilities are endless and can truly be customized to ensure each client has a one of a kind experience!  From finding the perfect location to personalized dining options, their expert picnic planners have you covered. Simply show up with loved ones and let the magic unfold as you feast on gourmet delights against the backdrop of Clear Lake’s natural beauty. Available by appointment June-August.
  • Da-Lish Acai Bar: Dive into guilt-free indulgence at Da-Lish Acai Bar, celebrating their second season in downtown Clear Lake. With a vibrant menu of dairy-free, gluten-free, and vegan-friendly treats, including refreshing acai bowls and bubble waffles, it’s a paradise for health-conscious foodies. Customize your creation with an array of fresh toppings and savor every guilt-free bite! New this summer: quart size to-go containers!
  • The Boulevard Bar & Grill: Cheers to The Boulevard Bar & Grill as they mark their second year of serving up culinary delights on Bayou Road. With a diverse menu of delicious food and drinks, including hearty meals and handcrafted cocktails, it’s the ultimate destination for casual dining and laid-back vibes.
  • The Olde Creamery: Back for their second year in the Surf District, this small town ice cream and gift shop has big city options! They offer dairy & gluten-free and vegan flavors so everyone can enjoy a delicious treat.
  • Elly’s Lounge: Your favorite basement bar is ready for their second summer bringing back the Elly’s vibe with celebrity bartender appearances, themed BINGO nights, and live music!

Super Summer Specials

New menu items, features, and experiences at your favorite restaurants in Clear Lake!

  • Cabin Coffee Company: The team has been busy creating your new favorite summer drink, including the new Cabin Breeze, a frozen lemonade smoothie in a variety of flavors that will be available June through August. For those who like to plan ahead, here is an exclusive look at their upcoming Drinks of the Month!
    May – Lavender Buzz (White coffee Frappe with Vanilla and Lavender Topped with Whip and Local Honey Drizzle)
    June – Cowboy Sunrise (Tropical Red Bull Cream Infusion with Strawberry and a splash of Cold Foam)
    July – Coconut Cream Cold Brew
    August – Strawberry Shortcake White Coffee Frappe
  • Charlie’s Soda Fountain: Turning winter fun into a refreshing summer treat – snow balls (sno cones)!
  • Scooter’s Coffee: New drinks include Pineapple Mint and Strawberry Lime Quenchers and a S’mores Latte.  New food items recently launched are the Carmelicious Cake Bite, S’mores Cookie, and Pretzel Stick Dippers with either a cheese or caramel sauce. They have a new and improved kids meal that comes with a unique foam puzzle and a smoothie of their choice!

As you head out on your culinary adventures this summer, remember to savor each bite, raise a glass to new discoveries, and cherish the memories made around the table. From all of us here in Clear Lake, Iowa, we wish you a season filled with good food, great company, and unforgettable experiences. Bon appétit! ️

Be sure to read Bucket List Bites, a curated list of menu items by our very own Chamber Team!