Looking for the absolute best Lake Geneva restaurants on the water? Here are the top 7 local recommendations that you shouldn’t miss!
There are so many delicious dining options near Lake Geneva Wi! From Wisconsin classics like cheese curds and fish frys to wood fired pizzas or even gluten free veggie burgers, there really is something for everyone.
The recommendations below are not only delicious, but all of these have a view of the lake. There is nothing better than enjoying a meal with friends and family (and a cocktail or two!) while taking in the natural beauty of Geneva Lake.
Top 7 Restaurants with a Lakeview
- Pier 290
- Gordy’s Boathouse
- The Grandview
- Popeyes Lake Geneva
- Oakfire Lake Geneva
- The Boathouse Bar and Grille
- Mars Resort
This post is all about the best Lake Geneva Restaurants on the water.
In my insider opinion Pier 290 is the best restaurant on the entire lake. This upmarket american inspired restaurant offer craft cocktails, free valet parking, indoor and outdoor seating, a gift shop and breathtaking lakeviews make it a local favorite. Another bonus is you can come by boat, dock in front of the restaurant, have lunch and then enjoy the rest of the day on the water.
I recommend sitting outside (in the heated covered patio) and taking in the beautiful views while having a craft cocktail. They also have a small stretch of “beach” in front of the restaurant. This is always nice when my 2 year old is done eating or getting antsy. My mom usually takes him down to walk around while my husband and I thankfully finish our lunch and cocktail. My go to is the blackened tuna sandwich on the gluten free bun (the gluten free bun isn’t listed on the menu but they have if you ask), and the homemade chips and dip are always a crowd pleaser.
While there are several amazing options in downtown Lake Geneva, these tend to be packed and don’t take reservations. Waiting more than 15 minutes is not an option with my 2 year old, so the additional 10 minutes we have to drive to Williams Bay is worth it. Plus you get to explore another one of the 3 towns around the lake!
Insider tip: The famous Geneva Lake Shore path is RIGHT BEHIND THE RESTAURANT! Yes, that means you can have lunch and then walk off those french fries while enjoying the beautiful mansions on the lake. For my full post with tips on how best to enjoy the Geneva Lake Shore path click here.
Gordy’s is one of my favorite spots in Fontana! This relaxed American eatery has been around since 1955 and the locals keep coming back! You can dock your boat then sit in or outdoors (where they often have live music), and enjoy the classic american and enjoy the view from both places.
My son swears by their wings- the appetizer portion is large enough for an entree, my little guy loves the burger from the kids menu, and I appreciate the many gluten free options. Like many places around the lake they do not take reservations so we usually get there close to opening. To check out the full menu click here. *Update; Gordy’s Boathouse has closed for the winter and will be open again in May.
Insider tip: In the summer across the street is Gory’s Surf Shack which serves burgers, fries and ice cream in a casual little “shack” right off the lake. In front of the shack is a small “beach” (to be generous!). Really just a small stretch of sand, but my boys love throwing rocks into the water and it is a nice way to entertain them after having some ice cream! This is also around the corner from one of the best playgrounds, Reid Park, in the area.
The Grandview is an upscale american restaurant with beautiful lake views located in the Geneva Inn Hotel. The floor to ceiling windows perfectly frame the lake and are only matched by the steaks and seafood. The hotel also has a first come first serve outdoor patio. This is one of my favorite places to have a romantic date night with my husband, and watch the sunset over the lake.
Happy hour is everyday from 3-5pm so even if you aren’t staying at the hotel I would highly recommend this restaurant for dinner or drinks.
Insider tip: Located on the eastern shore the Grandview gives you another view of the lake. It’s also down the street from the Big Foot Beach State Park.
Popeyes in Lake Geneva is an institution! Open since the 70s they are known for their rotisserie based menu (free range chicken, ribs, lamb, and pulled pork) and large outdoor patio which is right across from the RIvera building and the public Riviera Beach.
The downside is that because of the great location there is usually a wait during peak times (summer/weekends), since they do not take reservations. Parking can also be a challenge so don’t be surprised if you have to park several blocks away. If waiting isn’t a big deal, put in your name and grab a drink at their bar (which has quirky lake life decor). With small kids during peak season the parking + wait can be too much but we love coming in the off season or during the week.
Oakfire is right next to Popeyes and is a two story restaurant specializing in wood fired pizzas. They also offer salads, sandwiches and gluten free pizza crusts in addition to the lakeviews. The Mickey mouse shaped pizza was a hit with our three year old and the House Margarita with blood orange liquor and hibiscus syrup is my favorite!
This place always has a buzz and the location is right across from the downtown Lake Geneva public beach. Again, due to the great location, parking and wait times can be a challenge so I don’t recommend it during peak times for families with young kids, since they don’t take reservations. For those of you who don’t have to worry about young kids, go check it out!! There is always a crowd and I love the two story design. It reminds me of a rooftop bar in Chicago.
This newish addition to the lake has quickly become an extremely popular destination! Opened in 2017 this family owed bar and grille offers classic american fare (think burgers, wings and salads) and has a large outdoor deck with sweeping views of the lake! The have a large parking lot, you are able to dock your boat across the street so many ways to get here, and have live music every night from 6-9pm.
Insider Tip: The Boat House sits on the eastern shore overlooking Buttons Bay. It is right next to Big Foot Beach State Park so after eating lunch my family and I walk to the state park and take a loop around the pond (which is a small replica of Geneva Lake).
Mars Resort is located RIGHT on the shores of Lake Como (the 2nd smaller lake located in the town of Lake Geneva). This retro Wisconsin supper club has live piano music, an outdoor bar on the beach (complete with adirondack chairs) and offers short pontoon boat tours from their own dock.
This place is in the summer can’t be beat. Sitting on the beach with a cocktail in hand and listening to music outside is the best. Fair warning no reservations are accepted so the inside dining area fills up quickly. The Friday night fish fry is PACKED but delicious so if you don’t mind waiting I highly recommend. During the winter the also have igloos you can rent so the fun goes on year round.
No matter which of these restaurants you choose, Lake Geneva never disappoints! Try one, or all, and see which ones become your own local favorite.
This post is all about the best Lake Geneva Restaurants on the water.