Marty’s Place North Wisconsin: A Former Gem in Central Wisconsin

marty's place north garden

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In 1982, Marty’s Place North in Woodruff, WI opened its doors and has been serving locals and Northwoods vacationers ever since. This classic supper club offers a variety of fine dining options including steak and seafood. Check out the Wisconsin gem that is Marty’s Place North!

Marty's Place North Wisconsin: A Former Gem in Central Wisconsin

Located on Hwy 51 between Woodruff and Manitowish Waters, Marty’s Place North is known for its delicious food and friendly service.

Marty’s Place North history

The building housing Marty’s Place North has enjoyed a rich history as a farmhouse, a resort, and now a restaurant, since 1982.

As you look around, you see everything from a handmade canoe hanging from the ceiling to a gazebo-like central structure that is a focal point of the main level.

Yes, being in the Northwoods of Wisconsin, you will see stuffed animals and even a huge elk rack mounted over the fireplace. This lends a nod back to when plentiful elk herds roamed the area around Little Spider Lake.

Known for their expansive menu offerings, they had the same chef for 37 years, Chef Tim Wydeven. As of June 2020, chef Jason Gehrke has taken over. While some of the traditional Marty’s North favorites still exist – the new chef brings a new take on the menu – and his own twist.

Marty’s Place North owners

The Cady family, owners of Marty’s Place North, also opened Maverick’s Restaurante Mexicano in the summer of 2020. No doubt it was a brave move in the era of COVID – but the family never took the whole “social distance” or mask thing seriously. When we visited last in July of 2020, there were no safety measures of any kind in place for their guests.

Yes, this bugs me – my Mom died of Covid on December 28th, 2020, and was merely one of hundreds of thousands of other people. At the time of this article, over 594,000 people in the US alone have perished.

Not one table was removed, to the point, you hit another chair when you pulled yours out at your own table. Not one single staff member wore a mask. So much for the CDC or WHO recommendations…

When we asked the waitress why she wasn’t wearing a mask – she just shrugged her shoulders and smirked.

(sigh)

Such a 180-degree switch from what we had experienced at Norwood Pines. Or Little Bohemia. Or Aberdeen Lodge. Or anywhere else we went in the area, actually.

And – we weren’t the only ones shocked at this – there are a lot of negative reviews across the different sites on the Internet about their COVID non-policy. You and Google can see those for yourself.

While this doesn’t phase a lot of people who actually went North to try and avoid the regulations that Southern Wisconsin imposed, the menu was still drool-worthy – even if substitutions are now verboten.

Marty’s Place North menu

Personally, we have been going there as a family for almost 20 summers – starting with my in-laws, and wrapping up with the now teen.

Everything has been amazing from the baked french onion soup to the 8 oz fillet. How can you go wrong with your perfectly cooked steak on a sizzling broiler plate brought right to you while still at a volcanic temperature?

If you get a chance – the potatoes au gratin are worth a shot, as well as starting with a Brandy Old Fashioned Sweet as you dig into the simple relish tray and muffin basket.

Marty's Place North menu
A picture of the amazing strawberry dessert from a prior visit – always a treat we looked forward to.

The Strawberry Schaum Torte was always the way to end the meal – usually, a family venture as it was too large for any single person to attempt alone after such a generously portioned meal.

No substitutions. At. All.

New chef means new rules – which didn’t really work for us with a family member who has a food allergy. Where things were always able to be worked out before, this time we had a no-go. Our 13-year-old ate only muffins and French Onion Soup – we went to Culver’s after to get her a meal.

Marty’s Place North Food

Marty's Place North food
The duck

On our last visit? My husband had the roast duck ($28) – a half a duck with a cherry-currant demi-glace. He loved it – it was flavorful AND tender.

My fillet ($38) was overcooked. The Medium Rare was Well Done and when I asked the server about it – I was told:

Marty's Place North food
My briquette. Seriously, who orders a $40 steak well done?

“The kitchen must have confused it – it was a popular order tonight”.

So – apparently at 5:30 that night, a lot of people ordered a Medium Rare Fillet with rice.

The steak was so overcooked it was inedible and we ended up paying full price for it. Seriously, a dog wouldn’t have eaten it.

marty's place north french onion soup
The only thing our kid ate – until we went to Culver’s for her

After my complaint about the steak – and our frustration that our kid couldn’t get a meal, our server never checked on us. We had empty glasses, and it took forever for her to bring back our bill at check out. We didn’t even go for our beloved Strawberry Schaum Torte.

I’m sorry but after this visit, I think we’ll be going somewhere else next time! Our annual tradition of hitting Marty’s Place North twice during our annual visit to the area is over, there simply are so many other fantastic restaurants in the area to enjoy.

Marty’s Place North hours

Closed Tuesday and Wednesday, they open the other days at 4 PM. This is, after all, a SUPPER club and it’s only open for supper. I suggest you call for reservations: (715) 356-4335

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