Harvey’s, Bay City, MI

Harvey’s Grill and Bar in Bay City was a nice surprise. The atmosphere is warm and surprisingly trendy for a Michigan tourist town. Gorgeous contemporary fireplaces are focal points in the main dining areas and they had a live guitarist/singer performing on the enclosed patio the night we were there; both nice touches on a blustery winter evening.
The service was efficient, but otherwise not very noteworthy. The menu focuses on comfort food including eight types of burgers, Smothered Chicken and Ultimate Mac ‘N’ Cheese entrees and deep fried Oreo and deep Fried Twinkie desserts. Harvey’s also takes advantage of locally available fish with their Parmesan Encrusted Walleye.
The tomato bisque left a lot to be desired. It was very oily and lacked the smooth creamy flavor of a traditional bisque. The chicken salad panini was interesting and full of flavor and had a gourmet twist. Grilled sourdough bread was stuffed with provolone cheese and chicken salad that included dried cherries and candied walnuts for a nice crunch. There were a few leaves of spring lettuce mix that wilted into the mix as well. I loved the flavors, but struggled to get used to my traditionally cold chicken salad as a hot sandwich.
Havey’s makes an effort to be a little more glamorous than the rest of Bay City, and in some ways succeeds. The atmosphere is a nice change from the series of chain restaurants nearby and the entrees make an attempt to be a little more interesting. Though not everything is something to write home about it’s an affordable and pleasant restaurant experience if you’re passing through town.