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Gustafson's Smoked Fish and Beef Jerky

4321 US-2, Brevort, MI - (906) 292-5424
Posted By Michael Stern on November 5, 2006 12:09 PM
Gustafson’s is not a restaurant, but a gas station and party store with delicious food that is oh-so-ready-to-eat. Even with your eyes closed, you’ll find it as you cruise along the shore road (we don’t recommend driving this way) because a sugar maple haze from a quartet of smoldering smokers outside clouds the air with the unbelievably appetizing smell of whitefish, trout, menominee, chub, and salmon turning gorgeous shades of gold. Inside, coolers are arrayed with the firm-fleshed beauties, which you can buy by the piece, wrapped in butcher’s paper. Utensils and plates are unnecessary; it’s a pleasure to use one’s fingers to pick flavorful chunks of fish straight from the paper in which they’re wrapped.

Beef jerky is also a specialty of the Gustafson family, who marinate strips of top round for a day-and-a-half, then slow-smoke it over maple for six hours. Jerky is made with a traditional smoky-sweet taste, Cajun-spiced, or barbecue flavored. Vacuum packed jerky is available through the mail, by the pound.

Michigan’s Upper Peninsula lends itself to waterside picnics. A few chaws of jerky, a moist hunk or two of freshly smoked freshwater fish, a fifty-cent stack of saltine crackers, a bag of fried cheese curds, and a beer, plus the scenic beauty of Lake Michigan’s northern shore: what’s better than that?
4 star rating
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Posted By Alan Bierhoff on February 26, 2012 1:14 PM
I was in the U.P. last summer and this was my favorite fish store. Friendly people, great service, and the best smoked fish and jerky.
5 star rating
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smoked lake fish
beef jerky

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Posted By Thomas Gillette on March 22, 2007 5:38 PM
In addition to sublime smoked fish, perfect jerky of all types, and a beautiful drive along the North shoreline of Lake Michigan, Gustafson's is decidedly NOT pretentious. In fact, it is an authentic slice of the local color and "ethos" of the area; very straightforward shoot-from-the-hip no-nonsense friendliness that is disarming.

In a day when a $5 cup of coffee is defined by "large, grande, double-demi-hemi-semi-grande" or other such nonsense, it's delightful to find a place with such good food purveyed by people who ask the simple question "do you want this one or the big one in front of it?" It's a trip back to a more honest, less pretentious time... and it's a trip to arguably the best smoked fish and jerky found ANYWHERE. Enjoy the drive, and buy more than you think you'll need. It might not make it over the bridge!
4 star rating
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Posted By steve burkett on August 17, 2003 7:16 AM
Im from lower michigan(we're called trolls because we are below the bridge that separates michigans two halfs)and whenever I come to the upper this is a must stop.Smoked whitefish,cheese,bread and a six pack while watching Lake Michigan waves crash on the miles of sandy beach(and later taking a swim)is a great indulgence.
5 star rating
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