Eau Claire Eats

Three local restaurants to satisfy cravings

More stories from Amira Lunderville


When Riverview Cafe doesn’t sound appealing, Midwest Meals prides itself on being a healthy alternative.

There are a lot of restaurants in the Eau Claire and Chippewa Falls area. From fast food to a sit-in restaurant, you’ll find a variety of places for whatever you’re craving.

While COVID-19 might limit access to some places, there are four places you can still get food from, even if it’s just for takeout.

The first restaurant I thought of is Mancino’s (809 W. Clairemont Ave.), an Italian restaurant known for its grinders and pizzas. Mancino’s was a regular stop of mine in the summer of 2019, but I have frequented it less since COVID-19.

They are currently only open for takeout, curbside pickup and delivery. Their website recommends calling the store directly at 715-835-4100. The menu is available on their website.

I always order a grinder whenever I go. A grinder is just a fancy word for a grilled sandwich stuffed with your favorite toppings. You have the option to get a one-third, one-half or a whole grinder differing in prices.

My favorite is the “Italian Grinder.” I usually get one-half of a sandwich so I can have leftovers, which costs $6.69. You can get their specialty grinders, or you can customize your own.

On their website, they ask customers to wear masks and use the provided sanitizing stations.

If you’re not looking for pizza or sandwiches, they also have a variety of other items on the menu, too. Their entire menu is reasonably priced and, if it isn’t busy, it doesn’t take very long to get food.

Another place to try is Chippewa Family Restaurant in Chippewa Falls (1701 Kennedy Rd. – Hwy 178 N). I grew up in Chippewa, and this place was a staple restaurant my family frequented.

I recommend any of their omelets. You get a three-egg omelet served with hash browns or American fries and toast or pancakes. My two favorites are the house and country omelets. Most of their omelets are less than $10 and I always have enough to bring home for another meal later.

They have a range of food from breakfast to dinner, pie and more. You can check out their menu here.  

The best part about this restaurant is there are two locations, so you don’t have to drive all the way to Chippewa to get their food. You can also go to the Altoona location (2000 Hillcrest Pkwy – Hwy 12 E) for the same menu.

Both locations are currently open for dining and carryout, 7 days a week.

The last restaurant I picked was Johnny’s Italian Steakhouse in Eau Claire (4751 Owen Ayres Ct.). This place is great for a special occasion.

When arriving, there’s a bar to start for a couple of drinks (if you’re 21 or older). If that’s not applicable, then a club soda with lime is an option. That’s my personal go-to drink wherever I go.

After being seated, you are served freshly baked popovers with butter while you look over the menu. When I went, I couldn’t resist the steak with garlic mashed potatoes and it was one of the best meals I have ever had.

Even though it’s a steakhouse, steak is only one of many other options to choose from. They have fish, chicken and pasta specials among other things. Their full menu is available on their website.

Johnny’s Italian Steakhouse might be a little pricey, but definitely worth it if you can spend the extra cash.

Whether you’re looking for homemade cooking, fine dining or pizza and sandwiches, eating locally can help businesses during the pandemic.

Lunderville can be reached at [email protected]