Iconic restaurant in Gaylord back open for business

Sugar Bowl Restaurant

GAYLORD, Mich. (WPBN/WGTU) -- There are many iconic spots in downtown Gaylord, and one of the most recognizable is the Sugar Bowl Restaurant.

“Traveling from Saginaw to Mackinaw City or the U.P. we always stopped here and had breakfast or dinner,” said new Chef and Co-Owner Reuben Rosales. Who has 20 years of cooking experience. After spending time in places like Las Vegas, Colorado, and recently Chateau Chantal in Traverse City, Rosales is now ready for his new role with the Sugar Bowl.

“Menu is a little different," explained Rosales. "We have a lot of great steaks, some fresh pastas, our whole new bar area is all new."

After taking over in January, the new owners spent nearly seven months renovating the inside which is highlighted by their new bar area, before they officially opened on Aug. 1.

“The thing that we loved about this place was the history," said new owner Ophelia Gojcaj, who also owns another restaurant in West Branch. While acknowledging the restaurant's history, Gojacj says the changes have been well received.

"We’re having new generations of people coming in and they love the changes," Gojcaj said. "Even the people that have been here before are coming out and they're really enjoying our entrees and service and everything.”

“The sugar bowl is an institution in Gaylord," said longtime resident Charlie Bono. "Everybody who lives in Gaylord has been to the sugar bowl.”

Charlie and Christa Bono have lived in Gaylord for over 20 years, and here on their first trip to the new Sugar Bowl, they’re happy with the changes.

“It’s definitely updated," said Christa Bono. "I think the changes are really positive and I think people will love it.”

While the new Sugar Bowl is different than the former Sugar Bowl, the new owners also say some of the traditional favorites remain the same.

“I wanted to let everybody know that we do have the raspberry pie, we do have the greek lemon rice soup," laughed Gojcaj. "Times have changed and we’re changing with the times.”

The Sugar Bowl is open for lunch and dinner, but also offers a Sunday brunch.

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