Grant House Hotel and Eatery

Located in Rush City and housed in a restored 19th-century tavern is the Grant House Hotel and Eatery. The original Grant House Hotel was built in 1880 by Colonel Russell H. Grant, second-cousin to Ulysses S. Grant. Majestic, it stood until 1895 when a fire destroyed it. Burnt to the ground just a handful of years after its construction, it was rebuilt by Grant in 1896. Since then, the interior of the Grant House has been beautifully restored, featuring 11 turn-of-the-century rooms with modern amenities. Stylish, charming, individually-decorated rooms full of period-specific touches.

Over the years, many travelers and businesspeople came by rail (or in later years by Greyhound) because it was a good midway point between Duluth and the Twin Cities. The Grant also has a laid-back downstairs restaurant (open 7 days a week), that feels like your grandma’s kitchen. It’s the perfect place for brunch on the way to the north shore!

Interesting side note. The building itself has a darker past, with tales being told of the days where the hotel operated as a bordello and a haven for bootleggers. At the corner of 4th Street and Bremer, the three story hotel is said to be home to the paranormal. Reports range from ghostly laughter and voices, footsteps, furniture being shifted around rooms at night to the apparition of a woman who appears behind guests in mirrors.

Rush City Bakery 

Established in 1903, Rush City Bakery has been a regional staple for more than a hundred years. You name it, they have it. Biscuits, dinner rolls, breadsticks, donuts, pastries, cakes, cookies, bars, and so, so much more!  When it comes to sweets, they have nearly any flavor you could think of. For cupcakes and cakes, imagine Lady Baltimore,  strawberry bliss, turtle, neapolitan, tuxedo, and even lemon supreme. As for pies, they have the tried-and-true favorites like apple, blueberry, cherry, strawberry rhubarb, pecan, pumpkin, banana cream, and French silk. For the cheesy, creamy cheesecakes, they have turtle, raspberry swirl, salted caramel chocolate chip, key lime, Baileys, and pumpkin. They even do custom  wedding cakes, made from scratch! And if sweet isn’t your thing, they have you covered with savory. With it’s success, RCB added a sister company, New Generation Bakery, in  June of 2016. You can’t go wrong with their sesame, blueberry, onion, sprouted wheat, apple cinnamon, cinnamon raisin, jalapeno or asiago bagels. They also produce a full line of breads for the Minnesota Bread Company,  with loaves coming in all kinds of tastes like cranberry walnut, jalapeño cheddar wild rice, roasted garlic asiago, marble rye, San Francisco sourdough, chunky cinnamon, and onion dill.  There are too many options to list! Often lines out the doors with over a century of business, it’s not hard to see why Rush City Bakery is worth a stop.

The World’s Largest Walleye

When it comes to Paul Bunyan lore, I will go just about anywhere to follow in his exploits. The World’s Largest Walleye in Rush City, caught by none other than the Mackinaw-wearing gargantuan was no exception. Weighing in at a whopping 1,999 pounds, 15.5 ounce and enticed by a 35 pound Tiger Muskie and brought in with a 62 foot White Pine, 3 Ton Logger Winch rod and reel by Paul, the colossal angler. You can find this trophy just off I-35, exit 159.

Fun fact: Per the Department of Natural Resources, the largest real walleye caught in Minnesota weighed 17 pounds, 8 ounces and was taken from the Seagull River at the end of the Gunflint Trail in 1979.