Top 20 Restaurants in Waterford MI

Chosen by a Waterford resident & self-proclaimed 'foodie'

best restaurants in waterford mi
Johnny Black's Public House in Waterford

Anyone can hop on TripAdvisor or Yelp and find a list of the best restaurants in Waterford MI, but they're just algorithms pulling a bunch of data together without any heart and soul put into it, which in my opinion is what food is! Heart and soul on a plate.


My name is Erik and I'm a Real Estate Agent in Waterford, lifelong resident and self-proclaimed 'foodie'. Going out to eat and testing new restaurants is one of my (many) guilty pleasures, so I decided to share my version of the top dining spots my hometown has to offer. Go Corsairs!


food·ie /ˈfo͞odē/ a person with a particular interest in food; a gourmet. "he is an avid foodie and successful restaurateur"

Asian Cuisine

best thai restaurants in waterford mi
So Thai Restaurant in Waterford

1. Hot Pepper Thai

I'm a huge fan of Thai food in general but Hot Pepper Thai on Pontiac Lake Road is one of my absolute favorite places to get carryout. Try the Drunken Noodles and Fried Rice dishes. Your taste buds will thank you!


Promising review on TripAdvisor:

"Every time I go there I'm impressed with the flavor combinations they produce in every dish! They will accommodate low spice up to so hot that you're sweating. Try the hot and sour soup - delish!" -Jennifer C.


Visit Hot Pepper Thai:

4212 Pontiac Lake Rd, Waterford, MI 48328

(248) 618-0270 | Website


2. China Jade

If you're in the mood for some mouth-watering Chinese food, China Jade is the place to go in Waterford. Don't be fooled by its modest exterior — it's a hometown favorite!


Promising review on Google:

"They have great food! The sweet and sour chicken is excellent. Egg rolls, perfect. By far, my favorite place for Chinese food!" -Jake S.


Visit China Jade:

1070 W Huron St, Waterford Twp, MI 48328

(248) 681-1122 | Website


3. So Thai

Of the three Thai restaurants included on this list of best Waterford restaurants, So Thai offers the best dine-in experience. It recently moved to a new building with a bright and punchy interior that matches the flavor on your plate!


Promising review on Facebook:

"My husband and I have been craving some good Thai food for some weeks ... we decided to give So Thai a try and we are SO happy we did!!! Great service, and GREAT Pad Thai! Carryout was easy and fast. Will definitely eat here again soon." -Maddy CZ


Visit So Thai:

2553 Elizabeth Lake Rd, Waterford Twp, MI 48328

(248) 682-6350 | Website


Read more: 20 best restaurants in Clarkston, MI

4. Thai Legend

A lot of my friends who work in the area frequent Thai Legend for lunch. It's super fast, affordable, and the generous portions all but ensure you'll have lunch for tomorrow, too.


Just watch out — their spice levels are hotter than normal! If you're used to medium at other restaurants, go with mild here. You can thank me later.


Promising review on Google:

"Some of the finest Thai carry-out in the area. Fantastic Pad Thai and curry dishes. Consistent, family-run, and great location for a quick pick up and dash. Highly recommend!" -ΔΣΤ


Visit Thai Legend:

7108 Highland Rd, Waterford Twp, MI 48327

(248) 886-8850


Breakfast Joints

coney breakfast restaurants in waterford

5. FINO'S Food & Spirits

While FINO'S expansive menu offers way more than breakfast foods, I think their early-morning options are where they really shine. It has a cozy atmosphere that feels like catching up with friends over food and coffee on a Sunday morning.


Promising review on TripAdvisor:

"Always treated like family. Food was delicious. Staff awesome. Always willing to go the extra mile and make it the way you would like it." -Yvonne


Visit FINO'S Food & Spirits: 5115 Dixie Hwy, Waterford Twp, MI 48329

(248) 618-9141 | Website


6. Bryan's Neighborhood Coney

Bryan's is my go-to breakfast coney in Waterford. It's the definition of a hole-in-the-wall with sparse decor and limited seating, but the food is the reason you come back. The super generous portions always have me feeling like I need to go up a pants size when I leave, haha! Love their omelettes.


Promising review on Google:

"Great family place to eat. Centrally located on Elizabeth Lake road in Waterford. Kentucky hash is my [favorite] for breakfast. Good biscuits and gravy. Equally good for lunch as well." -Jed R.


Visit Bryan's Neighborhood Coney:

3861 Elizabeth Lake Rd, Waterford Twp, MI 48328

(248) 681-1739


Read more: 5 Best Lakefront Dining Spots in the Lakes Area

Family Dinner or Date Night

Date night restaurant ideas in waterford
Fork N' Pint Cass Lake in Waterford

7. Johnny Black's Public House - West

I can walk to Johnny Black's from my house and it's a blessing. It's a semi-upscale sports bar with more of a focus on food than bar. But, don't get me wrong — they can sling a mean drink!


It's a favorite meeting place for my friends after soccer and volleyball games because of the chill ambiance, affordable prices and ample seating.


Promising review on Google:

"A nice atmosphere with a good beer and cocktail selection. The food is really good. Love the BBQ potato skins!" -Steven B.


Visit Johnny Black's Public House:

5171 Dixie Hwy, Waterford Twp, MI 48329

(248) 599-9001 | Website


8. Lion's Den

To say the Lion's Den is a 'Waterford Tradition', as their slogan suggests, is an understatement. If you ask any resident for a few of their favorite hometown restaurants, Lion's Den will surely be one of them.


I think it's because they offer a comfortable atmosphere with consistent, quality food. Their menu is absolutely enormous with options to fulfill everyone's food cravings. My favorite Lion's Den guilty pleasure is the clam strips... Don't judge me!


Promising review on Facebook:

"Visited the Den last week and had an excellent experience. The hostess was friendly and seated us as soon as we walked in. Our server was amazing ... The filet mignon was one of the best I've ever had including those at very expensive restaurants known for their steaks. The hash browns were really a large serving of fried potatoes that were beyond delicious! We will be back very soon!" -Kathy E.


Visit Lion's Den:

4444 Highland Rd, Waterford Township, MI 48328

(248) 674-2251 | Website


9. Heroes Bar-BQ and Brew

I think Heroes Bar-BQ and Brew often goes unnoticed because of its location on M-59 in the outskirts of Waterford, but it's totally worth checking out. They have some of the best overall food of all the restaurants on this list, especially if you're a fan of American cuisine and elevated pub fare.


It's also a favorite hangout spot for me and my teammates after games for a drink or two!


Promising review on TripAdvisor:

"My family and I love Heroes. Food is great. The staff is friendly and professional. Never had a bad experience here." -Ann M.


Visit Heroes Bar-BQ and Brew:

998 W Huron St, Waterford Twp, MI 48328

(248) 683-9900 | Website


10. Fork N' Pint Cass Lake

Along with the varied menu, Fork n' Pint's elevated patio is this hangout's main draw in the summer. Seating over 200 outdoor diners, it makes getting incredible views while you eat, easy.


Fork n' Pint Cass Lake serves eclectic American cuisine featuring everything from mac and cheese, to white fish and walleye, to house-smoked BBQ. Be sure to try a crowd favorite: sriracha honey, bacon & lime Brussels sprouts. Yum!


Promising review on TripAdvisor:

"Enjoyed sitting outside. We shared the nachos with brisket and it was delicious with a kick of heat. Burgers were good as well as the chicken club sandwich. We will be back!" -Lisa H.


Visit Fork n' Pint Cass Lake:

4000 Cass Elizabeth Rd, Waterford Twp, MI 48328

(248) 791-3256 | Website


11. Overtyme Grill and Tap

Along with Johnny Black's Public House, Overtyme Grill and Tap is one of the restaurants that I personally frequent most. Its uber-close proximity to where I live helps, but it's just a solid place to pull up a seat at the bar and have a good dinner and drink when you've had a long day. I'm a huge fan of their giant pizzas.


But, Overtyme offers more than seats at the bar. In fact, it's one of the largest restaurants on this list and can accommodate hundreds of patrons at a time. It also has a large banquet hall and sizable arcade in the back with tons of fun games for kids (and the young at heart!).


Promising review on Google:

"I've been here several times over the past years, usually when I visit my family. The food and atmosphere is very appealing. Plenty of big screens to watch the games." -Chris K.


Visit Overtyme Grill and Tap:

4724 Dixie Highway, Waterford, Michigan 48329

(248) 674-4507 | Website


12. Shark Club

It's 'Shark Club', not 'Sharks Club'! Now that we've got that important tidbit out of the way, we can get to the good stuff.


Shark Club is another one of Waterford's huge sports bars with pretty solid food and a chill atmosphere. They have a couple of really large aquariums with fun marine life which is always a treat to see. Plus, you can challenge friends and family to a game on one of many billards tables.


Promising review on TripAdvisor:

"As soon as we walked in the door we were greeted by friendly people. Service was quick and the food was good. We enjoyed watching the many fish in the multitude of fish tanks around the bar area. They had a very nice beer selection, would go there again." -Todd H.


Visit Shark Club:

6665 Highland Road, Waterford, Michigan 48327

(248) 666-4161 | Website


Mexican Restaurants

mexico lindo - best mexican restaurants in waterford mi

13. Mexico Lindo

Situated right on M-59 across from Oakland County International Airport, Mexico Lindo often turns head because of its witty signage. But, the food is always what makes my head spin (in a good way)! My all time favorite is the California Quesadilla with grilled chicken & fresh veggies... yum!


Promising review on Facebook:

"Visiting from Phoenix Arizona and stopped by for lunch. Had the steak fajitas and it tasted just like home. Never imagined I would find this culinary oasis in a place like Waterford. Going back for dinner tonight!" -Oscar C.


Visit Mexico Lindo:

6225 Highland Rd, Waterford Twp, MI 48327

(248) 666-3460 | Website


14. El Patio

My sister loves Mexican food and her favorite place is El Patio. It has more of a diner vibe on the inside than Mexican restaurant, in my opinion, but it sure doesn't eat like a diner!


Promising review on Yelp:

"Small authentic Mexican restaurant. If you're looking for some great fast service food, come here. The BEST thing to order is their chicken soup! Downside is that there's no alcohol. So no margaritas with your food but still great!" -Anna R.


Visit El Patio:

7622 Highland Rd, Waterford Twp, MI 48327

(248) 666-5231 | Website


15. Trini & Carmen's

Waterford has some great Mexican food joints and Trini & Carmen's is definitely one of them. Like Heroe's Bar-BQ and Grill, I think it gets overlooked because of its location on the outskirts of the township, but its food keeps anyone who's in the know coming back for more.


Promising review on Google:

"Favorite Mexican spot. The nacho is award winning, and everything tastes fresh and amazing. Love their salsa, best around. Good service as well." -Heather L.


Visit Trini & Carmen's:

1715 Telegraph Rd, Waterford Twp, MI 48328

(248)332-6851 | Website


Pub Fare

top restaurants in waterford michigan

16. Union Lake Tap

Its recent renovation and cute outdoor patio provide a nice atmosphere to match its tasty food. You're not going to find any eccentric surprises on the Union Lake Tap's menu, but they do what they do well.


Promising review on Facebook:

"Awesome burgers, wraps and pizza. Nice service and TV's everywhere! Will gladly go here again." -Joe T.


Visit Union Lake Tap:

7760 Cooley Lake Rd, Waterford Twp, MI 48327

(248) 363-0400 | Website


17. Pontiac Lake Inn

If you're in the mood for an amazing burger, Pontiac Lake Inn is one of the top places to visit in Waterford. Many of my friends say its THE best, but I'll let you decide...


Promising review on Facebook:

"Great burgers, ice cold draft beer and the best wait staff! Our family loves is here. Just wish my keno numbers would cooperate." -Kelly M.


Visit Pontiac Lake Inn:

1775 Sherwin Ct, Waterford Twp, MI 48327

(248) 666-1436 | Website


18. Irish Tavern

Stop into Irish Tavern near Crescent Lake for delicious Irish fare and burgers. My favorite thing to get is the mushroom swiss burger and fries.


Irish Tavern is also a great spot for meeting up with friends for a drink or two. It's even been a party stop for a couple bachelor parties I was part of!


Promising review on Google:

"My favorite spot to go in town for a good drink. Waitstaff is very friendly [with a] good sense of humor. The atmosphere is quaint and tidy ... Proper pub fare made well and with care. If you're in town and looking for a nice meal and good brew, this is your place... P.s. there's a jukebox!" -Stephen K.


Visit Irish Tavern:

4703 Elizabeth Lake Rd, Waterford Twp, MI 48327

(248) 683-9056 | Website


Unique Spots

best waterford mi restaurants

19. The L.A. Cafe

It's hard to describe the L.A. Cafe, but I'll do my best. It's a coffee shop with an eccentric sit-down food experience, too. Some might say it's an establishment straight out of, wait for it... Los Angeles!


Promising review on Facebook:

"Waterford's hidden gem. Fantastic coffee, homemade soups, and a lovely little gift shop. Oh omelets are great too." -Marianne M.


Visit The L.A. Cafe:

5815 Dixie Hwy, Waterford Twp, MI 48329

(248) 623-1610


20. Greek Jalapeno

Nestled in an odd little plaza is one of Waterford's favorite dining spots. Greek Jalapeno offers an enormous menu specializing in Greek, Mexican and American cuisine. It's a great place to visit with a family of diverse food interests. Plus, they serve all-day breakfast... Score!


Promising review on Google:

"We've been a customer since they opened. We love the friendly staff, the comfortable atmosphere and the large array of food choices. Whether we're in the mood for Greek, Mexican or American food we can always count on it hitting the spot. This is our go to restaurant whenever we feel like taking a break from our kitchen." -Kara G.


Visit Greek Jalapeno:

6636 Cooley Lake Rd, Waterford Twp, MI 48327

(248) 363-3322 | Website



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