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Your Ultimate Guide to the Best Restaurants in Fort Wayne, IN

Your Ultimate Guide to the Best Restaurants in Fort Wayne, IN

The culinary landscape in Fort Wayne is experiencing remarkable growth and generating significant buzz. Having been a regular visitor for a few years now, I’m constantly delighted by the thriving dining establishments that continue to attract a loyal customer base and the frequent emergence of new ones. Allow me, the self-proclaimed culinary explorer, to present my personally sampled and meticulously studied list of the best restaurants in Fort Wayne, IN.

best-restaurants-in-fort-wayne

Thanks to Visit Fort Wayne for hosting many of my meals. As always, opinions and reviews are 100% mine and unbiased. 

Casa Ristoranti

If you’re after authentic Italian fare, Casa Ristoranti Italiano is the place to be, along with its three sister locations under the same family ownership. Start with Toasted Ravioli or Bruschetta, lean into a heartwarming meatball dish (Polpette), and be sure not to skip their show-stopping Petto di Pollo al Palermo – a breaded chicken spectacle in a zesty lemon white wine sauce with peas and mushrooms.

Remember to leave room for their legendary house salad with its one-of-a-kind dressing. From wood-fired pizzas to generously portioned pasta, you’re in for a treat with every visit.

casa-ristorante-fort-wayne-italian-eats

Coney Island (Fort Wayne Famous)

There’s something remarkable about dining in a place that takes you on a trip through time. Fort Wayne’s cherished Coney Island Hot Dog spot does just that, bringing a slice of Coney Island from the 1910s to your plate today.

The classic coney dogs here are culinary works of art. They feature grilled wieners nestled in steamy buns, drenched in house-made chili sauce, and crowned with fresh diced onions. And even though I have a soft spot for a chili cheese dog (hello Skyline or Gold Star in Ohio), here in Indiana, it’s all about that delectable Coney Island authenticity that cannot be surpassed.

fort-wayne-chili-and-coney-island-dog

Copper Spoon

If you’re craving that upscale dining experience, Copper Spoon is Fort Wayne’s not-so-hidden jewel. Stepping into this eatery is like traveling back to the era of flappers and speak-easies, thanks to their prohibition-style cocktails and a gastronomical menu that spares no expense.

The cocktail connoisseur will be right at home, and even if spirits aren’t your groove, the wine list is nothing short of extraordinary.

Start with the Pimento Cheese Board and pickled treats, then move on to a Ribeye with chorizo butter or Grilled Salmon that showcases what this place is all about. And trust me, the Chocolate Torte with fresh berries is the cherry on top of a perfect evening.

gourmet-cheeseburger-fort-wayne

Dash In

Dash In is the go-to for a laid-back ambiance paired with a mouth-watering menu. This place knows the art of grilled cheese and craft beers, making lunchtime an event to look forward to. Their pulled pork, pub burgers, and red pepper chicken turn a simple meal into a homely feast anytime you drop by.

But oh, their breakfast sandwich… It’s all the goodness of spinach, tomato, cheddar, Canadian bacon, fried egg, and herbed cream cheese in one bite. And for the early risers, their breakfast plates offer a deliciously satisfying start to the day. In need of a pick-me-up? Their barista specials (Vietnamese coffee, macchiatos, etc.) and smoothies are just the ticket.

american-breakfast-with-eggs-toast-and-bacon

DeBrand Fine Chocolates – Sweet Tooth’s Sanctuary

Every great meal deserves an equally great dessert, and DeBrand Fine Chocolates answers the call with its spectacular array of sweets. Step into any of their locations for a luxurious treat that feels like a comforting hug for your taste buds.

The Auburn Park Drive corporate headquarters is a chocolate lover’s dream, where you can sink into their plush seating and indulge in a truffle, classic, or connoisseur selection. Need help deciding? Go for the Passion, Key Lime Pecan truffle, or Dark Raspberry Cream, and thank me later.

debrand-fine-chocolates

Don Chava’s Mexican Grill

Don Chava’s adds Mexican magic to Fort Wayne’s dining scene. Whether it’s their mouth-watering margaritas, sumptuous seafood options, or classic Fried Ice Cream, this festive grill has something for everyone. 

Nothing says “comfort food” like their Arroz Con Pollo – tender grilled chicken nestling atop Spanish rice and smothered in creamy queso dip. And the chips and salsa? Infinite and undeniably scrumptious.

don-chavas-mexican-food-pollo-con-arroz

Hop River Brewing

Tucked away in the heart of Fort Wayne lives Hop River Brewing, where craft beers meet culinary innovation. Fancy a flight of beers tailored to your taste? You got it. Prefer to delegate the decision to their friendly staff? They’ve got you covered with expert picks.

What won my heart here was their Vegan Sloppy Joe – it’s a taste revolution on a bun. The family-friendly setting, with its array of games and weekly events like Trivia Night and Singo (music bingo), gives it that local charm where memories await.

hop-river-brewing-vegan-sloppy-joe

The Hoppy Gnome

Nothing says “welcome” like a creative gastropub menu, and The Hoppy Gnome nails it. Their locally sourced ingredients transform into the most delightful taco combinations. The cauliflower (creamy guac and chili glaze) and meatball (lemongrass, red curry mayo, mango slaw) tacos will redefine your taco expectations.

For beer enthusiasts, brewing your beer on-site is an experience not to be missed. Plus, they boast an exciting range of craft beers, wines, and cocktails to round off the perfect meal.

hoppy-gnome-tuna-appetizer

Junk Ditch Brewing Company

Fancy a place where modern dishes meet a rustic vibe? Look no further than Junk Ditch Brewing Company. Nestled in the historic Korte Paper Company warehouse, this spot merges charm with an eclectic menu sure to impress. Try their Junk Ditch fries (with sambal and garlic aioli)—a taste sensation priced just right. Or, the decadent Chuck Roast Gnocchi, oozing with flavors and topped with a silky slow-cooked egg. 

Take advantage of their brunch, too; it’s the talk of the town, and rightly so!

short-rib-gnocchi-with-egg

Nawa

As you wander down The Landing, you’ll be beckoned by the exotic aromas of Nawa, an Asian haven of flavor. Whether it’s a lunch date or an afternoon craving, this spot impresses with affordable rice bowls, wok creations, and an inviting selection of beer and wine.

Don’t miss out on their curry dishes; the Massaman Curry with Jasmine rice is a personal highlight, offering a symphony of flavors that rocks the palate. And with the ability to choose your spice level, you’re always in control of your culinary destiny here.

thai-tea-and-curry-from-nawa

Proximo

Exquisite and electric, Proximo marries Latin flavors from Cuba, Spain, and Colombia in a symphony of dishes that will enthrall you from breakfast through dinner. Try the Chilaquiles, the French Toast with macerated berries and pecans, or go with their Carnita Benedict, with braised pork on a cornbread base. Genius!

And oh, the Steak and Eggs, a traditional Midwest breakfast perfected with a chipotle demi-glaze, are simply out of this world. It’s a culinary adventure to remember.

proximo-breakfast-dishes

Rise ‘n Roll Bakery

Rising at dawn feels less of a chore and more of an adventure when Rise ‘n Roll Bakery is the destination. This Amish bakery is famed for its ‘Amish crack’ donuts, a sugary cinnamon confection that’ll have you hooked at first bite.

Their morning spread includes mouth-watering Bismarcks, homemade bread, and (my favorite!) an unmissable sausage, cheese, and egg roll smothered in savory gravy. The blend of comfort and innovation makes their pastries a must-try in Fort Wayne.

rise-n-roll-bakery-doughnuts

Tolon

Farm-to-table isn’t just a trend at Tolon—it’s a philosophy. Chef Matthew Nolot champions dishes crafted with sustainable ingredients that will have you coming back for more. Sink your teeth into their irresistible Brussels sprouts or duck fat fries with basil aioli. 

And, you’re in for a treat because of the Classic Coq Au Vin or the knock-your-socks-off, and you can’t go wrong with the bacon Cheeseburger with bacon jam either. Is your mouth watering yet? I have yet to mention the curated craft cocktails and seasonal menus.

tolon-restaurant-menu-items

Zesto Ice Cream 

Zesto isn’t just a place; it’s a nostalgia-filled experience. Their specialty is frozen treats that instantly beam you back to simpler times. Imagine enjoying a butterscotch-dipped cone or their signature Razzles – think of the creamiest, dreamiest Blizzard you’ve encountered. And yes, their banana split is both a bargain and a feast for the eyes. 

For the past 50+ years, Zesto has been more than a spot to satisfy your sweet tooth; it’s been a photo—worthy destination and a piece of Fort Wayne’s heart.

zesto-ice-cream

816 Pint & Slice

Fort Wayne knows pizza and 816 Pint and Slice proves it. It’s more than just a pizzeria; it’s a paradise for anyone craving New York-style slices or daily specials. Their Greeeen pizza, slathered with bacon, chicken, pesto, and ranch, is a hit. And then there are the deep dish and gluten-free options—all exceptional. 

Plus, 816’s relaxed atmosphere is the cherry on top. Are you not a pizza fan? No worries, they also have grinders, salads, and calzones.

slice-of-pizza-in-fort-wayne

Mmm, Mmm, Good Fort Wayne

This list will hopefully ignite your desire to visit Fort Wayne, Indiana, or indulge in its culinary delights. As someone fortunate enough to explore incredible dishes and support local establishments like these, I have the best job in the world.

Thank you, Fort Wayne, for the warm welcome.

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Read more about the Midwest in these posts:

Midwestern Cities You Must Visit

Awesome Reasons to Visit Elgin, IL

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