Peacefully tucked away in the heart of the northern Rocky Mountains, Missoula is the perfect spot for a weekend of history, culture and outdoor fun. Home to the University of Montana, one of the most architecturally distinguished academic institutions in the country, the city offers a number of intellectually stimulating attractions. Spend a few hours browsing through the exhibits at the Art Museum of Missoula or take a trip back in time at the Historical Museum at Fort Missoula. The city's close proximity to three major rivers and acres of lush forest means visitors can also enjoy a host of recreational activities, from fly fishing and kayaking to hiking and biking. Missoula's historic downtown area has classic early-century buildings and boasts unique shops, galleries, fine dining and a lively nightlife. With kids in tow, don't miss Dragon Hollow, a magical playground that features an extraordinary hand-carved carousel.
Things to do in Missoula
4.5 based on 368 reviews
Chef-owned and operated, Pearl Cafe is an aptly named jewel of a restaurant serving regional cuisine with a country French accent. The massive beams and peach toned bricks of the historic warehouse provide a warm and inviting atmosphere. Specialties include bison with huckleberry-zinfandel sauce, duckling with dried cherries and pomegranate sauce and beef tenderloin with port and Roquefort. Fresh fish dishes change daily and local products are used whenever possible. The menu is rounded out with a variety of appetizers, soups and salads, house made bread and a list of sinfully delicious desserts. The restaurant serves wine and beer, with a list of 15 wines by the glass, local draft beer, a broad selection of half bottles and over 100 full bottles.
The Pearl is an amazing restaurant full of great flavors, wines and service. Make sure to make your reservations because they can be very busy. Start off with an amazing bottle of wine from their great selections. They have an amazing selection of delectable hors d'oeuvres on the menu, so make sure to have several. Their entrées are an incredible sensation of art and flavor. By the time you have desert you will be ready to melt away to the nightlife of Missoula.
4.5 based on 347 reviews
My wife and I split a Caesar salad and pizza, both of which were excellent. My half of the pizza was pretty mundane: sausage and mushroom but my wife ordered one of the specials: chutney, apple, bacon and smoked Gouda and really raved about it. The service was excellent and, this being our first visit, our server took time to explain all of the options. We loved Missoula and this restaurant added to our enjoyment.
4.5 based on 268 reviews
We are a full service restaurant. Opened in 1991 as Montana's first coffee cart, The Catalyst Cafe has grown to become a favorite destination in Missoula for full-plate breakfasts and lunches. Open seven days a week and serving breakfast all day. The Catalyst caters to a very loyal following of University of Montana students, downtown Missoula business people, and visitors. The Catalyst Cafe brews the best coffee in Missoula and serves up a delicious variety of unique, fresh, local meals- including a great selection for vegetarians and vegans. The Catalyst Cafe is 100% Missoula - and prides itself on being a welcoming, comfortable restaurant for all walks of life.
Well managed, cute little restaurant. We were visiting during the Missoula Marathon so every restaurant in town was busy but everyone here from servers to management was efficient. We were seated upstairs at a small table for two. I ordered the Veggie Scramble, which was two eggs, scrambled with sautéed mushrooms, tomato, red peppers, spinach and sautéed onions. It was served with toast. My husband ordered the special, which was a brisket wrap served with soup. We loved everything about this place from the food to the excellent service.
4.5 based on 230 reviews
Simple business model fresh, quality ingredients based essentially upon a rice bowl though it is quite good, not a unique concept with the rice bowl but executed quite well.
4.5 based on 217 reviews
Red Bird Restaurant severs eclectic local cuisine with flair. Red Bird Restaurant is opened for intimate evening dining in dramatic architectural surroundings with an art nouveau feel. The Restaurant strives for sustainability and serves local meats, handmade pastas, sustainable fresh seafood & delectable desserts. Our menus change frequently to reflect the wide variety of seasonal foods available regionally. The Wine Bar has over 25 wines by the glass and an extensive representation of Northwest Wines. The Wine bar offers enticing appetizers, fresh salads, artisan sandwiches and petite entrees. Monday night is live music night in the Wine Bar. Come join us at Red Bird and taste what grows under the Big Sky.
This restaurant was on our B&B's recommended list for fine dining. The actual building it's in is historic and beautiful. The decor & atmosphere of the restaurant is great. The food selection is limited and they had several substitutions- I had wanted to order the halibut, but they were substituting it with salmon, which I didn't want, so I ended up ordering 2 appetizers instead. The restaurant is divided into a dining area & a wine bar/bistro with the same menu. Our waiter ignored us for long periods of time, presumably he had more customers on the bar side. He was also pretty snotty when I asked for a gin & tonic - telling me this is a wine bar and that only have wine & beer. He also never asked us if we wanted drink refills and when I asked for an herbal tea, he brought me a teapot with fresh mint leaves only in the infuser, which was odd.
4.5 based on 225 reviews
Went for lunch during a conference and was delighted. Was having problem deciding and they gave me a piece of burnt ends. They were great! Excellent food and service. Highly recommended in Missoula!
4.5 based on 506 reviews
HOURS OF OPERATION Monday-Thursday: 7 am to 9 pm Friday: 7 am to 9pm Saturday: 8 am to 9 pm Sunday: 9 am to 2 pm Coffee Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner Sunday Brunch Patio Seating in the warm months!
So, my husband and I dined tonight at Caffe Dolce. I had so looked forward to a nice meal. The menu changes seasonally somewhat, but tonight was just awful. When we first arrived in Missoula, Caffe Dolce was our favorite spot to dine out. The ragu and pasta dishes were pretty darned good. This past summer they offered a nice, light shrimp pasta dish that was just so good. Tonight I ordered their Conchiglie with heirloom tomato, seafood ragu, grapefruit and herbed mascarpone dish. I took one bite and oh my, I just could not eat it. I did try though---I ate a few more bites. Flavors did not mesh. Too strong. Too overpowering. Our wait person offered to take it back for something else, but I truly do not like doing that, so I declined their offer. My husband offered me his pasta bolognese, described as "traditional bolognese" but it was primarily a tomato sauce with a little sausage infused. Not sure what happened to their Caesar salads either. The dressing is now a flavored mayonnaise. Caffe Dolce used to prepare a rich short rib ragu this time of year but that is no longer there. With time, the sauces went from being rich to sauces with too much butter rendering them greasy. So disappointed. Caffe Dolce was my "go to" place for dinner but no longer. Lunch is good.
4.5 based on 654 reviews
Alehouse and grill.
The appetizers are really good. Also the wings and pizza. I had the flatbread with feta, etc. and that was yummy. The spinach dip is really good.
4.5 based on 111 reviews
The Market on Front is more than a market with a restaurant. It is an energetic marketplace which offers an epicurean experience to excite the senses. It is also an energetic, vibrant marketplace creating an opportunity to taste and take home the products of artisans who create excellent products at awesome prices. This community centered specialty food destination features gourmet yet traditio
Missoula has been lacking in breakfast options and I don't know how long the market has offered breakfast but it is a welcome addition to Missoula's offerings. We first stopped by Burn Street Bistro but after finding out they were out of the menu item we wanted and we were behind at least 15 people in line waiting to order we headed to the market. There breakfast menu was extensive but we ordered the pork belly biscuit special. It came out in under 10 minutes and as excellent. We will be back soon.
4.5 based on 145 reviews
Small café, order at the counter, breakfast or lunch. Not too many items on the menu, but there are some creative and interesting choices, like the home fries covered with veggies and cheese, with salsa and sour cream on the side, and toast -- $8. Very tasty.
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