Missoula, Montana, Photo by Josh Hallett via Flickr, CC BY-NC 2.0
When you’re already living in picturesque Montana, try adding even more charm to your life at these Missoula restaurants. Downtown, you’ll find dining options for every kind of palette, from the oldest yet freshest sushi restaurant in the state to some of the most authentic Mexican cuisine you’ll find this side of the border. Check out these five downtown restaurants, dominating the scene with unique menus and delicious meals.
Location: 322 N. Higgins Ave., Missoula, MT 59802
Cuisine: New American, Wine Bar
Hours: Every Day, 3 p.m.–1:30 a.m.
If you’re an aspiring sommelier — or even just a casual one — you’ll find your happy place at Plonk. Their wine list is varied and impressive, focused on pairing new American dishes like cheese boards or wagyu ribeye with the perfect vintage. Though, if wine’s not your style, never fear. Their cocktail list includes upscale takes on classics made with house-infused spirits. Try the Midday Manhattan, made with house-infused orange bourbon, Benedictine, and bitters.
Location: 403 N. Higgins Ave., Missoula, MT 59802
Cuisine: Sushi, Japanese
Hours: Lunch: Mon–Sat, 11:30 a.m.–3 p.m. | Dinner: Sun–Thu, 5–9:30 p.m., Fri–Sat, 5–10 p.m.
Sushi Hana prides itself for being the first (and best) sushi bar and Japanese restaurant to open in Montana — and doesn’t let Missoula forget. In addition to having amazingly fresh sushi meals, they have weekly specials that are too good to pass up. Monday’s “Not Just Sushi” $1 menu lets you stack your plate with delectable yet affordable eats after 5 p.m., and they do the same for sushi on Wednesday night.
Location: 101 S. Higgins Ave., Missoula MT 59802
Hours: Sun–Thu, 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sat, 11 a.m.–10 p.m.
In the mood for some authentic Mexican cuisine? Head to El Cazador, where the Hernandez family has been serving home recipes to downtown Missoula since 1995. Choose from a menu packed with house specialties like carnitas rancheras and camarones a la diabla, and don’t forget the margaritas. Brimming with tropical flavors and made with house wines, some of the margaritas here are larger than your head.
Five On Black
Location: 325 N. Higgins Ave., Missoula MT 59802
Hours: Mon–Sat, 11 a.m.–9 p.m.
Five On Black is all about providing healthy eats with all the fun and flavor of an indulgent Brazilian meal. Pop in, fill a bowl, and top it off to your liking, choosing from bases like feijoada — the national stew of Brazil, made with bacon, sausage, beef, and black beans. You can follow the happy faces to the heart of downtown for a bowl of your own, or head down to the South Crossing location, which is open every day of the week.
Market on Front
Location: 201 E. Front St., Missoula, MT 59802
Cuisine: Gourmet Cafe, Coffee Shop
Hours: Mon–Fri, 7 a.m.–8 p.m., Sat, 8 a.m.–8 p.m.; Sun 8 a.m.–7 p.m.
If you’re in the mood for a quiet, casual meal, head to Market on Front. For breakfast, lunch, and dinner, they offer simple and delicious soups, salads, and sandwiches made with fine gourmet ingredients. Try the Hot Hippie, a sandwich loaded with fresh mozz and veggies, or opt for a grown-up PB&J made with organic peanut butter and huckleberry jam. After your meal, shop their artisanal groceries, and grab a coffee for the trip home.