Trestle Inn Restaurant and Saloon

By Nancy SchleuterFeatured in Make It Minnesota's Fall 2014 issue.

When is a train wreck a good thing?

When you can order one from the menu, have it delivered to your table by an award-winning server and have a portion of the proceeds go to an excellent community cause – that’s when.

Need a little more explanation?

First off, this whole scenario starts at the Trestle Inn restaurant and saloon. Tucked into the Superior National Forest, less than an hour from Silver Bay, the Trestle Inn is a favorite stopping spot for hunters, snowmobilers, hikers, and vacationers of every persuasion. Their menu is packed with all of the usual hot-off-the-grill favorites that Minnesotans have come to love.

Plus, there’s the one-and-only ‘Train Wreck’.

The Train Wreck is a gargantuan burger creation that starts out normally enough with the basic building blocks of a traditional bottom bun, hamburger patty and cheese slice. Add to that a bratwurst patty, followed by another slice of cheese and top all of that with bacon strips and the remaining bun.

Serve it with a piping hot side of fries that have been seasoned with ‘a little love’ – and it all adds up to one mighty big meal. Which should be enough for most folks, unless they happen to like living on the daring side of things.

Then it is a simple matter of ordering a ‘Train Wreck with Casualties’.

What are Casualties? Well it’s pretty much whatever the cook darn-well feels like adding to your burger. And no, you do not get a say in the matter. Well, that’s sort of true. If you are allergic or afraid of a particular food, the cook will definitely skip it. (You can ask about the ‘afraid’ part when you get there.)

Your Train Wreck with Casualties is guaranteed to be a one-of-a-kind gastronomic delight unlike any you have ever eaten before. It may come surrounded by grilled cheese sandwiches. Perhaps it will be adorned with a fried egg or two.

Look closely at the Train Wreck in the photo. Yep, that’s eggs and grilled cheese sandwiches added to a burger that already breaks all the rules.

If you are lucky, your burger-behemoth will be brought to your table by none other than ‘The 2012 Best Server on the North Shore’ – as voted on by the readers of the North Shore Hwy 61 newspaper.

“The Best Server on the Shore? That’s our Robb!” chuckled Trestle Inn owner, Sue Butler. “We all know that he’s a great guy, so it was extra nice to have him recognized that way in the paper.”

And how does Robb feel about being named Best Server?

“I was surprised to get the award,” Robb grinned. “Especially considering the Trestle Inn isn’t exactly ON the shore. But hey, what do I know? I just like to see people have a great time.” And a great time at the Trestle Inn often starts with a Train Wreck.

How many Train Wrecks get served at the Trestle Inn? Well, as a Best Server, Robb just happens to know the answer to that question.

“In the past two years, we’ve served nearly two thousand of them. The reason I know is that the Trestle Inn donates one dollar from the sale of each Wreck to the local Rec Center in Finland – the director keeps a tally for us,” remarked Robb. “Get it? Eat a Wreck for the Rec. It’s kinda hokey, but it works!”

The Rec Center’s official name is the Clair Nelson Intermodal Transportation Center. It is run by the nonprofit organization, Friends of the Finland Community. The nonprofit’s Executive Director, Honor Schauland, comments on the donations easily – “The Trestle Inn rocks! Those dollars are much needed and appreciated, our projects are varied and designed for enhancing life here in Finland.”

So, the next time you are craving a burger, head north. Take a cinematic drive up the north shore, find your way to the Trestle Inn and get prepared for your own personal Train Wreck!

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