Skip to Main

Inside The Kitchen at M-22 Grill In Onekama

When you’re located off M-22, one of the most beautiful highways in the state, it would only make sense that all the decor matches.

But the one thing that goes unmatched here is the food.

John Blackman started in the restaurant business as a teenager.

When asked if he ever thought he’d own a restaurant…

“Never, never thought it would ever happen,” John Blackman said.

Now, not only does he own M-22 Grill in Onekama…

“It’s rewarding, you get to meet a lot of new people and see the same faces and all that good stuff,” he said.

He’s also making dishes named after himself, like “John’s Favorite.”

“I’ve been eating food like this for many years and I always had to order this and that, and put it all together on a plate,” he said. “So I said I’m going to make this an item that way everyone else can enjoy it.”

Layer of hasbrowns and then loaded up.

John’s Favorite is one of many menu masterpieces you can’t find anywhere else.

“We do a special feature of the month with an omelet, or a waffle, pancakes, or French toast,” John described.

There was even a Reuben omelet on the menu at one point.

Another dish drawing inspiration from within…

“Well I love grilled cheese,” he said.

The M-22 Grilled Cheese.

“I wanted to make ours bigger and better than any other I had had,” he said.  “A slice of white a slice of rye and a slice of wheat.”

And four different types of cheese — smooshed together — and paired perfectly with fresh cut fries.

“We don’t want you to go away hungry,” he laughed.

While the 16 different soup recipes are all John’s, he got some help with the decorations.

“All the cars and everything, some of them were my dad’s,” said John.

And more than 200 license plates brought in by customers, including all 50 states, plus Canada.

“We are on such a beautiful highway M-22 is gorgeous, let’s celebrate the cars and the road,” he said.

John says if people keep traveling M-22, the rest behind the counter is on cruise control.

“We will keep cooking,” he said.

M-22 Grill is located at 5159 Main Street in Onekama, and you can call them at (231) 889-7133.

If there’s a place you’d like us to check out, you can email us at