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Midgley’s Public House: Michael Midgley’s a Celebrity Dad Too!

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In honor of our first annual Men’s Issue, we are featuring the distinguished Midgley’s Public House in Lincoln Center, Stockton. Most know Chef Michael Midgley as the friendly and funny contestant and judge from Top Chef, Knife Fight and Cutthroat Kitchen and the creator of unique and delicious dishes, but many may not know him as a loving and caring husband and father of three adorable children.

We were lucky to roll up on Chef Mike having lunch at his own establishment with his children before their bicycle lesson. As the young Midgley clan nonchalantly munched on their chicken fingers and fries, the happy dad cordially welcomed and introduced us before launching into his famous impromptu comedy act. “Yeah, I’m such a horrible dad that I can’t even teach my kids how to ride a bike,” he chuckled with self-deprecating humor. He then went into the hilarious explanation about his newly acquired shiner, giving us the light version of an altercation he had over the weekend with some unsavories who were misbehaving in the presence of his children. “I’m not sure you’ll want to take photos of me with this,” he joked, pointing out his red and swollen eye. “But what was I supposed to do? I had to protect my kids’ honor, right?” The three, freckle-faced cherubs nodded in agreement while continuing to devour their lunch.

After a few photos, the busy chef and dad gathered the tots and left us in the gracious hands of his lovely and efficient wife, Laci. Since this is our Men’s Issue, we wanted a manly menu, but who wouldn’t want to start things off with Asian-inspired Sticky Wings from the appetizer offerings? And then, the bounteous eight-ounce beef Cheese Burger with lettuce, tomatoes, caramelized onions, pickles and MPH sauce on a brioche bun served with fries definitely crosses gender lines. We could only stare in amazement when the titanic 48-ounce Tomahawk Ribeye, cooked to personal perfection and served with grilled asparagus and those fabulous fries, showed up at our table.

If you plan to go, take your posse and treat them to something refreshing from the summer cocktail menu with the Midgley Mega Mule, 103 ounces of Beluga Russian Noble vodka, fresh limes & Regatta craft ginger beer in a party-sized mug. For something more on the light side, the Summer Sipper with Plymouth Gin, watermelon, cucumber and St. Germain elderflower liqueur will quench your thirst. And don’t even think about leaving without indulging in Midgley’s Mud Pie, a triple chocolate brownie buried under vanilla bean ice cream, chocolate sauce, bourbon caramel, whipped cream and candied pecans. Trust me; you will be glad you saved a little bit of room.

While we dissected the delicious fare, the obliging Laci was at our table with a five-dollar tip in hand left by her benevolent husband at his and the kid’s table. “Well, I wasn’t sure who to give it to, but since I cleaned the table, I guess I’ll keep it,” she quipped drolly. Treat yourself and your family to Midgley’s this summer, where the menu is always extraordinary and the service is more
than entertaining.

Find Midgley’s Public House at 296 Lincoln Center, Stockton, California. They’re open Sunday through Thursday for lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and dinner from 4:00 to 9:00; on Friday and Saturday, lunch is served from 11:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and dinner from 4:00 to 10:00. Call (209) 474-7700 for reservations and get menu previews at

Written by: Sharon Baker