The Foodie knows the name of every local farm within a 50-mile radius and has an heirloom tomato greenhouse on speed dial. Never lowering him or herself to eating at chains, the Foodie demands to speak with the chef to ask “what inspired this dish and what percentage of your food comes from local farms?”
Cut pre-packaged carbs out of your holiday menu entirely with delicious hand-crafted pasta and chocolate treats from The Local Epicurean. This pasta-making retailer offers artisanal pasta made with century-old traditions and a host of I’d-never-think-of-putting-those-things-together botanical combinations, like roasted pumpkin and chipotle or purple pansy and basil. Find handmade sauces, gluten-free options, truffle oils, pastas, chocolate truffles, soup mixes and even pre-made meals for the most discerning palate. Note: Local Epicurean is moving to a new location in Eastown the second week of January.
The Local Epicurean, 111 S Division Ave., Grand Rapids, thelocalepicurean.com, (616) 206-5175
Cooking classes at the Downtown Market are the perfect cure for a Foodie’s lament that there isn’t enough authentic food nearby. In December, a Seasonal Soups class teaches you to make your own stock from the chicken you caught at the farmer’s market; a French Dessert: Puff Pastry tutorial will give you the skills to make perfect Pan Au Chocolat and other desserts your friends can’t pronounce. You Are What You Eat: Joint Health will help you cook your in-season fingerling potatoes and kale into a delicious concoction of smug healthfulness, too.
Cooking Classes at the Downtown Market, 435 Ionia Ave. SW, Grand Rapids, 2-5 classes/month (ongoing)
Everyone knows that Wes Anderson’s films are the quirky, grass-fed porkbelly sandwich of cinema. Lucky for Foodies, Wes’s top hits are playing successively throughout December (in chronological order of release, of course). Catch the weekly special each Tuesday at 8 p.m. or enjoy all of the films to experience the most full-bodied character development.
Wes Anderson takes over Wealthy Theatre
Get music in its rawest form during Open Mic Nights at The Monarchs’ Club. This well kept West Side secret features great brews, a relaxed ambience and live, local performances by up-and-coming talent every Monday night. Cozy up to the bar after dinner around 9 p.m.
Open Mic Night at The Monarchs’ Club, 646 Stocking Ave. NW, Grand Rapids, Every Monday starting at 9 p.m., monarchsclub.com, (616) 233-9799
Few cuisines speak to the Foodie more than sushi, and Maru’s menu caters beautifully to those with a taste for the creative, exotic and just plain weird. Arguably the best place to find authentic sushi in town, Maru’s menu of cheeky rolls and plates features dishes like “Sexy Bacon,” “Super Mario” and “Beach Party.” With more approachable fare on one hand, Maru offers Foodies the danger and excitement they crave with daily specials like fresh-caught blue fin tuna sashimi, oyster shooters and impossibly exotic monkfish liver.
Dinner at Maru Sushi, Maru Sushi, 927 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids, marurestaurant.com, (616) 458-1900