This month in business news: New dining and drinking establishments, including Little Lucy's, West Michigan Rum Company, That Early Bird and more. Plus, former Mia & Grace chef joins the team at Grove.
While the Bilbo’s Pizza location in Kalamazoo will remain open, Bilbo’s location at 6202 S. Westnedge Ave., Portage has closed, following a sale of the building. In place of the pizza institution will be the fast-food chain Chick-fil-A. This will be the right-wing, chicken-slinging company’s first West Michigan location.
West Michigan Rum Company (470 W. Western Ave., Muskegon) is planning to open early 2017 in a corner of downtown Muskegon’s Walker Arena. In a world of whiskey connoisseurs and vodka fanatics, rum is finally getting the craft distillery it deserves, imo.
Fifth Third Ballpark (4500 West River Dr. NE, Comstock Park) may soon become the largest concert venue (and open air, at that) in the area. Capacity would increase from around 8,500 to 16,000-plus, potentially attracting big names that have previously driven straight from Detroit to Chicago.
Welp, the breweries are at it again. Watermark Brewing (5763 St. Joseph Ave., Stevensville) opened last month near the coast. Dark Horse Brewing Co. is embarking on yet another venture with Dark Horse Commons (511 S. Kalamazoo Ave., Marshall), an all-in-one coffee roaster, cafe, bakery, candy shop and creamery. The brewing company already operates a motorcycle repair shop, wood shop and general store on the same property.
Similarly, Greenbush Brewing Co. has opened the Clean Plate Club (5875 Sawyer Road, Sawyer) next door. What is it? A diner, open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. And lastly, The Mitten Brewing Co. (112 W. Nagonaba St., Northport) has opened a second location on the Leelanau Peninsula (that’s right, we got peninsulas on our peninsula) in what was once Northport Brewing.
That Early Bird (1445 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids) finally opened doors last month in the space that was once Kava House (R.I.P.). With a completely different interior, the cafe has also added a luxurious-looking breakfast menu and kicked the coffee up a notch.
While Creston Brewery may not have gotten around to opening last month, the owners of Graydon’s Crossing, Logan’s Alley and Derby Station have brought two new establishments to the area. Little Lucy’s Cafe, which is also a bakery, and Brighton Graye’s Bistro, a high-end restaurant, both opened in what was once D’Amico Food Mart (1747 Plainfield Ave. NE, Grand Rapids).
Grove (919 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids), a farm-to-table-centric restaurant in Eastown, has brought on a new head chef. Jeremy Paquin was formerly chef at Mia & Grace and Whistle Punk Pizza in Muskegon, most recently working at Bistro Bella Vita. Paquin now plans to bring some new choices to Grove’s menu.
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