Thornapple Brewing (6262 28th St., Cascade) opened last month with a lineup of classic beer styles like Treyway, a Belgian Trippel, and Brown Eyed Girl, an English Brown. But the seven-barrel brewery also offers cider, wine and mead, along with a kitchen serving up pizza made on spent-grain crust; hummus and veggie plates; and other bar fare.
Holland gained another brewery with Brewery 4 Two 4 (321 Douglas Ave.), named after the last three digits of the building’s zip code (49424). Check out the Crazy Putin, a Russian Imperial Stout, or any one of the multiple IPAs and pale ales. The taproom is BYOF (bring your own food), with darts, foosball and multiple TVs for sports viewing.
This being West Michigan, you may not be too surprised to hear that three breweries opened this month. Big Boiler Brewing (318 E. Main St.) rounds out the trio, bringing malt, hops and yeast to Lowell. The brewery’s food menu is ambitious, featuring six (very affordable) burgers, six entrees and seven sandwiches, along with all kinds of apps, soups and salads.
While not a brewery, Sprinkle Road Tap House (5003 Park Circle Dr., Kalamazoo) has no shortage of beer, with 30 brews on tap, along with wine and a curated whiskey list. While a menu wasn’t available at time of reporting, the other Tap House locations offer comforting, unique food like lamb burgers, pork waffles and wood-fired pizzas.
Noco Provisions (4609 Cascade Road, Grand Rapids) opens this month, describing itself as offering “laid-back, regional comfort-inspired cuisine.” Check out the menu when the restaurant opens, along with the cocktail list and newly built patio.
From the ashes (not literally) of Tre Cugini, Mazzo Cucina D’Italia (122 Monroe Center St. NW, Grand Rapids) rises like a phoenix. The Italian restaurant has a much more modern feel than its predecessor, even if the cuisine shares a common ancestor. Arrive at lunch for affordable sandwiches or make an evening of it with gourmet meat entrees. Either way, unique pizzas and pasta are available all day, along with honestly the best brussels sprouts I’ve ever had.
Both Harmony Brewing Co. (1540 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids) and Railtown Brewing Co. (3555 68th St. SE, Caledonia) have announced significant expansions. Harmony plans to take over the adjacent Subway property allowing for additional on-site parking, a second kitchen and more seating, all of which are much-welcomed. Railtown is planning to move to a new site entirely, having outgrown its space in the strip mall. The brewery will be tearing down the nearby car wash and building a 3,750-square-foot restaurant and taproom, with a connected 2,500-square-foot production facility. Whoa!
Apparently, to cosmically balance the opening of three new breweries, three restaurants and a brewery had to close too. We’re losing Lazy Susan (411 Wilson Ave., Grand Rapids), the unique Standale restaurant known for its rotating regional menu, comforting atmosphere, and just overall delicious food. LINC UP Soul Food Cafe (1167 Madison Ave. SE, Grand Rapids) closed its doors after four years of love to and from the community. However, manager Lewis Williams eventually will be opening another restaurant named Forty Acres Soul Kitchen. Millgrove Brewing Co. (633 114th Ave., Allegan) sadly was forced to close after three years of business, due to cash flow problems and an issue with renewing the liquor license. And finally, Black Heron Kitchen & Bar (428 Bridge St. NW, Grand Rapids) closed very unexpectedly and without much fanfare following an equally unexpected car crash through the restaurant’s floor-to-ceiling windows.