The Foodie is always planning their next meal, going through mental Yelp reviews to find the perfect dining experience. The ingredients must be premium, the service superb, the menu enticing. You can win the Foodie’s affection with gourmet fare and top-of-the-line kitchen tools.
The best way to surprise the Foodie is with a gift card, or at least a recommendation to a restaurant they’ve never heard of (good luck with that). Despite its prominent location across from DeVos Performance Hall, ROAM is still a bit of a hidden gem. This offshoot of San Chez has amazing food from dozens of countries around the world, from China’s jian bing to Italy’s tramezzino, making it a global smorgasbord perfect for the Foodie.
ROAM by San Chez
250 Monroe Ave. NW, Grand Rapids
Principle Food & Drink lays it all out there in the name — the Kalamazoo eatery focuses equally on thoughtful, fresh fare and complex, innovative cocktails. Both food and drink alike elevate, build on and twist classic staples, while respecting what makes time-honored dishes work. If you want a restaurant that takes every aspect of the restaurant experience into account, bring the Foodie to Principle.
Principle Food & Drink
230 S. Kalamazoo Mall, Kalamazoo
Cooking at home is the only way to satisfy certain hungers, and that’s where Art of the Table comes in. This Wealthy Street staple offers just about everything you could ever need for a gourmet home cooking experience, including various utensils, dishes, cheese, oils, drinks and so much more. You can treat the Foodie to a pre-made basket or hand-select the perfect kitchen gift box.
Art of the Table
606 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids
SpeakEZ Lounge makes “dinner and a show” easy by putting the two together with Randissimo’s Jazz Jam every Sunday night. Enjoy some brie capri and paella romesco while being serenaded by some of the best jazz talent the Midwest has to offer. There’s no cover, so to make this a true gift, you might want to pick up the tab.
Randissimo’s Jazz Jam - SpeakEZ Lounge
600 Monroe Ave. NW, Grand Rapids
If your Foodie never quite learned how to master the home kitchen, no worries — there are plenty of places to learn in West Michigan. For one, the Downtown Market offers a wide variety of hands-on classes, such as An Evening In Italy, which guides you through butternut squash ravioli, a traditional Italian compote and emulsifying balsamic. If sushi, pie, Thai or craft beer are more your Foodie’s style, the market’s got you covered.
Downtown Market Cooking Classes
435 Ionia Ave. SW, Grand Rapids
The table is the single most important piece of furniture for the Foodie, the central hub their life revolves around. In Actors’ Theatre’s At the Table, six friends get together for an annual retreat outside the city to catch up and dive deep on what matters in life, conversing around a table with drinks in hand. It’s thoughtful, moving and timely, and perfect for the Foodie, who appreciates the true point of food: bringing people together and sharing culture.
At the Table
160 Fountain St. NE, Grand Rapids