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Thanksgiving 2015

November 12, 2015

I’ve been getting a lot of traffic for a post I wrote five years ago about Thanksgiving Day options.  I figured I should probably update for those of you looking for something to do instead of Turkey.  As always, call ahead to make sure, but here’s what I’ve been able to find.  If you know of another restaurant open (that’s not fast food) please let me know in either the comments or email me

Read more…

Horseshoe Smokehouse

November 18, 2015
  • 333 Grandville Avenue SW
  • Grand Rapids, MI 49503
  • (616) 805-4541
  • Website
  • Menu

It’s not very often I work days.  In fact, I worked more day shifts last week than I have in the previous four years combined.  It’s hard to do with a child at home as J and I have our work shifts set up so we don’t need daycare, but her mom was in town and a co-worker asked if I could cover his shift in exchange for him working my Sunday shift.  An actual weekend?  I’ll take it.

My assignments on Friday kept me in Grand Rapids all day and with a little bit of spare time.  Around lunchtime, I decided I was going to head over to Founders Brewing and get a sandwich.   That was the plan anyway.  I got distracted by something else.

Several months ago, there was a string of BBQ shops opening up in Grand Rapids.  First, it was Two Scotts on the Westside.  Then Horseshoe Smokehouse near downtown.  Finally, Slows BBQ opened at the Downtown Market.  Two Scotts and Horseshoe were hard to get to in the beginning due to the fact they closed well before my usual dinner break.  I eventually noticed Two Scotts started staying open later, but I don’t drive by Horseshoe very much.  When I drove by it on my way to Founders, I suddenly got an urge for BBQ.

Horseshoe Smokehouse is on Grandville Avenue just north of Wealthy Street.  There’s a lot of great history behind the space that the smokehouse now occupies.  The building used to be the Lamar Hotel and the restaurant is in the space that was the Horseshoe Bar….a jazz bar that closed in the 70’s.  The space hasn’t been used for a business since.  The smokehouse took the name of the bar when they moved in earlier this year.  There’s actually a pretty good history of the place in the Grand Rapids Press article from when they opened.

I pulled up a menu after I found a place to park….which was a little harder than I thought it would be. There’s a lot of metered parking around the building, but it was all pretty much full.  I had to park a couple blocks away and walk back.  Since I didn’t know what kind of service they offered, so I called to see if I could put in a carry-out order.  The lady who answered the phone told me they don’t do call ahead orders.  I was right outside anyway, so I just walked in and found it to be a counter service restaurant.   Read more…

Broadway Grille – Coldwater

November 16, 2015
  • broadwaygrillecoldwater219 S. Monroe Street
  • Coldwater, MI 49036
  • (517) 278-2929
  • Website
  • Menu

Coldwater is not a part of the state you find me in very often.  In fact, before last week, I had never actually been in Coldwater.  I was totally flying blind when I got sent that way for a job assignment and had no idea where I was going to go for lunch.  I didn’t have time to scout anything out, so Google was going to have to save me.

Turns out, Google didn’t have to.  One of the people I met on this assignment recommended a place unsolicited.  I figured she was familiar with the area and the place she pointed me towards was right around the corner so why the heck not?

The Broadway Grille is on Monroe Street in downtown Coldwater just to the south of U.S 12 (or W. Chicago Street) which is the main thoroughfare through town.

This location is one of three Broadway Grille’s in the area and it’s the newest.  The original is on Broadway Street in Union City with the other on Michigan Avenue in Marshall.  This paragraph is kind of important to the story.  You’ll see why in a second (if you haven’t already figured it out). Read more…

Kirby House

November 13, 2015
  • 2 Washington Avenue
  • Grand Haven, MI 49417
  • (616) 846-3299
  • Website
  • Menu

I had a nice, relaxing day in Grand Haven.  Not a enjoy the beach relaxing, but as relaxing as it can be when I’m at work.

A co-worker I rarely work with were assigned to a project all day in Grand Haven.  We spent the morning working then headed downtown to find something for lunch.  We both knew we wanted to sit down and enjoy a meal for once since we had time.  I was thinking of an old hotel downtown.  He was thinking of a place that had a great basil lemonade.  Turns out, we were thinking of the same place.

The Kirby House is part of the Gilmore Collection and one of three restaurants in the old building on the corner of Washington and South Harbor Drive in Downtown Grand Haven.  The name “Kirby House” is what the whole building is called which includes the main restaurant.  There is also The Grill Room and K2 Pizzeria within the Kirby House.  There’s also a nighclub in the basement called Dark Room, but they don’t serve food.  Obviously, this is a big space in downtown Grand Haven.

The 140 year old hotel is a perfect place for a restaurant in this Michigan beach town.  When you walk through the revolving door, you come to a hostess station for the main dining area of the Kirby House.  The Grill Room is off to the right and the K2 pizzeria is upstairs.  Being lunch on a Monday, only the Kirby Grill was open.  We really needed a table near a power outlet to charge some equipment, so the hostess let us sit in the front area near the stage.  The tables are all four top pub tables and we chose a couple in the corner.  We used one for equipment charging and one for lunch.  The rest of the space is taken up by a huge floating island bar and a dining room with regular sized tables in the back.  I really can’t stress how great the feel is in this old building. Read more…

Barrett’s Smoke House – Kalamazoo

November 12, 2015
  • 4536 Stadium Drive
  • Kalamazoo, MI 49008
  • (269) 323-3700 Ext. 2
  • Website
  • Menu

I feel like I’ve written this blog post.  In fact, I have…this is actually blog post #4 for Barrett’s Smoke House.  They have two locations in town and both of them have replaced the original location with a new one.

Last Friday, I picked L up from school and had to get home in time for a repair man to fix my garage door.  I only had a few minutes to stop and get lunch on the way for her and me and I’m getting a little tired of eating fast food.

I chose to stop at Barrett’s Smoke House on Stadium Drive in Kalamazoo.  This store replaces the the Barrett’s that used to be on Main Street in Oshtemo Township.  They moved to a much bigger space on Stadium near Drake in to the University Commons shopping plaza.   Barrett’s takes over the space that used to be a Bargain Books just a few doors down from At Home.

This new store on Stadium is set up a lot like the new store on Oakland.    It’s a large open space with the front of the shop split between a dining area and a retail area.  In the back, there’s a large fresh meat case next to the cash registers which is where you order sandwiches, sides, and smoked BBQ meats by the pound.  Read more…

Moo Cluck Moo – Dearborn Heights

November 8, 2015
  • 8606 N. Telegraph Road
  • Dearborn Heights, MI 48127
  • (313) 562-9999
  • Website
  • Menu

Thursday turned in to an interesting day.  An early afternoon phone call from work led to me rushing to the Detroit area to meet up with a co-worker on a last minute assignment.  We completed said assignment around 6:30 then had to rush back to Grand Rapids for a 9:30 job.

Being rushed out the house, I didn’t have much time to eat.  I stopped and grabbed a sandwich from Gina’s Pizza and Deli in Albion on the way, but I was still hungry and it was past dinner time.

When I got sent over there, I didn’t know that I was going to have to rush back, so I was sort of planning on stopping at Miller’s Bar in Dearborn.  I have always heard they have great burgers and I was close.  The problem became they only take cash (I was going to put it on the company credit card) and I no longer had time to sit down some place to eat.

Before we left our job site, I started looking for other burger places.  I was unfamiliar with where we were out near The Henry Ford, so I was relying on Google to find me dinner.

After a little bit of searching, I came upon a burger joint that calls itself a fast food burger place, but uses Waygu beef.  Um…yes, please.  Read more…

Gina’s Pizza & Deli

November 6, 2015
  • 1313 E. Michigan Avenue
  • Albion, MI 49224
  • (517) 629-9330
  • Website
  • Menu

I thought I was going to spend my time before work on Thursday cleaning out the gutters and raking leaves, but an e-mail from my boss interrupted that plan.  As soon as possible, I needed to get on the road and head towards Detroit.  I had a job assignment in the suburbs that I would be meeting a co-worker at.  They didn’t know the time and place yet, but it was important that I get on the road as soon as possible.

I showered quickly and started heading east.  It was just before 1:00 and I hadn’t eaten lunch yet.  I was really hungry by the time I pulled off the highway for gas in Albion and I started looking for quick places to grab a sandwich.  I figured there had to be some kind of sandwich shop maybe a little closer to Albion College.  As luck would have it, I was right.

Gina’s Pizza & Deli is on Michigan Avenue just barely inside the Albion city limits on the east side of town.  As I figured, it’s just a couple blocks from Albion College’s campus.

The pizzeria is a standalone building with a large parking lot.  It appears it used to be a bank that they converted to a pizzeria.  The set up is order at the counter then they bring your food to you.  The business is quite a bit larger than I expected with a pretty good size dining room.  At 1:30 on a Thursday afternoon, there was a decent amount of people enjoying a late lunch.

The menu can be a  little overwhelming at first, but I was looking for a sandwich.  I wanted a pizza, but I was going to be in the car, so a sandwich was the only option.   Read more…


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