It’s milestone time. This post is #1000 on SW Michigan Dining. Ididn’t want #1000 to be just any post. I wanted it to be something special…so I have been pretty careful the last couple of weeks about where we were going to eat.
Earlier this week, a co-worker and I ended up in Lansing. I figured it would be fitting that post #1000 be a Lansing restaurant since that is where I started blogging about restaurants (although those posts don’t count towards this blog). Plus, there was a BBQ place I really, really wanted to go to.
Lucky for me, Co-Worker was on board with my restaurant suggestions. We didn’t have as much time as we had originally hoped, so after finishing our tasks for the day, she called in a carry-out order while I filled up the gas tank and stocked up on Pepsi.
Meat is a meat lover’s paradise. Every single thing on the menu made my mouth water. From the slow smoked BBQ to made-to-order mac-n-cheese to “Meatwiches”…making a decision was damn near impossible.
C.W. and I made our way in to the restaurant about a half hour before closing time. The dining room goes with a southern roadhouse theme. A number of tables are actually picnic tables and there are 80′s rock record covers lining the walls. Read more…
- 633 W. Main Street
- Mendon, MI 49072
- (269) 496-8200
- No Known Website
Working up north, it’s not very often my job takes me south of Kalamazoo. This past Saturday was one of those rare exceptions. I found myself in Mendon for a while and when I stopped to get gas, I was also in the mood for something to eat.
Lucky for me, I pulled in to the Marathon station right on M-60 on the west side of Mendon. I say “lucky for me” because there is a pretty large hot food section inside the gas station.
After filling up, I headed inside to grab a pop and the smell of fried chicken hit me right away. I noticed they had Chester’s Fried Chicken available and they were touting their pizza on signs near the door.
As I made my way to the order counter, I noticed a large menu board hanging above the chicken case. There is actually a pretty large menu that includes sandwiches as well as wraps, Mexican options in addition to the chicken and pizza I already mentioned.
Pizza was tempting, and I didn’t realize at the time they had slices available in a case near the cash register, but I saw a special on chicken tenders and how often do I turn down chicken tenders? Read more…
The way J and I find out about new places varies. Sometimes we just drive by, sometimes I get emails, but most of the time, we see it on Twitter.
In this case, J got a follow from a restaurant she had never heard of. Of course, that was enough of an incentive to do a little research. What we found out was the mysterious Twitter restaurant served wraps and they are close to home.
After picking L up from her class on Friday, J asked if I wanted to go somewhere for lunch. She initially suggested Panera, but I asked if she wanted to out someplace new.
Two Fellas Grill just opened up right near WMU. The shop is on Howard Street at Michigan Avenue across the Street from Campus Pointe Mall. The space used to be home to The Spirit Shoppe but it has now been converted in to a small take out restaurant.
The whole menu is wraps. It’s actually a pretty smart business concept right near campus and they’re open to 3:00 AM during the week and 4:00 AM on the weekends….oh yeah, and they deliver.
The menu is a little overwhelming at first and it took J and I few minutes to find something that sounded good. J got things started by ordering chicken strips for L and an order of Mac ‘n Cheese bites for her and I. Read more…
One way that J and I have been pretty lucky since the addition to our family is that we haven’t needed to use daycare. We work opposite schedules, so there’s always somebody home. On the plus side, we save A LOT of money. On the downside, L doesn’t get to socialize very much outside of our house.
J found a one day a week toddler class for L, so we can get her out of the house away from J and I to interact with other kids her age. The class is in the morning, so that means I get drop off and pick up duty while J is at work.
After dropping L off at her first class, I was left with two hours alone to kill. That hasn’t happened in quite a while, so I really didn’t know what to do with myself. I don’t usually eat much for breakfast because I’m too busy making breakfast for L and trying to stay awake after nights of very little sleep.
Since I had time, I figured I may as well pick up a breakfast sandwich for myself. I see J goes to Big Apple Bagels quite a bit for breakfast and there was one close to me.
Two. Two was a good number for us this month. On two different weekends, J and I were able to leave L with NaNa and Grampa so we could go in to Chicago for dinner. Two was also the number of breweries I stopped at on Saturday.
J wanted to go home on Saturday to attend a benefit that one of her high school friends was having for a rare disease her child has. I had some vacation days to burn, so I took the day off, but, as I explained in my blog for The Livery, J and her mom went home on Friday and I took my time driving to Chicago Saturday morning/afternoon.
The benefit consisted of two parts. There was a day of activity for the kids then it turned in to more of an adult function at night. J, L, and NaNa and Grampa went to the daytime portion while J and I went to the night session by ourselves. We really only made an appearance at the night part of the benefit because J wanted to take advantage of the grandparents wanting to watch L.
My birthday was last week and we didn’t really do anything. J told me to find a brewery in Chicago somewhere that we haven’t been to and that would be my birthday dinner.
The brewery I settled on was Atlas Brewing Company in Lincoln Park. I chose this one because the food menu looked as amazing as the beer menu. That way, both J and I are happy.
Atlas Brewing is on North Lincoln Avenue between West Diversey Parkway and West Schubert Avenue on the north side of Chicago…a little to close to Wrigley Field for this Sox fan’s liking :). Read more…
Almost anytime someone recommends a restaurant to me, I usually say, “It’s on my list.” Not cause I’m being a jerk but because there’s still a lot of good places in areas around Kalamazoo that I haven’t been able to make it to yet.
When I started blogging five years ago in Lansing, I was given a recommendation to a brewery in Benton Harbor. That brewery has been on my list ever since and this past weekend, I FINALLY had the opportunity to cross it off.
The Livery is on 5th Street in Benton Harbor just off the I-94 Business Route that runs through town. As the name would imply, the building is actually an old livery that was turned in to a brewery eight years ago.
I’ve always been pretty hesitant to stop at The Livery with J because I was really unsure of the food menu. There is a small menu on the website, but breweries with smaller menus always scare me. J’s not really a beer fan, so if I’m going to drag her to one with me, I really want her to enjoy it for reasons other than the beer. I can honestly say I’ve never been to a brewery, that served food, that I walked away disappointed, but it’s still always something that makes me a little nervous.
J’s mom was in town last week and they decided to head back to Chicago after J got off work on Friday. I had taken Saturday off, but still had to work Friday night, so I stayed behind. I really didn’t have to get to Chicago for any particular reason on Saturday so I decided to take my time and finally stop in The Livery for a couple of beers. Read more…
- 22637 M 43 Highway West
- Kalamazoo, MI 49009
- (269) 668-2952
- No Known Website
Now that L is getting a little older, J and I have been wanting to start traditions. At this age, their more for us than for her, but we want her to always remember doing certain things.
One of the fall tradition for most families is pumpkin picking. Last year, we went to a place in Illinois that J went to as a kid. It wasn’t a lot of fun because it was so crowded. Now that L can walk around and explore, we decided to head to the pumpkin patch that everyone in Kalamazoo knows.
Gene The Pumpkin Man has a farm set up just outside of Kalamazoo on M-43. The property is actually in Van Buren County’s Almena Township although it has a Kalamazoo address and zip code. ’
Even if you’ve never been to Gene The Pumpkin Man’s, you know exactly where it is if you’ve ever driven down M-43. There’s a large barn with a big orange door visible from the road. Even the mailbox is orange as is almost everything else on the property. There have been several times that I’ve seen Gene in Meijer in the spring (or anytime of the year actually) wearing his trademark bright orange shirt and cowboy hat.
When you pull in to the property, there’s a makeshift parking lot in a field on the east side of the property. While there were several cars packed in to the field, the farm was not busing at the seems and that made us happy. We found a parking spot near the front of the parking lot then got everyone out of the car and walked up to the farmhouse.
There are pumpkins all over the property. The bulk of them are lined up around the house. This is where you’re going to find the carving pumpkins. There are other bins located on different parts of the property….some in a barn…others just out in the open where they have pie pumpkins, gourds and special pink pumpkins. We overheard Gene telling someone that his wife passed away from cancer (and the garage is a little shrine built for her) and his daughter is a cancer survivor…so that’s why he has the pink pumpkins for sale. Read more…