Jul 12, 2011


I like to eat. So the following list is my personal recommendation of restaurants/grubs in town

Greenwells: Serves all american food here, including a grown-up mac n cheese entree.  They focus on organic and locally sourced food. It has a small outdoor patio.

El Granjero - The best authentic Mexican grill in town. No imitation or Tex-Mex white people food here folks. The staff speaks Spanish as well. You gotta try the Chile Rellanos with the side of fried green onions and jalapeno peppers. They serve breakfast as well.  

Lai Thai Kitchen - Serves Thai/ Vietnamese/ Chinese. Avoid the Chinese. Instead focus on Thai and Vietnamese food. They serve the best Thai curry dishes with coconut milk in town.  They also serve some off the menu items as well. Ask your server about it.  The owners are Vietnamese. 

Kuni Sushi - Serves sushi and maki rolls. But I haven't always had the best experiences with eating their raw fish. They weren't always the freshest. But they do have a limited selection of Korean food. When I have the cravings for Bibimbop (traditional or the seafood version) or Mandoo-guk, this is my only to go place. But skip the kimchi. The owners are Koreans.  

The Grille at Watermark - Although located at a private country club, the restaurant is open to the public and has a wide arrange of food with different price points to accommodate a variety of diners/budgets.  A great outdoor patio looking out the golf course.  They also serve brunch on Sundays (serve the best french toast in town). They serve great comfort food with a modern twist as well. 

Tacos El Coporal - A small authentic Mexican grill. There are two locations. One on 28th Street and other on Burton Street. The latter location is the original location.  From 131 Highway, get off at Burton Street and turn heading towards the west bound. Address: 1260 Burton.. They do not accept credit cards. I recommend their almighty, divine chicken quesadillas 

The Full Moon Supper Club - A gathering of foodies hosted by a local chef. The food theme changes at each gathering. $30-35.  

The Lubbers Farm - Sunday dinners on the farm specially created for the summer months. This organic farm owners collaborating with the local restaurant chefs to create an outdoor fine dining experience. But this comes with a hefty price tag of $85.00

The Salt of the Earth - This establishment is actually located outside of Grand Rapids region in Fennville. It takes about an hour drive southwest along the coast of Lake Michigan on Interstate 196 just south of Saugatuck. It's all about organic and made from scratch here

Nantucket Bakery and Pizzeria - Artisan bread and fresh made pizza. Take out only

Cherry Street Deli - A variety of sandwiches on amazing artisan breads. I recommend the vegetarian options.

Westsider Cafe - A polish food cafe and breakfast joint; where one can find home-made Polish sausages and pierogis. I recommended their breakfast burrito! They are open til 3pm.  

The India House - Hands down, the best Indian food in town in this humble establishment. A small restaurant run by an Indian couple and their children and connected to a small Indian grocery store with a basic spartan interior and decor. I recommend the vegetarian samosas.

O'Tools - A popular Irish pub joint with the local grad students. But I only go there for their Sunday $4.00 burger specials.  They are greasy and juicy and comes with just as greasy yummy fries.

Marco's New American Bistro - Located in Forest Hills part of Grand Rapids off of Cascade Rd. A great little bistro in a non-conspicuous location.  Refreshing nouveau approach to an American cuisine.

Le Cherie Inn - Cute and quaint with a French influenced decor. Serves great breakfast and lunch.

Schnitz Delicatessen: I've been going to this classic quality neighborhood deli since my childhood. My great grandfather's work office was located right at next door.  This joint never fails to meet my expectations.

Grove - A small and intimate restaurant with creative cuisines which focus on locally sourced food.  Closed on Mondays.

Ju Sushi and Lounge - It's one of the newest and hippest places to dine for some great sushi, other Japanese entrees and cocktails.  It isn't the cheapest place in town, but it's a great place to dine out for those special occasions and date nights.  I highly recommend their Agedashi Tofu for the vegetarians or  Bacon Wrapped Shrimp as the appetizer and the Playboy Roll which is served flaming for everyone else. * 40% off of selected wine bottles on Thursday nights and * Happy hours: 50% off of selected drinks everyday from 3-6pm.

Asian Palace: "Pho sure!!"  This is THE ONE AND ONLY place to get your pho fixing.  The interior may look like a total dive and seedy, but their amazing delicious and authentic pho dish more than makes up for it.

What the Truck:  Food truck serving some down to earth grubs

Reserve: only true wine bar in town.  They also serve European style charcuterie and cheese.  The interior is Ikea modern and also have all - year around outdoor patio upstairs.  * Industry 1/2 off  on Monday nights

Deli and specialty shops

An independently owned grocery store with a fantastic selection of deli meat and salads, sandwiches, and cheese.

Sobe Meats - A butcher shop where I go to stock up on local meats, eggs, and milk.  Their products are not considered organic, but they promote fresh products without hormones and antibiotics.  It's located in Walker City, west side of Grand Rapids. It's closed on Sundays and Mondays.

Marthas Vineyard: A local shop with a full of goodness of a huge selection of rare to fine wine, sake, cheese, craft beer.  Avoid the deli selections.  Located next to Nantucket Bakery and Pizzeria.

Drinks : All bars are open til 2am and smoke free

Brewery Vivant -  An old funeral chapel that has been renovated into a brewery specializing Belgium inspired brews. Only in-house brewed draft beer are offered at this establishment. They also serve comfort food inspired from the old countries like Belgium and France.

Founders Brewery - One of the oldest brewery establishments located in downtown of Grand Rapids. Only in-house-brewed drafts are offered.  They serve appetizers and light sandwiches.

Meanwhile - It has a hole-in-the-wall dive bar vibe with an eclectic clientel. On movie nights, a great place to sit outside in the beer garden.

Greydon Crossing - A British inspired pub. A great place to gather with friends and drink out in the patio. But I do not recommend their food. If absolutely hungry, try not to get adventurous by ordering one of their Indian inspired British entrees or any other ethnic inspired food.  I wouldn't recommend it to anyone. But I would only recommend their simple sandwiches and fries and onion rings.

Rocky's Bar - Just another generic neighborhood bar, but on Friday nights, they host a dance night "Control" at upstairs. It's usually helleva fun especially when DJ Collin is mixing up the tunes. ( I am proud to say, it was my husband who launched this event, although he is no longer involved.).

Bulls Head Tavern - I don't particularly like the food.  The staff is nothing special. But I do love the architectural design of the building, and the layout and design of the interior. In it's simplicity and rich details, there is so much character and depth that I can't help myself but to secretly  like the place.

Pyramid Scheme - I have personally never been to this bar in downtown, but I have heard many many great reviews including one from my husband. There are two sections. One for drinking bar and the other used as a concert venue. They bring in many national and local bands and other acts. Their drinks are stiff and they also have a great selection of Michigan microbrew beer.
* One Thursday of each month, they host a special 80's theme music event "Retro Deluxe" hosted by DJ Geoff Leopard.  It's one helleva fun!! You are missing out if you haven't checked it out yet! ( Another event co-founded by my husband as well)

Hop Cat - A beer brewery in the downtown of Grand Rapids. They only serve beer and light sandwiches and appetizers.  A fantastic selection of beer but I can do without their food.

Schmohz Brewery - A great little brewery.

Monarch Club - A friendly neighbourhood pub in the west side of Grand Rapids.

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