MBC

17 09 2009
  • 402 S. Washington Square
  • Lansing, MI 48933
  • (517) 977-1349
  • Website
  • Menu
MBC on Washington Square in downtown Lansing.

MBC on Washington Square in downtown Lansing.

The wait is over.  The Michigan Brewing Company put the “Coming Soon” sign on their building in downtown Lansing over a year ago.  I would drive  by every now and then to see if there was any progress.  I would periodically send e-mails to the marketing department in Webberville to see if they would give me anything, but never could get a solid answer.  All of a sudden, a few weeks ago, I saw a Tweet from Lansing PSD that MBC was opening.

The plan all along was to run some errands this morning then head downtown for lunch.  Of course, City Pulse beat me to the punch with an article in this week’s edition. 

MBC is near the corner of Washington Square and Kalamazoo Street.  The parking available is in front of the building in angled street parking.  There are a few spaces directly in front of the building, but more than likely, you’ll have to park and walk.  Not a big deal as there is plenty of parking spaces along Washington Square.

The building is dominated by windows that let in a lot of natural light.  When you first walk in, there’s a little lounge area off to the left with comfy red chairs and some bar stools.  Right in front of you is a hostess station that divides the remaining space into two distinct areas.  On the left is the bar area.  They have a beautiful bar along the far left wall as well as a couple pub tables.  The chairs at these pub tables are made of wood and have a ring around the bottom that looks like it was once part of a wooden barrel.  The rest of the bar area is filled in with regular tables that run along a half wall that separates the bar from the dining room.  The whole space has a somewhat industrial feel to it with high ceilings and low ambient lighting.  A majority of the light comes from the natural light that floods in through the large windows that make up the facade. Read the rest of this entry »





Redwood Lodge

9 11 2008
  • 5305 Gateway Center Dr.
  • Flint, MI 48507
  • (810) 233-8000
  • Website
  • Menu
The Redwood Lodge just off of I-75 in Flint

The Redwood Lodge just off of US-23 in Flint

I don’t usually expect Brew Pubs to be considered “upscale dining”, but when I looked on the Flint Visitors Bureau website that’s what it said.  I just figured it was a mistake or Flint has a pretty low standard.  I was wrong.

Redwood Lodge is located in a business/hotel park called Gateway Center.  It’s right off of US-23 and visibile from the freeway.  There’s a huge parking lot out front and the building makes you think of a lodge in the Rocky Mountains.  As we were making our way to the entrance, we passed stacks of mesquite wood which would be used in the wood burning oven.

The inside carried on the Rocky Mountain Lodge theme.  We were met by a host at the front who showed us to a booth near the bar area.  The booths didn’t butt up to the walls like they usually do.  They were freestanding and you could enter on either side.  A waitress came over and got our order for the usual Diet Pepsi and Pepsi.  We passed up the “World’s Largest Bloody Mary Bar.”  A great deal at $6 for all you can drink Bloody Mary’s, but neither of us drink Bloody Mary’s so we passed. Read the rest of this entry »





Grizzly Peak Brewing Company

14 09 2008
  • 120 W. Washington
  • Ann Arbor, MI 48104
  • (734) 741-7325
  • Website
  • Menu
Grizzly Peak Brewing Company in downtown Ann Arbor.

Grizzly Peak Brewing Company in downtown Ann Arbor.

Our day in Ann Arbor was coming to an end and I was starting to get really hungry again.  Earlier in the week, I asked for suggestions on where to eat dinner and there was no shortage of recommendations.  Since we had spent a pretty good chunk of money on lunch and shopping, I didn’t want to hit up one of fancier restaurants on Main Street even though they were quit tempting.

What we settled on was the Grizzly Peak Brewing Company which was a suggestion from Amy.  Grizzly Peak is located just off of Main Street in a big corner building.  We parked across the street in a public lot and walked over to the brewery.  When we walked in, we found the hostess station.  There was a lady bent over the stand and I just assumed she was the hostess.  Nope.  She was waiting for her husband or something.  A waiter saw us standing there and came over to seat us.  Here was my big complaint about the meal.  I probably should have asked to be seated in the bar so I could watch the football game, but I didn’t.  Outside of the bar, there was one other couple eating and one large group.  The dining rooms at Grizzly Peak are huge and there are several options.  They seated both us and the other couple right next to the large group in a cramped dining room near the back of the space.  Come on now.  Why would you seat a couple next to a group in an empty restaurant.  We just wanted to enjoy a nice dinner, but the group wanted to catch up and you know how people get when they haven’t seen each other in a while.  Grandpa at one end of the table is yelling to his grandson at the other end of the table.  Doesn’t make a good dining experience for anyone around them and we were right next to the table.  Read the rest of this entry »





Black Forest Brew Haus & Grill

1 09 2008
  • 281 Heinlein Strasse
  • Frankenmuth, MI 48724
  • (989) 652-6060
  • Website
  • Menu
Sullivans Black Forest Brew Haus & Grill in Frankenmuth, MI

Sullivan's Black Forest Brew Haus & Grill in Frankenmuth, MI

My parents have been to Lansing several times since I moved here from Central Illinois.  On I-94 going through Indiana, they always see a billboard for Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland.  Christmas is a big deal in my family and this year it’s even more special. My brother and his wife are expecting my parents first grandchild.  My mom, dad, and aunt decided to come north for Labor Day and I suggested we drive over to Frankenmuth to check out the town.  I heard it was pretty touristy and it was.

Before we did the tourist thing, we needed to find something for lunch.  My parents had been on the road since 8:00 AM CST and we arrived in Frankenmuth at about 2:00 EST.  Everyone kept saying, “Go to Zehnder’s” or “You have to eat at the Bavarian Inn.”  I did a little research and noticed the chicken dinners everyone raved about were $20/person, so that was out.  Seems pretty expensive…even for an all-you-can-eat.  I mean, really, it’s just chicken.  I didn’t get a whole lot of suggestions when I asked for one on Chowhound, but I ended up stumbling across a website for the Black Forest Brew Haus & Grill.

We ended up finding Black Forest right across the street from Bronner’s. My family was marveling at just how big the Christmas store was when I turned in the driveway for Black Forest.  They all turned around and said the same thing about the big, castle looking building we were now sitting in front of.   We hit up the brew pub during off peak hours.  It wasn’t quite lunch nor was it quite dinner.  We were right in between so there weren’t a whole lot of people in the restaurant at the time.  We were met at the door and show to a table in the dining area to the left of the bar.  Besides the bar area and the dining room, there was a four seasons patio not far from where we sitting.  Upstairs, there were big banquet rooms.  The dining room and bar area is realy spacious.  There are high exposed ceilings and lots of seating.  There is a big room enclosed in glass where the distillers sit.  Read the rest of this entry »





Olde Peninsula Brew Pub

20 07 2008
  • 200 E. Michigan Ave.
  • Kalamazoo, MI 49007
  • (269) 343-2739
  • Website
  • Menu
The sign for Olde Peninsula Brew Pub in downtown Kalamazoo

The sign for Olde Peninsula Brew Pub in downtown Kalamazoo

After a weekend in Chicago, I had to drop my girlfriend off in Kalamazoo for work.  Before we parted ways for the afternoon, we thought it’d be nice to check out what Kalamazoo has to offer in terms of restaurants.  I saw a recommendation for Olde Peninsula on chow.com, so that’s what I went looking for.

Olde Peninsula is located on the corner of Michigan and Portage in what used to be known as the Big Corner.  The first brew pub opened on St. Patrick’s day in 1896.  The current incarnation opened after the 1980 tornado that almost destroyed the building.  We walked into the building and found the hostess station near the door as an extension of the bar.  The building is divided into two dining rooms.  The smoking section also has the bar.  The distillers are visible through a glass wall opposite the bar.  The non-smoking section is divided by a wall that serves as the bar’s back wall.  We were seated in a booth which was on a raised platform on this back wall.

The waitress came over for drinks and we stopped her from leaving to place our order right away.  While there were several options that looked good, we were both in the mood for our usual sandwiches.  I went with the Olde Smokey burger.  The 1/2 lb burger was topped with cheddar cheese, bacon, lettuce, tomato and a bbq sauce.  The sandwich is served with a side of beer-battered fries.  The sandwich was big.  I had a hard time getting it in my mouth.  The bacon was nice and crispy and the burger was just slightly pink which lended itself to a good flavor.  I didn’t really notice the bbq sauce until the last couple bites where it had soaked into the bun.  The fries were interesting.  Beer-batterd fries aren’t usually my favorite, but the breading was not overpowering which made these better than normal. Read the rest of this entry »





Michigan Brewing Company – Coming Soon! – UPDATED!

25 06 2008

Michigan Brewing CompanyI was in downtown Lansing tonight and noticed that sign you see off to the right.  This seems to be a search engine search that brings a lot of people this site, so I figured some of you might be interested in seeing that work is happening at the building located at 402 S Washington Sq.  I’ve sent an e-mail to the folks at the Michigan Brewing Company in Webberville to see if there’s any progress and when they are expectin to open.  If and when I get a reply, I’ll let you know.

UPDATE – I got an e-mail back from Stan Thornbury who is the marketing manager for the Michigan Brewing Company.  He said the store is progressing slowly because they are waiting on state licensing.  They’re hoping for an opening in the third or fourth quarter of this year.

Michigan Brewing Company





Harper’s Restaurant & Brewpub

19 06 2008
  • 131 Albert Ave.Harper's Restaurant and Brewpub
  • East Lansing, MI 48823
  • (517) 333-4040
  • No Known Website
  • Menu

I noticed Harper’s one night while driving around East Lansing pretty late looking for a pizza-by-the-slice place.  We didn’t stop because we weren’t looking for a bar and especially not a college bar, but I put that info in the back of my head for future use.  Today, my girlfriend and I were making a run to the Grand Traverse Pie Company to get pie’s for the weekend, but weren’t in the mood to eat there.  After driving around with my head cut off, my girlfriend mentioned that brew pub I was telling her about, so we headed down Grand River to downtown East Lansing.

The building for Harper’s is massive.  When we drove by, we weren’t sure if it was even open.  It looked dark, so we drove around the block again.  The parking is across the street in the public pay lot, so we went through the gate and found a place to park.  It was just starting to rain as we got out of the car, so we hustled across the street hoping they were open.  I got to the top of the steps and pulled on the big wood double doors and they opened up right into the bar.  Read the rest of this entry »