I’m back! Alex is taking a nap, so I thought I would take advantage of the the downtime and check in with a little recap of our Tuesday in and around Grand Rapids and what we ate! So far, this place is just blowing my mind with the food and atmosphere. I highly recommend a stop here if you are so inclined!
Grand Rapids Vacation Eats
Vacations are probably the easiest to document with regards to a full day of eats (or they are the absolute hardest) because we have limited snacking options. Remember, though, that I still had other things to eat during the day, and you never see the whole picture! Eat what is right for your body, your life, your activity level, and always enjoy what you eat! Thank you to Jen for hosting.
For a round up of what we did and ate Monday, check out yesterday’s post. It was brew heavy, that is for sure! Tuesday, though, we took a step back from the brews because a) we’d had so many the day before and b) we knew it was going to rain Wednesday and thus would present the perfect opportunity for brewery hopping.
I woke up to my alarm on Tuesday, totally having forgotten about the time change! After getting up, changing, and thinking about when I would go run, I realized and promptly put myself back to bed for a bit 😀 I ended up waking up for good around 7:30 and made some tea in the room (no pic, but it was my fave chocolate hazelnut decaf that has a coffee like body and flavor. Same one I used to make the vegan chocolate hazelnut peanut butter!). Another cool thing about where we are— the sun rises much later and sets much later than we are used to as Chicago is so far east in the time zone and right now we are so far west. I actually dig it!
And as evidence that I ate so much the day before, I didn’t even eat before leaving for my run. Yeah. ME. I hope Armageddon isn’t coming.
I had a fantastic run through Heritage Hill over to the Gaslight District and East Grand Rapids. Seriously, you guys, this place is my architectural nerd wet dream. Dying. And the foliage… The world is on fire in a way I don’t know if I can describe (another Armageddon omen?). When I got back, Alex had woken up and was getting himself put together, so I cleaned myself up and went down for breakfast!
I love our host(s), he rocks. More on him later but he is super chill and fun. For breakfast we started with OJ, decaf French press coffee, and fresh cut strawberries, blueberries, and bananas.
Then Todd, our host, went to make our main course: bell pepper egg rings with herbs, fresh sourdough toast, and country ham. It was perfection—i even at the yolks (well, one of them—the one that was runny).
We figured out our plans and set off around 10 for Greenville and Klackle Orchards and Pumpkin Patch. We we’re up for a drive and wanted to pick our own. We basically got there just as they opened, so we started in the market building and got a hot cider and browsed through all the fun things! After a little bit we headed out to the orchaard and grabbed a full peck of fujis and braeburns.
Who’s ready for apple recipes? They be coming your way!
For lunch we stopped into the small town of Rockford, also per the suggestion of Host with the Most Todd, and chose Ramona’s Table for lunch. It is an adorable cafe that is one end of an old mill, and they do a great job of integrating industrial art and quirky cuteness! And the food was so delcious and fresh!
Alex and I split: an local Amber ale beer (no pic)
French Onion Soup (Ermigerd so good)
The Merry Mary Sandwich (cranberry walnut bread, cranberry aioli, turkey, lettuce, tomato) with sides of potato salad and coleslaw
Shrimp pesto salad (pesto marinated shrimp, pine nuts, artichokes, tomatoes, field greens)
A biiiiiit different than yesterday’s lunch, lol.
Next, we head back to central Grand Rapids and, per the suggestion of an IG follower, we went to the Grand Rapids Downtown Market. OMG IT MIGHT BE HEAVEN. You must put this on your list of things to check out if you are in any way a foodie—from test and demo kitchens to greenhouses and more upstairs to specialty shops featuring local goods and more downstairs, the Downtown Market is amazing.
We picked up a bottle of wine, a fun new condiment that will be featured very soon I’m sure, and some jalapeno cheddar popcorn (you know I love that stuff).
We toured through some of the neighborhoods after that before returning to the b&b for naps and a snack of popcorn and one of our new apples!
And now to decide what to eat for dinner…
And I’m back. Holy crow, what a meal.
Another must do for foodies in Grand Rapids: Grove Restaurant in the Cherry Hill neighborhood. Props to Alex for this discovery! Turns out that Grand Rapids is home to a top 100 restaurant for Open Table. And for good reason: everything is ground to table or completely sustainable, made in house, you know the deal. Oh and the menu? it changes daily. Absolutely exquisite. And as very accessible and comfortable atmosphere that was approachable and not intimidating at all. Service (ask for Nick, he rocks!) was worth a 25% tip. No lie.
What did we have?
The artisan bread plate (from the famous Ann Arbor bakery Zeeglers) and spreads (cranberry butter, pesto, and garlic infused olive oil).
Alex got the 3 course tasting menu, I ordered a la carte. As always, we shared.
Beet salad with nuts and seeds, Bibb lettuce, radish, and truffle (sauces on side). Some of the best beets ever. Amazing.
Duck Pot Stickers with pear, turnip, radish, celery, orange-habanero broth (the broth by itself was perfection and not too much heat).
Sweet Potato Gnudi (like a giant silky gnocchi) with apple vinegar, fried kalettes, asiago, smoked butter, three peppercorns. OMG GET ON MY BODY. Creamy, dreamy, sweet, savory. Asiago was perfection.
Walleye with celeriac skordalia, beets, apple conserva, braised cabbage, habanero-green tomato jam. Beautifully balanced, sweet and savory. just a touch of heat, and excellent use of textures.
Seafood “Fire and Ice” with mahi mahi, octopus, coconut, lime, farm chilis, popcorn and sweet potato. Amazing again. I wish there was a bit more heat, honestly, but each piece of seafood was cooked to perfection. And the sweet potato was a fantastic addition.
At this point we were positively stuffed, but Nick was awesome and brought us out a dessert on him:
butterscotch pudding with fresh whipped cream. the little bit of salt in the sauce on top was everything. the pudding was so light. #imspent
Drinks-wise we had the Modern Manhattan which was amazeballs with house infused vanilla whiskey. I die. And then we had a glass of Willamette Valley pinot noir.
Um. Yeah. Nuff said. Afterwards we went on a little walk then called it a night! We may or may not have watched The LEGO Movie.
If you are in the Grand Rapids, go to Grove. Ask for Nick. Have an amazing time and an amazing meal. Eat. Drink. Be happy.After this #wiaw, I'm planning my own vacation to #delicious Grand Rapids! #vacationeats #fitfluential Click To Tweet
It’s supposed to be rainy tomorrow—any suggestions?
Is Armageddon coming?
What apple recipes do you want to see the Suz take on?