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West Michigan’s Entertainment Guide for 28 Years » August 2016

Free!

You voted. We tallied. Find out who won on page 36!


2 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016


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What’s Inside

August 2016 | Volume 28, Issue 8

SCENE: 12 Things To Do This Month 16 Biz Beat 18 Eclectic 20 All Ages

SOUNDS: 23 Solid State Sounds 24 GRandJazz Festival 25 WYCE Playlist 26 Album Review: Heaters

Best of the West Readers poll winners

36

27 Local: Ras Na$-T 28 Local Country Music 30 Audiotree Festival 31 Touring: Big Gigantic 32 Touring: Earth 34 Album Review: Del Shannon

SPECIAL SECTION: 36 Best of the West Winners

SIGHTS: 51 Indie Film 52 Theatre 54 Style Notes 56 Art: superusted at UICA 57 Lit Life: Life is a Rip-off 58 Comedy: Michael Kosta

DINING & DRINKING: Comedy

58 64

61 Restaurant Guide

Vegetarian Dining

64 Vegetarian Dining 68 Beer: Lager Tasting


Letter from the Editor Hello all, If you’re wondering what that bodacious Best of the West logo is on the cover, I’ll give you a quick rundown. Back in May, Revue launched its first-ever readers poll where we asked you, the readers, to vote online for your favorite West Michigan-based places, people and things. This issue lays out all of the winners, while also offering insight on some of them. So what did we poll people on? Ya know … the important stuff: Where do you go to see live music? Where do you guzzle craft beer — or throw cash at vinyl records? It was a broad spectrum of localness. And for a first year event, we were pleased to see thousands of you natives went to revuewm.com/ bestofthewest and cast your votes. Sure, some might call this a glorified popularity contest. Call it what you will, but whether it’s awarding a long-established business like Founders, or giving props to a hard-working DIY photographer, surveys like these are important because they give a nod to the people and places that make our side of the state distinct. Read on. See if your favorites won. If not, rock the vote next year and help your candidates take home a winner’s certificate. Later,

W e s t M ichi g an ’ s E n t ertainmen t Guide

Editorial Publisher Brian Edwards / brian@revuewm.com Editor Joe Boomgaard / joe@revuewm.com Managing Editor Rich Tupica / rich@revueholding.com Associate Editor Josh Veal / josh@revuewm.com Design Creative Director Kim Kibby / kim@revuewm.com Ad Design Rachel Harper, Phil Artz Contributing Writers Missy Black Jayson Bussa Dana Casadei Ameera Chaudhry Steven G. de Polo Mark Deming Dwayne Hoover

Nick Macksood Steve Miller Eric Mitts Troy Reimink Nicole Rico Josh Spanninga

Sales / 616.608.6170 / sales@revuewm.com Kelli Belanger / kelli@revuewm.com Digital Editor Kim Kibby / kim@revuewm.com

Find us online! Rich Tupica, Managing Editor

Upcoming issues September: The Arts Issue A complete season preview of West Michigan’s cultural arts scene, profiles of artists and art professionals, plus issues affecting the arts.

October: The Beer Issue A thorough guide to the local craft beer scene, with an extensive brewery guide, beer face-offs, trends and more.

Website: revuewm.com Twitter: twitter.com/revuewm Facebook: facebook.com/revuewm Instagram: instagram.com/revuewm Revue is published monthly by Revue Holding Company. 65 Monroe Center, Ste. 5, Grand Rapids, MI 49503 Office: 616.608.6170 / Fax: 616.608.6182 ©2016, Revue Holding Company. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part granted only by written permission of the publisher in accordance with our legal statement, fools.

On the cover: Best of the West Winners Issue

To AdvertisE: Call (616) 608-6170 or email sales@revuewm.com.

Space reservation is the 15th of the month before publication.

10 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016

See the results of our Readers Poll on page 36!


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Relax at Rosa MAY 5 - SEPTEMBER 15 Free Musical Lunch Breaks Every Thursday. Noon - 1:30 PM. Rosa Parks Circle.

CABILDO May 5

BOOGIEWOOGIEKID June 23

BLACK BEAR COMBO August 4

BOY FROM SCHOOL May 12

ALEX MENDENALL June 30

KATHY LAMAR August 11

ESME May 19

SERITA’S BLACK ROSE July 7

BOOT STRAP BOYS August 18

ARS NOVA May 26

AN DRO July 14

KENT COUNTY STRING BAND August 25

KARI LYNCH June 2

COMPLICATED ANIMALS July 21

TO BE ANNOUNCED September 1

MEGAN DOOLEY BAND June 9

ASAMU JOHNSON & THE ASSOCIATES OF THE BLUES July 28

TO BE ANNOUNCED September 8

MYSTIC DUB June 16

**WEATHER DEPENDENT**

d o w t o w n g r. o r g

Please visit our facebook page for a list of band performances and food options organized by the Grand Rapids Food Truck Association.

LA FURIA DEL RITMO September 15


/// best bets

what’s Going on this month Ongoing Gideon Mendel: Drowning World

MSU Broad Art Museum, 547 E. Circle Dr., East Lansing Through Oct. 16 broadmuseum.msu.edu, (517) 884-4800 Gideon Mendel’s Drowning World is a reminder of the magnitude of climate change. The effect is shown through a series of portraits of flood survivors standing in the deep floodwaters that inundated their homes. Also presented are photographs that were found within the floodwaters — the results range from otherworldly hazes to painterly patterns on once beloved keepsakes.

Studio Brew: The Colors of Beer

Muskegon Museum of Art, 296 W. Webster Ave., Muskegon Aug. 11–Oct. 30 Adults $8, Students 18 & older $5, Children 17 & under free, muskegonartmuseum.org, (231) 720-2570 Studio Brew: The Colors of Beer is an exhibit to “celebrate the art of brewing through the visual arts, drawing its inspiration from an integral quality of beer: its color.” It features work from 26 Michigan artists who were told to replicate a single SRM hue. Artworks include paintings, photographs, drawings and sculptures that range in color from pale ales to dark stouts.

saturday 8/6 Dolly Parton

Van Andel Arena, 130 W. Fulton St., Grand Rapids Aug. 6, 7:30 p.m., $55-$125 dollyparton.com, (616) 742-6600

Cheap Girls

wsg Worn Spirit, Devil’s Cut Bell’s Eccentric Café, 355 E. Kalamazoo Ave., Kalamazoo Aug. 6, 9 p.m., 21 and over, $10 advance, $12 day of bellsbeer.com, (269) 382-2332 Cheap Girls, who formed in 2007 in Lansing, have been touring relentlessly over the past several years. They’ve

shared the stage with everyone from Against Me! and The Gaslight Anthem to The Hold Steady and Bouncing Souls. The band’s power pop sound has often been compared to the Lemonheads and early Smoking Popes. Opening the show are Worn Spirit and Devil’s Cut.

5K. Festival goers are encouraged to reserve camping space — it’s free and first come, first served. Hitting the stage are Jesse Ray & The Carolina Catfish, Joe Hertler & The Rainbow Seekers, Grand River Big Band, The Corn Fed Girls, Fauxgrass and Nick Stevenson, among others.

Monday 8/8

saturday 8/13

Painting and Pinot

Kiss: Freedom To Rock Tour

Mangiamo!, 1033 S. Lake Drive, Grand Rapids Aug. 8 & Aug. 15, 6:30 p.m.; 21 and over, grpl.org Enjoy two awesome things at the same time: painting and wine. On Aug. 8, head down to Mangiamo! and take in a painting demonstration by a local artist while you casually sip from your favorite bottle. Refreshments are available for purchase and seating is limited. See grpl. org for more details.

8/12-13 Cowpie Music Festival

Shagbark Farm, Alaska Aug. 12-13, $25-$250; All ages welcome cowpiemusicfestival.com Cowpie Music Festival includes plenty of live music, music workshops, an open mic, games, and a Cowpie Stampede

Van Andel Arena, 130 W. Fulton St., Grand Rapids Aug 13, 8 p.m., $39.50-$125 kissonline.com, (616) 742-6600 You wanted the best, you got the best! Kiss stops into Van Andel Arena as part of their highly anticipated Freedom to Rock Tour. When bassist Gene Simmons isn’t ruffling feathers, he and the rest of the band are selling LPs. The rock legends have sold over 100 million albums and were inducted into the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame. Opening the show is Dead Daisies.

Monday 8/15 Paul McCartney: One On One Tour

Van Andel Arena, 130 W. Fulton St., Grand Rapids Aug 15, 8 p.m., $29.50-$253

Paul McCartney at Van Andel Arena paulmccartney.com, (616) 742-6600 Making his first ever Van Andel Arena appearance, Paul McCartney brings his One On One Tour to Grand Rapids. McCartney will play songs that span his entire epic career, from his days in The Beatles and Wings to his work as a solo artist. One On One, which launched in April, also unveils a “dazzling” new set design. You know you want to hear McCartney belt out “Yesterday,” right?

wednesday 8/17 Annie Hall and Taxi Driver

Bell’s Eccentric Café, 355 E. Kalamazoo Ave., Kalamazoo Aug. 17, 8 p.m., Free! bellsbeer.com, (269) 382-2332 Fans of ’70s cinema will want to check out this event in Bell’s Beer Garden. This double feature of both Annie Hall and Taxi Driver begins at dusk and admission is free. Bring a blanket or a chair and take in all the nostalgic vibes of these classic flicks.

thursday 8/18 Tommy Stinson

Bell’s Eccentric Café, 355 E. Kalamazoo Ave., Kalamazoo

Continued ➤

REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

Country music icon Dolly Parton has set a record for female artists, with 25 of her songs reaching number one on the Billboard Country charts. Her songs have been covered by everyone from Whitney Houston to the White Stripes, to only name a couple. She’s also won seven Grammy Awards and appeared in hit movies like 9 to 5 and Steel Magnolias. Check out this living legend when she stops by Van Andel Aug. 6.

Mungion at Cowpie Music Festival

13


/// best bets Aug. 18, 9 p.m., 21 and over $12 advance, $15 day of bellsbeer.com, (269) 382-2332 Tommy Stinson is no stranger to rock ‘n’ roll debauchery. He started his career in The Replacements in the ’80s and followed that up by joining Guns N’ Roses in 1998. Since then, he’s released a few solo albums, Village Gorilla Head and One Man Mutiny, and even joined Soul Asylum for a few years. You can purchase advance tickets to the show via Bell’s website.

Tommy Stinson (of The Replacements) at Bell’s

Best Coast

Pyramid Scheme 68 Commerce Ave. SW, Grand Rapids Aug. 18, 8 p.m., $20 advance, $22 doors, all ages pyramidschemebar.com, (616) 272-3758 Best Coast frontwoman Bethany Cosentino draws influence from a broad array of entertainers, including Blink 182, Gwen Stefani, Weezer, Loretta Lynn and The Beach Boys, just to name a few. The Guardian described the band’s eclectic sound as “lo-fi ‘60s garage rock and surfing band fronted by a girl group singer.” Fans of the Vivian Girls might want to check out this show. Openers are Ann Arbor’s own Pity Sex.

Monday 8/22 Junior Brown

Tip Top Deluxe Bar & Grill 760 Butterworth St. SW, Grand Rapids Aug. 22, 6 p.m., 21 and over $30 advance, $35 day of juniorbrown.com Junior Brown merges country and rock ‘n’ roll with sharp suits. While doing so, he’s collaborated with big names, such as Stone Temple Pilots, The Beach Boys and George Jones. He’s also made appearances in movies like Me, Myself & Irene, The Dukes of Hazard and the Blue Collar Comedy Tour. Check him out at Tip Top, where he’ll crank through hits like “Venom Wearin’ Denim,” “Highway Patrol,” and “My Wife Thinks You’re Dead.” Opening the show is Luke Warm and the Not So Hots.

thursday 8/25 ConvoTronics

Founders Taproom, 235 Grandville Ave. SW, Grand Rapids Aug. 25, 9:30 p.m., Free! foundersbrewing.com, (616) 776-1195

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

Round out your month by checking out some of the best talent Hot Capicola Records has to offer. On August 25, ConvoTronics, Alexander Lynch, Dayz and DJ Dean Martian take over Founders Taproom to bring you a mix of hip hop, soul and R&B. An added bonus? The show is free, leaving you plenty of cash to buy drinks or the artist’s merch.

14 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016

Friday 8/26 Dave McGraw and Mandy Fer Seven Steps Up, 116 S. Jackson St., Spring Lake Aug. 26, 8 p.m., $25-$35 pindropconcerts.com, (231) 557-7687

This songwriting duo’s newest album, Off-Grid Lo Fi, was recorded during their stay on a nearly uninhabited, remote island in Northwest Washington. The pair was taking care of four old donkeys and a flock of chickens, overlooking the Pacific Inland Sea while drawing sonic inspiration. What resulted from this residency is a folk album that’s “intimate, authentic and refreshingly honest.” n

—Compiled by Nicole Rico


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/// news

west Michigan

That Early Bird (1445 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids) finally opened doors last month in the space that was once Kava House (R.I.P.). With a completely different interior, the cafe has also added a luxurious-looking breakfast menu and kicked the coffee up a notch.

biz beat

While Creston Brewery may not have gotten around to opening last month, the owners of Graydon’s Crossing, Logan’s Alley and Derby Station have brought two new establishments to the area. Little Lucy’s Cafe, which is also a bakery, and Brighton Graye’s Bistro, a high-end restaurant, both opened in what was once D’Amico Food Mart (1747 Plainfield Ave. NE, Grand Rapids).

A Roundup of Openings, Closings and other Business News CLOSING:

While the Bilbo’s Pizza location in Kalamazoo will remain open, Bilbo’s location at 6202 S. Westnedge Ave., Portage has closed, following a sale of the building. In place of the pizza institution will be the fast-food chain Chick-fil-A. This will be the right-wing, chicken-slinging company’s first West Michigan location.

ANNOUNCED:

West Michigan Rum Company (470 W. Western Ave., Muskegon) is planning to open early 2017 in a corner of downtown Muskegon’s Walker Arena. In a world of whiskey connoisseurs and vodka fanatics, rum is finally getting the craft distillery it deserves, imo.

Fifth Third Ballpark (4500 West River Dr. NE, Comstock Park) may soon become the largest concert venue (and open air, at that) in the area. Capacity would increase from around 8,500 to 16,000-plus, potentially attracting big names that have previously driven straight from Detroit to Chicago.

OPENING:

Welp, the breweries are at it again. Watermark Brewing (5763 St. Joseph Ave., Stevensville) opened last month near the coast. Dark Horse Brewing Co. is embarking on yet another venture with Dark Horse Commons (511 S. Kalamazoo Ave., Marshall), an all-in-one coffee roaster, cafe, bakery, candy shop and creamery. The brewing company already operates a motorcycle repair shop, wood shop and general store on the same property.

OTHER: Brighton Graye’s Bistro Similarly, Greenbush Brewing Co. has opened the Clean Plate Club (5875 Sawyer Road, Sawyer) next door. What is it? A diner, open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. And lastly, The Mitten Brewing Co. (112 W. Nagonaba St., Northport) has opened a second location on the Leelanau Peninsula (that’s right, we got peninsulas on our peninsula) in what was once Northport Brewing.

Grove (919 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids), a farm-totable-centric restaurant in Eastown, has brought on a new head chef. Jeremy Paquin was formerly chef at Mia & Grace and Whistle Punk Pizza in Muskegon, most recently working at Bistro Bella Vita. Paquin now plans to bring some new choices to Grove’s menu. n —Compiled by Josh Veal If you have any closings, openings or other business news for REVUE, e-mail josh@revuewm.com.

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

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17


/// Eclectic

Autumn Luciano

Ladyboss, Bombshell & Flauntrepreneur |  by Audria Larsen This month ushers in an Eclectic revamp with a new series featuring local personalities from weirdos to wunderkinds. For this first edition, I queried the multi-talented entrepreneur and cat lady from Lansing, Autumn Luciano. We talk about her pin-up photography company Decadence Dolls, her burlesque and variety show Tease-A-GoGo, and being an all-around babe. Check her out before she runs off with the carnival. No, seriously.

Who or what inspires your artistic expression? It’s never one person or thing, or sometimes it is, but it depends on the project. Overall, some of my greatest inspirations have come from John Waters, Tom Waits, Glen Heroy, Irving Klaw and Go-Go Amy.

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

Who is Autumn Luciano? Hell if I know. Best I can describe her at the moment is a “flauntrepreneur” who is currently attempting to obtain a carnie lifestyle. Do you consider yourself to have an alter ego? No. I have a stage name, Naughty Autie. But it’s just me, allowing myself to be sassier than I am day to day. Well, sometimes I’m sassy day to day anyway. I know you love fashion. Do you have any style icons? David Bowie, Emmett Kelly, Carmen Miranda and Little Edie. What are some of your obsessions of the moment? Clowns and the accordion. I am tackling learning the art of clowning and how to play the accordion this year. You started as a college newspaper and studio photographer. How did you transition into your own pin-up and event-hosting biz? I found my niche in pin-up photography and when I started six years ago there were little to no other photographers completely dedicated to the pin-up style in this state. Now the trend has grown, which means there are more competitors who like to undercut my prices.

18 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016

Autumn Luciano, self portrait

The show producing happened almost on accident. I started out directing a troupe of girls who wrestled in vintage lingerie in comedic skits live on stage [Klaw Mark Kittens]. About two or three years into running that troupe, I created a one-time show for an out-of-town performer who needed a gig and wanted to perform with my girls. Two months later, another performer friend of mine was coming in from out of state, so I recreated the show. I’ve kept it running every two to three months for a little over three years now. It’s grown into what is now Tease-A-GoGo, a burlesque variety show that has a different theme for every show. You’re pretty DIY. What challenges come with that? I am doing well over a full-time position and being paid probably minimum wage at best. Some people say my rates are expensive, but they have no idea about the work both before and after their shoots. I design and put together all the sets, spend hours hunting down wardrobe and props, [and] keep the entire studio clean and organized to keep the sets fresh. Also, [there’s] all the man hours promoting, editing and maintaining equipment. I won’t even get started on the ridiculous amount of work that goes into each show. I don’t call myself a flauntrepreneur lightly. If it’s sparkly and includes a paycheck, I am in.

What’s a quick memorable highlight in your career? I’m not sure if it was the most notable, but I was interviewed on Playboy Radio once, which was kind of funny. What are your current projects? Tease-A-GoGo is coming up on Sept. 3 at The Avenue Cafe in Lansing. Soon, I will have my second music video for Son of Dave (an incredible one-man band based out of England) released online, for his cover of “Black Betty.” Think fast! What is the title of your memoir? Clowns, Cats, and Cameras: The Impractical Guide to the Flauntrepreneurial Lifestyle. And in an homage to Andy Warhol and Interview Magazine … do you dream? Sure do — mostly about Coney Island. n Find out more about Decadence Dolls photography, Tease-A-GoGo and Autumn Luciano at autumnluciano.com.


REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

19


/// All Ages

Beat the Summer Time Blues It’s hot as heck and everyone is getting on each other’s nerves. We suggest escaping the unbreathable sauna of the evaporating Great Lakes and try distracting yourself with some laid-back music, a romp in the mud and millions of pounds of blueberries. By Steven G. de Polo

Lowell Showboat Sizzlin’ Summer Concert Series Downtown Lowell Aug. 4, 18, 25 at 7 p.m. Free! lowellartsmi.org

If it’s summertime, it’s Lowell Showboat Sizzlin’ Summer Concert time. All five incarnations of the Lowell Showboat have entertained crowds since the first ship (dubbed George Washington) was built in the 1930s to raise local spirits during the Great Depression. Ever since, the riverboat has hosted music, dancing and talent shows. There is no cost to attend the concerts, which are held Thursday evenings on the Riverwalk Plaza in Downtown Lowell. The series supports a diverse selection of musicians and musical styles, including blues, world music, country, rock, big band and jazz. Food and spirits are available and parking is free.

National Blueberry Festival

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

Muskegon Parties in the Park Hackley Park 350 W. Webster Ave., Muskegon Fridays, 5–9 p.m., Free! partiesinthepark.com

Parties in the Park is a 30-year Muskegon tradition. Held Friday evenings in Hackley Park,

20 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016

546 Phoenix St., South Haven Aug. 11–14 blueberryfestival.com, (269) 637-5171

This year, help your kids learn about Michigan history and agriculture at the National Blueberry Festival, one of the oldest fruit fests in the country. Founded in 1963, this South Haven festival was created to celebrate Van Buren County’s fabled blueberry crop of 100 million pounds harvested annually. That’s a lot of blue teeth! The four-day festival is being held in various locations, inside and out, with lots for families to do in the beach town community. Look for the blueberry barbecue, blueberry pancake breakfasts and kids’ blueberry pie eating contest. The Blueberry Festival Parade is Saturday, followed by a blueberry themed Arts and Crafts Fair the rest of the weekend. There’s also sidewalk sales, the Blueberry Festival 5K and 10K, and a classic car show. The U.S. Army National Guard Band closes out the festivities Sunday afternoon with patriotic songs and marches.

Grand Rapids Mud Run 1200 60th St. SE, Kentwood Aug. 27 Adult 5K (Ages 12 and up): 8:30-10:30 a.m., $45 Kids Mini Mudder (Ages 6-12): 11:30 a.m., FREE with adult entry or $20 grandrapidsmudrun.com

Aug. 4: Hannah Rose and the GravesTones (funky blues rock) ​ Aug. 18 Roosevelt Diggs (Americana) Aug. 25 Adams Family with Friends (doo-wop and classic rock)

National Blueberry Festival

Grand Rapids Mud Run

the series offers high-quality entertainment in a family-friendly atmosphere at no cost. That means bands, food trucks and more, with each night sponsored by a local nonprofit. Proceeds go towards physical enhancements to the park and helping to improve the quality of life for the whole community. This National Historic Designated Park was dedicated to the memory of Civil War veterans and presented to the city in 1890 by Charles H. Hackley. Every party hosts five vendors to feed all those hungry

Lowell Showboat Photo: Steven de Polo

mouths, including Bone Ends Food Truck, Just Klassics Roadside Deli, Fatty Lumpkins Sandwich Shack and Ice Box Brand Ice Cream Bars. Aug. 5 Julia and the Greensides (contemporary folk) Aug. 19 The After Effect (rock ‘n’ roll)

The Grand Rapids Mud Run has completely redesigned the obstacle course for its seventh year. The adult 5K course includes new twists and turns like no mud run ever has. You’ll find every kind of obstacle here: man-made, natural, physical and mental (it’s just like cleaning out the basement). Look for mud pits, a 60-foot mud slide, tunnel crawls and wall climbs. Sign up as a team and enjoy all the muddy excitement as a family. According to Mud Run founder Jeff Eckart, “Every year we hear stories from people who thought they couldn’t do it,” he said. “Each of them crossed the finish line with huge smiles and a great and inspiring story to tell.” n


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1: Oregon Dreamchild 2: Buddy Twist 3: Oxymorons 4: Niche Band 5: The Factory 6: Livin’ The Dream 7: Decades 8: Brena 9: Union Guns 10: Three’s A Crowd 11: Sweet J 12: Electric Red 13: Avon Bomb 14: Rock Shop 15: Oxymorons 16: Strumble Head

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August August August August August August August August August August August August August August August

17: 18: 19: 20: 21: 22: 23: 24: 25: 26: 27: 28: 29: 30: 31:

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/// local Music

Solid State Sounds

Local music news and shows for August including Walk The Beat, The Concussions, Olivia Mainville & the Aquatic Troupe, No Bails and more |  by Eric Mitts

Olivia Mainville and the Aquatic Troupe

T

he sun still shines bright in the summer sky, heating up the local music scene with loads of exciting outdoor shows. This month, Frederik Meijer Gardens’ wildly popular, locally-centered Tuesday Evening Music Club is hosting five shows with Grand Rapids Americana/ folk singer Dave Hardin and folk-rock group Brother Adams taking the stage Aug. 2, Olivia Mainville & the Aquatic Troupe and Delilah DeWylde & the Lost Boys on Aug. 9, and Deep Greens and Nicholas James & the Bandwagon on Aug. 16. Then, on Aug. 23, the outdoor amphitheater hosts Cultivating Peace, a special show highlighting many world music traditions and featuring multiple artists. Finally, longtime favorite Grand Rapids singer-songwriter Ralston Bowles is once again closing out the series with several guest performers on Aug. 30.

Unruly Brewing Company (360 W. Western Ave., Muskegon) also takes local music outside this month with its ongoing Sunday Summer Series. Held in the venue’s beer garden, local performers in the series this month include Grand Rapids country/rocker Kevin Schaffer Aug. 7, psychedelic roots-rock band Bigfoot Buffalo Aug. 14, Kalamazoo funk outfit The Mainstays Aug. 21, and Muskegon contemporary folk group Julia & the Greensides Aug. 28.

Those looking for a short musical respite from the work week can come out for some lunchtime live music with the Relax at Rosa Thursday afternoon series running through the end of this month at Rosa Parks Circle. Local performers include R&B/jazz vocalist

Long-running Kalamazoo punk festival UFO Dictator 12 returns to Louie’s Back Room (629 Walbridge St.) on Aug 12. Memphis punk rockers Sweet Knives (featuring Alicja Trout, previously of The Lost Sounds) headline the event, which also features Kalamazoo vets No Bails, the “jazzed up punk bedlam” of Kzoo’s Anybody But the Cops, Erik Nervous & the Beta Blockers, and Columbus, Ohio bands Bloody Show and Raw Pony. Also in Kalamazoo, Papa Pete’s (502 S. Burdick St.) hosts the Dogman Fest Aug. 14. The allages heavy music event features Kalamazoo progressive metal band Arson Party, Battle Creek thrash metal band Eye Remain, Bay City punk rockers Desiring Dead Flesh, and Illinois progressive metal band Noesis.

The Concussions

Kathy Lamar Aug. 11, Boot Strap Boys Aug. 18 and the Kent County String Band Aug. 25. Creating a big buzz wherever they go, Grand Rapids’ own Heaters is releasing its second LP Baptistina while on the road this month with a special show at Baby’s All Right in Brooklyn, N.Y. on Aug. 5. The psychedelic rock group — which has previously worked with Grand Rapids label Dizzybird Records — is issuing the new LP with New York label Beyond Beyond Is Beyond.

Heavy-hitting Grand Rapids rockers Heart at War and Grand Haven metalcore outfit Elan Vital are opening for rising Ohio metal band The Plot In You at The Stache inside The Intersection (133 Grandville Ave. SW, Grand Rapids) on Aug. 6. Heart at War is currently finishing its new album Truth and Fire and has plans for a tour this fall. The annual Cowpie Festival returns to Shagbark Farm in Alaska, Mich. from Aug. 12-13. The jam/roots fest features more than a dozen area artists, including such familiar West Michigan names as Kalamazoo’s The Red Sea Pedestrians and Grand Rapids’ Fauxgrass. The one-of-a-kind weekend also features workshops led by the artists, an open mic and a 5K run all taking place during the two-day, family-friendly, on-site camping festival held at an actual active cattle farm. Organized by the Beer City Brewers Guild, the inaugural Hopstock is taking place Aug. 13 in Grand Rapids’ Calder Plaza. This event features Ann Arbor folk/bluegrass group Dragon Wagon, GR rock band The Legal Immigrants and instrumental rockers The Concussions.

Other new music to look out for this month: Grand Rapids anti-folk artist Claire Fisher releases her new CD at Tip Top Deluxe (760 Butterworth St. SW) on Aug 19. Titled And Friends, the release finds Fisher working with collaborators Joleen Rumsey, Eric Deacon and Michael Frederick Hoksina Cunningham. Grand Rapids art-punk trio Five By Five is releasing its debut EP on Aug. 26 at Mulligan’s Pub (1518 Wealthy St. SE). Local favorites The Sailor Kicks, First Curse and Tonia Bug open the free show. Last but certainly not least, the entirety of Grand Haven is transforming into one enormous music destination when Walk The Beat returns to the lakeshore city Aug. 20. With 70 local artists performing at 35 different locations, including several businesses not usually thought of for live music, the annual event raises awareness of the enrichment music brings to all of our lives. n

REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

West Michigan Jazz Society’s “Jazz in the Park” summer series continues this month with three Monday night performances. Longtime local jazz/musical theater vocalist Mary Rademacher Reed is taking her talent to the stage Aug. 1, while veteran jazz combo Checkers Morton perform their original music Aug. 8, and the Grand Rapids Jazz Orchestra closes out the annual series Aug. 15.

Several area breweries, distilleries, cideries and food trucks will be on hand, offering their flavors for the season. Elsewhere, The Concussions plan to release their new album Newaygo Sound Machine on Aug. 21 at The Red Dock (219 Union St., Douglas).

23


/// On tour

GRandJazzFest Returns

|  by Eric Mitts

A

Schedule | Dining | Sights | Sounds | Scene

performances in 2013 and 2014, as well as free face painting registered dental hygienist for by Fancy Faces during afternoon hours. more than 35 years, Audrey Sundstrom “[We’ve] been fortunate to exceed expectations for atmight not initially seem the type to organize one tendance each year since [our] inception,” Sundstrom said, of the most popular jazz events in West Michigan. adding that they expect to have more than 10,000 attendees However, Sundstrom frequently attended jazz this year. “As a free festival, people can come and go, or festivals on the east side for years. By 2011, she come and stay.” had begun to wonder why so many towns much smaller than GRandJazzFest has also been recognized by Downtown Grand Rapids had free festivals when the second largest city Grand Rapids Inc. (DGRI) and the Downtown Development in the state did not. Authority (DDA) as a Signature Event. It’s a distinction that When her husband finally challenged Sundstrom to be they proudly share with only two other events in the comthe one to act, she did just that. munity: ArtPrize and LaughFest. Now the founder of GRandJazzFest and the chair of GR This year, the festival is welcoming its first female headand Jazz, the nonprofit volunteer organization that produces liner when jazz trumpeter Cindy Bradley the festival, Sundstrom is elated as the antakes the stage on Saturday night, along with nual event will celebrate its fifth year at Rosa Michigan jazz guitarist Tim Bowman, who Parks Circle this month. GRandJazzFest dazzled the crowd when headlining the first “When we started our planning in presented by DTE Energy event in 2012. early 2012, we were fortunate to have DTE Foundation “We are very grateful that Tim believed Energy Foundation become the Presenting Rosa Parks Circle, Grand Rapids Aug. 20–21, starting at 12:30 p.m. in the vision of GRandJazzFest years ago Sponsor of GRandJazzFest,” Sundstrom FREE!; grandjazzfest.org and agreed to headline our inaugural said. “With their enthusiasm and support, Michigan-local jazz festival,” Sundstrom many additional major community sponEntertainment lineup: said. “Tim is a lifelong Michigan resident sors embraced the idea and concept of Day one: and is one of the best jazz guitarists in the GRandJazzFest.” Grand Rapids Jazz Orchestra w/ Edye country.” The festival started in 2012 as a free, Evans Hyde (12:30 p.m.), Organissimo Also returning to the GRandJazzFest one-day, Michigan-local, family-friendly (2 p.m.), Tumbao Bravo (3:30 p.m.), stage on Aug. 20 will be Grand RapidsSteve Hilger (5 p.m.), Tim Bowman live celebration of jazz. A hefty positive (6:30 p.m.), Cindy Bradley (8 p.m.) based jazz guitarist Steve Hilger, who leads response from the first event’s crowd, filling a variety of jazz and blues bands around Rosa Parks Circle, prompted the organizaDay two: town. He’s also playing as part of the festion to expand the next year to a two-day Bierenga-Sullivan Quintet (1 p.m.), tival’s “jazz jam session” after-party, held event showcasing the sheer diversity of jazz Lakeshore Big Band (2:30 p.m.), Urban after the festival’s close in The B.O.B. (20 subgenres, including big band, swing, Latin, Jazz Coalition (4 p.m.), Walter White Monroe Ave. NW). Added in 2014, the (5:30 p.m.), Chris Standring (7 p.m.) Afro-Cuban, straight-ahead, contemporary jazz jam session is hosted by the Gilmore and more. They also added student band

Michigan jazz guitarist Tim Bowman

Collection and open to anyone looking to join in on stage or listen. “I think [we] have helped to expand the definition of jazz in our community,” Sundstrom said of the festival’s impact. “Jazz is a diverse style of music. There are many sub-genres of jazz. Different styles appeal to different individuals, yet there is a degree of commonality to jazz as well. The diversity of jazz composition, the diversity of jazz artists in age, gender, race, nationality and ethnicity — all result in a diverse group of people who attend GRandJazzFest. The experience is one of people coming together to perform, interact, experience, enjoy and build relationships.” Those already looking to sponsor, volunteer, or perform as part of next year’s GRandJazzFest should visit grandjazzfest.org for more information. n

Hey West Michigan! Thank you for voting

Cheeky strut Best Salon The Mission of PeaceLab Yoga is to create a warm, inviting yoga community where yogis of all experience levels can come together to share in the Art and Science of Yoga. #dedication

24 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016

5570 Wilson Ave. SW, Suite M Grandville, MI 49418

peacelabyoga.com | 616.745.0310

616-272-3123 216 Grandville ave SW www.Cheekystrut.com


/// playlist

Songs We Like, Vol. 12

upcoming

at

by Pete Bruinsma, WYCE Music Director

W

hen we were kids, everything above the kitchen countertop held so much fascination. All of the good stuff was out of reach and off-limits. We knew it was up there, and we knew that someday we’d be tall enough to see over the top and grab all of those delicious snacks, adult beverages and shiny, shiny knives. Grand Rapids is growing up, and we’re peering over our countertops at Detroit and Chicago. Our music scene is coming of age, from a thriving local music scene that has been bubbling for decades, to a developing appetite for world-class performances and venues that can accommodate. Our tastes in music are becoming more complicated and diverse. WYCE is around for you music fans to stew together eclectic favorites, a wide mix of new music, and to put a spotlight on our local musicians. Programming volunteers come from our community every week to dish this stuff out to you and we totally get it…sometimes musical asparagus is fed to an 8-year-old, and confetti cupcake toaster pastries to our adults, all with the purest of intentions. Still, by dedicating countless hours to experimentation and by casting our nets wide, we achieve some priceless radio moments for the true connoisseur. We’ve compiled our playlist for you this month from WYCE’s top-played music so far in 2016. Some songs come from popular local acts, some bought a special place in our hearts by coming to town and putting on an unforgettable show, and some come from great new music discoveries that our programmers have championed. Thank you for naming WYCE the “Best of the West!” You inspire us and have made our hearts swell, West Michigan. Next year WYCE turns 30, and we all look forward to another 30 years of growing up with you.

Fri, Aug 12

The Crane Wives Hayward Williams

Thurs, Aug 18

Tommy Stinson

Lake Street Dive – “Godawful Things” Lucinda Williams – “Doors of Heaven” Peter Wolf – “It’s Raining” Radiohead – “Burn the Witch” Santana – “Freedom In Your Mind” Sturgill Simpson – “Keep it Between The Lines” Tedeschi Trucks Band – “Don’t Know What It Means” Thao & the Get Down Stay Down – “Astonished Man” The Accidentals – “Parking Lot” (feat. Rick Chyme) The Great Ones – “Breathe Love” Ziggy Marley – “Love is a Rebel”

$10

Saved By The 90's

A Party with The Bayside Tigers!

Doors 8:30pm — Show 9pm

Sat, Aug 20

$20

The Steel Wheels

Doors 8pm — Show 9pm

Sat, Aug 27

$10

Toga Party

With the All American Funk Parade Bell’s Beer Garden – Rain or Shine

Fri, Sept 2

Keller Williams

Sat, Sept 3

Ultraviolet Hippopotamus

Bell’s Beer Garden – Rain or Shine

Thurs, Sept 15

Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas

Tancred

Sun, Sept 18

of Montreal

Ruby the RabbitFoot

Sat, Oct 1

Doors 8pm — Show 9pm

$25 adv / $30 day of Doors 8pm — Show 9pm

$16 adv / $20day of Doors 8pm — Show 9pm

$12 adv / $14day of Doors 7pm — Show 8pm

$18 adv / $20 day of Doors 8pm — Show 9pm

$25 adv / $30 day of

Frank Turner & The Sleeping Souls

The Arkells, Will Varley Bell’s Beer Garden – Rain or Shine

Doors 7pm — Show 8pm

REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

Adrian Younge – “Sittin’ By the Radio” Alexander Lynch – “Missing Me” Ben Harper & the Innocent Criminals – “Shine” Bombino – “Timtar (Memories)” Bonnie Raitt – “Unintended Consequence of Love” Cage the Elephant – “Mess Around” Charles Bradley – “Ain’t Gonna Give it Up” Crane Wives – “Pretty Little Things” Hinds – “Garden” Kevin Morby – “Dorothy” King Gizzard & the Wizard Lizard – “Robot Stop”

$12 adv / $15 day of

Fri, Aug 19

Bell’s Beer Garden – Rain or Shine

This sonic-mix, a dynamic collaboration among WYCE, AMI Jukeboxes and Revue, is available on AMI Jukeboxes, but it’s also streamed at revuewm.com and wyce.org. From Grand Rapids to the world!

Doors 8pm — Show 9pm

Doors 8pm — Show 9pm

& More Than a Little

WYCE’s Top-Played Songs of 2016 (So Far)

$10 adv / $12 day of

25


/// local Music

Album Review: happy hour $3 Glasses of Wine, $2 Well Drinks, $2 Domestic Bottles, $1 off Large Pitchers, $0.50 off Pints & Small Pitchers, 12 Draught beers available!

Monday

Happy Hour All Day Long!

Tuesday

Happy Hour 11 AM - 7 PM & Jam with Everett 8 PM - 12 AM

Wednesday

Happy Hour 11 AM - 7 PM

RECOMMENDED BY JOHN GONZALEZ FROM MLIVE! $3.75 Deluxe Olive Burger

thursday

Happy Hour 11 AM - 7 PM Karaoke with Patty B. 8 PM - 12 AM

friday

Happy Hour 11 AM - 7 PM Live Entertainment 9:30 PM 1:30 AM - No Cover Charge!

saturday

Happy Hour 11 AM - 7 PM Live Entertainment 9:30 PM 1:30 AM - No Cover Charge! 3 Hard Shell Tacos for $3.75

sunday

Happy Hour All Day Long! 3 Hard Shell Tacos for $3.75

Schedule | Dining | Sights | Sounds | Scene

AUGUST BANDS 8/5 THE FRONT STREET ALLIANCE 8/6 IRON HORSE 8/12 GROUP THERAPY 8/13 ERICA SCHERRY 8/19 DECADES 8/20 PRETTY RAGE 8/26 TRIXY TANG 8/27 PALOMINO BLONDE

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK! (616) 451-0044 RIVERCITYSALOON.COM 1152 LEONARD ST. NW, GRAND RAPIDS

26 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016

Heaters: Baptistina |  by Mark Deming

R

emember when Jimi Hendrix told us back in 1967 that we’d never hear surf music again? Turns out he was wrong. Sure, the reverb-soaked sound of surf instrumentals fell out of favor in the Summer of Love. But time has taught us that the psychedelia that was supposed to render surf guitar irrelevant was actually a distant yet friendly relative of those crashing waves of sound. If you’re not sure just how that formula works, you need to lend an ear to Heaters, a band from Grand Rapids who’ve been making a name for themselves with their heady fusion of psychedelic wanderlust and the big splashy sound of the surf. The band’s second album, Baptistina, is an inspired exercise in contemporary psychedelic rock, headlined by the outstanding guitar work of Andrew Tamlyn. Tamyln’s playing is short on chops-intensive guitar heroics (which is ultimately a good thing), but as far as creating a distinctive atmosphere goes, the guy is a master. On songs like the wordless “Orbs,” the tribal “Garden Eaters,” and the suitably surreal “Dali,” he blends sharp, clean tones with thick washes of reverb, and adds just enough distorted patterns to create powerful soundscapes that herald the beginning and the end of the ’60s all at once. The band latches onto a hookier sound with “Mango” and “Centennial,” but even at their most approachable, Heaters’ technique is lean and muscular, and the trio rocks dependably without pretension or needless flash. While it’s Tamlyn who takes top honors on Baptistina, his accompanists do more than their share to make this album something special. Bassist Nolan Krebs (who also adds additional guitar) lends the music a responsive and suitably liquid bottom end that gives the tunes a dependable backbone when Tamlyn is inviting the spirit. And like Jimi’s old buddy Mitch Mitchell, drummer Joshua Korf doesn’t just hold the 4/4 here, but splashes out all over his kit to add to the

Heaters

Baptistina cover art expansive attack of this music (who knows how his cymbals can handle it all). There are more than a few acts who are trading in similar sounds, such as Thee Oh Sees and Ty Segall, but where they have clearly drawn a lot of inspiration from garage rock, noise rock and first-wave punk rock, Heaters more accurately recall a rougher and wilder version of Television, a band that was clearly steeped in sounds of the past but reworked the elements into something with a sound and spirit of its own. The sound

PHOTO: Sacha Lecca

of Heaters is clearly built from the lessons of surf and psych, but their trippiness is sharper, smarter and better focused than that of, say, your average jam band attempting to figure out what the Grateful Dead were doing. The production on Baptistina is simple, but suits the music beautifully. Much of Baptistina sounds like a raw, well-executed recording of the band playing live in a room with solid acoustics. This approach captures the interplay of the musicians in a flattering light, probably better than a more ambitious production might have achieved. And while the mix tends to bury the vocals, somehow that doesn’t seem like a serious flaw. Tamlyn and Krebs’ singing feels as much like another instrument as anything else, and if you can’t always scan the lyrics, this music is eloquent enough by itself. With Baptistina, Heaters have made it clear they are a truly important band on Michigan’s independent music scene and this LP is both bracing and contemplative stuff. As Dick Dale once put it, let’s go trippin’. n


/// local Music

Razz Na$-T Shoots ‘Planet Cracker’ Video |  by Eric Mitts

Dean spent the last year working on Midas Well, which is a play on the famous Greek myth, and the idea of pulling up actual gold from an hen REVUE got a hold underground wellspring. of Gran d Rapi ds rap“The idea was basically that you have to p e r Razz Na$-T earlier this work to achieve full potential,” Dean said. summer, he was gearing up for a Dean, 25, first started writing lyrics as a life-altering trip to Las Vegas. teenager, and first got into the world of hip-hop However, his destination wasn’t just the by listening to Insane Clown Posse. About six alluring glitz of the Vegas strip — it was the months later, he started smoking and hangnatural splendor of Lake Tahoe, the site of his ing out with Ogos — one of the members of latest music video. Mad Snipes — who enlightened him with the “Just know that it involves motorcycles, a Definitive Jux record label, as well as artists like devil and a demon, the desert, clear water, blue MF Doom, Madlib, and Company Flow. skies, and of course California evergreens,” said “I fully credit Ogos for developing my love Razz, aka Riley Dean. “The rest is a surprise.” of hip-hop and the culture that comes with,” The clip — for the single he said. “Planet Cracker” — is the second Mad Snipes began playing video off of Razz Na$-T’s debut house shows in the beginning of Razz Na$-T Appearing w/ solo LP, Midas Well, which he re2010. Not long after, the group reBamfomania, The leased earlier this year. It’s his first leased its debut EP, New. Affordable. SEVENTH release since parting ways with Green. The Pyramid Scheme, GR hip-hop crew Mad Snipes last “By 2012 the shows had gotten 68 Commerce SW year, and its 17 tracks showcase his so big that the cops would always Aug. 5, 8 p.m. emergent lyrical savvy. come and break stuff up or, in one $10 advance, $15 day of show, All-ages “ My st yle is const a nt ly instance, we shattered the floor pyramidschemebar.com, morphing,” Dean said. “I do not boards,” Dean said. (616) 272-3758 like to shoot for a certain style. In addition to Ogos, Midas Whether I’m producing or writing, Well features such other Grand I tend to just let it fall out of me MCs as Aramis, Nate Paulson and as organically as possible in order to create Ajax Stacks. It also features the production work something original that nobody has heard of Man @ Work, Dean Martian, Dayz, Chip before.” Vicious, Fuzbuz, and Feek VonWorkum. n

W

Non-Commercial.

Listener Sponsored.

Since 1987 Razz Na$-T

PHOTO: Danny Griffith

REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

Volunteer Powered.

27


/// local Music

Yee-Haw!

A Beginner’s Guide to West Michigan’s Country Scene |  by Jayson Bussa

Schedule | Dining | Sights | Sounds | Scene

W

hen big-time country acts h i t t h e s tage at Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, it isn’t uncommon for them to take some time and throw out props to smaller venues like The Intersection. Most of the heavy hitters toiled away in West Michigan, using it as a foothold on their climb to the arenas they play now. “I always like going to a country show at Van Andel and hearing the headliner talk about playing The Intersection,” said Scott Hammontree, general manager at The Intersection, which since 2004 has been a huge player in bringing national country acts to Grand Rapids. “It’s happened quite a few times over the years.” That’s just one testament to West Michigan’s love affair with country music. Y’know, in case the fact that Garth Brooks rolled into town and sold out six shows in a matter of minutes wasn’t enough to tip you off. And while every city wants to be known for its great fans, West Michigan’s designation as a hotbed for country music is more than just a self-appointed title. “I know that the (West Michigan) market has a very strong reputation in Nashville with labels, agents and management,” Hammontree said. In his assessment — and one that throngs of country music fans around the region would likely agree with — much of the success has hinged on B-93.7 FM, a Grand Rapidsbased country music station with a beastly range. Since adopting its country music format in 1992, the radio station has served as the soundtrack for an endless number of barbecues and camping trips, but B-93 has also been very active in bringing country music acts to the local area. This is highlighted by the grandmother of all country music shows, the B-93 Birthday Bash, which is over 20 years old and features a long list of the hottest country artists anywhere. “In my opinion, (the local popularity of country music) all started with B-93,” Hammontree said. “With a station that has that strong of a signal and a commitment to participating in the live performance side of it, the market became very strong.” The popularity of mainstream country music has trickled down to benefit the hardworking local country bands, who certainly have no shortage of venues to drop down their twangy, line dancing-worthy sounds. Brian Randall of the Brian Randall Band is one member of the relatively tight-knit community of country music artists in West Michigan. Randall, who is now based in the

28 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016

LOCAL COUNTRY ACTS For country that rocks…

UNION GUNS

Screaming guitars (or geetars) and high-octane shows — Union Guns pack a punch, which is why they’re a go-to band when national acts need locals to warm the big stage. For a country crooner…

JARED KNOX

While Knox and his band The Hagar Bombs are known to unleash dynamic shows, the South Haven artist really shines on his acoustic ballads. Very Tim McGraw-esque. For a big Nashville sound…

KARI LYNCH AND KRIS HITCHCOCK

Both Kari Lynch and Kris Hitchcock (with their respective bands) became household names in West Michigan’s country scene before relocating to Nashville. Now, they boast a polished, radio-ready sound that’s everything you came to expect from the duo. For old school country…

MICHATUCKY

Before country artists were shaking their asses and auto-tuning their vocals, you had guys like Merle, Bocephus and Johnny Cash. This Grand Rapids band channels that era of country music heavily, but with its own modern twist.

Brian Randall Grand Rapids area after about a half-decade playing out of Southwest Michigan, attributed the area’s interest with the genre to geography and lifestyle. “West Michigan is full of people who work hard,” Randall said. “There are a lot of rural areas even around Grand Rapids. All of the outskirts are nothing but farm fields and people in these areas are working hard, which is kind of what country music is all about — the good old guys and girls having a good time on the weekend.” This affection for country music isn’t confined to Grand Rapids, either. There are plenty of joints in Southwest Michigan that pack the house for country music. “Czar’s (505 in St. Joseph), is always a fun one to play. It’s always packed and it’s more of a concert than playing in a bar,” Randall said. “Cowboy Up (in Mendon) is probably one of the largest venues (for country music), too.” n

For a rising star…

SHELBY ANN MARIE

Not far removed from an album release, 18-year-old Shelby Ann Marie of the Lansing area has already scored some monstrous gigs opening for national acts all around the mitten.

WHERE TO FIND LOCAL COUNTRY MUSIC Twisted Bull 3320 Eastern Ave. SE, Grand Rapids

Tequila Cowboy 5660 W Saginaw Hwy, Lansing

Jimmy’s Roadhouse 38138 W Red Arrow Hwy, Paw Paw

The Back Forty Saloon 48 Fulton St. W, Grand Rapids

Backroads Saloon 15325 W Michigan Ave., Marshall

Czar’s 505 505 Pleasant St. #303, St. Joseph

Wild Bull Saloon 139 S Edwards St., Kalamazoo

Cowboy Up 22046 M-60, Mendon


Michigan

Irish Music Fe s t i v a l

SEPT

15-18 Heritage Landing, Downtown Muskegon

over 20 bands

Andy Irvine Altan Scythian Jig Jam Aoife Scott Tupelo The Bonny Men Ten Strings and a Goatskin Dallahan Strung Seamus Kennedy Blackthorn Kennedy’s Kitchen Moxie Strings

ACTIVITIES

The Highland Games Local Craft Beer Whiskey Snug Cultural Village & Shopping Wee Ones’ Area Scene | Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

www.michiganirish.org Buy online EARLY and SAVE www.michiganirish.org to view website

Get In FREE Early Friday, 5 - 6 pm only

REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

29


/// On tour

Ra Ra Riot

Joe Hertler and the Rainbow Seekers

Audiotree Grows into ‘Unique Boutique Festival’ Concert Sticks to its Kalamazoo Roots |  by Eric Mitts

Schedule | Dining | Sights | Sounds | Scene

F

o u r y e a r s i n , t h e Au d i o t r e e Music Festival still knows nothing bu t grow t h. Founded in 2013 by Kalamazoo natives Michael Johnston and Adam Thursion, the one-day event has already showcased an impressively diverse range of artists in its short history. This year, it’s taking over the city’s landmark Arcadia Creek Festival Place for the first time ever. “I think each year we learn a lot and try to take those lessons we learned to make the next year’s festival that much better,” said Johnston, who also described the concert as a “unique boutique festival.” Unlike the festival’s first three years, which alternated bands on two different stages, this year’s Audiotree is taking place entirely on one massive stage that the organizers plan to build onto Arcadia’s existing amphitheater structure. They are also offering more craft beer options and welcoming area food trucks and other vendors to help connect fans with the community. “We are excited to have a great group of vendors on site representing Kalamazoo,” Johnston said. “A couple that I am personally excited about are Satellite Records, Green Light Records, Handmade Kalamazoo and Underground Printing, just to name a few.”  

30 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016

“Since we founded the company in 2010, This year’s lineup is led by Colorado we have grown in ways we would have never livetronica duo Big Gigantic, who last played Audiotree Music imagined,” Johnston said. “We now have sevin Kalamazoo at the State Theatre back in Festival eral divisions within the company which are 2012. w/ Big Gigantic, Ra Ra Riot, comprised of our music discovery platform, “We are incredibly excited to have Big Robert DeLong, Judah & the Audiotree Live, our for-hire live streaming Gigantic headline this year’s festival,” Johnston Lion, Joe Hertler & the Rainbow production company, and our music venues said. “Not only will their music have the entire Seekers, Rayland Baxter, Ripe, in Chicago that we own and operate.”   downtown dancing, but we should be able to and Cereus Bright Arcadia Creek Festival Place, 145 Their long-running in-studio live series see their light show from space.” E. Water St., Kalamazoo is watched by 2.5 million viewers a month The bill also features indie-rock group via YouTube and has just under three million Ra Ra Riot, electronic artist Robert DeLong, Aug. 20, 2 p.m. $32.50 advance, $45 door, $85 streams a month via Spotify and Apple Music.  alternative-folk band Judah & the Lion, altVIP, audiotreemusicfestival.com “We are proud that Audiotree Live has country singer Rayland Baxter, and more. grown into a true music discovery platform The festival has always made sure to for millions of people around the world,” highlight area artists, with Kalamazoo’s own Greensky Bluegrass taking the stage in 2013, Grand Rapids’ Johnston said. “Our production company now works for many large brands and ad agencies around the country.” The Soil & the Sun in 2014, and Heaters, hi-ker and The Almost half of the company’s employees were raised in Cardboard Swords in 2015. This year, indie-pop outfit Joe Hertler & the Rainbow Seekers will help represent the Mitten. Kalamazoo, so despite their success in Chicago, Audiotree hopes to hold onto its roots here too. “We never wanted to be painted into a corner,” Johnston “We feel a strong connection to Michigan and want to said about Audiotree’s diverse lineup. “We didn’t want to be continue to create amazing experiences throughout Michigan known as a festival that was solely [one genre]. What you can in the future,” Johnston said. “Our goal is to expand the festiexpect from an Audiotree Fest lineup is to be blown away by val to a multi-day experience. We also envision creating free a band you have never heard of and become a fan for life.” workshops and networking events revolving around the arts In addition to bringing one-of-a-kind performers to Kalamazoo, the festival is also a celebration for the Chicago- leading up to the festival.” n based music production company Audiotree.


Colossal Sound

A Q&A with livetronica innovators Big Gigantic |  by Eric Mitts Lalli: For sure. Absolutely. People were looking at us like we were a little crazy when we first started, but we just stuck to it and kept trying to develop it further. But like Jeremy said, it’s nice to have it all come full circle now and we can decide to do our thing with it. How has the onstage connection between the two of you changed over the years?

Big Gigantic

Live instruments, absolutely massive beats and a mind-altering light show — that’s the holy trinity of Colorado duo Big Gigantic’s live shows. Saxophonist/producer Dominic Lalli and drummer Jeremy Salken had extensive experience performing improvisational jazz, funk and jam before forming Big Gigantic in 2008. They’ve been sought out as collaborators — both onstage and on record — and played high-profile slots at every major festival in the country, including Electric Forest, Lollapalooza and their own annual event, Rowdytown, which returns to the iconic Red Rocks Ampitheatre in Colorado this fall. And this month, they’re coming back to Kalamazoo to headline the fourth annual Audiotree Music Festival.

Lalli: Yeah, it’s extremely important, especially now in 2016. When I was in school, and I’m not trying to date myself, but it was like people were in band everywhere. Now it’s like weird. So much [music] funding has been cut from schools and kids just don’t have the same welcoming feeling towards

it like back in the day. And so for us to come [onstage] like we did at Coachella [in 2014], and we did here in Colorado, and have a high school marching band out there with us — that lets kids see what can actually happen if you stick with it and you have a unique idea and just work hard. Do you feel like you pushed the initial idea of bringing live instruments into the EDM scene?

You’ve had a new album in the works for a few years — since the release of the fifth LP The Night Is Young in 2014. What can you tell us about where that’s at right now? Lalli: I just feel like it’s worlds beyond anything else we’ve ever put out. It’s down the same lane for sure, but it’s just so much more mature. This album, basically every track has a featured singer or rapper or something. So yeah, there’s all kinds of music, but it’s also pretty current, pretty fresh, and pretty Big G sounding. n

Scene | Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

You both grew up playing in your high school’s band. Do you hope that the path you’ve made is something that inspires kids to pick up instruments now?

Salken: We come from a performance background. We both grew up playing instruments and playing in bands, especially in the jazz and funk scenes and things like that. So once we lived together, Dom got a computer and just started making beats. We would take everything that we had learned from playing with other people and bring it to the DJ world. It’s cool how it’s kind of circled back. Like, that [live instruments are] now more celebrated throughout the scene. There was a minute where there were almost too many kids who were like, ‘Is that a saxophone?’

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REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

31


/// On tour

Earth Lands at Pyramid Scheme Doom legend Dylan Carlson chat with Revue |  by Steve Miller

T

Schedule | Dining | Sights | Sounds | Scene

ake the band name: Earth – a heavy-duty tribute to Black Sabbath. “Earth” was the first name Ozzy and his crew of metal pioneers chose when trying to come up with a suitable moniker in a then-undiscovered genre. Today’s Earth, which formed in 1989 in Olympia, Wash., is fretting new ground as well. The band’s founder and chief songwriter Dylan Carlson ponders his favorite Black Sabbath albums. After all, he named his band after Sabbath, he must be a hardcore devotee, right? “I’d say the two [Black Sabbath albums] I go back to the most are Born Again and Heaven and Hell,” Carlson said. What? Two post-Ozzy LPs? Egads, man. Is nothing sacred? Lightweight tastes in namesake aside, Carlson is a progenitor of what has come to be known as doom, a molten metal that thrives on thrum and drop-tuning. Formed at the height of grunge, Carlson found acceptance in Seattle’s erupting music world. He even forged a close, welldocumented friendship with Nirvana’s Kurt Cobain. Early on, Earth also impressed Sub Pop Records label head Bruce Pavitt while performing at a small club. “There were people setting out then with a business plan and everything else,” Carlson said. “But for us, it was all happenstance. We didn’t expect any kind of help putting out

Earth, led by Dylan Carlson (center), performs this month at the Pyramid Scheme. records, but Bruce came to us and it was the only offer around. Of course we said ‘yes.’” When the final product arrived at Sub Pop headquarters in Seattle, Carlson and crew headed over to check it out. Imagine his disappointment: it was a CD, not a vinyl set. Carlson was an old soul as the times shifted from records to CDs. “So when Earth 2 came out, that was this great record, two discs, clear vinyl,” Carlson said of the 1993 record. “The CD, it was cool.’

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But that was like, ‘Well, I have really made an album.’ ” And then another and another. To date he’s released eight studio LPs in all. Along the way, Carlson has indulged his infatuation with all things Anglophile, which started early with a love of Led Zeppelin. That led him right into an interest in the folk sounds on Led Zeppelin III. His uncle gave him a copy of Fairport Convention’s Liege & Lief, which inevitably led to more exploration

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This publication was supported by a grant from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services/ Office of Drug Control Policy, through Lakeshore Regional Entity. Its’ contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of MDHHS/ ODCP or LRE.

32 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016

of British and Celtic folk. You can almost see the fairies dancing. Which dovetails right into his interest in magic: Carlson’s recent reads include Cunning-Folk and Familiar Spirits: Shamanistic Visionary Traditions in Early Modern British Witchcraft and Magic and Religion and the Decline of Magic: Studies in Popular Beliefs in Sixteenth and Seventeenth-Century England. But when he’s not taking in otherworldly reads, he continues to write, record and tour. On this expedition of the U.S., with dates supporting Boris, the band makes a stop at the Pyramid Scheme in Grand Rapids on Aug. 13. Earth is stretching out some songs from the 2014 LP, Primitive and Deadly. “We have some new stuff to bring out and see how it works, which is how we’ve always done it — play it live then record,” he said. But the longer back catalog means having to play some favorites. “We’re now one of those bands that has to do things people want to hear,” Carlson said. “Not quite like Sabbath having to play ‘Paranoid’ every night, but there’s stuff people want to hear.” To its fans, Earth is a beloved blast of heavy. If someone has to lean on labels, doom, drone, whatever — Carlson seems lax about the genre stamps, though he never uses the terms. “If it helps people identify what they want to listen to, that’s fine,” he said. “I just thought I played rock ‘n’ roll. It’s weird rock ‘n’ roll — but it’s rock ‘n’ roll.” n

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33


/// album reviews

Del Shannon’s ‘Overlooked Masterpieces’

Schedule | Dining | Sights | Sounds | Scene

Digging Into the West Michigan Native’s Trippy Tracks

34 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016

|  by Mark Deming

usual but with all of his traditional passion and assurance, with the support of some great Beach Boys’ styled harmonies. The arrangements were significantly more elaborate than his early hits, o r n i n G ran d Rap i d s but the sound of the album favored Shannon as o n D e c e m b e r 30, 1934, it pointed his music in a new and more artful De l Shan non was not direction. Unfortunately, it would be decades j ust one of the biggest rock ‘n’ before his fans got to hear the results. When roll stars the State of Michigan a couple of advance singles from the album produced in the 1960s, he was one failed to chart, Oldham shelved the project. of the best American rockers of his era. Born While most of the material appeared on the Charles Westover, Shannon was an outstanding 1978 album The Music Played On, it was in 2006 vocalist with a wide range, able to hit an impresthat the exemplary British archival label Now sive falsetto with seemingly little effort, and he Sounds finally gave Home and Away a proper was a gifted songwriter as well. Shannon’s “I Go release. One listen confirms this was one of the To Pieces” was a hit for Peter & Gordon and finest lost albums of the 1960s. covered by dozens of artists. He knew a good Shannon took a bit of what he learned tune when he heard it, cutting a version of The making Home and Away and put it to good use Beatles’ “From Me To You” in 1963, months on his next LP, The Further Adventures of Charles before the Fab Four would break through in Westover, a set that mixes straightforward America. rock ‘n’ roll with psychedelic pop and a shot But Shannon is best remembered for a of rhythm & blues. Unlike Home and Away, string of early-’60s hits that were like nothShannon wrote most of the songs on Further ing else on the U.S. pop charts. With tunes Adventures, and the album has a tougher and like “Runaway,” “Hat’s Off to Larry,” “Keep more muscular tone, even on trippy numbers Searchin’,” and especially the epochal “Stranger like “I Think I Love You” and “Silver Birch.” in Town,” Shannon created a handful of potent “Be My Friend” is a great, hard-edged bluesteenage dramas where love was never easy, rock track, and “Colour Flashing Hair” is a danger lurked around every corner, and no one widescreen exercise in folk rock. “Runnin’ could be trusted. Shannon’s world was so dark, On Back” plays like an update of Shannon’s he made Roy Orbison sound positively sunny. great hits with a harder and heavier attack, and 1965’s “Stranger in Town” was one of “Magical Music Box” out baShannon’s last major hit singles, roques anything on Home and and while his talent didn’t fade, Away. The Further Adventures of his presence on the radio did Del Shannon Charles Westover ranks with the as harder and more progresHome and Away (Now most ambitious and eclectic sive sounds came into vogue Sounds) projects of Shannon’s career, with the psychedelic era. But and unlike Home and Away, Shannon was far from a spent Liberty Records actually reforce, and in 1967 and ’68, he The Further Adventures of leased it. It was a commercial recorded a pair of overlooked Charles Westover (Beat Goes misfire, but has developed a masterpieces, Home and Away On/Trouble in Mind) richly deserved cult following and The Further Adventures of among fans of ’60s psych, and Charles Westover. in 2014, the noted garage-punk Shannon won a significant label Trouble in Mind Records gave the album fan following in England after “Runaway” hit a lovingly accurate vinyl reissue. The album is No. 1 in the UK, and he scored a minor hit with also available on CD from the UK label Beat a cover of the Rolling Stones’ “Out of Time.” As Goes On, and like Home and Away, it can be Shannon’s career was going into a slump in the easily found via Amazon. States, he found a British benefactor in Andrew If Del Shannon’s days as a major rock star Loog Oldham, the manager and producer who were brief, they made a tremendous impact, made the Stones a global sensation. In early and he’s still well remembered 26 years after his 1967, Oldham brought Shannon to England death in 1990. In Coopersville, Mich., where to record an album for his newly launched Shannon lived as a child, the local Rotary Club Immediate Records label, backed by some of stages an annual Del Shannon Days Car Show, the cream of London’s session players, includwhich this year takes place on August 12 and ing pianist Nicky Hopkins, Steve Marriott of 13, and features an appearance by Shannon the Small Faces, future Led Zeppelin bassist tribute artist James Popenhagen. But as great as John Paul Jones, and drummer Andy White. “Runaway” and “Keep Searchin’” were, there’s a The result, Home and Away, was a superb lot more to Shannon and his legacy than that. If exercise in ’60s record making, with one foot you’re interested in learning how much he had in baroque pop and the other dipping into to offer, give Home and Away and The Further psychedelia. The album featured some of Adventures of Charles Westover a spin. n Shannon’s best vocal work, more relaxed than

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35


Special Feature

36 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016


And the winners are… Revue’s ‘Best of the West’ Readers Poll Winners Unveiled! by Josh Veal

“The time has come,” the Walrus said, “To talk of many things.” Of polls, and votes, and sentiments — of local queens and kings, And why Grand Rapids won it all, and what this even means. That’s right, readers — the votes are in. Revue’s inaugural Best of the West poll came to a close on June 25, meaning we’ve had a month to tally the ballots and analyze the results. We asked anyone and everyone passionate about West Michigan to vote for their favorite local establishments and/or people in 127 categories, from New Restaurant and Best Bartender to Farmers’ Market and Best Record Store. In an effort to keep things 100-percent reader-driven, the nominations for each category were written in entirely by you guys, starting from a blank slate on May 1. In the end, more than 4,000 nominations made it into the poll, with god-knows-how-many being thrown out in the process (we don’t really consider “Walmart on Alpine” a local business, y’all). Now there’s a lot of numbers in this next paragraph, so brace yourself: Over the two months the survey was live, thousands of people participated in one round of voting — no brackets, elimination rounds, any of that. As for us, we’re announcing just the top three winners in each category. In the following pages, some of our writers are going to delve into what exactly these results might say about the victors and the communities they’re in. They’ll also share thoughts on who they think “should have” won (i.e. Staff Picks). But first, let’s take a look at the big picture.

GR On Top Even though our contest spans West Michigan, maybe 15 of the first place winners aren’t based in Grand Rapids. In some ways, that’s not too surprising, given that the city’s population is larger than Holland’s, Muskegon’s and Kalamazoo’s combined. On the other hand, according to IP addresses, only about 37 percent of respondents were voting from GR. But it doesn’t take a hard majority (more than 50 percent) to win in a poll like this. In fact, the ballot was spread so thin in one category that the first place winner garnered only 4 percent of the total vote. There were some close calls. Similarly, we move more print magazines out of Founders’ taproom than any other single location (FYI: Revue is distributed in roughly 550 spots across West Michigan). Now guess which local brewing company brought home five first-place, four second-place and third-place wins — all without promoting itself for the contest even once: Founders. Meanwhile, Bell’s Brewery in Kalamazoo is the seventh largest craft brewery in the country, producing more than twice as much beer as Founders every year, but Bell’s won a single category.

Rising Stars While many of the winners are what could be considered “local institutions” (i.e. Vertigo Music, HopCat, Funky Buddha Yoga Hothouse), it looks like you guys are getting excited about all the new offerings as West Michigan continues to grow. Harmony Hall, Long Road Distillery and Furniture City Creamery are all new players that made strong showings already. Even more impressive, Greyline Brewing Co. opened doors five days before this contest began and won first place in the New Brewery category. At a glance, it seems the key to making a splash as a new establishment is either bringing something novel to an area (i.e. Furniture City’s small-batch, vegan ice cream) or having a strong reputation established by a previous business (i.e. Harmony Hall). Still, when so many of our winners have also reigned supreme for years in other publications’ similar contests, we have to ask: Why? Does Yesterdog really have the best hot dogs in West Michigan? Is All Day actually Founders’ best IPA? Is an established product/business/artist more likely to win because of actual quality or just reputation? Is quality subjective? Does reputation necessitate quality or are people merely comforted by familiarity and popularity? Where do nostalgia, experience and atmosphere come in? Ah, well. I’ll save the existential crisis for another time.

All Right, Wrap It Up We didn’t expect or require anyone to vote in all 127 categories. As a result, people hopefully only gave their opinion where they actually cared. Here are some fun facts that resulted: ■■ People have some strong opinions about the Best Burger. It was the most-voted-in category by about 300 votes. ■■ Of the five larger survey categories, Services & People was actually the most active, probably due to bartenders/hair stylists/artists asking their friends to take part via social media posts. ■■ The Grand Rapids Symphony was the single most-voted-for nominee in any one category. I don’t really have an explanation for this — but kudos to them. And there you have it. I now give you permission to scrutinize, celebrate and/or condemn the results. Just remember, if you’re upset about something, and you didn’t even vote … well, there’s always next year.

REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

37


Best of the west winners

Dining by Troy Reimink

I

t is within my capacity as a certified member of The Media to deliver what is known as a “hot take.” This is an industry term for a piece of writing whose fresh perspective on the day’s news provokes vigorous debate, contemplative chin stroking and, of course, feverish internet clicking. The information about dining/drinking preferences from our Best of the West survey offers many possible routes for the armchair thinkpiece pundit. For example: What do our favorite hot dogs say about the shared hopes and struggles that connect us as a region? (Plenty.) How far are white people willing to venture outside downtown Grand Rapids and East Hills for tacos? (Not very.) Do we still like breweries? (We do.) Below are more of my sizzling, data-driven takes based on several minutes of probing analysis. Prepare to be scorched. Cottage Bar’s 4-Alarm Chili

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Hot take No 1: You like Founders. You really, really like it.

Grand Rapids’ signature brewery appears in our results a staggering 13 times. Our polling research has determined that Founders is “Hamilton” at the Tony Awards. Founders is Beyonce commanding you to get in formation. Founders is Serena Williams wiping a tennis court with the tears of some 90-pound Eastern European opponent. Founders is Khaleesi sailing her fleet to Westeros. It wins or places in categories such as: best brewery (duh); best IPAs/stouts (duh/ duh); best sandwich/deli (can’t disagree); best open-mic (sure, why not); best lunch (although “Best place for a work lunch to go completely off the rails” might have been more accurate); best first date spot (a bit loud for my tastes, but to each their own); best beer event or festival (because Founders Fest is undoubtedly your best opportunity spend a 90-degree afternoon standing on pavement while drinking thick-ass beers); and so on. We’re not here to argue, much. The people have spoken, and if there’s one thing demonstrated by 2016’s geopolitical events — Trump, Brexit — it’s that populism is never wrong!

Hot take No. 2: I have strong hot dog feelings

Since I no longer possess a 23-year-old’s intestinal fortitude, I cannot verify whether the public is correct in naming Yesterdog best hot dog. But since I brought up politics, I’ll go ahead and defer to Hillary Clinton, who visited the Eastown landmark in March while in Grand Rapids on a fundraising visit.

38 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016

The snarky memes basically created themselves when photos circulated in local media of Clinton staring uncomprehendingly at the Yesterdog menu. But her order (six Ultras for her and her staff), is respectable for a newbie, and possibly a first for a sober person. It’s interesting to reflect on the fact that the Democratic nominee for President has patronized Yesterdog more recently than I have.

Hot take No. 3: Harmony Hall is the future

Harmony Hall’s win in the best new restaurant category represents the intersection of several current Grand Rapids narratives. You have the growth of an established brewery that was on the leading edge of the city’s craft beer boom. There’s the takeover of the West Side in general and Bridge Street in particular by salivating developers. And, par for the course for any new restaurant, there’s the upscaling of a locally specific, historically working-class food -— in Harmony’s case, sausages, a nod to its building’s early history as a sausage factory. Harmony’s ambitious expansion to the space most recently occupied by Little Mexico has created an attractive (if conceptually vague) dining experience that appeals on all fronts without bothering to repeat the format that earned the original location -— a cozy Eastown pizza joint — its loyal following. Harmony Hall’s days of brewery exclusivity on the Bridge Street corridor are numbered, as the even larger New Holland Brewing development and, across the river, Atwater Brewery prepare to set up shop. But with a comfortable head start, Harmony Hall is

well on its way to Grand Rapids dining/drinking fixturedom.

Hot take No. 4: All hail the new champion of breakfast

I’m not sure whether this qualifies as an upset anymore. The 1950s-style diner Anna’s House has been around since the early 2000s, but only in recent years has begun crushing the field whenever a West Michigan media outlet has endeavored to name the best breakfast in the past three or four years. Which is no easy task when the other faces on Grand Rapids’ Mount Rushmore of beloved breakfast spots -- two of which, Wolfgang’s and Real Food Cafe, also appear in our results -- haven’t lost a step. Perhaps Anna’s surge is thanks to its gradual expansion from the original Plainfield Avenue NE location into a mini-chain with restaurants in Holland, Grandville and along the East Beltline. Wider nets catch more fish. But maybe, just maybe, the hype here is justified. I can think of no other place in Michigan where you could indulge on smoked salmon hash, a tempeh power bowl, breakfast lasagna(!), creme brulee sauce-soaked Twilight French toast or red velvet pancakes while in an environment that provokes a strange urge to reenact the breakfast-diner scene from “Reservoir Dogs.”

Hot take No. 5: It’s a Thai game, and Erb wins

The category that aligns closest with my perception of reality is Best Thai (give or take the absence of Bangkok Taste). My visits to Erb Thai’s original location at Wealthy Street and Diamond

PHOTO: katy batdorff

Avenue SE usually unfold thusly: I’ll place a to-go order of my usual, Pad See-U (thick sauteed rice noodles with broccoli and tofu), then face the dreaded follow-up question: How spicy? Medium, I’ll say emphatically. The server will look me up and down and reply, “Are you sure? Medium is pretty hot.” The implication being, you look like more of a mild-plus guy. Not today, my friend! I’ll stride boldly out the door with a takeout bag of Medium (capital M) Thai cuisine...only to spend the next 45 minutes gingerly picking at my entree as it imposes radioactive havoc upon my mouth and my confidence, then crawl under a cold shower. Guess I’m a mild-plus person after all. You win again, Erb Thai. You deserve to.

Hot take No. 6: Cottage keeps watching the chili throne

Here’s a fun idea: Gather middle-aged regulars from the Cottage Bar, the Pickwick and Nick Fink’s, ask them which is the oldest Grand Rapids bar, then see how long before chairs and bottles take to the air. Here’s something less debatable: Only one of them, Cottage, serves chili, and it’s the best in town. There’s three-alarm with ground chuck and red beans! Four-alarm with sirloin! White chili with chicken and pinto beans! Or, if you can wait a month or so, Cottage holds an annual outdoor chili cook-off to mark the arrival of fall, in which dozens of cooks compete for supremacy but rarely match the reliable meat/ bean/secret-whatever prowess of their host. Listen to your elders, kids. They know what they’re talking about.


Dining & Drinking Readers Picks Asian Cuisine Maru 927 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Thai Fusion 3. Erb Thai BBQ Two Scotts 536 Leonard St. NW, Grand Rapids 2. Slows BBQ 3. Horseshoe Smokehouse Beer Event or Festival Founders Fest 235 Grandville Ave. SW, Grand Rapids 2. Winter Beer Festival 3. Brewery Vivant Wood Aged Beer Fest Best Ambience Brewery Vivant 925 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Founders Brewing Co. 3. Harmony Hall 3. Winchester Best IPA 1. Bell’s Brewery - Two Hearted Ale 2. Founders Brewing Co. - All Day IPA 3. Perrin - Grapefruit IPA

Bloody Mary The Winchester 648 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Stella’s Lounge 3. SpeakEZ Lounge

2. Graydon’s Crossing 3. Logan’s Alley

2. Wolfgang’s Restaurant 3. Real Food Cafe

Dessert Cakabakery 1436 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids

Brewery Founders Brewing Co. 235 Grandville Ave. SW, Grand Rapids

2. Wealthy Street Bakery 3. Nantucket Bakery

2. Brewery Vivant 3. Perrin Brewing Co

Diner Grand Coney 809 Michigan St. NE, Grand Rapids

Burger Stella’s 53 Commerce Ave. SW, Grand Rapids

2. Bartertown Diner 3. Choo Choo Grill

2. Brewery Vivant 3. The Winchester

Distillery Long Road Distillers 537 Leonard St. NW, Grand Rapids

Chili Cottage Bar 18 La Grave Ave. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Founders Brewing Co. 3. HopCat Cidery Vander Mill 505 Ball Ave. NE, Grand Rapids 2. The Peoples Cider Co. 3. Crane’s Cider Mill 3. Ridge Cider CO. Cocktails Long Road Distillery 537 Leonard St. NW, Grand Rapids 2. Rockwell Republic 3. SpeakEZ Lounge Coffee Madcap Coffee 98 Monroe Center St. NW, Grand Rapids 2. Rowster Coffee 3. Biggby Craft Beer Selection at a Restaurant/Bar/Brewpub HopCat 25 Ionia Ave. SW, Grand Rapids

2. New Holland 3. Grey Skies Distillery Farm to Table Terra GR 1429 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Grove 3. San Chez Food Truck What The Truck 648 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Two Scotts 3. A Moveable Feast Fried Chicken Cousin’s Tasty Chicken 1209 Leonard St. NE, Grand Rapids 2. The Southerner 3. New York Fried Chicken Fries HopCat 25 Ionia Ave. SW, Grand Rapids 2. Brewery Vivant 3. Stella’s Lounge

Happy Hour Terra GR 1429 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Pyramid Scheme 2. Rockwell Republic 3. Grand Rapids Brewing Co. Hard Liquor 1. New Holland Beer Barrel Bourbon 2. Long Road Distillers Vodka 3. Long Road Distillers Gin Hot Dog Yesterdog 1505 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Jonny B’z 3. The Corner Bar Ice Cream/Frozen Treats Furniture City Creamery 958 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Spoonlickers 3. Love’s Ice Cream Indian Bombay Cuisine 1420 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Curry Kitchen 3. Palace of India Italian Amore 5080 Alpine Ave. NW, Comstock Park 2. Osteria Rossa 3. Mangiamo’s Lunch Marie Catribs 1001 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Two Beards Deli 3. Founders Brewing Co. Margarita Donkey Taqueria 665 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Beltline Bar 3. Luna

STAFF PICKS BEST FARM TO TABLE: Food Dance 401 E. Michigan Ave. #100, Kalamazoo You’ll be hard-pressed to find a restaurant as passionate about the farm-to-fork movement as Food Dance in Kalamazoo. This restaurant has lived and breathed for almost two decades, far before it became trendy. They believe firmly in the connection between food and people, sustainable food sources, supporting the community and culinary education both for themselves and their patrons. In addition to offering delectable dishes, they also participate in various foodrelated events and host a number of cooking classes throughout the year. —Dwayne Hoover

Best Breakfast/Brunch: The Westsider Café 1180 Walker NW, Grand Rapids The Westsider Cafe is one of those places where it is IMPOSSIBLE to leave hungry. Tucked away on Walker Avenue in Northwest Grand Rapids, this local breakfast hot spot entices patrons with ridiculously large portions of breakfast comfort food. Their Polish Skillet is a local favorite and their grilled red skin potatoes are the perfect breakfast side. If you’re feeling extra hungry, order the 7th Street special with biscuits and gravy. Just make sure to have a takeout box ready – and a couple hours to spare for your upcoming food coma. —Josh Spanninga

SHOULD HAVE WON A LOT: Little Africa 956 Fulton St E, Grand Rapids In a just world, there would be a line down the block for Little Africa, which still, bafflingly, falls under the umbrella of “Best-Kept Secret.” Revue didn’t have an African-specific food category in the survey, but there are several other winners’ circles where Little Africa belongs. What about Best Vegetarian? It does, after all, boast an allvegan menu, offering such Ethiopian and East African delights as spicy red lentils, soy curry, ferfer (kale and tomato paste with onion and garlic), gomen (spiced collard greens) and alicha (vegetable mix with potato and cabbage). How about Best First Date Spot? You’ll learn more about a person sharing a two-person platter of the day’s cuisine atop a bed of injera bread than over beers in some loud brewery. How about best service or ambience? A meal in Little Africa is like eating in the home of a lifelong friend. —Troy Reimink

REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

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Best Stout 1. Founders Brewing Co. - KBS 2. Founders Brewing Co. Breakfast Stout 3. New Holland Brewing Co. Dragon’s Milk

Breakfast/Brunch Anna’s House (Multiple locations)

39


Best of the west winners

Drinking by Joe Boomgaard

STAFF PICKS

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

BEST BREWERY: Bell’s Brewery 355 E. Kalamazoo Ave., Kalamazoo Even as new breweries continue to pop up, and as we continue to be recognized as one of the greatest craft beer meccas on the planet, you simply can’t discuss the best breweries in West Michigan without mentioning Bell’s Brewery. It’s an institution. This Kalamazoo staple continues to be ranked among the best breweries in the country, with favorites like Two Hearted Ale lauded as one of the finest IPAs on the entire planet and the spring release of Oberon being treated like it’s a legitimate holiday. Bell’s also boasts first-rate food offerings and some of the best live music options in The Zoo. —Dwayne Hoover

Best New Brewery: Trail Point Brewing 6035 Lake Michigan Dr., Allendale With so much good beer readily available within Beer City USA, it can unfortunately be all too easy to overlook some true quality brews in surrounding areas. But I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Trail Point Brewing in Allendale. Conveniently located off Lake Michigan Drive, Trail Point always has it all. From their cream ales and IPAs to stouts and scotch ales, the brewers here have proven they’re Jacks of all trades (or tastes, rather). The brewery itself does not serve food, but welcomes guests to bring their own dishes in, or to order food from one of the many surrounding restaurants. With their calming rustic décor and biergarten, it’s the perfect place to sip a few brews and wile away a few hours over a game of Catan, or some good conversation. —Josh Spanninga

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C

ongratulations West Michigan: You’ve added fuel to the hype train. The Best of the West results for the best beer, hooch and other drinking-related categories come as no surprise, but this is a popularity contest, after all. That said, no one will dispute the bona fides of the winners in either of the top beer categories: Bell’s Two Hearted Ale for best IPA and KBS from Founders for best stout. Both beers rank among the standard-bearers for their individual styles in the nationwide craft beer scene. Likewise, there’s no question best brewery award winner Founders has left a mark in the hearts and minds of West Michigan with its compelling backstory (How many times have you heard that they almost went bankrupt?) and for its consistency in turning out good products. But let’s dive into these results a bit more. Bell’s and Founders are the top two breweries by volume in the state of Michigan, and they’re also among the so-called old guard of Michigan’s craft breweries. There’s some history there in how both breweries’ beers helped shape the palates of a generation of Michigan craft beer drinkers, and they’ve each pioneered American craft beer styles. The same could be said about Vander Mill’s ciders, which have become the go-to cider in bars and restaurants across the region. The company further solidified its reputation with the recent opening of a new production facility and farm-to-plate restaurant in Grand Rapids that

makes some of the best-tasting dishes around — all of which pair well with Vander Mill’s draft specialty ciders. The award for best new brewery goes to a well-deserving candidate in Greyline Brewing Co. in Grand Rapids. With industry veterans at the helm, the company launched without the quality or inventory issues that plague many new breweries. Greyline’s portfolio of beers tend to be on the hoppy end of the spectrum (Mosacca IPA and DryPA being two favorites), but they’re also making some solid stouts (the Shakey Knees coffee stout, in particular). This will certainly be a brewery to watch as it continues to develop and innovate. On the hooch side, Long Road Distillers has certainly eked out a name for itself in just over a year in business, stacking up international honors for its gin, vodka and aquavit, a traditional European herbal spirit. Well, the much-lauded Long Road can add Best of the West honors to its ever-expanding trophy case, as it took home “Best Distillery” honors. While its spirits are the stars, the company is focused on the craft and art of cocktails at its West Side Grand Rapids location. (Pro tip: Start with a flight of Long Road’s spirits — served neat — to be able to key in on the nuance of each product when you try it in a cocktail.) Whether or not you agree with the final tallies in each of these awards, it’s clear the readers of Revue have spoken. Here are the results in alcohol-related categories of the inaugural Best of the West Awards, as well as a few editor’s picks.


Best of the west winners

Arts & Music STAFF PICKS BEST RADIO STATION: WIDR-FM 1501 Faunce Student Services, Kalamazoo Since 1952, WIDR, the student-run radio station at Western Michigan University, has taken pride in its non-commercialism and its ability to bring listeners a wide array of sounds, both new and old, with absolutely no genre bias. The station is also an integral part of the Kalamazoo music scene, hosting local and touring acts on its Basement Show and Kiva Sessions broadcasts, spinning tracks from local bands and artists, and participating in a number of events, including its very own WIDR Block Party. —Dwayne Hoover

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

Best Original Band: Bong Mountain (Grand Rapids) bngmntn.bandcamp.com Bong Mountain has only been in existence for about a year and half, but in that short time they’ve managed to craft a brand of pop punk that’s catchy, gruff and (most importantly) a hell of a lot of fun. Whether they’re playing at a bar, a music festival or a random basement show, these guys always manage to deliver a heartfelt reminder that sometimes the best cure for what ails you is a little rock ‘n’ roll. The band’s debut cassette EP You’re Doin’ Great has sold out, but you can still download a digital copy at their Bandcamp page, as well as their 2016 split with Junior Battles. —Josh Spanninga

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Megan Dooley

Cover Band 1. Brena 2. Funkle Jesse 3. Delilah Dewilde and the Lost Boys DJ 1. AB (Adrian Butler) 2. SuperDre 3. Dean Martian Local Alternative Art Gallery Mexicains Sans Frontieres 120 Division Ave., Apt 226, Grand Rapids 2. Tanglefoot 3. The Spiral Gallery

Local Art Gallery UICA 2 W. Fulton St., Grand Rapids 2. Richard App Gallery 3. LaFontsee Galleries Local Art Museum Grand Rapids Art Museum 101 Monroe Center St. NW, Grand Rapids 2. UICA 3. Muskegon Museum of Art Local Live Theater Group Grand Rapids Civic Theatre

30 Division Ave. N, Grand Rapids 2. Dog Story Theater 3. Circle Theatre Local Symphony 1. Grand Rapids Symphony 2. West Michigan Symphony 3. Kalamazoo Symphony Music Festival Electric Forest Festival 5900 Water Road, Rothbury 2. Lamplight 3. Wheatland Music Festival

PHOTO: fran dwight

Music Venue Pyramid Scheme 68 Commerce Ave. SW, Grand Rapids

Solo Musical Artist 1. Rick Chyme 2. Lady Ace Boogie 3. Megan Dooley

2. Frederik Meijer Gardens 3. The Intersection

Vinyl Record Store Vertigo Music 129 S. Division Ave., Grand Rapids

Original Band 1. The Crane Wives 2. Vox Vidorra 3. Greensky Bluegrass Radio Station 1. 88.1 - WYCE 2. 97.9 - WGRD 3. 95.7 - WLHT

2. Corner Record Shop 3. Dodd’s


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Best of the west winners

Nightlife & activities by Josh Veal

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

W

hen it comes to nightlife, the unexpected is pretty much… well, expected. My motto for a night on the town is “prepare to be surprised,” and I’d say the same for this year’s Best of the West results in the Night Life category. Who knew The Pyramid Scheme, a venue known primarily for top-shelf rock concerts, would ever be considered the region’s hottest nightclub? Especially when there are two places right behind that literally have “Nightclub” in their names. Speaking of which, apparently none of our voters had ever heard of Metro Nightclub of Kalamazoo, because Rumors was the single, solitary, exclusive nominee for Drag Show. Even one vote would have been enough to give another venue second place. Then again, that may just mean Rumors really does, indisputably and unequivocally, host the best drag show around. And yet, The Apartment Lounge took home Best LGBT Bar, likely due to its decidedly more chill atmosphere, upscale (IMHO) interior and A+ drink specials. One of the biggest surprises in this whole contest, however, is The Hideout Brewing Co. showing up in third place. The Grand Rapids-based brewery, tucked away at the end of a long road through a secluded apartment complex, doesn’t market itself as a LGBT hotspot. And yet, Hideout has seemingly developed a reputation as a safe space for people of all genders and sexualities (something every local establishment should aspire to, of course). On the more vanilla side of things, The Meanwhile came in first for Best Bar/Pub/ Tavern. I don’t know if that’s surprising or not, given that the Eastown watering hole seems to attract a distinct, yet dedicated crowd. I’ve heard The Meanwhile referred to as a “hipster bar” too many times to count, but I think “hipster” is just what most people

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call any millennial that doesn’t wear cargo shorts. Full Disclosure: The Meanwhile is my go-to bar on any given night. The enclosed patio is huge, Long Islands are only $3 on Tuesdays, and there’s a killer craft beer selection to boot. Also: Ms. Pac-Man. You probably could’ve guessed the rest. Founders’ huge stage and guaranteed audience make for a first-place open-mic night, Dr. Grins is the largest comedy-only venue in West Michigan, and Peppino’s is basically Italian Buffalo Wild Wings. The results pretty much speak for themselves.

STAFF PICK Best Bar/Pub/Tavern Kalamazoo Beer Exchange 211 E. Water St, Kalamazoo The Kalamazoo Beer Exchange may be based on a gimmick, but it’s a damn good one. Seems like every new restaurant and bar in the state is boasting its exciting craft beer selection, which survival requires standing

out. For some places, the solution is sheer quantity. For the Beer Exchange, it’s a unique mechanic in which every beer’s price constantly fluctuates throughout the night. Screens on both floors show whether each beer has increased or decreased in fee, with visuals clearly alluding to the stock market. The best part: every so often, a market crash hits and all the prices plummet like it’s 1929. —Josh Veal

Andrew WK at The Pyramid Scheme

PHOTO: katy batdorff


Dining & Drinking Readers Picks, continued

Founders’ patio

Nightlife & Activities Readers Picks Annual Event/Festival 1. ArtPrize 2. Festival of the Arts 3. LaughFest Bar/Pub/Tavern The Meanwhile 1005 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Cottage Bar 3. Founders Taproom Beach 1. Grand Haven State Park 2. Kirk Park 2. Oval Beach 3. Hoffmaster State Park Bowling Clique Lanes 533 Stocking Ave. NW, Grand Rapids 2. Wenger’s 3. Spectrum Lanes

2. The Pyramid Scheme 3. Tip Top Deluxe Dive Bar Mulligan’s 1518 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Birch Lodge 3. Farah’s Drag Show Rumors Nightclub 69 Division Ave. S, Grand Rapids First Date Spot Founders Brewing Co. 235 Grandville Ave. SW, Grand Rapids 2. The Winchester 3. San Chez Karaoke Stella’s Lounge 53 Commerce Ave. SW, Grand Rapids 2. Kale’s Korner 3. Z’s

Casino Gun Lake Casino 1123 129th Ave., Wayland

LGBT Bar The Apartment 33 Sheldon Ave. NE, Grand Rapids

2. FireKeepers Casino 3. Four Winds Casino

2. Rumours Nightclub 3. The Hideout Brewing Co.

Comedy Venue Dr. Grins Comedy Club @ The B.O.B. 20 Monroe Ave. NW, Grand Rapids

Movie Theater Celebration! Cinema (Multiple locations) 2. AMC Grand Rapids 18 3. Wealthy Theatre

PHOTO: Dan Miller

Night Club The Pyramid Scheme 68 Commerce Ave. SW, Grand Rapids 2. Eve at The B.O.B. 3. Billy’s 3. Rumours Night Club Open-Mic Night Founders Brewing Co. 235 Grandville Ave. SW, Grand Rapids 2. Stella’s Drunken Retort 3. Billy’s Park/Trails Hoffmaster State Park 6585 Lake Harbour Rd., Muskegon 2. White Pine Trail 3. Riverside Park Patio Founders Brewing Co. 235 Grandville Ave. SW, Grand Rapids 2. Rockwell Republic 3. Bostwick Lake Inn Sports Bar Peppino’s 130 Ionia Ave. SW, Grand Rapids 2. The Mitten Brewing Co. 3. The Score Tourist Attraction 1. ArtPrize 2. Frederik Meijer Gardens 3. Founders Brewing Co.

Meadery Arktos Meadery 1251 Century Ave. SW, Grand Rapids

Sandwich/Deli Two Beards Deli 38 Commerce Ave. SW, Grand Rapids

Vegetarian Marie Catrib’s 1001 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids

2. Bardic Wells

2. Cherry Deli 3. Founders Brewing Co.

2. Bartertown Diner 3. Electric Cheetah

Seafood Fish Lads 435 Ionia Ave. SW, Grand Rapids

Wine List Reserve Wine & Food 201 Monroe Ave. NW, Grand Rapids

2. Bonefish Grill 3. Leo’s

2. Divani 3. Aperitivo

Service Brewery Vivant 925 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids

Winery Cascade Winery 4665 Broadmoor Ave. SE, Grand Rapids

2. Amore 3. San Chez

2. Lemon Creek Winery 3. Fenn Valley Vineyards

Steak The Chop House 190 Monroe Ave. NW, Grand Rapids

Wings Slows BBQ 435 Ionia Ave. SW, Grand Rapids

2. Tillman’s 3. Iron

2. Stella’s Lounge 3. HopCat

Mediterranean Pita House 1508 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Gita Pita 3. Sheshco Mediterranean Grill Mexican Donkey Taqueria 665 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Tacos El Cunado 3. Taqueria San Jose Middle Eastern Pita House 1508 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Shiraz Grille 3. Osta’s Lebanese Cuisine New Brewery (opened 2015 or later) Greyline Brewing Co. 1727 Alpine Ave. NW, Grand Rapids 2. Harmony Hall 3. Cedar Springs Brewing Co. New Restaurant Harmony Hall 401 Stocking Ave. NW, Grand Rapids 2. Vander Mill Grand Rapids 3. Luna Pizza Harmony Brewing Co. 401 Stocking Ave. NW, Grand Rapids 2. Mitten Brewing Co. 3. Brick Road Pizza

Sushi Maru Sushi & Grill 927 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Fuji Yama 3. Tokyo Grill Thai Erb Thai Multiple locations 2. Bangkok Taste Cuisine 3. Angel’s Upscale Restaurant Grove 919 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Bistro Bella Vita 3. Amore 3. San Chez

Crispy Pig Pizza from Harmony Brewing Co.

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Best of the west winners

Services & People by Josh Veal

O

ut of our five broader surveys, Services & People was by far the most voted in, and perhaps it’s because we consider the categories to be so personal. We trust our stylists with our entire self-esteem and our tattoo artists even more so. We develop relationships with our bartenders, our yoga instructors, even our auto-repair shops. They directly impact our lives, so finding true quality is a must. For this first ever Best of the West contest, some of the winners could be considered local celebs — Best Artist Erica Lang of Woosah fame, Best Filmmaker Joel Potrykus and Best Local Chef Jenna Arcidiacono (of Amore Trattoria), all of whom Revue has given ink to before. Best Photographer Katy Batdorff has made a name for herself shooting for events and publications all over Grand Rapids, including countless shoots for Revue. Climate change denier and WOOD TV8’s meteorologist Bill Steffen’s amiable personality and 40 years of airtime have made him something of a household name – hence his win for Best TV Personality. Everyone knows the dude-bro charm that is The Free Beer & Hot Wings Show, an FM talk show now airing on more than 30 radio stations around the country.

Interestingly enough, Eric Zane came in at second place, less than a year after being fired from Free Beer and Hot Wings. I get the feeling people love an underdog. As for Best Barber Shop (Jude’s), Day Spa (Design 1), Nail Salon (Chasing Vanity) and Salon (Cheeky Strut), I’ve happily hit up the same place for my hair needs three years running *cough* Genesis Salon & Day Spa *cough*. And I can’t afford spa days, so overall I just don’t have a lot of insight here. I’m sure you also know who’s best, so be sure to vote for your spot next year! But this year’s Best Hair Stylist went to the innovative Katie Lynn “KL” Kristofferson at Cheeky Strut. Here’s a fun fact though: Local Hair Stylist received 163 nominations, more than any other category in the contest. I guess stylists are generally surrounded by a supportive community friends and family. And the Photographer, Bartender and Artist categories all weren’t far behind in terms of total nominations. All in all, these personable winners in the People & Services arena, they’ve developed a strong, unique brand and actively engage in the community. Getting out there and shaking hands pays off every once in a while. Congrats to the winners!

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

Services & People Reader Picks Auto Repair Community Auto Repair 846 Fulton St. E, Grand Rapids 2. Spaanstra Bros Automotive 3. Westside Garage Bank/Credit Union Lake Michigan Credit Union (Multiple locations) 2. Huntington 3. Fifth Third

STAFF PICKS Best Local Artist – Anna Lisa Schneider annalisaillustration.com

Best Barbershop – Foremost 152 E. Fulton St., Grand Rapids

Graphic designer for New Holland Brewing by day, comic creator by night, Anna Lisa Schneider’s illustrations manage to mix creepiness, cuteness, humor and surrealism in equal measures. In 2014, her tongue-in-cheek Artprize entry Fartprize satirized the experience of the festival in a series of vulgar, cartoon-like illustrations. Since then she’s been selfpublishing zines, updating her weekly webcomic Inward Bound (inwardboundcomic.com), and tabling at various events, including the Cherry Capital Comic Con. She also recently opened her own online store where she sells comics, stickers, patches and pins. —Josh Spanninga

From the moment you walk into Foremost Barbershop, it’s pretty clear this place is not like other barbershops. There is punk music blaring, a large sign stating “Cash Only” and only the bare bones of what’s needed for a good haircut/shave at each station. Foremost specializes in traditionally masculine cuts, and the barbers are absolute masters at fades, crew cuts, pompadours and the like. Whenever you visit you’re likely to encounter a long line of punks, greasers and businessmen waiting for haircuts and shaves. Luckily they have plenty of comics laid out for your reading pleasure. At $20 a cut and $30 per shave — it’s well worth the wait. —Josh Spanninga

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Erica Lang

Barber Shop Jude’s Barbershop (Multiple locations) 2. Foremost Barbershop 3. Ace of Fades Bicycle Shop Freewheeler Bike Shop 915 Leonard St. NW, Grand Rapids 2. Spoke Folks 3. Village Bike & Fitness

Car Wash/Detailing Southland Auto Wash (Multiple locations) 2. Water Works Car Wash 3. Breton Auto Wash Day Spa Design One (Multiple locations) 2. Chasing Vanity 3. Vasaio Life Spa Fitness Club/Gym MVP Sportsplex 4035 Burton St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Allegro Coaching 3. Family Fitness Local Artist Erica Lang Woosah Outfitters, 131 Division Ave. S, Grand Rapids 2. Hugo Claudin 3. Tony Putt Local Bartender Roach, Stella’s 53 Commerce Ave. SW, Grand Rapids 2. Alex Calley, Winchester 3. Brian, Harmony Brewing Co.


Our staff thanks you for voting us best breakfast in West Michigan!

Wolfgang’s RestauRant | 1530 Wealthy, grand Rapids | (616) 454-5776 | mattwolfgang.com RestauRant HouRs: Monday–friday: 6:30 am to 2:30 pm; saturday–sunday: 7 am to 4 pm

BEST WINGS

Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

CATERING TO ALL EVENTS 40 CRAFT BEERS ON TAP AWARD WINNING BBQ 435 IONIA AVE SW • GRAND RAPIDS, MI 49503 616-454-1588 • SLOWSBARBQ.COM REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

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Best of the west winners

Shopping Antique Shop Eastown Antiques 1515 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids

STAFF PICKS GIFT SHOP: Bailey & James 51 ½ E. Bridge St., Rockford Bailey & James in Rockford is a strong contender. The owner has a thing for picking the most adorable merchandise including mugs, candles, pillows and greeting cards. There’s a charming mix of local artisan’s work along with the Rifle Paper Co. line. I’ve developed a bad habit here: I purchase gifts for others and always something for me. ­—Missy Black

Schedule | Dining | sights | Sounds Scene

HOME DÉCOR: The Found Cottage 2450 Chicago Dr., Hudsonville Every nook and cranny at The Found Cottage in Hudsonville gives me a mini panic attack. I need their things. I want their things. I have to own their things. Filled with ideas, emotions and vignettes, this place promises to do right by your home. —Missy Black MEN’S CLOTHING: Frances Jaye 50 E. 8th St., Holland Frances Jaye in Holland has a nice collection of men’s clothing — things I’d want my husband to wear so that I could also steal them from him. It’s classic stuff with a modern twist that has a romantic and gentlemanly vibe to it. —Missy Black WOMEN’S CLOTHING: Jade 17 Squires St. Square NE #B, Rockford I blew almost all my birthday money on dresses and tanks at Jade in Rockford. I had to stop checking their Facebook page for fear that I’d become penniless but well-dressed. They should be on your radar. —Missy Black

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2. Lost & Found Treasures 3. Blue Door Athletic Goods Store Gazelle Sports (Multiple locations) 2. Striders 3. Freewheeler Bike Shop Bakery Nantucket Bakery 615 Lyon St. NE, Grand Rapids 2. Wealthy Street Bakery Inc. 3. Field & Fire Beer or Wine Store Martha’s Vineyard 200 Union Ave. NE, Grand Rapids 2. Siciliano’s Market 3. Rishi’s International Beverage Book Store Schuler Books & Music 2660 28th St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Argos 3. Redux Books

Convenience/Liquor Store Martha’s Vineyard 200 Union Ave. NE, Grand Rapids 2. Smitty’s Specialty Beverage 3. Rishi’s International Beverage Ethnic Food Store G.B Russo & Son International Grocery 2770 29th St. SE, Grand Rapids

Health Food Store Harvest Health Foods (Multiple locations)

Pet Store Chow Hound Pet Supplies (Multiple locations)

2. Nourish Organic Market 3. Fresh Thyme

2. Fido & Stitch 3. V.I. Pets

Home Decor Wealthy at Charles 738 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids

Thrift/Consignment Shop Urban Exchange 926 Fulton St. E, Grand Rapids

2. A Dong Market 3. Green Market

2. Captain Bizzaro’s Treasure World 2. UBU Home Furnishings 3. Rebel Reclaimed

Farmers’ Market Fulton Street Farmers Market 1145 Fulton St. E, Grand Rapids

Jewelry Store Devries Jewelery Store 411 Leonard St. NW, Grand Rapids

2. Muskegon Farmers Market 3. Holland Downtown Market

2. Medawar Jewelers 3. Metal Art Studio

Florist Eastern Floral (Multiple locations)

Local Art Supply Store Service Reproduction 345 Summer Ave. NW, Grand Rapids

2. Horrocks Market 3. Posh Petals Gift Shop Rebel Reclaimed 1409 Robinson Rd SE, Grand Rapids 2. Art of the Table 3. Pink Lemonade

Butcher Sobie Meats 3450 Remembrance Rd. NW, Walker

Grocery Store Horrocks Market 4455 Breton Rd. SE, Kentwood

2. Kingma’s Market 3. Byron Center Meats

2. Meijer 3. Kingma’s Market

2. The Outlet 3. Fris Downtown - Holland Men’s Clothing A.K. Rikk’s 6303 28th St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Denym 3. Meijer Musical Instrument Store Rainbow Music 1148 Leonard St. NW, Grand Rapids 2. Firehouse Music 3. Meyer Music

2. Rock Paper Scissors Consignment 3. Conscious Collective Tobacco/Cigar Shop Buffalo Tobacco Traders 952 Fulton St. E, Grand Rapids 2. Sicilianos 3. Grand River Tobacco Vape Shop Mister E’s Vape Shop (Multiple locations, mister-eliquid.com) 2. Mitten Vapors 3. Endless Vapor Vintage Clothing Store Captain Bizzaros Treasure World 442 Leonard St. NW, Grand Rapids 2. Flashlight Alley 3. Grand Rapids Vintage Thrift Women’s Clothing Lee & Birch 759 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Gina’s Boutique 3. A.K. Rikk’s


Services & People Readers Picks, continued Local Chef Jenna Arcidiacono, Amore Trattoria Italiana 5080 Alpine Ave. NW, Comstock Park 2. Abigail Therrien, Terra GR 3. Aaron Stek, San Chez Local Comedian 1. Sarah Jean Anderson 2. Stu McCallister 3. Nolan Graff Local Filmmaker 1. Joel Potrykus 2. Daniel Falicki 3. Jarred Griffith Local Hair Stylist KL (Katie Lynn) Kristofferson, Cheeky Strut 216 Grandville Ave. SW, Grand Rapids 2. Francie VanHoven, Avantgarde Salon 3. Sara Close, Capelli Salon Local Instagram Account 1. EatGR (@eatgr1) 2. Experience Grand Rapids (@experiencegrandrapids) 3. Woosah Outfitters (@woosahoutfitters)

Brena

Local Photographer 1. Katy Batdorff 2. Brian Kelly 3. Tony Norkus

Salon Cheeky Strut 216 Grandville Ave. SW, Grand Rapids

Local Radio Personality 1. Free Beer and Hot Wings 2. Connie & Curtis 2. Eric Zane 3. John Sinkevics

2. Brindle and Blonde 3. Chasing Vanity

by eric Mitts

Tattoo/Piercing Mos Eisley’s 71 Division Ave. S, Grand Rapids

F

Local TV News Personality 1. Bill Steffen, WOOD TV 8 2. Rachael Ruiz, WOOD TV 8 3. Lauren Stanton, WZZM 13 Nail Salon Chasing Vanity 150 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids 2. VIP Nails 3. Asia Nails Optical Cascade Optical 6740 Cascade Rd. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Grand Rapids Ophthalmology 3. Family and Pediatric Eye Care

2. Honest to Goodness 3. Sovereign Arms Vet/Animal Clinic Eastown Veterinary Clinic 1350 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids 2. Cascade Hospital for Animals 2. Breton Village Animal Clinic 3. Family Friends Veterinary Clinic Yoga Studio Funky Buddha Yoga Hothouse 1331 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids 2. AM Yoga 3. PeaceLab

Local Cover Bands orget what some people say — it’s not that easy playing in a cover band. Sure, getting up on stage and cranking out some of your favorite artists’ biggest hits is a blast — but there’s some stress that comes with the territory. You’ve got to log the long hours learning a serious catalog of crowd pleasers. You also have to be ready for oddball requests, unaccommodating venues, spontaneous sports interruptions and an unending stream of drunken chatter. Not to mention having the pure musical chops to comfortably switch genres and styles onstage — all of this while keeping people dancing. Doesn’t sound like just a fun hobby anymore, does it? On top of all that, when playing other peoples’ songs, it’s not as easy to stand out. With all things considered, three winners in our Best of the West contest this year managed to do just that. Here’s a little more information on what makes these groups so exceptional.

1st Place:

Brena

2nd Place:

Funkle Jesse

funklejesse.com Funkle Jesse is a self-proclaimed Michigan supergroup made up of musicians from such local bands as Bless You Boys and Full Catastrophe, earning the band a serious position in just a few short years. The crowd pleasing blend of pop/rock hits from the ’80s up

Abigail Therrien of Terra GR

3rd Place:

Delilah DeWylde & the Lost Boys

delilahdewylde.com Also known for their original songs, this long-running band frequently bangs out some solid sets filled with rockabilly, vintage country, surf rock and honky-tonk hits. Frontwoman Delilah DeWylde is a pure powerhouse performer, capable of climbing atop her upright bass one minute and calmly crooning the next. Alongside guitarist Lee Harvey, she’s revved up audiences for the better part of a decade now with her retro sound and look, while reigniting the forgotten spark first struck by true rebels like Hanks Williams Sr., Johnny Cash and Wanda Jackson.

PHOTO: katy batdorff

REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

Scene Sounds | Sights | Dining | Schedule

brenaband.com Starting out as a garage band playing original songs, Brena built a club following for years before deciding to become a cover band. The group is now a favorite at area weddings, where the six members get to show off their masterful jazz and classical chops. But when it’s time to party, they get down, playing everything from pop hits and Motown favorites to country classics and rock anthems, all while switching through an assortment of instruments live on stage.

through today has kept them busy too, with gigs lined up throughout the entire summer. They’ve wowed audiences with everything from Adele to Prince to No Doubt and more. Currently, the group is at work on an album of original material, so look for that in the near future.

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AUGUST HIGHLIGHTS LGBT Speed Dating for Millennials

Tuesday, August 2, 2016, 7:00 pm Grand Rapids Brewing Company – 1 Ionia SW Enjoy a fun-filled night with lots of other LGBT singles! Speed daters will have 4-6 minutes to chat with a potential match before moving on to the next. If two people indicate mutual interest, they will be given contact information to schedule a follow-up date. The event is free, but due to space limitations, pre-registration is required. For ages 21 and older. Sign up at www.grpl.org/register.

10 BOOKS & 29 EVENTS

Explore the Galaxy of GR Scavenger Hunt Saturday, August 6, 2016, 4:00 pm Pyramid Scheme – 68 Commerce Ave SW Are you ready for the most out-of-this-world scavenger hunt? On this hunt inspired by The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and our city, you and your team of up to six people go head to head with other teams as you strive to solve missions in the most creative way. Starting at the Pyramid Scheme, we’ll go over what lies ahead and then you’ll head out with trusty towels in hand (see Hitchhiker’s Guide for a recommended list of what to bring on a galactic trip.) Your survival is at stake, and the galaxy of Grand Rapids awaits you! At the end of the hunt, relax with a Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster beer or other drink of your choice at Pyramid Scheme. Prizes and bragging rights go to the top teams. Pre-registration is recommended, and space is limited. For adults 21 and up.

ALSO CHECK OUT THESE EVENTS! Baking with the Ginger Chef Wednesday, August 3, 2016, 7:00 pm Wednesday, August 4, 2016, 7:00 pm Central Reformed Church – 10 College Ave NE

Painting and Pinot Monday, August 8, 2016, 6:30 pm Monday, August 15, 2016, 6:30 pm Mangiamo! – 1033 Lake Drive SE

Speak Up: All About Oral History Tuesday, August 16, 2016, 7:00 pm Main Library – 111 Library St NE

Tai Chi in the Park Wednesday, August 17, 2016, 6:30 pm Canal Street Park – 941 Monroe Ave NW

Renewal Madness

JUNE 1 – AUGUST 31, 2016 WWW.GRPL.ORG/GRREADS 616.988.5400 FUNDED BY:

MEDIA SPONSORS:

Thursday, August 18, 2016, 7:00 pm Main Library – 111 Library St NE

An Evening with Author W. Bruce Cameron Tuesday, August 23, 2016, 7:00 pm Main Library – 111 Library St NE For all GR Reads events, visit www.grpl.org/GRReads.

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indie film

by Josh Spanninga

AUGUST FIRST-RUNS OPENING AUGUST 5 SUICIDE SQUAD OPENING AUGUST 12 Meryl Streep in FLORENCE FOSTER JENKINS OPENING AUGUST 12 Seth Rogen & James Franco in SAUSAGE PARTY AUGUST SPECIALTY

Richard Vanuk (played by Falicki) gets possessed in a scene from Accidental Exorcist.

Local Filmmaker Daniel Falicki releases ‘Accidental Exorcist’, preps for ‘Alien Implant’

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been busy pitching ideas for Croyle, who in turn finances the projects he likes. With this process, Falicki has been beefing up his IMdB page at an alarming rate, releasing multiple movies each year. “When people ask, ‘What do you do for a living?’ I tell them, ‘I make low-budget genre films.’ They instantly assume porn,” he said. His most recent film, Accidental Exorcist, follows a depressed, alcoholic wannabe writer (played by Falicki) who finds himself stuck doing the only job he’s good at – exorcising demons out of the possessed. While the film does have its fair share of blood, gore and generally terrifying moments, it also features plenty of the director’s signature dark humor sprinkled throughout. “I just want to entertain. I don’t want to scare people,” Falicki said. “That’s kind of what the reviews I’m getting on Accidental Exorcist are all about. They’re like ‘I don’t know if this is a comedy or a horror.’ Some people are scared, some people aren’t.” Accidental Exorcist has garnered the most attention and positive reviews of any of his films. Falicki himself has been pleasantly surprised with the overwhelming response. And when Ain’t It Cool News recommended the film to its readers back in June, Falicki freaked out appropriately. “I shat my pants so much that day I had to stand up to get off it,” Falicki said. “I used to read that as a kid.”

Falicki has high hopes his next release will be met with similar acclaim – as it turns out, he won’t have to wait long to find out. In June, Falicki finished his latest film, sci-fi revenge flick Alien Implant, while reviews were still rolling in from Accidental Exorcist. “It’s about a woman — she lives like the Unabomber out in the wilderness, but she has a dark past. She’s been abducted by aliens ever since she was a kid,” Falicki said. “It’s very simplistic. It’s practical effects the whole way through.” Per usual, Falicki wore many hats during the production of the movie, not only directing and editing, but also doing the set design, sound and practical effects himself. His small crew is comprised entirely of Michigan talent. Many of the actors in his films are friends and local actors Falicki met while doing live theater in Grand Rapids. “My boss always wanted me to go out there. He lives in Forest Hill, California,” Falicki explained. “He’s asked why I don’t move out there — it’s because all the talent’s here.” n Accidental Exorcist is currently available to rent on Amazon Instant Video.

AUGUST 2 STEEL MAGNOLIAS Quote-Along AUGUST 4 & 7 Branagh Theatre: ROMEO & JULIET AUGUST 8 Doris Day & James Cagney in LOVE ME OR LEAVE ME AUGUST 14 & 18 James Dean in REBEL WITHOUT A CAUSE AUGUST 15 Doris Day & Rock Hudson in LOVER COME BACK AUGUST 16 TWISTER 20th Anniversary Party AUGUST 21 & 25 James Dean in EAST OF EDEN AUGUST 22 Doris Day in CALAMITY JANE AUGUST 28 James Dean & Elizabeth Taylor in GIANT AUGUST 29 Doris Day & Rock Hudson in SEND ME NO FLOWERS Visit drafthouse.com/kalamazoo for showtimes and tickets

DATES ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE PLEASE CHECK DRAFTHOUSE.COM/KALAMAZOO FOR UPDATES

REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

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us t si x or se v e n y e a r s ago, Gr and R apids filmmaker Daniel Falicki was not in a good spot. Recently divorced and unemployed, Falicki was going through what he now refers to as an “early midlife crisis.” Then, a neighbor in his apartment complex one day asked Falicki if he could shoot wedding videos. Falicki figured he’d give it a shot, and soon discovered a special knack for film. Before he knew it, he was making commercials. “It was actually a blessing in disguise,” Falicki said. “They pretty much paid me to learn.” One thing he learned from this new job was how to use green screens, a filming technique that made his first feature-length project, GR30K, possible. In this film, Falicki employed the effect to build a post-apocalyptic world filled with mutants, evil corporations and Amazonian warriors, all rotoscoped in the style of Ralph Bakshi’s films. GR30K amassed a small but loyal following, including producer Warren Croyle, Falicki’s soon-to-be boss. One day Croyle called him up out of the blue, asking how much GR30K cost to make. Falicki’s answer was around $3,000, “considering all the plastic shoulder pads and green paint I bought.” Croyle offered to finance his next film, and thus began Falicki’s career. Since then, he’s

AUGUST 1 Doris Day & Rock Hudson in PILLOW TALK

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by Dana Casadei

Theatre

Local Theatre Events From cult classic musicals to Shakespeare’s deep cuts, there are enough shows this month to satisfy even the pickiest of patrons. Find what fits, here.

Over the River and Through the Woods, Circle Theatre 1703 Robinson Road SE, Grand Rapids Aug. 11-13, 17-20, 21, 24-27, times vary, $25 circletheatre.org, (616) 456-6656 Four loving grandparents, a 29-year-old single grandson and a table full of food — that’s the basis of Over the River and Through the Woods. Nick eats dinner with his elders once a week, but one specific Sunday, an announcement changes everything: He’s moving to Seattle for his dream job. How do they react? A series of harebrained schemes trying to make Nick stay, including finding him a wife. Gotta love old people.

Henry IV Parts 1 and 2, Pigeon Creek Shakespeare Company

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Dog Story Theater, 7 Jefferson Ave. SE, Grand Rapids Aug. 12-14 and 19-21, times vary, $14 pcshakespeare.com, (616) 850-0916 Henry IV picks up where Pigeon Creek Shakespeare Company’s 2015 production of Richard II left off. Henry Bolingbroke is now King Henry IV in this and struggling to hold on to the crown. Not only is Henry trying to rule a country, but he’s got a few issues to work out with Prince Hal, his own son and heir to the throne.

The Great American Trailer Park Musical, Mason Street Warehouse Saugatuck Center for the Arts, 400 Culver St., Saugatuck

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Aug. 12-18, times vary, $25+ masonstreetwarehouse.org, (269) 857-2399 Mason Street Warehouse’s most requested musical is back, following the rowdy lives of Armadillo Acres Trailer Park’s colorful tenants. Everything is mullets, cheese spray and fun times before Pippi, a stripper on the run, shows up and turns the trailer park into a Jerry Springer-esque romp, love triangles and all.

The Tempest, Pigeon Creek Shakespeare Company Rose Theater, Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp, 300 E. Crystal Lake Road, Twin Lake Aug. 27, 2 p.m. $20 pcshakespeare.com, (231) 894-5656 One of Shakespeare’s final plays centers around magician and ex-duke Prospero, exiled to an island by a traitorous brother who now sits on Prospero’s rightful throne. With the help of a few magical creatures and his teen daughter, the magician plots revenge.

Upcoming shows at Hope Summer Repertory Theatre DeWitt Student Cultural Center, 141 E. 12th St., Holland hope.edu/hsrt Hairspray Aug. 6, 8, and 13, times vary, $30 Hairspray, the John Waters-penned classic, tells the story of Tracy Turnblad, a big girl with a big heart and even bigger hair in 1962. Tracy has one passion: dancing to rock ‘n’ roll, and when she wins a spot on a local TV dance program she becomes a teen sensation. But

Over the River and Through the Woods, Circle Theatre Photo: Bryan Esler

she’ll do more than just dance: She’ll launch a campaign to integrate the show. Oedipus Aug. 2 and 10, 8 p.m. $30 The classic tragedy follows Oedipus as he arrives in Thebes, a town under the curse of a Sphinx who will not free the city until someone solves her riddle. Oedipus solves it and becomes King, but not before unintentionally fulfilling a demented, violent prophecy. Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike Aug. 4 and 12, 8 p.m., $23-$27 In the Tony-award winning play, siblings Vanya and Sonia are content living their twilight years in their childhood home. That is until movie-star sister Masha shows up unexpectedly with her super-hot boy-toy Spike, and causes all sorts of chaos in their quiet lives. The Fantasticks Aug.1, 3, 5, 9, and 11, 8 p.m. $28-$33

This chamber musical tells the story of two fathers plotting to get their kids together … by pretending to keep them apart. It’s like Romeo and Juliet, but if the Montagues and Capulets were actually faking the feud to inspire a little teenage rebellion.

Upcoming shows at The Barn Theatre 13351 W. M-96, Augusta barntheatreschool.org, (269) 731-4121 The Rocky Horror Show Aug. 2-14, times vary, $37 Richard O’Brien’s cult-classic follows innocent lost travelers Brad and Janet, who end up at the crossdressing Dr. Frank N Furter’s castle. The duo meet his creation, also known as Rocky, and the rest of the house’s residents throughout a night they won’t soon forget. Be prepared to jump to the left and

step to the right with your hands on your hips. Damn it, Janet, you know the rest. Singin’ in the Rain Aug. 16-28, times vary, $37 Adapted from the 1952 Gene Kelly classic film, Singin’ in the Rain tells the story of a silent film company making the difficult transition into “talkies.” The Barn’s production will have an onstage rainstorm during the title number, so maybe grab a poncho if you’re getting seats toward the front. Red, White, and Tuna Aug. 30-Sept. 4, times vary, $37 Follow two actors as they portray the entire town of Tuna, Texas (the third-smallest town in the state), during the Fourth of July Tuna High School Class Reunion. If you’ve seen any of the other three Tuna plays, you’re likely to recognize some familiar faces. n


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Reb el h an g

Style Notes

by Missy Black

m ariu err t g in

Bailey and James pillows and containers

Styling Your Home

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he Found Cottage, 2450 Chicago Dr. in Hudsonville, is an “eclectic space for creatives,” according to Abigail Hoppen-Albers. HoppenAlbers is one of the store’s three co-owners, along with Liz Marie Galvan and Lisa VanDyke. While Galvan loves white and VanDyke is more modern, Hoppen-Albers is into color and patterns. Their mash-up of different styles combined with 15 vendors gives the space a cozy and warm atmosphere. Because home fragrances are a subtle way to style your home, pop into the store for a whiff of the Kalamazoo Candle

Company line (I’m intrigued by the salted grapefruit scent). “They’re made in Kalamazoo, the jar is chic and they burn forever,” Hoppen-Albers said. Another reason to visit is Hollyhocks & Hydrangeas — one-of-a-kind, hand painted calligraphy style signs from a true artist. Hoppen-Albers reminds customers to be purposeful when purchasing and make sure you’re working toward the emotions you want to feel when you walk into your home. Style tips include rearranging furniture (that’s free!) to wall art (transforms a room and changes the focal point) and the addition of pillows (pillow covers are easy to change out), throw blankets and plants. For more information, visit thefoundcottage.com.

Framed botanical prints (4x6 inches) by Idlewild Co. are the perfect way to bring the outdoors inside. $11. Surround yourself with adorable hanging air plant terrariums from Bird and Feather. $25. (Pictured top left) Rebel Reclaimed, 1409 Robinson Rd. SE, Grand Rapids rebelreclaimed.com Adorable Mitten pillows by Sew Nifty Thrifty make for a perfect accent and a nice reminder of home. $27. Pom Pom Minis and Pints by Petit Pehr are full of color, texture and fun, with 100-percent heavyweight canvas. $20-28. Bailey & James Boutique, 51 ½ E. Bridge St., Rockford baileyandjameslifestyle.com Rebel botanical prints

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Kalamazoo Candle Company salted grapefruit candles at The Found Cottage


HyperOptik 1134 Wealthy Street 6 1 6 . 3 0 1 . 1 9 1 1 www.hyper-optik.com PHOTO: ROB CONENS FRAME: THEO JAMES NINE MODEL: JULIE HONEYCUTT


Visual Art

by Ameera Chaudhry

A promo image from UICA’s superusted exhibit

UICA Unveils ‘superusted’

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tional and non-traditional materials. There ust — a notorious deare performance and interactive pieces, as stroyer of aged bikes, well.” pipes and cars, takes on a new By selecting artists whose works transmeaning at the superusted exhibiformed in aesthetic during the exhibition tion, opening August 18 at the development, and also explaining the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts contemporary relationship between nature (UICA) in downtown Grand Rapids. and humanity, Clyne presents the dynamic Drawing on her experiences living in the character of rust. Midwest — also known as the “Rust Belt of “The vibe of the show feels very intenAmerica,” exhibition curator Cheryl Wilgren tional,” Duffy said. “I think, a lot of the Clyne focuses on the transformative nature time, artists will create works of rust in superusted, which that are specific to one place, runs through Oct. 23. or the history of that place. su“She [Cher yl Wilgren superusted: The perusted is different, it includes Clyne] was thinking about a 4th Midwest Biennial works that seem interwoven car from the early ’70s that she Urban Institute for with the place that presents owned and how the clutch of Contemporary Arts them.” this old car rusted off and fell, 2 W. Fulton St., Grand Rapids Each piece in this exhibiwith the floorboard, onto the Aug. 18 –Oct. 23 UICA Members: Free, tion — like rust — clings to and middle of the street during a non-members: $5 transforms its surroundings. winter drive,” said Heather uica.org/superusted, While almost all of the exact Duff y, UICA exhibitions (616) 454-7000 works from the original show curator. are coming to UICA, attendClyne noticed how rust ees can expect the installations had consumed the vehicle’s to appear different from their premiere at the foundation, fundamentally transforming fourth Midwestern Biennial in Minnesota. her car — both in form and function. This In addition to this, 12 of the 17 artists are incident, combined with inspiration from coming to Grand Rapids to install their Neil Young’s 1979 album Rust Never Sleeps, pieces, and there will be, as Duffy put it, “a illustrated to Clyne that rust — while derekindling of that original community” — structive, is ultimately a beautiful catalyst fortifying the intentional vibe of the show. for change. While the mediums used in this exhibiSo, what styles of art will this origition are vastly diverse, superusted successfully nal community of Midwest-based artists unites artists through one particular trait: showcase? their Rust Belt identity. n “The exhibition is really diverse,” Duffy said. “It includes photography, sculptures, and mixed media pieces that include tradi-


by Steve Miller

LIT LIFE

Detroit Musician Goes Gonzo Book Review: Life is a Rip Off (Third Man), by John Olson

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n album review can be the path to enlightenment — a path that in the early ’70s landed Blue Oyster Cult, The Stooges, Savoy Brown and so many others before my ears as a lad. While the writing is important, it’s not nearly as crucial as the act under review. A solid recommendation is a gift when it provides guidance. John Olson (of the Detroit band Wolf Eyes) comes bearing those gifts, 365 of them, in Life is a Rip Off, released via Third Man Books. Olson’s task was onerous: Review one piece of music, every day, for a year, starting in late 2012. Despite whatever he went through, the reward goes to the readers. While the Gonzo/anti-writer/whof***ingcares style can become wearying at times, indicating he was hitting a wall (understandably), that same style can make you laugh out loud. It’s a treat to be handed Olson’s solid grasp on music both known and obscure. To get the full benefit of this hefty gem, grab some beers, sit down with your iPad, and head to Spotify or YouTube and listen along to Olson’s reviews. Mainstreamers like Tim Buckley, U Roy, Staple Singers, Emerson Lake & Palmer mix with Insanity, Eskoria and Kurraka. Demo tapes, compilations, bootlegs, never-to-befound 7-inchers and Platinum-sellers all hold hands in Olson’s hearty and healthy musical appetite. If your thing is Dutch prog rock, he’s got a review of Cargo, a revered outfit in certain circles. “It sounds like if STYX did the soundtrack to the long walk in Steve King’s The Talisman and the band was fine with the eminent destruction of man…” he says. If it’s soul, he reviews a Spinners “best of ” CD, exclaiming “The flow of this digital boy is stone cold SOLID.” Blues? There’s Sonny Boy Williamson, whom he aptly calls “the OG hard living, hard drinking, craggling blues master.” He may let you dow n i n spot s. Damnation isn’t such a great grind find.

And three reviews of the Grateful Dead is three too many. But the vast territory mined is such that you can’t go wrong following Olson’s lead most of the time. This is one of those books that you can open at any spot and chances are good that you will find an answer to your racy prayers. The more I read and listen, the more I think of a notion that has defined my own listening for decades. The quote inspiring that notion is attributed to Louis Armstrong, Dr. John or Duke Ellington, depending on who you want to believe. But it goes like this: “There are two kinds of music: the good and the bad. I play the good kind.” That’s Ellington’s version. Miles Davis bastardized it a bit, proclaiming, “Good music is good no matter what kind of music it is.” Whoever uttered this sentiment to begin with, it carries the heaviest of weight and truth yesterday, today and tomorrow. So many people are confused by styles and strata, determined to categorize music — Olson does the reader a favor by dispensing of that concern. n

REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

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by Eric Mitts

Comedy At The B.O.B. Grand Rapids, MI 616.356.2000 www.thebob.com

Michael Kosta

Ann Arbor Native Headlines Dr. Grin’s

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DAVE sWt A4IT-6E Augu

LIZA TREYG August 1

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A T S O K L ICHAE 1-13

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M August 1

JESSIMAE PELUSO August 18-20

JOHNNY BEEHNER August 25-27

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f yo u as ke d a te e nag e M i chae l Ko sta what te n n is m eant to h i m, he’d tell you, “It’s no laughing matter.” After all, the now 36-year-old comedian grew up in Ann Arbor playing competitively before going on to win four Big Ten titles with the University of Illinois. It was getting serious. But when it came time for the pro circuit, Kosta topped at number 864 in the world, earning around $11,000 over four years. That’s when he began to see some humor in competition. After moving back home to work as an assistant tennis coach at the University of Michigan, Kosta turned to stand-up, eventually breaking out at the HBO Comedy and Arts Festival in Aspen. Naturally, before returning to perform a run of shows at Dr. Grins Comedy Club (20 Monroe Ave. NW) this month, he’ll also stop by a different home court when performing as the emcee during the exhibition match at this year’s USTA Nationals in Kalamazoo on Aug 6. “Junior tennis is pretty intense,” Kosta said of performing for the USTA crowd. “I love doing stand-up comedy and it’s my job, but tennis is also a big part of my life. To go back and mix being funny with the sport that I love and spent 25 years of my life Michael Kosta playing, it’s a real pleasure.” Dr. Grins Comedy Club 20 Monroe Ave. NW, Grand Obviously, the material is pretty difRapids ferent. Commentating is improvisational Aug. 11–13, 8 p.m., 9 p.m., and there’s kind of an implied PG rating 10:30 p.m., $5-$15 at any K–12 sports match. The crowd thebob.com/drgrinscomedy, itself brings another vibe as well. (616) 356-2000 “I’m not dealing with drunk audience members who are ordering fried mozzarella sticks,” he said. “Instead it’s tennis players and their parents in a competitive environment, so it’s fun to give them a little entertainment.” Kosta relocated to Los Angeles in 2005 and began a career in comedy and television that saw him making regular appearances on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Chelsea Lately, Conan, @Midnight, and his own special Comedy Central Presents: Michael Kosta. He also made a brief return home while hosting Fox Sports Detroit’s CCHA: All Access, which earned him two Michigan Emmys. Of course, never losing his sense of humor, Kosta comically posed with the award on the cover of his debut comedy album, Champion, in 2009. More recently, he mixed that sports experience and his comedic chops as co-host on Fox Sports 1’s Crowd Goes Wild in 2014. Doing the show live allowed him to get real-time feedback from fans — and haters — via social media. He became especially intrigued by the negative feedback and, in 2015 explored the absolute worst of the trolls on the Internet as host of E!’s short-lived series The Comment Section. Kosta doesn’t feel that the show — or his string of other cancelled or never-aired TV series — has made his comedy darker. Instead he thinks he’s just evolved as he’s gotten older.

Comedian Michael Kosta

“I don’t want to use the word ‘smarter,’ because I don’t love that type of humor,” he said. “I think maybe I’m touching on less goofy ideas, maybe not as silly. I’m happy to be politically incorrect, not just to piss people off, but I think it’s important that we allow real and open discussion on certain topics. I mean, it’s very hard to write a joke on gun control, but if you can pull it off, maybe you can say something that is valuable.” After the release of his second standup album, Comedy For Attractive People, in 2014, Kosta started his own podcast, titled Worst Birthday with Michael Kosta. He’s still working on the project, with all 42 episodes available on iTunes and the All Things Comedy Network. “I’ve been a part of so many worst birthdays, with girlfriends and ex-girlfriends,” he said. “I somehow always seem to screw up and make it their worst birthday. So I was motivated to share these funny, real worst birthdays with people, and hopefully we can just lower the expectation on birthdays.” n


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Restaurant listings arranged by region

Grand Rapids Angel’s Thai Café 136 Monroe Center NW. 616-454-9801 THAI. This downtown restaurant makes your order fresh, fast, and hot. You can order your entree with your choice of meat and spice level, or create your own. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Thai Steak and Yum Talay. Big O Café 80 Ottawa NW. 616-451-1887 ITALIAN. The downtown (and downstairs) restaurant has a reliable menu featuring pizza, pasta, and sandwiches that are Italian and Cuban influenced. A great spot for lunch or a quick glass of wine and plate of pasta before a downtown event. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Dead Head Vegetarian Pizza, Cuban dinners on Friday nights. Bistro Bella Vita 44 Grandville Ave. SW. 616-222-4600 ITALIAN. One of Grand Rapids’ best dining experiences, featuring Mediterraneaninspired country cuisine, a swanky yet comfortable downtown atmopshere and personable service. BBV’s culinary team creates authentic, housemade recipes made with locally grown produce, fresh seafood and rotisserie roasted meats. Specialty gluten-free menu, and can prepare custom dishes for lactose intolerant, vegetarian, and vegan diets. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Mediterranean Country Cuisine and Martinis.

Bombay Cuisine 1420 Lake Dr. SE 616-456-7055 INDIAN. Offering savory and subtly spiced dishes from northern India, Bombay Cuisine is a hot spot for those who like to add a little flavor to their lives. With a lunch buffet served every weekday, this restaurant provides its eaters with an array of traditional Indian cuisine. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days GO THERE FOR: Naan, Butter Chicken. Brewery Vivant 925 Cherry St. SE. 616-719-1604 BREWPUB. Housed in a former funeral chapel, Brewery Vivant crafts Belgian-style

Chapbook Café 2660 28th St. SE, Grand Rapids. 616-942-0595. CAFE. Take a break from browsing the shelves at Schuler Books with a homemade selection of soups, sandwiches and quiches. Soups are prepared in-house daily and served with fresh baked bread to accompany a small-but-elegant sandwich menu. Try a quiche or traditional Italian Panini grilled on fresh ciabatta bread, or for a quick bite, grab a bagel or scone from the dessert case. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days GO THERE FOR: Homemade soups and sandwiches CitySen Lounge 83 Monroe Center St. NW. 616-608-1720 AMERICAN. CitySen Lounge, located in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids, is a bar with a big-city feel, offering exciting options for lunch, dinner and breakfast on the weekends. The focus is on fresh ingredients and a full bar with local brews, wine and creative cocktails. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner (Breakfast on weekends). OPEN: Open 7 days GO THERE FOR: Daily happy hour The Corner Bar 31 N. Main St., Rockford 616-866-9866 AMERICAN. The downtown Rockford tavern serves a solid menu of burgers, burritos, salads and sandwiches, but it is best known for hot dogs — serving almost 1,000 per day. Its hot-dog-eating challenge has been conquered by more than a few, but it raises the question: Why would you want to consume Corner Bar dogs in a hurry rather than savor each bite? » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Hot dogs. The Cottage Bar 18 Lagrave Ave. SE. 616-454-9088 AMERICAN. The Cottage Bar is the oldest operating restaurant and bar in downtown Grand Rapids. Come in for the Cottage Burger, smothered with green olives, bacon, lettuce, tomato, hickory mayonnaise and Swiss and American cheeses. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Closed Sundays GO THERE FOR: The Cottage Burger. Divani 15 Ionia Ave. SW. 616-774-WINE. ECLECTIC. Divani offers a sophisticated environment, with chefs using Michigan-made ingredients in their creations, such as Dancing Goat Creamery, Otto’s Chicken, S&S Lamb, Ingraberg Farms, Mrs. Dog’s and Madcap. For the thirsty, the bar serves more than 300 types of liquor, 300 wines and 50 beers to complement each

handcrafted meal. » SERVING: Dinner after 4 p.m. OPEN ON: Everyday but Sunday. GO THERE FOR: Wine and Local Cuisine. Erb Thai 950 Wealthy St. SE #1A. (616) 356-2573. Additional locations at 4160 Lake Michigan Dr. NW, Suite B, and 820 Michigan St. NE. THAI. Food rooted in traditional Thai cuisine, but also made to accommodate health conscious and special diets. Not too strong, not too weak, like harmony and melody. Marketing representative Molly Rizor was a Thai virgin when she went and is now glad Erb Thai was her first experience. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Peanut Curry Noodles. Founders Brewing Company 235 Grandville SW. 616-776-1195 BREWPUB. A beer-lover’s paradise with a national reputation for flavorful, award-winning beers. Likewise, the brewpub’s menu consists mainly of flavorful handcrafted deli sandwiches that can stand up and complement the beers (or vice versa). » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Award-winning beer, handcrafted sandwiches. Ganders 4747 28th St. SE. 616-957-0100. AMERICAN. Ganders by Hilton Doubletree presents modern American menu options dedicated to locally grown ingredients representing the best farms, markets and food artisans of West Michigan. The restaurant also features a number of local craft beers on tap and by the bottle. The restaurant works directly with local breweries to create multi-course beer tasting menus featuring beer incorporated into every course. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 Days. GO THERE FOR: Fresh, locally grown ingredients and Michigan-made beer. Garage Bar & Grill 819 Ottawa Ave. NW. 616-454-0321 AMERICAN. This bar and grill serves up real food with fresh ingredients. Known for its all day happy hour with a $2 draft, $3 well drink and $4 glass of wine. Also look for the freshly-ground 7 oz. Garage Burger, served with hand-cut fries. The casual bar’s diverse menu ranges from soups and wedge salads to brisket sandwiches and hand-battered onion rings. A long list of icecold craft beers tops off the experience, with block parties on Wednesday throughout the summer. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Burgers, Chicken Tenders, Live Music. Gilly’s 20 Monroe NW. 616-356-2000 SEAFOOD. Gilly’s may not be the biggest name on the seafood block, but it takes second place to no one in regards to quality, freshness and inspiration. A

vast array of exotic fish is line-caught, flown in and prepared fresh daily. Every facet of Gilly’s speaks to impeccable attention to detail. » SERVING: Dinner OPEN ON: Closed on Sunday. GO THERE FOR: Fresh seafood at a great price. Graydon’s Crossing 1223 Plainfield NE. 616-726-8260 TAVERN. An authentic take on the English Pub, with a huge selection of beers on tap and a menu that includes classic English dishes like Fish & Chips, Shepherd’s Pie and Irish Stew, as well as Indian specialties like Tandoori Chicken and Tikka Masala. A great casual atmosphere for drinking and dining. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Beer and authentic pub food. G.R.P.D. (Grand Rapids Pizza and Delivery) 340 State St. SE. 616-454-9204 ITALIAN. The current location opened in 2004 as the first established pizzeria in Heritage Hill A common meeting spot for local folks, business professionals and college students, a place where one could gather for a quick meal or a reflective lunch. It offers both hand-tossed pizza and Chicago-style stuffed pizza, as well as pasta, sandwiches, salads, and wings. Online ordering, too. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Pizza. Grand Rapids Brewing Company 1 Ionia Ave SW. 616-458-7000 BREWPUB. Good for the environment and your palate, GRBC is Michigan’s first certified organic brewery and features a menu stocked with locally grown ingredients. With a diverse selection of beers on tap inspired by historical Grand Rapids figures and a hearty array of shareables, burgers/sandwiches, and entrees, this place represents the best of the brewery’s 120-year legacy. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Organic beer and locally sourced food. Grand Woods Lounge 77 Grandville Ave SW. 616-451-4300 AMERICAN. The restaurant’s interior exudes a warm, casual ambiance reminiscent of the great eateries of the Pacific Northwest; the outdoor porch features two outdoor bars and a fireplace. Menu stocked with affordable appetizers great for sharing, plus salads, sandwiches, and entrées. Lots of domestics and microbrews, plus an array of martinis including the “Woodstini,” a tasty mix of Stoli Orange Vodka, mandarin oranges and raspberries. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Cocktails. Harmony Brewing Company 1551 Lake Dr. SE (616) 233-0063 BREWPUB. Harmony features 12 craft-brewed beers in addition to signature root beer for the kiddos. Named one of the top-five brewpub menus in West Michigan by yours truly, Harmony offers 10" rustic wood-fired pizzas and great soups and sandwiches. Check out their new location, Harmony Hall, at 401 Stocking Ave. NW. » SERVING:

REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining Schedule

The B.O.B. 20 Monroe Ave. NW. (616) 356-2000 ECLECTIC. If you’re not sure what kind of dining you want, you can just head into The B.O.B., where you can choose from one of its several venues. Go into Gilly’s, where you can dine on seafood or B.O.B.’s Brewery, the restaurant’s in-house brewery. You can dress down for some pizza at Bobarino’s or dress it up for a steak at Judson’s Steakhouse. For after dinner, take in a show at Dr. Grins or enjoy live music at H.O.M.E. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Beer and numerous dining options.

ales with a focus on barrel aging. The brewpub also brings Belgian tradition when it comes to food, featuring French and Belgian-style meals to pair perfectly with the beer. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: The Burger

REVUE’s dining listings are compiled by staff and minions. This is not intended to be a comprehensive list of restaurants in the region. For an expanded list, be on the lookout for new and improved dining changes on our website, revuewm.com. The listings are not intended to be reviews of West Michigan restaurants, although we will inject some opinions into the listings based on staff experiences and personal preferences. To submit or to correct information in a dining listing, e-mail editor@ revuewm.com.

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Dining

Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Pizza and brews. The Holiday Bar 801 5th St. NW. (616) 456-9058 AMERICAN. Tucked smack dab in the “Heart of the Westside,” The Holiday Bar boasts a classic 40-foot Horseshoe bar, along with cheap eats and drinks, both served until 2 a.m., with specials happening daily. The Holiday Bar has a full menu that features pub fare like chicken strips, pierogis, battered homestyle mushrooms and more. It’s a great place to watch the game, listen to music or just hang out with friends. » SERVING Lunch Dinner. OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Cheap eats and drinks. HopCat 25 Ionia SW. 616-451-4677 TAVERN. Rated the 3rd best beer bar on the planet by Beer Advcoate, HopCat’s spin on its food is thus: “It’s the food your Mom would feed you, if your Mom loved beer.” That’s specifically true for HopCat’s beerbar cheese, cheese ale soup and porter braised beef, but mom would also love the Hippie wrap (it’s vegetarian), the crack fries (not real crack), and Killer Mac and Cheese. Because what mom doesn’t like mac and cheese? » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Widest variety of beers, crack fries. Marie Catrib’s 1001 Lake Dr. 616-454-4020 ECLECTIC. The East Hills eatery makes everything from scratch with local ingredients, and there are plenty of vegetarian and vegan options. Get there

early for lunch, as there is almost always a wait. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Salads, soups and sandwiches. Mixology 235 Louis St. NW. 616-242-1448 LOUNGE. Casual, upscale service and atmosphere allows guests to relax and enjoy the city views. This type of service allows guests to complete business tasks while still enjoying the accessibility to great food and libations. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days GO THERE FOR: Specialty cocktails. O’Toole’s 448 Bridge St. 616-742-6095 PUB. This West Side pub offers delicious and outrageously topped burgers, as well as an extensive beer selection, and arguably, the best happy hour specials in town. If food is not your passion, this is a prime place to kick off your Sunday Funday with its $3 Absolut Bloody Mary bar. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 Days. GO THERE FOR: Gourmet burgers, Bloody Mary bar. One Trick Pony 136 E. Fulton. 616-235-7669 AMERICAN. One Trick Pony unveiled a new menu last April with the tagline “Fresh, Local Fare with a Beat.” The restaurant is a part of FarmLink and supports local growers and remains focused on sustainability. Connected to the Cottage Bar, the menu spans pizza, salads, homemade soups, smoked prime rib and more. Pair the food

with live music, which OTP features weekly. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Eclectic pizzas. Pearl Street Grill 310 Pearl St NW. 616-235-1342 AMERICAN. Dine in a relaxing environment where kids eat free and the chef uses local vendors and suppliers. Conveniently located in downtown Grand Rapids, Pearl Street Grill offers nightly happy hour specials that include signature cocktails and Michigan beer, as well as a $10 burger and beer special, $5 pizzas and more. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner. OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Late night specials.

primarily wine-centered menu. » SERVING: Lunch, Dinner OPEN ON: Closed on Sunday GO THERE FOR: Wine and food pairings, charcuterie, happy hour. River City Saloon 1152 Leonard St. NW. 616-451-0044 AMERICAN. Combine your tastes of live music and filling food at River City Saloon. The restaurant and bar has Mexican options, burgers, salads and more. On the weekends, indulge in any of these menu items or a couple drinks while listening to some local music by bands like Hey Marco, OTC, Litt Up, Drop 35 and more. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days GO THERE FOR: Wednesday olive burger special

The Pita House 1450 Wealthy SE, 3730 28th Street, 4533 Ivanrest SW (Grandville). 616-454-1171 MEDITERRANEAN. Gyros so big you can club someone with them, the smoothest hummus in town and other Mediterranean fare, including kibbe, kafta and falafel. Additional locations on 28th Street and Kalamazoo SE. Sandwiches are made to order with fresh vegetables and ingredients. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Fresh pita wraps.

Rockwell-Republic 45 S. Division Ave. 616-551-3563 ECLECTIC. Menu offerings range from sushi to burgers and everything in between. The craft cocktail menu runs the gamut from classics like the Manhattan to more modern concoctions and the beer and wine menus are nicely curated. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Specialty cocktails, broad menu, lively atmosphere.

Reserve Wine & Food 201 Monroe Ave. NW (616) 855-9463 ECLECTIC. With 102 wines available by the glass and more than 300 by the bottle, paired with an ever-changing food menu influenced by West Michigan grown foods, Reserve promises diners a unique experience. Cocktails and craft beers add depth to the

San Chez Bistro 38 West Fulton St. 616-774-8272 SPANISH/ECLECTIC. San Chez is both a café and a Tapas Bistro, now both housed in the same room. This is a social setting where people can remember the one rule of kindergarten: sharing. Featuring small, delicious dishes, San Chez can satiate your desire for

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Great food / Great drinks / Great times

San Chez has been serving meals that people love to share since 1992, and we’re bringing back 24 of the best-of-the-best dishes to enjoy again. Follow us on Facebook to see our two throwback features every month — for a limited time only!

Located at 38 W. Fulton St. (2 blocks East of Van Andel Arena)

sanchezbistro.com • 616.774.8272

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G r a n D

r a p i D s

/

D o w n to w n

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taste this

Veiled Vegetarian Gems An All-Day Guide to Finding Amazing Meatless Options In Unexpected Eateries by Troy Reimink

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Field of Greens Pizza at Mitten Brewing

These are unquestionably good times to eat a plant-based diet in West Michigan, where the vegetarian options used to consist of Gaia Cafe and... Gaia Cafe. The bummer of the beloved restaurant’s unceremonious 2014 shuttering has been cushioned by the growing popularity of meatless cuisine throughout Grand Rapids’ dining scene in recent years. In Grand Rapids alone, several vegetarian-friendly restaurants have firmly established themselves. There’s Marie Catrib’s (1001 Lake Dr. SE), with its wide variety of meatless sandwiches, lunch entrees and vegan treats. There’s the prestigious Grove (919 Cherry St. SE), which gives its vegetarian menu equal billing. There’s Stella’s (53 Commerce Ave. SW), whose veggie sandwiches, salads and vegan sides are presented with as much attitude as its nationally renowned burgers. There’s Bartertown Diner (6 Jefferson Ave. SE) and its neighbor, CVLT Pizza, which have turned the block into a hotbed of earth-conscious, vegan-friendly eating. There’s the dizzying array of vegetarian and vegan sandwiches at the sibling delis: Cherry (834 Cherry St. SE) and Two Beards (38 Commerce Ave. SW). And of course there’s the all-vegan Little Africa (956 E. Fulton St., Grand Rapids). I would take a bullet for Little Africa. But if you can’t always convince your friends or significant other to patronize these hot spots, you can still find good vegetarian food in unexpected places. Our dining excursions throughout the city have revealed vegetarian riches at restaurants that do not specialize in meatless cuisine. Consider this your guide to off-brand, below-radar veggie cuisine in Grand Rapids, broken down by meal.

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Breakfast

Wolfgang’s - The Dewey ($7.99)

1530 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids; mattwolfgang.com

Cherie Inn - Vegan Sweet Potato Hash ($7.95)

969 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids; cherieinn. com

Go on a weekday if you want to avoid standing in a line down the sidewalk leading into this beloved Eastown breakfast spot. My longtime favorite is the Dewey, a breakfast burrito loaded with black beans, hash browns, scrambled eggs, cheese and guacamole.

This cozy, oft-overlooked Cherry Hill restaurant offers a half-dozen vegetarian omelets, plus inventive takes on waffles and pancakes. The potato hash, which includes red peppers, portobello mushrooms and broccoli, is a battery charge that won’t weigh you down all morning.

Anna’s House - Tempeh Power Bowl ($12.50)

The Westsider Cafe - #3 Skillet ($7.75)

Multiple locations; annashouseus.com

1180 Walker Ave. NW, Grand Rapids

My only complaint about this Popeye-like dish (tempeh bacon, brown rice, steamed kale, dried cherries, two eggs) was that I had to choose it over the hippie hash and sweet potato/brussel sprouts hash – the other vegetarian standouts on Anna’s extensive breakfast menu.

The West Side of Grand Rapids is not known for its vegetarian-friendliness, but this skillet of scrambled eggs, potatoes, sauteed vegetables and tomatoes — one of the only meatless options on the menu — is hearty and unpretentious. Continued on page 66 ➤


get some ( beer ) gardening in.

Sun - Wed: 11AM - 12AM

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining Schedule

– 40+ Beers On Tap – Full-Service Restaurant – Live Music & Special Events – free Tours DOWNTOWN & COMSTOCK BREWERIES – general store & homebrew supplies Th - Sat: 11AM - 2AM

355 E. Kalamazoo Ave., Kalamazoo, MI 49007 269.382.2332

bellsbeer.com REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

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Vegetarian Dining, continued from page 64

Lunch

Tacos El Cunado – Tempeh Taco Duo ($6.25) 435 Ionia Ave. SW, Grand Rapids; tacosgr. com

This was a coin toss versus the cactus tacos at Taqueria San Jose, but the Cunado location at the Downtown Market gets the crown for its tempeh, king of the soy proteins.

Maru Sushi & Grill – Simply Green roll ($8)

927 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids; marurestaurant.com

You know a sushi restaurant with a roll called “Sexy Bacon” is taking creative liberties with the concept. Some of Maru’s vegetarian specialty rolls are similarly over-the-top, but the Simply Green roll — containing cucumber, avocado, kampyo and baby greens — splits the difference between excessive and minimal. (marurestaurant.com)

Thai Express – Gang Panang Tofu Curry ($9.45) 4317 Kalamazoo Ave. SE, Kentwood; thaiexpressgr.com

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This punchy curry option — bell pepper, sweet basil leaves and broccoli cooked in coconut milk — is my favorite lunch choice from a restaurant located within a cluster of diverse options near the corner of Kalamazoo Avenue and 44th Street SE.

Dinner

Chez Olga – Creole Tofu ($11.99)

1441 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids; chezolga.com

If pressed, I’d list this masterful Haitian restaurant as my favorite Grand Rapids dining spot — so distinctive, so unassuming, so unsympathetic to your tolerance of brain-roasting heat. Think carefully when requesting the spiciness level on this entree of sauteed tofu, peppers and onions in thick coconut sauce over rice.

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Mitten Brewing Co. – Field of Greens Pizza ($13.99)

527 Leonard St. SW, Grand Rapids; mittenbrewing.com

The West Side’s best bar for Tigers fanatics serves a rich variety of specialty pizzas, my favorite of which is a vegetarian pie loaded with enough house-made pesto, seasoned artichoke hearts, broccoli, green peppers, portobello mushrooms, fresh tomatoes, feta cheese, red onions, fresh basil and mozzarella to unite herbivores and carnivores.

Tempeh Power Bowl at Anna’s House

Slows Bar-B-Q – The Genius ($9)

435 Ionia Ave. SW, Grand Rapids; slowsbarbq. com It’s annoying when people praise vegetarian food by noting how well it imitates meat, but dang, the still-fairly-new Slows location in the Downtown Market serves a meatless sandwich — soy protein doused in a sweet, bold sauce and topped with coleslaw and pickle — that stacks up admirably against the famous barbecued fare.

Dessert

Brewery Vivant – Vegan Cookies and Cream ($5)

925 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids; breweryvivant.com

The Belgian-themed brewery offers a dairyfree delicacy — cashew cream between two gingersnap cookies, served amidst a decorative pomegranate molasses that’s sprinkled with popped sorghum.

Late Night

Jonny B’z – Veggie Dog with fries ($6)

636-638 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids; jonnybz.com

Jonny B’z has rescued me on more weekend nights than I should admit publicly. I’m lucky they serve the best veggie dog in Grand Rapids and always have vegetarian chili ready to top it. I always add haystack onions, coleslaw, pickles and mustard.

Vegan Sweet Potato Hash at Cherie Inn

Georgio’s Pizza – Veggie Deluxe slice ($4.19)

Taco Bell – Seven-layer Burrito ($2.79)

The small Midwestern chain’s Grand Rapids location stays open late and, situated on Ionia Avenue, offers some phenomenal peoplewatching if you get there shortly before the after-bar rush. Lesser-known fact — more than one-third of its by-the-thick-slice menu is vegetarian.

I joke, but only sort of. Grand Rapids lands on numerous lists, but “best late-night food options” has never been one of them. If you’re a vegetarian or vegan who’s ever been in a pinch, you might already know that Taco Bell, despite its failings on many dietary and aesthetic fronts, boasts a remarkably good meatless menu. n

15 Ionia Ave. SW #150, Grand Rapids; georgiosgourmetpizza.com

(address/website withheld, because… come on)


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Featured Restaurants during Restaurant Week August 10-21 Bistro Bella Vita

Grove

bistrobellavita.com

groverestaurant.com

One Trick Pony onetrick.biz

The Cottage Bar

Pearl Street Grill

cottagebar.biz

pearlstreetgrillgr.com

Ganders

SpeakEZ Lounge

doubletreegrandrapids.com/ ganders

speakezlounge.com

The Green Well thegreenwell.com

Wheelhouse Kitchen & Cocktails committothemitt.com

A new restaurant for Southeast Grand Rapids. At Ganders, we’re passionate about Michigan.

616-957-1111

28th Street SE at Patterson Ave. doubletreegrandrapids.com/ganders

MICHIGAN GROWN MICHIGAN MADE MICHIGAN BREWED Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner

REVUEWM.COM | August 2016 |

Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining Schedule

CitySen Lounge cityflatshotel.com

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by Joe Boomgaard, Revue Beer Czar

Beer

Crushable Lagers

Craft beer comes full circle

A Bell’s Quinannan Falls

lthough craft b rewe rs once mali g n e d mass - pro d u c e d American lagers as “fizzy, yellow beer,” many have started to embrace the traditional German styles as consumers seek out sessionable options. Let’s face it: Sometimes you just want a flavorful, crushable beer. When it’s 90 degrees and humid, a barrel-aged imperial stout may not be your best option. Lagers are the so-called lawnmower beers, but that doesn’t mean they have to forego nuance and flavor, as this sampling proved. Lagers are not all one homogenous style, either. American Pale Lagers like Bell’s Quinannan Falls Special Lager are yellow and carbonated and will have a mix of malty flavors and the typical bitterness, in this case from dry hopping with Simcoe hops.

Quinannan Falls Special Lager Beer

Bell’s Brewing Co., Galesburg, Mich. 6.5% ABV The piney hops were more than apparent in this beer’s aroma and flavor, which was balanced nicely with malty notes. Clearly a well-refined, drinkable beer that’s sure to have cross-over appeal to hopheads. A refreshing, crisp lager. Score: 80.2

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Perrin Q-Stew Light

Booze Briefs n Uncle John’s Hard Cider recently took home three awards for its ciders, including a second place for Russet Cider in The Royal Bath & West Show in the U.K., a Chairman’s Award for Baldwin Hard Cider at the Dan Berger International Cider Championship

68 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016

Purple Gang Pilsner

Atwater Brewery, Detroit 5.5% ABV This beer looks, smells and tastes traditional, clearly a nod to some

held in California, and the Best in Class Award for Apple/Apricot Hard Cider at the Great Lakes International Cider & Perry Competition.

n Grand Rapids-based Mitten Brewing Co. has expanded with a taproom in Northport, Mich. at 112 W. Nagonaba St., the former location of Northport Brewing Co.

old-style hops that have a minerally or herbal flavors and the bready malts. It pours slightly hazy. The sweet malts at the front eventually give way to the earthy hops. Nice creamy body for a lager. Score: 79.8

Q-Stew Light Lager

Perrin Brewing Co., Comstock Park, Mich. 3.6% ABV Clearly, the brewers focused on the aroma (and flavor) with this beer. It looks like champagne and smells tropical, with heavy notes of mango and fruit loops that carry over to the taste. While it’s a bit thin, this would

n Bell’s Brewery Inc. will release its Roundhouse India Red Ale for the first time in cans this year, starting in September. Previously, the beer had been a draft-only product. It’s brewed with Michigan honey, “substantial amounts” of hops, and toasted and caramel specialty malts.

Meanwhile, a Czech Pilsner such as Purple Gang from Atwater is more straw colored with a traditional spicy herbal hop characteristic. (Note: Some of the traditional lagers have slight corn or vegetable flavors from the use of Pilsner malts. Dimethyl sulfides, or DMS, would be a fault in some beers, but is acceptable in low levels in this style.) From there, the style breaks down even further into more traditional German and Czech styles, and whatever Americanized craft concoction brewers are coming up with these days. That was the case with Q-Stew, a fruity light lager from Perrin Brewing Co. that’s dry-hopped with Citra, Mosaic and experimental hops. Interestingly, Revue’s blind tasting of eight Michiganmade lagers found a strong set of beers, with the top five examples separated by just 1.8 points. Here are the results.

be perfectly crushable in summer. However, one reviewer thought the flavor profile to be too weird for a lager. Score: 78.8

Atwater’s Lager

Atwater Brewery, Detroit 5% ABV Here’s another beer that seems very tied to the traditional German style. The flavors are rather muted, but lean on caramel sweetness and a grassy or herbal finish. It’s nothing too crazy, but is perfectly drinkable. Score: 78.4

Lager of the Lakes

Bell’s Brewing Co., Galesburg, Mich. 5% ABV This beer seems rather unremarkable at first, but opens up to reveal an inherent complexity. It starts with grainy, bready and herbal aromas. The flavor is all about a balance of the sweet malts and herbal hop notes. A truly refreshing beer that would pair well with foods. Score: 77.8

Others tasted: Lake Brothers Lager

Lake Brothers Beer Co., Detroit 5% ABV Accessible for fans of mass-produced lagers, yet rather basic among the beers tasted here. Some reviewers called it out for being too bitter. Score: 67.6

Euchre

Arbor Brewing Co., Ypsilanti 5.5% ABV This beer leans heavily on the malty side, but the flavor is less-thanassertive — which could be good, depending on what you’re seeking in a beer. Score: 66.8

Sparkle

Petoskey Brewing Co., Petoskey 4.5% ABV After the tasting, we found out the beer was packaged more than five months beforehand and decided it wouldn’t be fair to rate an old beer. Watch your dates when buying beers since certain styles like lagers do not age well. (Note to store owners: Purge your old inventory! Selling old products to consumers can taint their perception of craft beer.) Score: N/A n


ON TAP NOW FOR A LIMITED TIME! Brewer John's kettle sour gose brewed with hibiscus and yuzu fruit, giving this light beer a blush hue, mildly tart flavor and hints of citrus and tea. A thirst quenching Summer session ale.

THE B.O.B. • 20 MONROE AVE GRAND RAPIDS • 616.356.2000 THEBOBSBREWERY.COM

CAKE WALK vAniLLA CrEAm ALE

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CAKE WALK - When life is going smoothly, you call it a Cakewalk. When we brew

a light and easy drinking cream ale with real Madagascar Vanilla beans, we also call it a Cake Walk. Cool! Cake Walk’s floral aroma complements the addition of corn in our malt bill to yield a pleasing creamy mouth feel, followed by a subtle sweet vanilla finish. rightbrainbrewery.com

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Dining

CROP DUSTER CITRA IPA

variety. It’s also a hidden secret for breakfast in downtown Grand Rapids, offering a great start to any day. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 Days. GO THERE FOR: Tapas, Breakfast, Sandwiches

NOW IN CANS!

The Score 5301 Northland Dr. NE. 616-301-0600 SPORTS BAR. The Score is the perfect combination for beer and sports lovers. More than 70 TVs carry all major sports packages and there are 128 beers on tap. During the summer months, enjoy live entertainment seven days a week, outdoor dining (complete with real palm trees) and volleyball tournaments. The menu ranges from burgers to pizzas and wings tossed in one of The Score’s 16 sauces. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner .OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Lots of beer options.

17 S. 2ND ST. GRAND HAVEN, MI 616.414.7822

HAND CRAFTED TRADITIONAL ALES AND LAGERS

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W W W. G R A N D A R M O RY B R EW I N G . C O M

GREAT FOOD. GREAT BEER. CASUAL DINING.

BREAKFAST ANY TIME.

CRANKER’S RESTAURANT & BREWERY 454 68th St SW, Grand Rapids 616-827-1919

CRANKER’S BREWERY 213 S State St, Big Rapids 231-796-1919

CRANKER’S RESTAURANT & BREWERY 1207 E Pickard Rd, Mount Pleasant 989-779-1919

CRANKERSBREWERY.COM

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Six.One.Six. 235 Louis St. NW. 616-242-1448 ECLECTIC. Market-inspired menus, sweeping views and progressive rhythms combine to create a memorable dining experience. The dishes tempt taste buds and is the perfect spot for foodies. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 Days GO THERE FOR: Variety and being seen. Stella’s Lounge 53 Commerce Ave. 616-356-2700 TAVERN. The Chicago-style whiskey bar has more than 200 varieties of distilled spirits, old-school video games, and a menu filled with vegetarian and vegan bar food — and stuffed burgers. Did we mention you can sip cans of PBR and other classic beers out of a mason jar? » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Whiskey, vegetarian and vegan bar food.

Wolfgang’s Restaurant 1530 Wealthy St. SE. 616-454-5776 BREAKFAST. The bustling Eastown breakfast spot is home to some of the heartiest breakfast dishes and funniest menu descriptions. Courteous staff never fails to offer a cup of coffee to go after we’ve finished breakfast. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Breakfast all day.

Kalamazoo/Battle Creek Arcadia Brewing Co. 103 Michigan Ave., Battle Creek. 269-963-9520 BREWPUB. You’ll find some of the usual suspects on the Battle Creek brewpub’s menu, including wood-fired pizzas and some of the best barbecue in the region. But you’ll also find some delightful surprises — Osso Bucco in a brewpub?! — on the menu, courtesy of award-winning Chef Sean Kelly. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Handcrafted ales and barbecue. Bell’s Eccentric Cafe 355 E. Kalamazoo Ave. 269-382-2332 BREWPUB. The Eccentric Café features eclectic fare sourced from sustainable local ingredients, inspired by and designed to complement Bell’s award-winning beers. On tap, you’ll find 30-40 different beers, many exclusive to the Café and brewed right next door at the original brewery. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: The Beer

Terra GR 1429 Lake Dr. 616-301-0998 AMERICAN. Terra boasts fresh, healthy ingredients in every dish. The restaurant doesn’t feature one menu, either. It offers a Saturday and Sunday brunch menu, as well as menus for lunch, dinner, dessert, beverages, wine, happy hour and kids. The food is inspired by the seasons and ingredients come straight from one of Michigan’s many farms. » SERVING: Brunch Lunch Dinner. OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Fresh foods with ingredients from regional growers.

Bravo! 5402 Portage Rd., Kalamazoo 269-344-7700 ITALIAN. Muchlauded restaurant has earned its stripes over 23 years as one of the region’s best dining experiences, including a 3-star rating in the 2010 Forbes Travel Guide. The Tuscan-inspired cuisine is spectacular, the atmosphere comfortable and intimate, and the service first-rate. Also brews its own beer in small batches for pairings with menu offerings. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. (Closed Sat. lunch) GO THERE FOR: A great dining experience.

Wheelhouse Kitchen & Cocktails 67 Ottawa Ave. SW, Grand Rapids. 616-226-3319 AMERICAN. Nestled into the ground floor of Grand Rapids’ new Arena Place tower, this casual/fine dining bistro is all about refined, locally-sourced versions of classic dishes in a modern, yet intimate, atmosphere. With an 85-seat porch, Wheelhouse wants to provide a true community experience. » SERVING: Lunch, Dinner. OPEN ON: 7 days (Sat.–Sun. dinner only). GO THERE FOR: Tartines, outdoor dining.

Central City Taphouse 359 S. Kalamazoo Mall. (269) 492-0100 TAPHOUSE. If Central City doesn’t have the kind of beer you want on tap, you’ll probably find it with the 75+ bottles. OH, you say you’re not a beer drinker? Well, Central City offers 20 wine ‘taps’ and a full bar. If you’re not the drinking type, that’s cool too. There are a number of food options to pick from, including a raw menu, a pizza menu and the all-day menu, which features burgers, soups and entrees. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Diverse beverage selection.

The Winchester 648 Wealthy St. SE. 616-451-4969 ECLECTIC. This upscale bar and restaurant feels like it was plucked from Chicago’s Bucktown or Logan Square neighborhoods. A comfortable spot to drink or dine, with an always evolving menu featuring shared plates, salads and inventive sandwiches and specials. When available, some produce items are harvested from their garden across the street. » SERVING: Brunch Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: DIY Bloody Mary Bar Special, Yucca Fries.

Fieldstone Grille 3970 W. Centre St., Portage. 269-321-8480 AMERICAN. Lodge-retreat atmosphere overlooking the Moors Golf Club natural wetlands. The “field-to-plate” menu features burgers, pizzas, steaks and some eclectic items like quail. Try the FSG chips, a combination of potato, beet and sweet potato chips. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Blue Burger, Almond Crusted Walleye, FSG Chips.


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Food Dance 401 E. Michigan Ave. 269-382-1888 AMERICAN. Food Dance is committed to building a thriving and sustainable local food system, supporting artisans who practice craft food processes. It’s about the connection with people and places the food comes from. Offering breakfast, lunch and dinner, private dining space, catering and delivery, while an on-site market offers humanely raised meats, artisan cheeses, fresh bread and pastries. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Fresh Local Foods. Martell’s 3501 Greenleaf Blvd., Kalamazoo. 269-375-2105 AMERICAN. Tucked away in a quiet neighborhood that overlooks Willow Lake, Martell’s offers casual ambiance and an expansive menu with steaks, prime rib and other comfort food entrées like Italian style meatloaf and pork shank. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days (Sundays-dinner only) GO THERE FOR: Quiet casual ambiance.

Schedule Dining Sights | Sounds | Scene

Old Burdicks Bar & Grill 100 W. Michigan Ave. (269) 226-3192 AMERICAN. Old Burdick’s Bar & Grill features tasty sandwiches, burgers, salads and entrees, as well as a great selection of cocktails, wines and beers. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner. OPEN: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: The Old Burdick Burger.

Old Dog Tavern 402 East Kalamazoo Ave., Kalamazoo. 269-381-5677 AMERICAN. The food at Old Dog Tavern is just about as eclectic as the entertainment offered. The menu has so much on it that it might even bring some harmony between picky and adventurous eaters. » SERVING: Brunch Lunch Dinner. OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: The eclectic menu options. Olde Peninsula 200 E. Michigan Ave., Kalamazoo 269-343-2739 BREWPUB. Downtown brewpub serves up the expected (e.g., steaks, ribs), the authentic (e.g., London Broil) and some pleasant surprises (e.g., extensive vegetarian offerings, Italian food). Offers a range of beers brewed on the premises and served on tap, plus a full bar. Check out the seasonal porters on tap right now, including the Vanilla Porter (5.5% ABV) and Stout Chocula (5.25% ABV). » SERVING: Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Beer-B-Que Ribs, London Broil.

Union Cabaret & Grille 125 S. Burdick St., Kalamazoo. 269-384-6756 AMERICAN. A partnership with Western Michigan University, Union features eclectic food and cocktails, plus live jazz music performed by WMU faculty and students. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Closed Sunday. GO THERE FOR: Portabella Fries, Bloody Maries with infused vodkas.

Now Offering Brunch Saturday & Sunday, 8 am Brunch & Bloody Mary Bar Daily lunch and dinner chalkboard specials Check out our full menu at olddogtavern.com

(269) 381-5677 | 402 E. Kalamazoo Ave., Kalamazoo MI 49007

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Lakeshore 8th Street Grille 20 W. 8th St., Holland. 616-392-5888 AMERICAN. This eclectic grille offers a mix of draft and bottled craft beers and a variety of pub classics and new, American beer-inspired dishes. Happy hour includes half-off appetizers and $1 off drafts. » SERVING: Lunch, Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: 28 taps of craft beer.

Bil-Mar Restaurant 1223 S. Harbor St., Holland. 616-842-5920 AMERICAN. A destination restaurant for more than 60 years. Dazzling sunsets and an all-American menu featuring fresh seafood and hand-cut steaks. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Lake perch, lobster strudel, prime rib. CityVu Bistro 61 E 7th Street, Holland. 616-796-2114 AMERICAN. A distinctive rooftop dining experience in downtown Holland with fresh gourmet flatbreads and an array of seasonal entrees. The contemporary-yet-casual atmosphere, full bar and unique menus make it the ideal spot for lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch. » SERVING: Breakfast Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days GO THERE FOR: flatbreads

Everyday People Cafe 11 Center St., Douglas. 269-857-4240 AMERICAN. REVUE Publisher Brian Edwards calls Everyday People Café his favorite restaurant along the lakeshore. The atmosphere is casual and upbeat, the staff knows its stuff about wine and food, and the seasonal menu is filled with meticulously prepared, eclectic comfort food like Butternut Squash Risotto, Braised Lamb Shank and Ahi Tuna. A great wine list and tremendous desserts. » SERVING: Brunch (Weekends) Lunch Dinner OPEN: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Gorgonzola Pork Chop, Greek Salad with Grandma Gigi’s Dressing (Edwards).

Fricano’s Pizza Tavern 1400 Fulton Ave., Grand Haven. 616-842-8640 ITALIAN. Claims to be the first pizzeria in Michigan, but customers care less about its longevity than the amazingly crispy thin crust and simple ingredients atop its much-lauded pies. Four other locations around West MI, including Comstock Park, Muskegon, Holland and Kalamazoo. » SERVING: Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Pizza. Hops at 84 East 84 East 8th St., Holland. 616-396-8484 TAVERN. A beautiful taproom sporting reclaimed wood and copper. With 60 beer taps, two English beer machines, eight wine taps and an extensive spirits menu, Hops has a special beverage for everyone. The menu includes brick-oven pizza, burgers and sandwiches, chicken wings and a rotating special of the day. There are


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Scene | Sounds | Sights Dining Schedule

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Dining

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also gluten-free options, including their famous pizza. Several large-screen TVs adorn the restaurant if you’re in the mood to watch the big game. » SERVING: Lunch, Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days GO THERE FOR: Craft beer and brick-oven pizza.

love affair with Phil’s. Eclectic menu is all over the place, but in a good way, and the staff is super-friendly. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: Open 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Portabella Mushroom Fries.

Kirby House 2 Washington, Grand Haven. 616-846-3299 AMERICAN. The Grill Room doesn’t pretend to be anything other than what it is — a chop house and grill. Atmosphere is warm with Tuscan tones, atmospheric lighting, classically cool music and leather booths. The menu focuses on steaks and chops and makes no apologies. The steaks are prime USDA choice, the seafood selection immaculate, and the wine and beverage list is top shelf. Relaxed and unpretentious atmosphere. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Nightlife.

Salt of the Earth 114 East Main St., Fennville. 269-561-7258 AMERICAN. Salt of the Earth is a farm-to-table-inspired restaurant, bar, and bakery located in the heart of SW Michigan farm country in Fennville. Focuses on fresh, seasonal, and local ingredients whenever possible. Also serves up live music on weekends. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: House made rustic cuisine.

New Holland Brewing Company 66 E. 8th St., Holland. 616-355-6422 BREWPUB. One of West MI’s premier microbreweries serves up better than average pub grub, including savory sandwiches chock full of Michigan ingredients, plus a seasonal entree menu. Also try their artisan spirits. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Mad Hatter IPA, Dragon’s Milk. Phil’s Bar & Grille 215 Butler St., Saugatuck. 269-857-1555 AMERICAN. This cozy (some would say “small”) bar and grille in downtown Saugatuck is one of those unassuming spots you might easily overlook, though locals in Saugatuck will tell you about their

Open for Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner: 7 days a week

Did you know? Thank you,

West Michigan!

Schedule Dining Sights | Sounds | Scene

BEST WINERY

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74 | REVUEWM.COM | August 2016

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To submit or to correct information in a dining listing, e-mail editor@revuewm.com.

send us your events

Note Worthy Dining.

Downtown Grand Rapids

Saugatuck Brewing Company 2948 Blue Star Highway. 269-857-7222 BREWPUB. Enjoy a traditional Irish-style pub that features quality beer, wine, food and service. Try one of 12 unique brews that are served in the pub and bottled and distributed throughout the Midwest. » SERVING: Lunch Dinner OPEN ON: 7 days. GO THERE FOR: Beer in a family friendly pub environment.

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Grand Haven Tasting Room 327 N. Beacon Blvd. Grand Haven, MI | 616.844.1709

revuewm.com/ calendar

Wine Tasting Daily! Berrien Springs Winery Vineyard 533 E. Lemon Creek Rd. Berrien Springs, MI | 269.471.1321

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August 2016, Revue Magazine  

Check out our Best of the West Winners Issue! REVUE is West Michigan's most comprehensive free monthly entertainment guide covering music, a...

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