Food Service & Agriculture, Retail, and Travel & Tourism

Restaurant Week expands to 12 days

More than 60 eateries already have agreed to participate.

June 20, 2014
| By Pat Evans |
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Restaurant Week
Participating restaurants will be serving a three-course meal for $28, or in some cases, two meals for $28. Courtesy Thinkstock

(As seen on WZZM TV 13) Restaurant Week is making a return for 12 days in August.

The event now has an added day for patrons to enjoy three-course meals at more than 60 restaurants across West Michigan. Restaurant Week Grand Rapids 2014 runs Aug. 13-24, with a theme of “Perfect Pairings” to help highlight the beverages that go well with the menus.

“’Perfect Pairings’ are different beverages that pair well with different foods,” said Janet Korn, senior vice president of Experience Grand Rapids, in a release. “Many of the participating restaurants will offer suggestions for wine, beer, spirits and coffee pairings on their menus.”

Several “exclusive partners” will help area restaurants with the pairing mission, including Founders Brewing Co., wineries Black Star Farms, Fenn Valley and Simi, Ferris Coffee and Nut, and Woodford Reserve. Beverage selections won’t be limited to those companies.

More than 60 restaurants have signed up to offer an individual three-course meal for $28, or a pair of three-course meals for $28. The menus will be announced in mid-July; the public can view them at restaurantweekgr.com beginning July 14.

Participating restaurants include:

Amore Trattoria Italiana, The Acorn Grill at Thousand Oaks Golf Course, Applebees (seven locations), Brann’s on Leonard, Bistro Bella Vita, Bagger Dave’s, Bull’s Head Tavern, Bobarino’s at The B.O.B., B.O.B.’s Brewery, Blue Water Grill, Brewery Vivant, Bar Divani, Buffalo Wild Wings, CitySen Lounge, Cork Wine & Grille, Charley’s Crab, Cottage Bar and Restaurant, Cygnus 27, El Granjero Mexican Grill, FireRock Grille, Flat River Grill, Fajita Republic, Grove, Green Restaurant, Grand Rapids Brewing Co., Grand Woods Lounge, The Green Well, Gilly’s at The B.O.B., HopCat, Houlihan’s, Judson’s Steakhouse, Kitchen 67, Licari’s Sicilian Pizza Kitchen, Lindo Mexico, Mitten Brewing Co., Mangiamo, McFadden’s Restaurant & Saloon, One Trick Pony, Osta’s Lebanese Cuisine, Peppino’s Downtown, Pietro’s Italian Restaurant, Pearl Street Grill, Rush Creek Bistro, Red’s on the River, Red Jet Café, Rose’s, Rockwell Republic, Railside Golf Club, River House Ada, Reserve Wine & Food, Stella’s Lounge, SpeakEZ Lounge, San Chez Bistro, six.one.six, Shiraz Grille, Spinnaker, Timber’s Inn Restaurant & Tavern, Terra GR, Tavern on the Square, and Z’s Bar & Restaurant.

The week also will benefit local cooking students. Since 2010, one dollar from every Restaurant Week meal sold has gone to scholarships at Secchia Institute for Culinary Education at Grand Rapids Community College. Nearly $75,000 has been donated to the scholarship fund.

“Restaurant Week is paying it forward to students to help expand and enrich the culinary talent within Grand Rapids,” said Doug Small, president of Experience Grand Rapids. “We love the fact that Secchia Institute for Culinary Education is one of the top 20 culinary schools in the nation. As a community we all benefit from that talent. Many of the students and graduates of the Secchia Institute for Culinary Education program remain in the community and work in the hospitality industry.”

Two additional features will take place during Restaurant Week. The Grand Cocktail competition will kick off at participating restaurants, which includes the Best Summer Cocktail and the Best Old-Fashioned using Woodford Reserve bourbon. The public can vote for their favorite cocktails, but there also will be a judged competition with the winner receiving a two-day, all-expenses-paid trip for two to Woodford Reserve in Kentucky.

There’s also a Perfect Pairings Instagram Photo Contest. Using the hashtag #RWGR, users can submit photos. Those with the most “likes” will receive restaurant gift certificates.

“Area restaurants that participate in Restaurant Week are able to expose new customers to their fantastic offerings, which helps them develop a new audience on a regular basis,” Small said.

“This is great for our local economy and our leisure travel and convention visitors, too. The local restaurant industry comes together to showcase their culinary talent and they also enjoy competing against each other at the Grand Cocktail Competition. It’s a fun event for the Greater Grand Rapids community. Restaurant Week also helps support a great organization — the Secchia Institute for Culinary Education at GRCC.”

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