Butcher’s Union

Two words: Meat & Whiskey! That is what you will find at Butcher’s Union located at 438 Bridge St Downtown Grand Rapids. The deliciously fancy cocktails, super tasty food, and comfortable outdoor seating all make it the perfect place to be. Their mission is  – “to offer delicious food, inspired cocktails and an unrivaled whiskey collection while creating a culture of warmth and belonging, where everyone is welcome. We exist to create experiences where passion, purpose and a good time come together.” (https://www.butchersuniongr.com) I can say from experience they succeed! Butcher’s Union also supports the community by trying to source all of their products from local farmers and partners around the area. Which of course is awesome and we love that!

Before I dive into their delicious drinks and food, I have to admit that I am not a whiskey drinker. However, they do have other amazing cocktails available for non-whiskey drinkers so there’s something for everyone! Showing an example with my white peach sangria!

I am a huge sangria fan so I was very excited to see that this was an option. They also have a red sangria and offer a mixture of the two for the best of both worlds!

They are not known for Meat & Sangria though, so let’s get into the whiskeys, bourbons, and ryes. My husband ordered THE SQUIRMING COIL which is – Old Overholt rye & Amaro Montenegro stirred with BU simple syrup, Fee Brothers aztec chocolate bitters & Angostura bitters, served up in a smoked glass with a flamed orange peel.

The smoke aspect of this drink really drew him in to the intense flavors offering a new twist to an Old Fashion for him. He ended up ordering two!  He is looking forward to going back there and trying some of their other whiskey options while sitting out on the street patio in the cooler fall crisp air; creating a whole vibe there for you! Check out their full list of whiskey, bourbons, and ryes at Butcher’s Union or on their website, the list is very impressive even for someone who does not drink it. 

Onto these mouth watering sandwiches… They tasted just as good as they looked and were huge! We honestly could have split either one and still been stuffed! We ordered their pulled pork sandwich and the fried chicken sandwich and each  came with a pile of fries.

The chicken sandwich had a cucumber slaw on it and despite not being a huge fan of cucumbers, I thought it was delicious ! By the end I was just picking the cucumbers off to eat them !  I stole a few forkfuls of Tyler’s pulled pork (you know like wives  do) and it was so tender and flavorful. Highly recommend both of these sandwiches! As we waited for our food passing orders for other tables had us creating a list of things to try on future visits. ! There wasn’t one meal that came out that didn’t look delicious! 

Whether you are wanting cocktails with friends and/or family, date night, a delicious meal, or all of the above Butcher’s Union  is the perfect spot! There is something for everyone and you have to take advantage of the patio seating while it lasts. I hope you guys love it as much as we do, even though I know you probably will! 


Brewery Vivant

The first brewery that I will be highlighting is my favorite brewery in Grand Rapids, and that is Brewery Vivant!  If you follow along on instagram you will see in the stories that my husband and I go here quite a bit! There is so much that we love about this place and I will count the ways for you! 

But FIRST, some fun history/facts about this cool Eastown brewery! Vivant is the world’s first LEED certified microbrewery housed in a refurbished historic funeral home! Which is crazy cool, but I’ll be honest a little creepy too! Despite it’s morbid origin the inside reminds me more of a beautiful church! Unfortunately, the main dining area is closed right now but there you will find the most beautiful stained glass window right above the bar and gorgeous wood beams on the ceiling!

Another reason to try Vivant is that supporting them means supporting other local businesses! They’re devoted to sourcing most of they’re products from within the community! They also just opened a second location but that place is called Broad Leaf, and even though they are operated by the same overall they are different and will have their own post as well! 

It might sound crazy but Brewery Vivant is like a second home for me and my Husband! We became monk club (mug club but they call it monk club) members and that led to more visits to enjoy. Throughout our visits we have become friends with the hosts, servers, and mostly the bartenders! So now it’s  more going to hang out and talking to them than it is getting beers even though their beer is amazing! So that is why it is like a second home because the staff is so welcoming and nice and just fun to hang out with, it makes for a great atmosphere! 

Now for the good part –  food and BEER! I will start with food because just thinking about it makes my mouth water. Normally when we go we get their big juicy burger! I honestly don’t think I’ve had a better burger in Grand Rapids! They are extremely tender, always cooked right, flavorful, and huge! We normally share one and are stuffed afterwards!

I think their most popular item on the menu would be their duck nachos though, that’s right duck nachos! You’ll  see almost every table with an order of them. Another popular table shared item is their soft pretzels with beer cheese. This is one of my favorite items if I’m not hungry enough for the burger, it is the perfect snack to go with my beer!

Speaking of beers, Vivant has a great selection for everyone’s taste buds! My summer go to beers at the moment are Tropical Saison and Beach Patrol. Tropical Saison is a pineapple and mango Ale, super smooth and refreshing for the summer time. Beach Patrol is a Summer Wheat Ale with lime and sea salt, it makes me feel like I’m at the beach listening to the waves with every sip!

I tend to stick to the beers with more fruity flavors in them, which is why I have been branching out to more Sours, which Vivant has been creating a lot of options for. The one I just tried was Sour Lake: Watermelon Lime Sour and that was super tasty! It wasn’t a pucker your lips type of sour like some are but more of a subtle sour with a smooth finish and great flavors. Some watermelon flavors can be too sweet but I did not get that from this beer, which was a bonus for me!! My absolute favorite beer that Brewery Vivant makes though is………… Wizard Burial Ground! This is a Bourbon Barrel Aged Quadrupel and it is hands down number one on my beer list! It is a beer that comes out in, I believe the end of November, and only lasts as long as supply does and they don’t make more until the next year. We tend to go a lot when they have this beer on tap. They’ve been experimenting with variations of this beer making for some added fun to our visits when this time comes! When the time gets closer I will for sure talk more about my favorite beer! 

As you can tell I can talk about this place forever and could go on and on about how great it is here but please take my word and check it out for yourself! I am happy to give out beer recommendations as well! Wine is available for those who aren’t interested in craft beers providing something for everyone to enjoy! Check them out and tag me in your photos to let me know what you think! 


Relax at Rosa

Rosa Park Circle to me is the heart/gathering place of downtown Grand Rapids. It is close to everything and is super relaxing just hanging out there and enjoying a coffee. This inviting gathering place hosts all sorts of fun events! One being Relax at Rosa! 

Relax at Rosa has been an event that the city of Grand Rapids has been putting on for a while now. When the snow leaves Michigan and it’s finally summer time is when this event starts happening. Every Thursday from 12pm-1:30pm is free lunchtime entertainment! Every week there is a new spotlight on local talent and a line of Grand Rapids best food trucks!

It’s the perfect opportunity to step away from your desk/get out of your house to enjoy some great food, good company, and live music!

This event is dog friendly and masks are highly recommended and they suggest that you keep practicing social distancing while attending the event. They do have hand sanitizer stations on site for use as well. 

Here is the lineup for the rest of the summer – 

August 13: The Go Rounds

August 20: The Hacky Turtles 

August 27: Kevin Jones

Reminder all of these events are from 12pm-1:30pm at Rosa Park Circle in downtown Grand Rapids. For event pages and other events put on by Grand Rapids please visit their Facebook page here!

I love going to this event and checking out new local talent and our food trucks are hard to beat! It’s a perfect breath of fresh air for my dog Oakley and I! I am lucky enough to be working from home right now, so having a little lunch break and getting out and about is a great way to break up our day and have something to look forward to during the work week! Nothing like the great combination of food, sunshine, and live music to brighten your day!

I hope everyone gets a chance to experience this event before the leaves start turning! Take some time to enjoy your lunch break and get some Vitamin D while supporting GR’s local talent and food!