Saturday, November 8, 2014

Grove - Grand Rapids

My last two trips to Grand Rapids, I've been fortunate to be able to spend time with my friend MW after my work is done.  This trip, after both of us having a rough go of things that week, it seemed an epic meal was in order.  So we made reservations to eat at Grove!

I've been seeing more restaurants using iPads as menus (what a world we live in nowadays!), and this made especially good sense for Grove.  They have an extensive menu, changing seasonally, and we knew we wanted to dive into their three-course Taste of Grove special.  (The menu online is just a sample of what you'll see when you actually get to the restaurant!)  We kicked off the meal with a cocktail:  a seasonal sangria with a distinctly spiced flavor that was very much a taste of fall!  It's hard to describe it, but it was special.

For my first course, I chose Potato Gnocchi, served with a prime beef bolognese, fresh mozzarella, peppers, and greens.  Perfection!  I'm a gnocchi and bolognese fan, so this dish was comfort-food heaven.

For my second course, I selected a little Asian fusion: Sesame Braised Beef.  Served with rice noodles, an assortment of veggies, chiles, sesame-soy beef broth, and a slow cooked egg, this was tangy and flavorful.  The egg (I love eggs!) was a true treat.  I also really liked the noodles.

For my third course, I chose the Duck Confit Spaetzle.  I know what you're thinking now... every course I chose had some kind of carb/noodle, and I just recently indulged in duck breast with spaetzle at Dinner Lab.  But come on, people, I was in Michigan, land of duck hunting!  I  knew it would be good, and it was.  The meat was from a smoked onion barbecue duck leg, served mixed with spaetzle, radish, collard greens, Brussels sprouts, and a pimento cheese fondue.  YUM.  The duck was shredded like pulled pork, so it felt a bit like a gussied up Southern BBQ bowl.

 And yes, dear reader, we ate dessert.  Because reasons, as my pal Lladybird would say!  I couldn't decide between the Dilley's Favorite Butterscotch Pudding (with caramel, sea salt, whipped cream, and shortbread) and Sweet Potato Doughnuts (with vanilla allspice ice cream, molasses bourbon caramel, chocolate pecan butter, pecan crumble, and CANDY BACON) , so we ordered both and shared.  I thought the doughnuts would be my favorite given all the delicious things on it, but the butterscotch pudding slayed me.  It was so simply, delectably good I couldn't help myself.  I'm not even a pudding fan, and I could probably eat this every day.

My favorite part about Grove was being able to try so many different flavors.  The Taste of Grove is really reasonably priced (I believe it was $35, with some courses meriting upcharges), and you get so much out of the meal!  I left feeling very full, but not uncomfortably stuffed, which is the perfect ending to a multi-course dinner.  I'm so glad MW suggested that we eat there!

Grove on Urbanspoon

P.S.  Just a quick shoutout, I also had a great meal at Bistro Bella Vita, as well as a visit to Founders Brewing Co., during the same trip.  Grove, Bistro Bella Vita, and Green Well Gastro Pub are all part of the same restaurant group, I've learned.  And I like them all now that I've tried them!  Definitely worth a visit in Grand Rapids.

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