Happy Hour

A weekly snapshot of Happy Hours around the region…

Everyday, open-7 p.m., $1.75 highballs, $2.50 house chardonnay, $2.00 drafts, $1.00 off everything else.
310 Cass St., Traverse City

Sunday-Thursday, 3-6 p.m., $1 off all drinks.
422 North 5th St., Roscommon

Lulu's Bistro
Thursdays, 5-9 p.m., $3 wells, $2 off drafts, select $5 wines.
213 N. Bridge St., Bellaire

Boyne River Inn
Everyday, 3-6 p.m., 1/4 off drinks.
229 Water St., Boyne City
Rendezvous Lounge, Odawa Casino
Thursday & Friday, $2.25 domestic drafts, $3.25 well drinks, $3.25 house wine.
1760 Lears Rd., Petoskey

Choice Bits!

Round-the-region snapshots of the dining scene. 

RUTHIE'S CHICKEN & DAIRY TWIST: Roasted chicken and ice cream, malts and shakes.
201 N. Bridge Ln., Bellaire. 213­-533­-8538.

Practically an Up North institution, the place to find out the latest fishing or snowmobile news from the locals and visitors who gather for their hearty breakfasts, steaks, burgers, soup & salad bar, & homemade desserts.
10921 Main St., Honor. 231­ 352­6585.

When you've worked up an appetite from all the bowling and karaoke that Boyne City Lanes has to offer, you'll find a selection of hearty fare to choose from, including homemade soups & desserts. Cocktails are served at the Lanes,with live entertainment and glow ­bowling nights.
1199 West Boyne Road, 231-­582­-6353.

Open 7 days a week for lunch & dinner. Full Chinese menu, as well as Hunan & Szechuan entrees.  Daily specials, special combination plates,  a lunch & dinner All You Can Eat Buffet. 
616 S. Mitchell St., Cadillac, 231­-876­-8888.

Take a trip back to the '50s where chili dogs & frosted mugs of root beer are still served up by carhops at this All ­American institution. Elvis has been known to make an appearance during their annual summer “A&W Cruise Night” in August, as do cars from the 50’s and 60’s that we remember well.
At the bottom of the hill, 21 Lake St., Frankfort,  231-­352-­9021.

From Antler Ale to Wolverine Wheat, Big Buck specializes in microbrewed beers. Offering the usual beef and buffalo burgers, steaks, and ribs, plus more unusual fare, like their portabella sandwich with red onion marmalade and provolone cheese.
550 S. Wisconsin Avenue, Gaylord, 989­-732-­5781.

A refined atmosphere, subdued lighting, and an appetizing selection of epicurean treats awaits the diner at this Harbor Springs corner landmark. Menu selections range from their smoked whitefish ravioli appetizer to their Atlantic salmon, baked polenta and eggplant, tomato basil fettuccine, or filet mignon ­ and their brunches include one of the best versions of Eggs Benedict around.
101 State Street, downtown across from Bar Harbor, 231­-526-­1904.

Pool tables, a full bar, friendly service and a varied menu make the Village Inn popular with families and locals.  Dinners include Lamb Skewers, Blue Corn Enchiladas, Charbroiled Whitefish, Lasagna and Ribeye.  Also burgers, sandwiches, salads, appetizers and pizza.  Lunch and Dinner.
Just north of the blinking light 116601 Lacorre Ave. on M­22,  Empire. 231-326­-5101.

One of Petoskey's first restaurants, Jesperson's is famous for homemade pies and fresh turkey. Breakfast and lunch.
312 Howard, Petoskey, 231­-347­-3601.
Located in Building 50, grilled panini's, soups, wraps, baked goods, specialty coffees and teas.
1200 W. 11th St., Traverse City, 231-­947­-7740.

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Tastemakers: Taste The local Difference Guidde 2009/Short‘s Brewing Company Nicie Spicie

Rick Coates - June 1st, 2009
Taste the Local Difference 2009 Guide
The small-local farm is making a comeback. In the 10 counties known as the Northwest Lower Michigan corridor of the state there are now 2,229 farms. A few years back the Michigan Land Use Institute launched the Taste the Local Difference initiative to help farmers connect to consumers. Fresh off the press is the 2009 version of their Taste the Local Difference guide. This 80-page glove-box friendly resource is packed full of information for those interested in seeking out local and fresh foods as well as other non-food agricultural products produced in the area.
The guide lists farms by county and each listing contains an overview of the offerings at each farm along with hours of operation and website and phone number for additional information. Also included is the listing of the 25 farmers markets in the region as well as restaurants and delis that use local products. Another helpful page is the fruit and harvest dates, giving one a guidepost as to what is in season.
Taste the Local Difference has a supporting website that allows users to search for specific items and farms in their area that offer those products. Another great online tool is the local food exchange where both growers and buyers may post items they are looking for or selling.
The Michigan Land Use Institute has been a longtime supporter of preserving farmland in Northern Michigan. while much of their work is rooted in legislative policy, the Taste the Local Difference program is not about politics -- it is about practicality. Supporting the local farmer makes sense on all levels from healthy eating to preservation of our land and agricultural heritage. To learn more, visit mlui.org or call 231-941-6584 to obtain a copy of the new guide. --Rick Coates

Shorts Brewing Company Nicie Spicie

Larry Bell launched his Sol Sun (now called Oberon) ale 20 years ago and it quickly became the benchmark for Midwest summertime wheat beers. Now, microbrewers are not about duplicating, they are about creating. So when brewmaster Joe Short of Shorts Brewing Company in Bellaire launched his summer brew Nicie Spicie, he didn’t have Oberon in mind; instead his focus was on brew that worked for those Northern Michigan hot days and cool nights of summer.
Nicie Spicie works well as a thirst quencher by day and a nighttime sipper after sundown. This brew is a blend of premium two-row malted barley and malted white wheat and is loaded with fresh citrus zest, coriander and a four pepper blend. The citrus notes make this a perfect beach beverage. The pepper and coriander is a nice touch and gives Nicie Spicie a wide range of food pairing options. Enjoy with your favorite grilled seafood, especially items that are blackened. Pair with grilled tequila lime shrimp and grilled seasonal vegetables.
Brews from Shorts are now available all over, though visiting the brewery and enjoying their fresh menu and buying a growler or two is a great experience along with their strong lineup of music all summer. For additional information visit shortsbrewing.com or call them at 231-533-6622. --Rick Coates

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