Tuesday, February 26, 2013

SpeakEZ Lounge offers up “Cool Brews. Hot Eats.”

Written by  Dan VanderKooi
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SpeakEZ Lounge offers up Cool Brews Hot Eats

“Cool Brews. Hot Eats.” launched in conjunction with Grand Rapids Beer Week and is running through March 2nd, featuring over 50 area breweries and restaurants offering special dishes honoring the local beer scene. I recently made a stop in at the SpeakEZ Lounge, a downtown Grand Rapids pub, to check out one of their new featured menu items and sample some of the great beer.
SpeakEZ Lounge is located at 600 Monroe Ave NW. The location may already be familiar to some as the former Cambridge House which closed a couple years back. SpeakEZ Lounge’s “Cool Brews. Hot Eats.” contributions include an Alpine Reuben featuring German mustard honey sauce and bacon-apple-onion kraut served with deep roasted brussel sprouts and Wiener Schnitzel with a Brewery Vivant Solitude hunter’s sauce served with braised red cabbage and spaetzle. Besides these special features, SpeakEZ Lounge also features a full menu and bar, including lunch specials and vegan/gluten-free menu as well.

I met up with SpeakEZ owner Eric “EZ-E” Albertson at the restaurant, who shared with me his enthusiasm for great food and beer while I sampled current draft selections and tried the “Cool Brews. Hot Eats.” Alpine Reuben along with Eric’s recommended beer of choice to complement - the Vivant / New Belgium collaboration Biere De Garde. Both the sandwich and choice of beer was outstanding and I highly recommend giving it a try. My visit was on the heels of a Vivant tap takeover so the current taps included some exclusives including the new Tart Side of the Moon and Pandora, a barrel-aged Kludde. Michigan craft beer currently featured include Perrin, Arbor Brewing, Bell’s, and Founders alongside an authentic Hefeweizen from World Beer Cup brewer Michael Plank.

SpeakEZ Lounge will be hosting a four-course Bavarian Beer Dinner on Thursday, February 28th. The cost is $45 per guest with seating limited to the first 25 to reserve, so make sure you that you call ahead (phone # 616 458-3125) to reserve your spot now. Grand Rapids Beer Week may be over, but the celebration of local beer continues into March with “Cool Brews. Hot Eats.”

Dan VanderKooi

Dan VanderKooi

Dan VK has been following the Michigan Craft Beer scene since before Oberon has been available in 6-packs. Besides making the rounds at all the local craft breweries and beer bars, Dan also supports the local music scene, reads crime fiction, and enjoys playing volleyball with his wife and friends.