We’ve waffled a great deal about wedding plans – in part because our living and working situations have changed dramatically since we first got engaged, in part because our families are in different cities and have very different life situations, and in part because we just couldn’t come up with a plan that worked for everyone while still making US happy. We toyed with eloping, and it was that line of brainstorming that led to Lake Michigan beach towns, which led to Muskegon. Why would we decide to get married in a town that we’d never visited? Because of views like this:
SO that’s what we’re going to do. Lake Michigan and gorgeous lighthouses in the background. No backup plan. No changing plans again, because if we do, we’re going to the courthouse, and no one’s allowed to get mad at us. It’s going to be incredibly small and relaxed, and then over the summer we’re hoping to have receptions in Illinois and Ohio so that our many loved ones can celebrate with us.
We took a much-needed and belated daytrip to Muskegon today to scout out wedding locations and test-eat the restaurant where we’d like to have dinner that night. We tromped around in the snow on the beach, took a lot of photos, and sort of squinted our eyes to imagine what it’ll be like in two months. We walked on the icy sea wall all the way out to the lighthouse, where I freaked Shane out a bit by clambering around to investigate a giant ice formation. All that walking and wintery lake air fanned the flames of our peckishness, so we were both pleased to find Mia + Grace quickly and to almost as quickly have beverages in front of us and delicious smells wafting towards the table.
The owners and chefs of Mia + Grace espouse a farm-to-table orientation, which is demonstrated in the list of farm friends on the butcher paper menus on the walls. This orientation towards supporting local agriculture was one of the things that really drew us to the restaurant – and also made us wish that Mia + Grace were in OUR neighborhood rather than several hours away. I had the butcher’s plate, which today featured house-made mortadella, salami, a spicy sausage, and duck rillettes with delicious toast points, a ridiculously large and peppery cracker, and onion jam. I’m not a big fan of mortadella – meat with things in it has always struck me as weird – but the duck rillettes in particular blew me away – savory, creamy, sweet, and impossibly rich. Shane had the spaghetti and meatballs, with hand-rolled pasta and pork and beef meatballs cooked slowly in a sweet tomato sauce. I regret not being hungry enough to try any of the amazing desserts – but look forward to being able to do so on a special occasion coming soon.