Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Zorn Brew Works; Don't Expect the Typical

Sometimes all it takes is for someone to look beyond the crumbling bricks, overgrown weeds and outdated properties to see opportunity and then put their ideas into action. So is the case for John Van Prooyen proprietor of Zorn Brew Works, Co.

His vision and enterprise have brought to life a historic landmark in the heart of Elston Grove, Michigan City Indiana. Zorn Brew Works Co., It is the brain child of John and his entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well. In many ways one might say he is channeling that same spirit that was found in the original owner of the business Philip Zorn a 19th century immigrant from Bavaria.

Guests to Zorn Brew Works can expect small batch brews, small plates (with the promise of a full kitchen in the near future) wine and new to the offering is local winery, Shady Creek. Zorn Brewing is unique in that it offers more than just their own brews on tap.

This wonderful addition to the North End of Michigan City brings to life an area that has suffered economically over the past couple of decades and is an important part of the Michigan City revitalization efforts of this bustling community. Not only does Zorn provide the perfect "third place" it provides opportunities for professional networking, live musicians and more to come.

Way to Go Zorn! We are so glad you are here. 

100 Washington Michigan City Earns a 100%!

For those of you coming into the area for a summer get-away or maybe you have your boat down at the Michigan City Marina, you are in for an amazing treat! Northwest Indiana and the entire Michiana area are quickly becoming known for their gastronomic excellence and one of the newest members of the elite club is 100 Washington located at 100 Washington Street, Michigan City. It is located along Trail Creek and the Amtrak Station with glorious views of the lake.

Jason Kyle has taken his time in creating a well-crafted establishment. From the upscale patio to acquiring Chef Cheryl Bernacchi to a spot on bar he earns an A+. But, more than that is the "chill-esque" vibe of the dining room and New York state of mind events that keep the locals coming back for more. Kyle has committed to staying open year round and has embraced the locals as his cake with summer tourism as the frosting on said cake.

Make sure you stop in and allow time to relax with one of their specialty cocktails, fine wine, or sip a mint julep out on a fabulous patio.

One Hundred Washington

100 Washington, Michigan City, IN 46360, us


Monday - Thursday: 11am - 9pm
Saturday:11am - 10pm
Sunday: 11 am - 9pm

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

New Buffalo Bills Is Smokin' Good!

603 E. Buffalo St. 
New Buffalo, MI 49117 
(269) 469-9992 
It was a long time coming and I was told by a friend that I had to try New Buffalo Bills as soon as it was in full swing this spring. So today was the day. I happened to be in the neighborhood and suddenly got a hankering for some good BBQ. Fortunately NBB's was open and ready to serve. 

I think one of the things that got me hooked early on was the friendly voice behind the drive up. Because I hadn't really planned on sitting down to eat but, rather I did the easy, breezy thing and took advantage of their convenient drive-thru. I can assure you that now that I have enjoyed their fine BBQ I will be back and enjoy the fully remodeled restaurant along with a nice glass of wine to go along with my meal. So,  back to the friendly voice behind the drive up. The voice has a name - Jason. 

My order was placed: Beef Brisket Dinner and Texas Sausage Dinner. Each dinner comes with two sides, so I chose greens, cowboy beans, corn bread and potato salad. I pulled forward and was greeted by the "friendly voice." Believe me after a long day at work there is nothing more appetizing than great customer service. Jason assured me it would only be a minute and by gum, he was right! Quick, friendly service! Before I even tasted the cuisine I was hooked. 

The beef brisket was out of this world! It was flavorful, super tender and melt in your mouth goodness. The Texas sausage, while not my thing, was delicious. Steve, the sausage lover really enjoyed it. Personally I loved the greens. They were easily some of the best I have ever eaten. The cowboy beans are truly a meal all by themselves, especially when enjoyed with spoon-able corn bread. 

For those of you who are not meat eaters, no worry, there is plenty to choose from that does not come from anything that moos or oinks. One item that caught my eye was smoked tofu. I looking forward to trying it as well as their ribs and chicken. I guess there is very little need for me to fill my propane tank, acquire charcoal and set up the grill when I can travel down rt. 12 and let New Buffalo Bill's cook for me. So much goodness, such little time as the saying goes. 

The owners of the establishment have a long history in both nutrition and the culinary arts. All of the smoking comes from locally grown fruit trees and unlike some establishments that over smoke or over sauce their meat, diners can expect the perfect amount of smokiness, and seasonings. If you want sauce, sauce and more sauce, just ask NBB's has plenty to choose from. 

Large orders are available and meat is obtainable by the pound, perfect for all the summer picnics and gatherings coming around the corner. All items are available for dine in or carry out. New Buffalo Bill's also offers beer and wine. 

Friday, March 31, 2017

Bourbon Street Bistro, NOLA Comes to LaPorte

There is little need to fly down to New Orleans in order to catch the NOLA vibe. Simply get in your car and drive to Bourbon Street Bistro located at 701 Lincoln way, La Porte, Indiana. 

You will be welcomed by deep, rich woodwork, tin press ceilings, antique slot machines, open staircase, and an over-sized pot belly stove. Let yourself be lulled by a vintage Creole atmosphere.  Be transformed and transported to a by-gone era. Tennessee Williams couldn’t have designed the scene any better. Imagine Vivian Leigh and Brando crying out over the banister and streetcars rushing by you as you await the first course. There is a spirit of the past that has been preserved in this Vaudevillian theatre formerly known at Etropal and John Moultrie’s sense of style and flair ensures that spirit of yesteryear is pervasive throughout his establishment. 

A word of warning: Don’t come to the Bistro if you think you are going to be watching calories. Be ready to indulge and treat yourself to a homegrown Mardi Gras. Moultrie’s homegrown recipes hail from a rich tradition in Cajun cuisine, seasoned with love by his ancestors. Couple that with his vast experience in the culinary industry and voila it combines to make the experience memorable and delish!

We began our gastronomical journey with a Hurricane Rum Punch, a NOLA tradition. Next, by recommendation of the staff we enjoyed Fried Green Tomatoes, which were perfectly fried and evoked comments including “mmm, nice, mmm, yes! Shall we place another order?”

Next came my order of Gumbo Ya Ya, which was very savory and delightfully rich with all the traditional Cajun ingredients of onions, celery, sausage and chicken in a traditional broth.  My fellow diners feasted on Blackened Salmon, Kitchen Jambalaya, and my dish was Bourbon Street’s soon to be famous Bourbon Street Smothered Chicken. Each entrée came with a superb corn bread mini-loaf. All in all the food was prepared fresh and served up hot and fast.

John Moultrie’s commitment to excellent and a desire to bring high quality entertainment, food and overall experience to the people of La Porte and surrounding areas deserves a huge round of applause. The next time I go I will have to find a way to save room for the Bourbon Street Bread Pudding. I have often said, you can tell the truest culinary ability of a restaurant by how good their bread pudding and other house made desserts are, next to that is their soup. It might be time to add cornbread to that list.

Bourbon Street Bistro offers live entertainment on weekends. While they do not take reservations, one can always try by messaging the Bistro via their Facebook page. Don’t wait too long to get in there on the weekends, it fills up fast!
Bourbon Street Bistro is currently open from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday and from 4:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday through Sunday.  For more information, call (219) 575-7261 or visit

Friday, March 10, 2017

A North End Vibe Featuring Jazz Pianist David Lahm and Steve & Mary E.

David Lahm joins Steve Champagne and Mary E. Rapier to bring you "A North End Vibe," hosted by the Main Street/Canterbury Theatre. Together they bring you jazz standards, a whole new spin on the Beatles and other songs that will leave you tapping your foot and singing along. With over 100 years of combined musical talent, the three are embarking on musical stylings from the Beatles to Bacharach - and everything before, during, and after.

Tickets are $20 with half going to the Canterbury Theatre so they can continue to provide quality live theater and music to the community at an affordable price.

Tickets are available by going to Eventbrite  or direct through paypal 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

A Family Puzzle: A story worth reading.

The Story Dear Family & Friends, After nearly 13 years of marriage, through prayer and reflection, we have decided that we are being called to help our family to grow and parent a child. We understand that this is normally not ground breaking information. We want to welcome you to our journey of faith and love in growing our family. We also need to let you know about some of the unique challenges it brings. Years ago, during Amanda’s Kindergarten days, a traditional classroom activity to finish a classic phrase was posed. The classroom activity precursed a lifelong dream, goal and, ultimately, a challenge. Students were asked to complete the statement, ”When I Grow Up, I Want to Be …” Amanda said simply,“a mom”. The dream of her lifetime was realized. Years later, during adolescence, Amanda received some heartbreaking and life changing news. Due to a lifelong medical condition, Polyglandular Autoimmune Disorder, her ovaries were attacked, leaving her with no ovarian function (post-menopausal). For the remainder of her life, Amanda would require hormone replacement to provide typical female hormone levels. During Junior High School years, Amanda learned that unique steps were necessary in order to make her dream of starting a family happen. Amanda’s Auto-Immune Disorder also attacked adrenal glands (adrenal insufficiency) parathyroid gland (hypoparathryoidism) and liver (auto immune hepatitis/non-infectious type.) She is not a candidate for IVF (Invitro-fertilization) or to carry a child through egg donation due to the condition. In the fall of 2016, hope entered our family. In particular, a lifelong family friend met with Amanda and shared her experience of surrogacy. During that conversation, she offered to serve as a surrogate for our family. From a young age, Amanda’s sister, Elyssa, felt called to help her sisters be mothers in any way she could. She has generously decided to gift us through egg donation. Our surrogate, Morgen, will carry for us following the IVF process. We want to carry on for our families, blending our genetic backgrounds. Recently, the ball has gotten rolling, when she contacted us and said that was ready to begin the journey with us. We couldn't believe this would be possible! We know this is a big adventure and a costly one that will require a great deal of fundraising, financing and resources to cover the costs ($50,000-$70,000) of the uniqueness involved in growing our family through surrogacy. We feel strongly that we are called to embark on this journey. We want to keep you posted and invite you to join us on this adventure. We know that there are many pieces to this puzzle needed before we will meet the child that God has planned for us to parent. Please consider following our page for updates, to learn about our journey and to find out how you can help us find our missing piece of our family’s puzzle through your prayers and financial support. If you have any fundraising ideas or resources that can assist us in completing our puzzle, please let us know. Feel free to share our story with others who may want to keep us in their prayers and support us along this journey. Love Always, Amanda and Steven

Saturday, December 31, 2016

A Night of Jazz and Wine at Shady Creek Winery Feat. David Lahm & Steve and Mary E

A Night of Wine and Jazz will feature jazz pianist David Lahm, Mary E and Steve Champagne. With over 100 years of combined musical talent the 3 are embarking on musical stylings from Beatles to Bacharach and everything before, during and after. To be held at Northwest Indiana's finest winery, Shady Creek Winery February 23. Ticket includes live music, a complimentary glass of Shady Creek Wine, chocolates and other assorted small bites. (additional wine is available for purchase at the event) 

David Lahm: David Lahm is a highly regarded jazz pianist who is divided between NYC and his second home in Harbor Country. David Lahm is the son of one of the world's most prolific lyricists, Dorothy Fields. Lahm has a flourishing career as a jazz pianist and arranger. He has recently released a CD entitled "Jazz Takes on Joni Mitchell" and has also performed in cabaret in New York with his wife, singer Judy Kreston. Their cabaret act "All in the Family", was devoted to his mother's work, and featured the song they wrote together. In 2000, he arranged several tracks and provided piano accompaniment for Morag McLaren's Fields tribute CD : Nobody Does Like It MeDavid Lahm - famed jazz pianist
Mary E.: Mary E., has been singing for over three decades. She was recently names along with partner Steve Champagne as Best Acoustic Duo in 2015 by the Kankakee Area Music Awards. For over 20 years Mary E., has been a guest vocalist with Kankakee Municipal Band. Mary began her career singing Standards, Light Opera and Broadway. Since forming an acoustic duo in 2007 with Steve they have focused on a wide range of songs made popular between the 60's and 70's and love bringing their music to the Michiana region. Mary E., vocalist
Steve Champagne: Steve has dedicated his life to perfecting his knowledge of the Beatles' and other favs. Some call him a walking jukebox the way he can recall lyrics, melodies and overall style. He has been singing and playing guitar since his earliest memory. Together Steve and Mary E., have hours of pop-rock play list along with standards. 

"SaM & David," is the newest endeavor of these three music lovers and guests will be entertained with a whole new repetoire of Jazz standards, new spins on old favorites and songs that they love to perform. Guests will enjoy a glass of Shady Creek wine, fine chocolates, small bites and Music by David, Mary E. and Steve. Additional glasses of wine will be available for purchase. Tickets are limited so get them while you can. For direct purchase feel free to contact Mary E., at General questions feel free to email Mary E., at