Sunday, December 09, 2012

Muskegon’s new Hank’s Tavern pairs Michigan Beer with Diverse Food Menu for December opening

Written by  Dan VanderKooi
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Hank's Tavern in Muskegon

Veteran Restaurateur Hoby Thrasher promised something new for Muskegon with the new Hank’s Tavern, and on Saturday, December 1st he has delivered. The Henry / Sherman St. location is not new; Previous businesses at this location have included a bank and fast food pizza joint with the short-lived Bonfire restaurant being the most recent tenant. However, this time around Hoby has really outdone himself transforming the building which once felt small and cramped to an expansive and vibrant atmosphere which will be sure to impress anyone familiar with the building’s former occupants.
Hank’s 16 beer taps guarantee them a place on any list of Muskegon beer destinations. Among these initial taps are featured 9 Michigan brews including Founders, Bell’s, New Holland, and Dragonmead in 10 oz “Half Pint” or 19.25 oz “Imperial Pint” pours, along with bar bites which include Toasted Almonds, Curry Cashews, and Wasabi Peas. I opted for a Dark Horse Boffo Brown with a side of the almonds to start the evening. Hank’s plans to eventually up the ante from 9 Michigan beers to 12, but in the meantime some excellent non-Michigan choices include seasonals from New Belgium and Blue Point help to round out their Craft Beer selection.

The centerpiece of the debut food menu is the “50/50” burger, a 50% ground beef / 50% ground bacon burger with mayo and cheese which I must confess I am saving for a future visit. Instead, I opted for the spicy and delicious Vegan Black Bean Chili along with a Dragonmead Final Absolution. Hank’s offers ample Vegan, Vegetarian, and Gluten-Free options which is certainly something new and welcome to the Muskegon restaurant scene. Carnivores will not be disappointed as the chili is featured on the menu with beef and cheddar as well as a variety of gourmet style hand-crafted meatballs, chicken wings, and Mexican fare which can be ordered with beef, chicken, or vegetarian-style with black beans. Soups, salads, shakes, and desserts round out the diverse menu which is sure to have something to please everyone. One visit is all it takes to convince me that Hank’s Tavern is my new destination for Michigan beer with their diverse and welcome selection of food options.

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.