Currently home to Brewery Vivant and Harmony Brewing Company, I find myself a frequent visitor to Eastown. However, even the days prior to the current craft beer renaissance I can remember Wealthy St and Lake Dr as the original home of the famous Intersection nightclub; host of countless concerts back in the day. The Intersection still hosts a multitude of great events but while it has long since moved downtown (in walking distance from Founders,) the neighboring Mulligan’s Irish Pub remains and has inherited the legendary Intersection stage so as to continue the Eastown concert tradition to the present day.
Also out of Eastown, Dallas McCullough and his friends are leading a new renaissance with their idea of the cooperatively owned and operated High Five Co-op Brewery
. So what better partnership than to host a benefit featuring Michigan bands and brews at the iconic Mulligan’s Otherside nightclub? Here you can find live music every weekend with no cover charge. To show your support for the benefit, $5.00 High Five pint glasses granted you $2.00 Michigan beers all night long. While the tap selection at Mulligan’s only includes a few Michigan selections (of which I indulged in a Short’s Soft Parade,) the bottled Michigan beer selection was quite extensive.
The event was promoted by a diverse lineup of bands including punk, metal,and rap. I caught two of the sets and was most impressed by Lo Mobb, a hip hop group boosted by a full live band. Apostles and Cain Marko were the other bands featured as well as Mike Saunders (from the Grand Rapids Soul Club,) DJ’d between sets. Based on the crowds present for the bands and at the bar, I would judge this benefit an astounding success for the High Five crew and their concept of a member / worker owned co-op brewery.
Another related project being pushed by a handful of High Five participants is the new Burritotown offshoot of the Bartertown Diner where Dallas works also as a collective member. The Burritotown concept is to extend Bartertown’s hours into late night with a new menu of vegetarian and vegan burritos and tacos starting at just $2.00 a taco and ranging in price up to $9.00 for the specialty burritos which include choice of chèvre or Daiya (a vegan cheese substitute.) Launching in July, I definitely plan to give the diner a visit (located at 6 Jefferson just south of Fulton St,) sometime soon to enjoy a burrito and support another Grand Rapids co-op.