3rd Annual Taste of Port Huron charms
Stepping into McMorran’s theatre lobby and looking around didn’t reveal much but masses of people and tables stacked with shiny silver chafers. However, inside the gleaming chrome held the items that filled the air with sweet and savory smells. Smells that prompted many Port Huron residents to fork over a few bucks for their tickets to taste.
McMorran Place’s theatre lobby and memorial room held the 3rd annual Taste of Port Huron on Nov. 8 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. seven downtown restaurants and bars welcomed everyone to come out and taste signature menu items for the price of $1 per ticket. One to two tickets reaped anything from bread pudding to bruschetta.
Taste of Port Huron is hosted by the Downtown Port Huron Bar and Restaurant Collective. Mike Taylor, owner of Fuel Woodfire Grill, explained how every restaurant and bar represented at Taste of Port Huron is a member of the organization.
Taylor said that the Taste of Port Huron was the kickoff for the organization in 2012. The event helps raise money for the organization’s marketing of the downtown area’s independent restaurants and bars.
The Downtown Port Huron and Bar Restaurant Collective have over twenty members, including the Culinary Institute of Michigan (CIM). Students from CIM manned the McMorran entrances during the event to redeem money citizens cheerfully handed over for orange tickets to belly bliss.
CIM students, Calie Nelson, 18, and Kyle Grace, 18, said they enjoyed their first year at the event.
Taylor said he’s glad that CIM made their presence known in the area and that CIM supports the local restaurants. Taylor hopes that some students will stick around downtown for their careers.
Taste of Port Huron participant, Tom Smith, hopes more young people will stay in the area to support Port Huron. Smith said, “I’ve been trying to go downtown more. I’m trying to support my town. Somebody has to.”
Smith, a resident of Port Huron for his whole life, believes this event is great exposure for downtown restaurants and bars.
The businesses weren’t the only thing to get some attention though.
“The Backburners,” an acoustic duo made up of Gasoline Gypsy band members, Rob Schweihofer and Caleb Malooley, kept the crowd entertained in the memorial room. This is Schweihofer’s second year at Taste of Port Huron and Malooley’s first. Schweihofer said, “It (Taste of Port Huron) just keeps getting better.”
Emma DeVooght, 16, couldn’t agree more. DeVooght, Ft. Gratiot, sheepishly smiled as she admitted to savoring five helpings of Lynch’s Irish Tavern’s bread pudding.
DeVooght said, “I’ve never been there (Lynch’s Irish Tavern) before, but I’m definitely going to go now.”