If you ever venture to Holland, Michigan, you’ll be hard pressed to find an establishment that isn’t offering a craft beer brewed with hometown pride by the New Holland Brewery. However, nowhere has as good and varied a selection as the New Holland Brewery’s own restaurant, the New Holland Brewpub. Situated smack in the city’s downtown, right on the impressive 8th Street, it’s a meal sojourn you’ll want to seek out. While we certainly toured the brewery (this is actually out of the downtown, about a 15 minute drive from the restaurant) and where D got to sample a vast number of brews, we still wanted to try the restaurant (well, me for the food, the beer, not so much).
After our long drive from Pennsylvania, we got to Holland around 4:30 in the afternoon. So it wasn’t until close to 6 PM that we ventured out in search of food. Although I didn’t want to have to wait for dinner, I knew that places like the New Holland Brewpub generally don’t take reservations and on a weekend night, waiting is sometimes the norm. We were told it would be about a 20 minute wait, which in my eyes wasn’t terrible at all (I was afraid it would be an hour or more). The waiting area is right in the gift shop where retail merchandise, along with their beers and spirits, are available so we at least were able to browse the wares while waiting. But in actuality, the wait was just about 10 minutes, which made the brewpub already that much more endearing to me.
The seating portion of the restaurant seemed decent, and the bar space even more so (the latter was extremely busy). There is a bier garden immediately adjacent where you could order food from as well as your choice of alcohol. We were seated upstairs, which offered a prime view of all the activity below.
The menu is broken down into social plates (appetizers), sandwiches (burgers are included in this), dinner plates, and pizzas, along with soup and salad sections and desserts. Our waitress informed us that the soup of the day was enchilada, which sounded delicious, so I decided on a cup of that. Unfortunately, it seems that the waitress had the soups mixed up as it turned out to be a broccoli cheese. While good, I was disappointed that it wasn’t in fact enchilada. As the rest of the meal was flawless, it didn’t seem a big deal to say anything.
D went with the Dragon Wings (six for $9.99 although he ended up getting seven on his plate), which were fiery spice-rubbed chicken wings coated in poppy seed dressing. I only tried a smidgen of one and it was mind numbing hot. He loves that kind of stuff though…
I opted for a pizza for my entree-small, 10″ pizzas are $8.99 while large, 14″ ones are $16.99. I kept it on the slightly lighter side by selecting the Margherita-herb infused oil crust, tomato reduction, fresh mozzarella, sliced Roma tomatoes, pinch of salt and pepper and finished with fresh basil. I ended up eating the whole thing shockingly enough. I think if there had been more cheese I probably would have failed, but as I said it wasn’t a stick to your stomach kind of pizza. Another one (bacon and potato) sounded incredibly tasty but I think it was a good idea I didn’t get it.
While he debated between a couple of things, D ended up with the Beer Cheese Burger ($8.49). It was a house-ground steak burger that was topped with sliced grilled pablano, sweet onion compote and a rich and creamy beer cheese on a spent grain bun. It was definitely met with approval.
I tried to be good on this trip and we didn’t get desserts with any of our meals; however, being a brewpub, they did have some unique sounding ones, namely “beer floats” (the adult version of a root beer float-$5.99) and a bread pudding infused with their own beer barreled bourbon ($3.99).
Although it seems a place that locals adore and tourists seek out in droves, you can’t go wrong dining at the New Holland Brewpub. You know what to expect and you know good food and spirits will be had, so just go and enjoy.