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Beverages are flowing at Art of the Table!

May 30th, 2011

We’re in full swing of our new schedule of wine & beer tasting events.  Join us!

It’s June, and that means Thursdays are for wine tasting!

Every Thursday in June we’ll be uncorking sample bottles to let you taste wines!  Our June theme is a bubbly, white & red.  Each Thursday one of each will be opened from a specific country. Come in each Thursday and learn by taste!

June 2 ~ Spain: Bubbly, White & Red

June 9 ~ Argentina: Bubbly, White & Red

June 16 ~ France: Bubbly, White & Red

June 23 ~ Italy: Bubbly, White & Red

June 30 ~ USA: Bubbly, White & Red


It’s June, and that means Fridays are for beer tasting!
Fridays in June we’ll be flipping open those sample bottles to let you taste beers:

June 10 ~ Local Ciders: Black Star Farms from Traverse City & Goldfinch Cider from Ada!

June 17 ~ Brooklyn Brewery

June 24 ~ Lagunitas Brewery

June 29 ~ Dark Horse Brewing Co.

All tastings from 4-8pm on their respective dates!


It’s the Most Basketful Time of the Year!

December 12th, 2010

We at Art of the Table do love making gift baskets!

It’s this holiday time of year that we make the majority of them, but we certainly do stay busy year round for events.

We have been known to make gift baskets for:

Gift box stack

  • That person who has “everything”
  • Welcome to a new job
  • New babies
  • Weddings & Showers
  • Housewarming
  • Bereavement – Another way to care for a friend
  • Retirement
  • Birthdays
  • Client & corporate gifts
  • Welcome to town for your visit – We will deliver to downtown Grand Rapids hotels free of charge!

For each basket we work hard to customize to your desires.

What goes in an Art of the Table basket?  It’s all up to you. 

  • You can come in and pick out the items and we will make it look beautiful!
  • You can tell us a price and a general theme you would like to work with and we can create!
  • We can add flowers from Wealthy at Charles or bread from Wealthy Street Bakery.
  • We are also willing to work with your corporate logo items or another item or two that means something to you and the receiver of the gift to add to the one-of-a-kind feel that we want for each gift we create!

One of the things we like to do is to be creative about our “baskets”.  They’re often not baskets but books, cutting boards, a bar tray, a cooler or Reisenthel basket.  We want to think about creativity for and with you to create a basket like no one has ever gotten before.

Please give us a call or shoot over an email with any questions you might have at any time.

Art Prize, Art Peers & Art of the Table

September 26th, 2009

Every week around this place is interesting – this place. Grand Rapids? Art of the Table? My life? Yes, all of those. Every day I arrive at something new and this week it fits the whole city – as we know Art Prize is in full swing. I’m planning to set aside some time to get out into the ‘scene’ – hopefully tomorrow.

In the meantime, I’m in the scene of Art Peers, the secondary art thing in town…With 58 artists at 29 venues throughout Uptown (Wealthy, Eastown, East Fulton and Cherry Business Districts), there’s an art vibe here too! Truly a spectacle all around, if you have time this weekend, you should stop in at many of the participating places – including ours! We’ve got a geisha with a vacuum cleaner done with encaustic. What? you ask? What did you say? The answer is – come in and see for yourself! Artist Susan Mulder will be on hand today (Saturday) from 3-5pm to meet & greet!

Beyond that, I find it fascinating that I get calls (not just one. more!) daily about Art Prize. It’s ironic that just having “Art” at the beginning of your name in Grand Rapids could make one a resource for all that is “art” in this city. We’ll happily answer questions if/when we can. We’re not experts at the kind of art that’s being displayed all about Grand Rapids but we’re happy to be here.

To tell the truth, I’m a little disappointed that Sarah Grant didn’t ask me to set her table…Then again, I’m not that into scaling chairs suspended on top of bridges! :)

Trolley Days in Uptown

September 15th, 2009


We in the Uptown business district continue to give you fun things to do on the weekends…This weekend, ride the trolley to shop the districts and eat as you go, or relax in one of the many relaxing green spaces…It takes place the third Saturday of the month May-September. It’s completely FREE to you!

You can ride anywhere you want from the farmer’s market to Art of the Table and Eastown’s Streetfair.  Ride it for fun, ride it all day, it’s our treat to you!  Check out the map for details!

Asparagus! A farmer’s market/open house/Stalkumentary and meet the director!

May 20th, 2009

Back when Asparagus! The Stalkumentary was first released, I went to the Wealthy Theatre to view it.  I was intrigued by it then because my business was new and I was getting into the ‘foodie’ scene.  I knew right away through friends that one of the producers & directors of this 53-minute film was Kirsten Kelly, a fellow Calvin grad, who grew up in Oceana County on an asparagus farm – so she knows firsthand how this all goes.

After viewing the film I was provoked to follow it, because WOW – it was funny, sad, politically angering (even though I profess to not care about politics!) and truly eye-opening!  It took a while for it to move through all of the film festivals and such (and very respected ones like Harvard’s The Food Literacy Project) to make its way to mainstream sales and video.  Since it came out on video I’ve been selling it in the store.  It’s $24.95 retail.  Recently it made its way to our local PBS station GVSU and I know more people have now seen it.

However, I know you all haven’t seen this movie.  That would be impossible.  And being as excited as I am about eating local, about eating asparagus in many different forms and about promoting Wealthy Street, I couldn’t help but want to promote this movie to a wider audience.  Did I mention what a fabulous person the director, Kirsten, is too?  She is passionate about asparagus and she will be in the house to talk about these tall green stalks of veggie.  Join us!

So here it is, Art of the Table sponsors a local asparagus festival!

Asparagus: A stalkumentary


Please join us for a local asparagus festival

featuring an open house of samples and information

as well as a screening of the film

& a Q&A session with producer

and director, Kirsten Kelly!

The feature is a captivating & award winning short film which brings to reality the joys and struggles

of Oceana County, Michigan farmers.

The film is described by NY Magazine as “oddly brilliant” as well as “powerful, disturbing, political and yet highly enjoyable!” by local viewers.

Where? Wealthy Theatre @ 1130 Wealthy Street SE

When? Wednesday, June 3

6-7:30pm open “asparagus” house with food sampling, local stores & farmer appearances *see list below*

7:30-9pm film & discussion

Cost? Only $10, all proceeds go to the Wealthy Street Business Alliance!

Advance tickets (recommended) available online @

and tickets will be available at the door.

Open House booths include:

  • Mrs. Asparagus ‘89 and Mrs. Asparagus Runner-up ‘89
  • Brick Road Pizza samples – asparagus pizza
  • Electric Cheetah samples — asparagus bruschetta
  • The Sparrows samples—asparagus crepes
  • Amy Sherman of Slow Food West Michigan samples—asparagus soup
  • The Winchester samples something delectable
  • Art of the Table—store products related to gardening & I heart asparagus “schwag”
  • West Michigan Co-op will promote local farmers
  • Literary Life Bookstore— featuring books on asparagus and local eating
  • Local First – a presence to promote Local First’s foodie members
  • Food for Thought magazine will hand out free copies of its local foodie magazine
  • Asparagus preservation demo by Joy-Elizabeth Lawrence

…and more to come!

Join us – it’s a great way to experience local food & fun & education all at the same time! And supporting the WSBA isn’t a bad idea either!  Hope to see you there!

Jimtown Olive Spread

December 30th, 2008

jimtownolivespread1New to the store today is this New Years’ ultimate easy appetizer – In the NEW refrigerated case we have brought in another lovely food from Healdsburg, California. All natural and made in small batches at the Jimtown Store – we think it makes a tasty for sandwiches or fabulous dolloped atop a cream cheese and ‘party toast’ for a hors d’oeuvres, and can be subbed in anywhere olives are requested – though they suggest NOT in a martini. Too messy. Fresh and $6.50, it will take you a long way…enjoy!

Local First Coupon Book

December 17th, 2008

Local First 2009 Coupon Book

Local First 2009 Coupon Book

as of this moment, we have sold 162 of the Local First coupon book and i intend to sell more.


because i believe in local – first.

This organization called Local First has come a long way in two years. Elissa Sangalli Hillary is quite a go-getter.

When i envisioned this coupon book, I thought we would have about 50 coupons and it would cost at least $30.

Instead, this Local First Coupon book – the first ever – has over 200 coupons worth thousands of dollars (if spent :) ) and costs only $15. How is something like that possible? It’s possible because Elissa worked hard to prove that dollars spent locally will pay us all back in dividends. It’s possible because Elissa got a grant from the Grand Rapids Community Foundation to get this book made.

I urge you to not only buy this book but to USE this book.  When you come in with your coupon, I’ll give you $5 back. That’s not the big deal. The big deal to me is that you choose to shop local. That you chose to really focus on making my business – and every other business in Uptown work. Thank you for that. And if you haven’t purchased the book and if you haven’t shopped local this holiday season, please rethink that…

…for many reasons.

giving gifts – with your style

December 17th, 2008

aott_coverStill searching for the perfect gift for someone?

A gift basket? The perfect tray with some goodies and wine atop?

Let us know how we can help guide your holiday gift giving to some serious recipient happiness – and givers’ too!

Thai food and my pseudo-Thai brother-in-law

March 21st, 2008


My brother-in-law, Jon Ruis, was just written up in the St. Cloud Times (Minnesota) where he lives and spends his time working at St. John’s University. His article helps debunk the fact that Thai cooking is difficult and time consuming and gave inspiration to Thai cooking at home. He returned last year from a four year stint in Thailand where he lived in a small village and learned firsthand just how to cook Thai correctly!

Whenever (and i mean each time!) Jon comes to Grand Rapids, we can be found pouring over Thai cookbooks though seriously 95% of our choices end up coming from the Quick & Easy Thai book by Nancie McDermott. After the recipe study, you can find us over at one of the Asian markets on Division near 36th picking out our ingredients. We make a great team, chopping & blending and then everyone in the family gets to enjoy our authentic delights.

One of my favorite wines to pair with Thai food is Gewurtztraminer. German or Austrian or even some great dry Rieslings are fantastic companions. Try the Thomas Fogarty Gewurtz @ $17.50 for a treat!

Next time you’re inspired to make a fun meal with friends, or for friends, try Thai, it’s easier than you think, especially after you pick up the Quick & Easy Thai book from us!

Art of the Table celebrates four years!

October 2nd, 2007

We enjoy being Art of the Table.  We enjoy being at Art of the Table.  We’re celebrating four years in October and are so thankful for our customers & friends!  So although we love being at the store, we’ve got a different locale in which to enjoy life that night.  On October 26 at 6:30pm we will be hosting a party at the Chop House downtown complete with food & wine, music & friends.

Please consider joining us – tickets are $60 – and available at the store.  You can stop in or call to purchase yours!  We would love to have you there.   Want more details?  Ask one of the staff, they know how fun it will be!

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