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Depth and Flavor: Arms & Embers Spices Up Grand Ledge Dining

Homestyle comfort gets a contemporary twist in Grand Ledge.

Taking its name from the arms of draft beer and the embers in the fireplace, Arms & Embers is a breakfast, lunch and dinner space at 219 N. Bridge St. that refuses to be ordinary while not forcing a patron to explore uncharted territory.

Owner Jordan Rivas found his way home to the middle of the Mitten by way of Detroit, Arizona, Montana and Wyoming. When Rivas landed in Grand Ledge, he was asked to resuscitate a space that had a base that lacked flair and flavor.

Rivas chose the culinary path of exploration while immersing himself in nature at Yellowstone National Park as its head sous chef overseeing 14 restaurants, employee dining halls, banquets and hotels. He said his biggest challenge was navigating around bears, wolves and other overzealous animals, although Rivas said a run-in with a porcupine probably caused him the most panic.

Arms & Embers interior

When you dine at Arms & Embers, you’ll taste the flavor of his travels.

“I want a person’s experience to be flavors that are not normal to this area,” Rivas said. “I want to create something with harmony and satisfy the palate of anyone who eats here.”

The Smash Burger, for example, magically mixes ingredients and spices, which are spun together in juices to seal in flavor and topped with a buttered and grilled bun. The combination of fresh burger, American and gouda cheese, caramelized onions, and crunchy pickles brings a crispness to the burger in an inviting way.

Arms & Embers is a full-service space, with exciting cocktails that will sneak up on you. Your biggest decision with either food or beverage may be whether you want sweet or savory.

“You’ll have something fresh, different and new — over the top but accessible,” Rivas said. “The experience is varied and has depth beyond your imagination.”