We visited Food Dance on a recent visit to my brother Ethan and his wife Maura in Kalamazoo, Michigan. My brother basically recommended it as the best place to eat in Kalamazoo, and, based on our (admittedly limited) experience, we definitely agreed.

The vibe is simultaneously homey (lots of hardwood) and slightly upscale, a bit like Crop Bistro in Cleveland. We ordered the Cheese Board and Curry Dusted Chickpeas to start and were very happy with both. The cheeses included blue, sharp Cheddar, hard Monterey jack, and Gouda along with some rustic crackers and excellent olives. The deep fried chickpeas had an almost overwhelming curry aroma but were actually mild enough for even Jonathan to enjoy.

To drink Ethan ordered a mojito. Most mojitos I’ve had at restaurants are cloyingly sweet, but his was perfectly minty and fairly dry. Both Sarah and I ordered the Short’s Soft Parade, a four berry rye beer brewed in Bellaire, Michigan. One wouldn’t immediately think of pairing berries and rye, but they balance each other perfectly to make a strong, dry but distinctly fruity ale. I’ll definitely look for this in Cleveland. My second beer was a Dark Horse Crooked Tree IPA with an excellent floral hop flavor. Food Dance had six other beers on draft as well, including a couple from Bell’s Brewery.

For dinner Ethan and Maura split the Crab Pasta, which included a “sherried tomato dill cream sauce,” and they were both very happy with it. Jonathan had pizza from the children’s options (not listed on the menu) and Sarah ordered the Grilled Chicken Dance sandwich:

It included bacon, melted cheddar, caramelized onions and chipotle mayo. As Sarah pointed out, it had “every yummy thing you could want on a chicken sandwich” and tasted very, very good.

I ordered the Carnitas Soft Tacos, which included farm cheese, slaw and black beans:

The locally farmed pork was tender, sweet and smoky. The cilantro crema on the tacos was a perfect combination of rich sour cream and sharp herb flavor, but I would have liked a little more of it. The beans were generously portioned and richly spiced, rounding off an excellent entrée.

Our server was very friendly, knowledgeable and attentive. We would definitely enjoy a return visit to Food Dance the next time we visit Kalamazoo!

Food Dance Cafe on Urbanspoon

  • Ethan

    Benj, Sorry it took me a bit to find this. Its a really good review. I am amazed how well you remembered all the details. You really captured the place well, from appetizer to ambiance! Thanks for putting us and Fooddance on the Heightseats map!