A new Starbucks, a new acai bar and more local business news


SAGINAW, MI — From a locally-owned acai and juice shop now offering acai bowls and fresh-pressed juices in downtown Saginaw to the region’s newest Starbucks store opening on Dixie Highway, here’s some recent mid-Michigan business news you might have missed.

What’s that? New shop serving acai bowls, fresh-pressed juices in Saginaw

A new business is serving acai bowls and fresh-pressed juices in downtown Saginaw.

Bloom From Within opened inside the SVRC Marketplace, 203 S. Washington Ave., on Wednesday, May 15.

“It’s been amazing,” said Kelli Johnson, who owns Bloom From Within with her wife, Nicole Johnson. “An overwhelming amount of support in the best way.”

“Saginaw really has been showing out for us,” Nicole Johnson agreed.

The new shop’s menu includes build-your-own bowls with organic acai, a berry containing antioxidants, steel-cut oatmeal or Greek vanilla yogurt, plus add-ins like berries, banana, kiwi, pineapple, granola, gluten-free granola, chia seeds, shaved coconut, slivered almonds, chocolate chips, raw honey, natural peanut butter and Nutella.

Read the full story here.

A view of the Peppermint Phoebe ice cream in a bubble cone at Cream & Sugar Ice Cream Co. located at 160 Uptown Dr., in Bay City on Wednesday, March 8, 2023. (Kaytie Boomer | MLive.com)
This Michigan ice cream shop is known for its unique bubble waffle cones

A mid-Michigan ice cream shop known for house-made bubble waffle cones is open for the season and will be serving scoops all summer long.

Michigan Cream & Sugar Ice Cream Co. can be found at the Uptown Bay City development overlooking the Saginaw River at 160 Uptown Drive. The ice cream shop opened for the season in March, touting limited-edition flavors, including 24-Carrot Magic, Penny’s Strawberry Cheesecake, Matcha Love, Honey Lavender and Michigan Waffleberry.

But these special flavors aren’t all that’s new. Cream & Sugar officials are preparing to open a second storefront this year. That new store will be located on Hamilton Street in Old Town Saginaw.

“While anticipation grows for our new scoop shop and production facility, Saginaw may see Michigan Cream & Sugar scooping our flavors at a few community events throughout the summer,” Cream & Sugar Manager Tim Mangan previously told MLive.

Read the full story here.

A grilled cheese sandwich from One Love Smoothie & Grilled Cheese at the Midland Mall, 6800 Eastman Ave., is seen in this courtesy photo. (Photo provided by Autumn Roy, One Love Smoothie & Grilled Cheese)
What’s that? New eatery offers fruit smoothies, grilled cheese at Midland Mall

A new eatery offering freshly-made smoothies and grilled cheese sandwiches is among the Midland Mall food court’s newest additions.

One Love Smoothie, which operated at 301 S. Hamilton in Old Town Saginaw in 2015, recently reopened as One Love Smoothie & Grilled Cheese at the mall, 6800 Eastman Ave. Details for its grand opening are to be determined.

“We pledge to use the freshest, most delicious local ingredients to bring you the best and most healthy smoothie around,” reads a recent post on the One Love Smoothie & Grilled Cheese Facebook page.

Owner Ryan Oliver said he never gave up on his dream of small business ownership and saw an opportunity at the Midland Mall to revive it.

“We’re going to focus on what we know best right away,” Oliver previously told MLive/The Saginaw News, noting that the menu will initially feature fruit smoothies and grilled cheese sandwiches.

Read the full story here.

Saginaw County’s newest Starbucks, seen here on Monday, May 6, 2024, is located at 6301 Dixie Highway in Bridgeport Township, formerly Big Boy. (Heather Jordan | MLive.com)
New Starbucks opens in Saginaw County, and it’s looking for a neighbor

Saginaw County’s newest Starbucks recently opened in Bridgeport Township, and the space next door remains available for another new commercial tenant.

The coffee chain opened its new store last month at 6301 Dixie Highway, formerly Big Boy, which served loyal customers for four decades before closing in 2023.

Related: Bridgeport’s Big Boy owner reflects on 40-plus ‘glorious’ years in business

Anthony Denha, development manager for Akkadian Development, wished to thank Bridgeport Township officials for their collaboration and support throughout the project, which also included a patio area and the installation of EV charging stations.

“Our redevelopment initiative not only breathes fresh life into the area but also contributes to job creation and stimulates economic activity, particularly with the increased traffic generated from I-75,” Denha said.

“Starbucks is thrilled to become an integral part of the community and eagerly anticipates the opportunity to serve its customers with warm smiles and exceptional service.”

A view of a burger, fries and a cocktail available at Brinstar located at 415 E Main Street in Midland on Wednesday, April 24, 2024.
Up, up, down, down, eat, drink: Michigan game-themed stop mixes food, arcade games

From Dow to downright fun, two friends left their full-time gigs when Dow Corning and Dow Chemical Company merged.

Scott Nankervis told Belle Fawcett that he liked beer and video games, so Fawcett, the foodie between the two of them, said she would investigate it from there.

Nine months into the investigation, the property at 415 East Main Street in downtown Midland became available. It is in a social district, which was perfect for their idea of a new arcade bar and grill, Fawcett said.

Brinstar, co-owned by Fawcett and Nankervis, opened to the public on June 3, 2022. With a mix of classic and newer arcade games and pinball machines, customers can enjoy a full meal and an alcoholic drink with a side of nostalgia.

“We are developing our own community inside of Brinstar,” Fawcett said.

Some of the vintage and classically styled games include “Joust,” “NBA Jam,” and a “Pulp Fiction” pinball machine.

Read the full story here.

A look at the new charcuterie board coming to WhichCraft Taproom located at 124 Ashman Street in Midland on Tuesday, April 23, 2024.
WhichCraft beer or spirit will you choose from this Michigan taproom?

At downtown Midland’s WhichCraft Taproom, customers have several beverages to choose from, and all of them are Michigan-made.

WhichCraft Taproom, located at 124 Ashman St., opened for business in September 2013. Wife-and-husband team, Sharon and Richard Caldwell, set out to create a place for Michigan-based beer, wine, cider, mead and liquor to be served.

“Michigan craft beer was coming onto the scene about 10 years ago, and it was a great opportunity to showcase Michigan-made products,” Richard Caldwell said.

The Caldwells were able to snag a redevelopment liquor license for a fraction of the price, Sharon Caldwell said.

“We have never in 10 years felt the need to venture outside the state. I don’t think we’re missing anything,” she said. “The Michigan beer community, in particular, was really welcoming to us.”

Read the full story here.

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