Meet Claire Moore, feature writer here at The Awesome Mitten.
Where have you lived in the Mitten? Where’s your favorite? Why?
I was born in Rochester Hills and moved to Gaylord halfway through fourth grade. Upon discovery of the gem that is Traverse City, my family decided to take up relatively permanent residence in the cherry capital. I recently uprooted once again to continue my education at Northern Michigan University in Marquette. I can honestly say I am incredibly attached to every place I’ve lived. Each place offers its own unique appeal of our Awesome Mitten’s many facets—from urban city-scapes to beautiful bays to rolling mountains. And while I am having a wonderful time exploring Marquette, it’s a definite possibility I will end up in the Detroit area to pursue a career in design.
Favorite Michigan beer/wine:
I’ll happily drink anything created by Brew Master John Neidermeyer, particularly his “Black Bikini” coconut porter. Definitely
looking forward to the opening of his agri-brewery, Terra Firma, in Traverse City. I may be biased as far as wines go, considering I’ve worked in the tasting room at Shady Lane Cellars on the Leelanau Peninsula. That being said, my preferred Michigan wine is Shady’s “Franc ‘n’ Franc,” a dry, peppery red. And I have to add another category to the list: Favorite Hard Cider. When the weather’s warm at the old state hospital grounds, I’m often found sitting outside, enjoying a glass of Left Foot Charley’s “Cinnamon Girl.”
Favorite place to eat in each city you’ve lived?
Let’s start from the bottom of the mitten and work our way up. Detroit and the surrounding cities boast bountiful restaurant choices, but my favorites tie at the top of the list: Buddy’s Pizza, with several locations in the area, and Inn Season, in Royal Oak.
Traverse is becoming quite the foodie town, so it’s hard to find a place where you don’t like the cuisine. My number one has to be Xylo café. Marquette also has a
wide range of restaurants, but Donckers, with its prime downtown locale and menu based on locally grown ingredients, is a favorite every time my family visits.
Favorite place to drink in each city you’ve lived?
Marquette’s bar scene is enjoyable largely due to the college town atmosphere. Complete with Michigan brews on tap and performance space for Mitten-based bands, the Wild Rover is probably my favorite place to grab a pint. Poppycock’s, located in downtown Traverse City, is not only an award-winning restaurant, but has an expansive beer, wine, and mixed drink menu, plus a refined, yet comfortable atmosphere.
Why have you stayed in Michigan?
It’s hard to beat the Awesome Mitten. We’re never more than six miles from a body of water. The natural beauty of our state rivals that of any other place I’ve visited. Michiganders are proud, ambitious, and eager to share with the world all that we have to offer.
Must be the Great Lakes: fresh water, fresh ideas. Born and raised and here to stay.
What Michigan bands are you listening to these days/or what’s the last great Michigan band you saw live?
Northshore, out of Traverse, was the last Michigan band I’ve seen live. It was a really intimate set at Lil’ Bo’s. G-Snacks, a band comprised of many of the Northshore members, played afterward and both sounded amazing, per usual.
What’s your favorite story you’ve written for the Awesome Mitten (favorite place, event, whatever)?
I really enjoyed researching and writing about Michigan hauntings. I’ve always had an interest in the paranormal and it was fun to learn about (and dream about investigating) different haunted sites in our spooky Mitten.
I also loved how excited readers seemed to be about the article; many shared their favorite creepy spots and experiences as well.
Where is one place in Michigan that you’ve never been, but would like to go?
As silly as it sounds, I have never actually been to Ann Arbor. I’ve heard stellar reviews and have several friends living in AA, so I I would like to visit soon.
Advice to people who have recently moved to Michigan?
Don’t worry: you’ll pick up on the whole speed-talking, word-mashing thing pretty quickly. Oh, and never leave the house without a hooded jacket.