About 170 guests enjoyed a Taste of Saline Wednesday night in downtown Saline.
The Saline Main Street event returned after a one-year hiatus, due to the construction project.
Main Street officials were happy with the turnout.
“It was a great event with terrific food, creative artists and great musicians,” said Riley Hollenbaugh, Executive Director for Main Street. “It was good to see people from Saline and from neighboring towns walking around and sampling so much of what we have to offer.”
Patrons started in the Merchant Square building, where guests were entertained by members of the Saline Fiddlers Philharmonic. Artists from Salt Valley Arts also displayed their work, demonstrated their skills and talked about art with guests. It was also the site of the table manned by staff from Smokehouse 52, the new restaurant which is moving into the space most recently occupied by Mangiamo Italian Grill. Smokehouse 52 served BBQ pork parfaits, which were a big hit.
According to owner Phil Tolliver, the restaurant will open sometime this summer.
Smokehouse 52 wasn’t the only new business showing off for visitors. Jen McPherson plans to open McPherson Local at the old Drowsy Parrot on North Ann Arbor Street. She and Saline resident Sicily Giacalone served peanut butter hummus with jelly and pretzels at the The News, Arts and Antiques. Sheila Vish, owner of Sweet Leilani’s Desserts, showcased their treats at Maureen’s Designs.
Jill Durnen, owner of Hartman Insurance, is President of the Saline Main Street Board. She said she received a lot of good feedback from people who attended the event.
“People had fun and they were excited to try all the food,” Durnen said.
Among the food generating the most buzz was the deep fried brussels sprouts at Brecon Grille. Salt Springs Brewery served toasted crostinis with herbed goat cheese and bacon jam made with Salt Springs whoatmeal cherry stout. It was topped with forge head microgreens.
Mac’s lobster rolls were popular, too.
Saline Main Street’s next major event is the Summer Music Series, which kicks off June 15 with a concert by The Forte Band and LaShera Moore. Summer Music Series concerts take place in downtown Saline every Thursday at 7 p.m. from June 15 until Aug. 24.