Woodshop Social – Mt Pleasant, MI
The dream to open his own restaurant without partners has been a long-time dream for Jim Wood, Executive Chef and Owner of Woodshop Social in Mt Pleasant, MI. The opportunity to have total creative control and make all the decisions is something that he has not taken for granted. Having grown up in Mt Pleasant himself, he was excited for the opportunity to bring something special to the area. “This town was dying for a restaurant that actually cooked everything in house, and where they could come and have a good time and it wasn’t a chain.
I guess what they probably wanted was someone who actually cared about the entire restaurant.” It is evident that’s exactly what Chef Jim does; he cares. He cares about his employees, their happiness, and their training because he feels strongly that those things impact their ability to help provide the best experience possible for his guests.
He cares about the products he purchases for his menu and where they are from and sources as much locally as he can. Chef Jim and Woodshop Social’s partnership with us is something we really value. We are thankful to be a supplier who also sources locally whenever possible and part of why we do what we do is in hopes that our customers continue to choose our products because they believe they are the best. For Chef Jim, all of those things, along with a few others help bring to light his top priority and the question that will always remain: What overall experience is he looking to provide for those who choose to dine at Woodshop Social?
“In order to be successful, especially in this day and age, aside from having to have your hands in everything, you need to be extremely passionate about it because that shows,” Wood said.
He made a point in also saying that when it comes to his restaurant, being successful means far more to him than simply making a dollar. “This is my first restaurant where it’s just me, so, as much as someday I would like to do that, right now the total focus is the guest experience; making sure everybody is happy and everybody leaves satisfied.”
When it comes to cooking, Chef Jim loves to be creative and expand off his classical French training he learned in while in culinary school. He is creative in the kitchen and has had the ability to combine so many worldly methods of cooking to create something really special and unique; something that you wouldn’t have normally thought to pair together, but in the end, it just works! The menu at Woodshop Social proves to be not only creative, but unique and delicious. And with so many bourbon selections, a memorable “horseshoe” bar, and overall tastefully aesthetic atmosphere, planning a visit the next time you find yourself in Mt Pleasant, should be at the top of your list!
This dish combines both east coast inspired cuisine with the soulful flavors of the south. It features a fresh blackened and grilled Black Pearl Scottish Salmon fillet and Canadian Cove Mussels from Prince Edward Island to give you some of those iconic east coast flavors. It’s topped with Paul Piazza jumbo gulf shrimp and all served on spicy jambalaya rice with andouille sausage to tie everything together southern-style. Scottish Salmon from Black Pearl Seafoods has a mild flavor with a buttery texture and high fat content which makes it highly versatile and perfect for the simplest dishes to those who incorporate multiple ingredients.