Cari Jodloski, chef and proprietor of Batter Up Bistro, is ready to step back up to the plate. After closing for more than two years amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Jackson Field-adjacent eatery is finally up and running again.
“While we were closed, we did a complete renovation of our historic building, from top to bottom, and created a beautiful destination here in downtown Lansing for an old-world dining experience,” said Jodloski, who lives with her family in a loft next to the restaurant.
Originally opened in the fall of 2017, Batter Up was partly inspired by one of Jodloski’s daughters, who shares her mother’s entrepreneurial spirit.
“I would bake chocolate chip cookies for my kids when they were very young, and unbeknownst to me, one of my daughters would bring extra cookies to school and sell them to her friends for big bucks. She kept wanting more, and I couldn’t make them fast enough. Once I got clued into what was happening, I knew I was on to something because the demand was so high and they got rave reviews,” Jodloski said.
A rigorously studied, self-taught chef, Jodloski’s baking remains a cornerstone of her business, which, upon reopening, has expanded to include dinner service, with Jodloski personally baking artisanal bread loaves each day that are used for toast and sandwiches and served alongside bowls of pasta and salad.
Menu offerings include a veggie omelet with peppers, zucchini, maitake mushrooms and muenster; French onion soup; and, for dinner, butternut squash ravioli. Am I just naming the things I most want to try? Yes, but hopefully they sound just as good to you.
“We use fresh, organic ingredients in all our recipes and take pride in everything we make, bringing out the best of each element and layering them together to create something truly memorable,” Jodloski said.
The interior of Batter Up is uniquely cozy but elegant, making it an ideal location for brunch or a romantic date. On that note, it is offering a $90, four-course, prix-fixe menu for Valentine’s Day, which includes tantalizing French- and Italian-informed classics such as salade niçoise and red wine-braised short rib ragu. I’m betting you’ll be able to taste the love cooked in.
“I’ve always loved expressing my creativity through cooking for family and friends,” Jodloski said. “It’s been a dream of mine to open a bistro.”
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