Michigan’s Best Local Eats: Travel back to the Prohibition era at Capone’s Speakeasy in Muskegon – MLive.com

Michigan’s Best Local Eats: Travel back to the Prohibition era at Capone’s Speakeasy in Muskegon – MLive.com

Michigan’s Best Local Eats: Travel back to the Prohibition era at Capone’s Speakeasy in Muskegon – MLive.com

Michigan's Best Local Eats: Capone's Speakeasy in Muskegon
MUSKEGON, MI – Behind a non-descript door in Muskegon, 1920s Chicago awaits.
Burgundy booths tufted with buttons line Capone’s Speakeasy, 794 Pine St., where glittering chandeliers hang from the ceiling and a painting of Al Capone, a Prohibition-era gangster, overlooks the bar.
Owner Jim Noel created a restaurant that travels back to the Prohibition era when the manufacture, sale, and transportation of alcoholic beverages in the United States was illegal.
“There are no windows. There are no signs,” he said. “The sign on the door says the ‘Anti-Saloon League Chicago Branch.’ There’s nothing telling you that it’s Capone’s Speakeasy.”
Capone’s Speakeasy is Noel’s fourth restaurant in Muskegon. A pizza aficionado, Noel also owns two Topshelf Pizza locations and 794 Kitchen & Bar.
Noel said he had the idea “bouncing around in my head” for a speakeasy-style restaurant.
“It’s basically a throwback to the styles of the 1920s. We tried to recreate much of the decor of that time period,” he said.
The signature item at Capone’s is Chicago deep dish pizza.
Made the traditional Chicago way, a buttery crust brims with pizza sauce, cheese and a choice of topping. At $17.50 each, a 10-inch pizza serves one to two people.
Capone’s also serves rectangular Sicilian style pizzas for $17.50.
“It’s very light and fluffy, crispy on the outside and soft on the inside,” Noel said. “It’s probably about an inch to two inches thick, but when I say thick it’s not so much filling as it is light and airy.”
The It’s a Gouda Meatball pizza is topped with sliced meatballs, caramelized onions, mushrooms and smoked gouda cheese.
Pizzas can be paired with craft cocktails that are poured into period-specific glassware. Capone’s serves the classics like a French 75, a gin gimlet and daiquiris, but it’s the Old Fashioned that speakeasy customers enjoy the most.
“Throughout history, the Old Fashioned has not changed with the basic ingredient being bourbon,” Noel said. “But how it’s built after that has changed through the decades. We do a classic period Old Fashioned, which would be bourbon, a brown sugar cube crushed, bitters and an expression of an orange peel.”
Noel hopes visitors to Capone’s can step back in time to enjoy a meal with quality service. He has plans to update the menu this winter with fine dining Italian pasta dishes.
“It’s a unique experience being transported to that time. It’s something different than your traditional restaurant,” he said.
Capone’s Speakeasy, located in NorthTown 794, is open Tuesday through Thursday from 3-9 p.m. and Friday through Saturday from 3-10 p.m.
More information is available online or by calling 231-288-1791.
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