BAY CITY, MI – A new restaurant in Bay City is aiming to bring the taste of authentic southern-style barbeque to town while offering quick service for those on the go.
Downtown Restaurant Investments’ (DRI) quick-service barbeque restaurant ‘M2′ in downtown Bay City opened its doors on May 21 to customers in the former American Kitchen site at 207 Center Avenue. DRI originally announced its plans to convert its American Kitchen operation to a barbecue-style restaurant in February 2020 and American Kitchen remained closed as it was converted to M2 over the last year. M2 is an offshoot of DRI’s Midland location called ‘Molasses’ barbeque.
“It was kind of natural of thinking to get the barbeque to Bay City. We had the building, we had the space, and we wanted to provide an experience that was different from Midland. With this building being the size that it was it only made sense to turn it into a counter-service as opposed to a straight service model that we’re used to, which is table service,” said Kurt Busard of DRI.
Customers paying a visit to M2 are able to choose from multiple ordering options including traditional counter service, an at-table QR system, and a touchscreen kiosk to quickly get their food. Busard said that the food at M2 comes out normally under five minutes, making it an ideal location for those on the move and who want to grab a quick bite to eat.
“It’s a great place for lunch, it’s a great place to grab a quick snack to take down to Wenonah for concerts at the park, things like that,” he said. “It’s a great place to take advantage of for things where you’re trying to hurry or grab it to go on the way home.”
Food items at M2 range from traditional brisket meals and sandwiches to more unique items such as a BBQ fried rice and homemade pork cracklings. Busard said that the items on the menu are inspired by St. Louis barbeque
“It is brisket, it’s ribs, it’s pulled pork, it’s everything cool that you think about with a southern barbeque joint,” said Busard.
M2 also offers alcoholic drinks such as Moscow mules and brews such as Shiner Bock to compliment the barbeque items and, according to Busard, M2 is offering cocktails to go as well.
M2 is also home to an educational program that aims to give high school kids some hands-on, real-world experience in the restaurant industry. M2 hosts students from the Pro Start professional training program through the Bay Arenac ISD Career Center. According to the National Restaurant Association, ProStart is a career and technical education program that unites the foodservice industry and the classroom to teach high school students culinary skills and restaurant management principles, as well as employability skills such as communication, teamwork, professionalism and time management.
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