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Basalt: Modern Tex-Mex

Basalt: Modern Tex-Mex

Steven Thiel 336 Views

About Idea

Basalt is a from-scratch, modern Tex-Mex kitchen that blends Tejano culture with West Michigan sensibilities for food that is delicious, distinctive, and inclusive. As a native Texan Basalt is a way to share the food and culture I love with the city I fell in love with over a decade ago.

Our menu is unique because we take the traditions and flavors of authentic Mexican food and then throw out all the rules so we can serve an amazing hand-made flour tortilla stuffed with from-scratch chorizo for something a little more familiar or fill that same tortilla with local MI mushrooms potatoes and onions covered in a vegan poblano crema for something just as delicious but more inclusive to our friends with different diets.

Last year I launched Basalt at the Fulton Street Farmers Market and through partnerships with local farms and GR based small businesses we built an amazing following. Now we’re ready to take the next step and open a storefront in Eastown.


A storefront is a stable base of operations where folks can find us year-round. Opportunity to sell tacos at the FSFM and a restaurant means we’re buying more local products and contributing to the growth & success of the local food ecosystem.
Our commitment to our community goes beyond our purchasing power and includes paying a living wage and contributing to local organizations who are working towards the pursuit of racial justice, social justice, LGBTQ+ rights, and gender equity.

What I Will Do With $5,000

If we win the $5,000 it will be used to cover a handful of smaller purchases for opening the space including:

- uniforms, equipment, and supplies for our opening crew
- shelving and equipment for retail to feature local food producers & artisans
- permits and licenses
- some light renovation and design work in the dining room

Idea Links

Steven’s avatar

About Steven Thiel

I was born in Texas but moved to Grand Rapids in 2007. I attended Calvin and studied theology but left after my junior year to pursue a career in food service. I've worked in most positions at a handful of restaurants but my favorite job was as the catering manager at Marie Catrib's until our closure in 2018. I married my husband Josh about 2 weeks before everything shut down last year and we are the proud fathers of two mini schnauzers and two cats.

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