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Detroit Restaurants: Reviews & Recommendations


ChocoKitty
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Upon recommendation of the author, I revisited a former favorite sandwich spot...and found that his assesment of the Bread Basket Deli to be correct. After paying $9 for a Ruben, I found that it truly was one of the most tasteless corned beef sandwiches I had ever encountered, and I therefor retract my earlier reccomendation and apologize to anyone I may have led astray...

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I have a suggestion for when you need something to eat and you are in a hurry. The Sprout House in Grosse Pointe is heavenly. It's a health food store that prepares food to go as well. I'm vegan so I love that they cater to vegan needs in addition to omnivores. They have fresh sandwiches, soups, and even really great desserts in a cooler in the back of the store. The slices of vegan chocolate cake are probably some of the best chocolate cake I have ever had. It was so dense and the frosting so fudgy and rich, I couldn't believe it didn't have any animal products in it. I really like the fact that this locally owned business supports other Michigan businesses like Avalon breads and Eden Organics.

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I have a suggestion for when you need something to eat and you are in a hurry. The Sprout House in Grosse Pointe is heavenly. It's a health food store that prepares food to go as well. I'm vegan so I love that they cater to vegan needs in addition to omnivores. They have fresh sandwiches, soups, and even really great desserts in a cooler in the back of the store. The slices of vegan chocolate cake are probably some of the best chocolate cake I have ever had. It was so dense and the frosting so fudgy and rich, I couldn't believe it didn't have any animal products in it. I really like the fact that this locally owned business supports other Michigan businesses like Avalon breads and Eden Organics.

I'll second that. The Sprout House is just a couple of blocks from a friend's house, and when I visit I always make it a point to pick up some stuff there. Their cookies are great, too. BTW, they're in Grosse Pointe Park, on Kercheval at Beaconsfield, which has become a nice little food corner. Mulier's Market is just a couple of doors down, and across the street there's a small seafood shop where I stock up on smoked whitefish sausage.

"There is no sincerer love than the love of food."  -George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman, Act 1

 

Gene Weingarten, writing in the Washington Post about online news stories and the accompanying readers' comments: "I basically like 'comments,' though they can seem a little jarring: spit-flecked rants that are appended to a product that at least tries for a measure of objectivity and dignity. It's as though when you order a sirloin steak, it comes with a side of maggots."

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I second those cookies. I used to rely on Healy's Health Hut for all my baked goodies(I bake sometimes but the minute my family hears the word 'vegan' they won't touch it), but now I go here as well. I like that Sprout House and Healy's are so close together. I actually used to live on Beaconsfield for a few months back in 2002. I wish they had been there around that time, I miss being within walking distance of my stores. A lot of the roads here in Mt. Clemens aren't pedestrian friendly. I have also been meaning to try Moo-Moo's cafe too. I can't remember what street in Grosse Pointe she's on, but I have bought a few items from the cafe at Healy's last year and enjoyed them very much. My parents could believe some of the food was vegan-friendly.

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I second those cookies. I used to rely on Healy's Health Hut for all my baked goodies(I bake sometimes but the minute my family hears the word 'vegan' they won't touch it), but now I go here as well. I like that Sprout House and Healy's are so close together. I actually used to live on Beaconsfield for a few months back in 2002. I wish they had been there around that time, I miss being within walking distance of my stores. A lot of the roads here in Mt. Clemens aren't pedestrian friendly. I have also been meaning to try Moo-Moo's cafe too. I can't remember what street in Grosse Pointe she's on, but I have bought a few items from the cafe at Healy's last year and enjoyed them very much. My parents could believe some of the food was vegan-friendly.

Moo-Moo's is on Charlevoix near Wayburn. I haven't had a chance to get there yet. I think they have just a few tables. BTW, that stretch of Charlevoix is another interesting area that also includes Embellish Cafe and Gifts (a cutsey little tea room), Janet's Lunch, and Ye Olde Tap Room.

"There is no sincerer love than the love of food."  -George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman, Act 1

 

Gene Weingarten, writing in the Washington Post about online news stories and the accompanying readers' comments: "I basically like 'comments,' though they can seem a little jarring: spit-flecked rants that are appended to a product that at least tries for a measure of objectivity and dignity. It's as though when you order a sirloin steak, it comes with a side of maggots."

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Speaking of that cool little corner of Charlevoix and Wayburn there used to be a killer little creole place on the corner there that served awsome little portions of sandwiches soups (read po' boys and gumbo) for rediculous prices. Anybody know if it's still around? It's a little out of my current traveling range....

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Speaking of that cool little corner of Charlevoix and Wayburn there used to be a killer little creole place on the corner there that served awsome little portions of sandwiches soups (read po' boys and gumbo) for rediculous prices. Anybody know if it's still around? It's a little out of my current traveling range....

Are you referring to M'Dears? It's still around, or at least it was a couple of months ago, which is the last time I was there. And yes, that is a good place locally for creole food.

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That's it, M'dears! If that place is everything that I remember it being it is out of this world!!!Highly recommended to anyone that happens to find themselves in this strange little corner of the world...along with the nachos at a place called Sunrise Sunset Cafe :)

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being from the GP and now living in Ferndale, a Schoolcraft grad, and pastry chic turned stay at home mom, I have a lot to say on this thread.

Terapinchef did you go to schoolcraft? You're right, first year culinary at that place are timid! (tell tim I say hello and well wishes.)

If you like Steve's Backroom you must must go to the Sahara on Harper between 8 and 9. They are labanese and the flavors far supercede steve's. Lamb shwarma is one of the best in town (My credentials, you ask? I rented in e dearborn for a while and my sittoo, god rest her soul, was a wonderful lebanese home cook).

Moomoo's is getting a 10 thousand square foot place in Royal Oak and soon will not have a storefront in the GP.

Lunchbox deli is on Mack Ave, not Charlevoix.

Siam Spicy on Woodward and 12 is the place for tom yum. Everything else is super spicy without much depth.

Has anyone been to Via Nove? I've been twice and think it's really pushing other Ferndale restaurants to up their game.

SAVE XHEDOS! Caleb is trying to turn Xhedos on nine mile into less of a cafe and a little more of a vegan restaurant, if that's your preference.

Detroit and beyond is anxiously awaiting the grand opening of Asian Village on the riverfront. Zingermans coffee at the cafe, noodles, dim sum, sushi, high end fusion restaurant with a highly talented chef at the helm! Taking detroit high-end cuisine to a "new york" caliber.

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being from the GP and now living in Ferndale, a Schoolcraft grad, and pastry chic turned stay at home mom, I have a lot to say on this thread. 

Siam Spicy on Woodward and 12 is the place for tom yum.  Everything else is super spicy without much depth.

Hey Ruthie. Welcome to Ferndale. As a life-long resident, I'm actually somewhat embarrassed that I haven't really hit up the local scene as much. I guess there's just something a bit too bar-like in the Ferndale scene that kind of turns me off from it. Go figure.

I haven't tried Via Nove, no, but then, Italian's not a big priority on my list. I'm pretty "Americanized Italian" when I go out to eat Italian, as I really want to enjoy what I order, rather than take a chance. One place I want to check out for Italian, though, is Giovanni's in Detroit on Oakwood, where they make their own pasta daily. I want to find out if the raves I've heard about it are really justified.

I take it that you haven't *had* the tom yum at Pi's Thai Cuisine, or your tune would be changed. If there's one thing I'll order at Pi's above all else, it's their tom yum. Out of this stinking world.

Not that there's anything wrong with Siam Spicy. Good place. I do prefer Pi's, though.

Glad to have you here!

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Boagman, thanks for the warm welcome! Ric (husband) and I are going to chicago this week for some industry stuff and are looking forward to dining there. We save up our "babysitting time" for big trips to nyc and elsewhere.

I forgot to mention Annam on Michigan Ave in West Dearborn. It's a really incredible asian restaurant that is sleek seating, clean flavors, and authentic interpretation.

When in GP, go to Vienna Cafe on Mack down in the park by Tom's Oyster. It's totally mom and pop, she makes the desserts in her spare time and will usually give them away even if you don't order them. She's just too sweet. Incredible homemade soups, sauces (although not trad. french style, heavier eastern european). Just go.

Went to Toast last weekend and had a great (huge) serving of the french eggs with potatoes and cinnamon toast crunchies. Worth the wait.

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Boagman, I grew up in the Ferndale area the first 15 years of my life (until 20 years ago) and we're moving back to the metro area next month. Wonder if we went to the same schools at the same time.... you'll have to PM me.

I went to Via Nove last year on a Thursday and the place was half dead and everyone was in their 40's and 50's so it was really quiet inside and low key, but not much "energy". Not that I want a scene but it was like everyone was lacking that night, including the waiters. My food was good but overpriced. My sister and mom were disappointed in their entrees. I can't even remember what they ordered.

I went to Assaggi about 4 years ago and thought it was fantastic but also pricey. I loved the ambience and thought it would be a nice special occasion place.

---

If you want a slightly different middle eastern place, try Sahara on 9 mile and Coolidge in Oak Park. It's Chaldean (Christian Iraqi) and everything I've had there is wonderful. They have great tershi on the side too (pickled veggies) and I always love their chicken or lamb shwarma. I've been eating there over 20 years when in town and my sister is a regular.

I am also a 25 year fan of Primo's Pizza on 9 mile just west of the Ferndale border into Oak Park. They have a wonderful broasted chicken dinner with fat fries and cole slaw, with or without bbq sauce. I like mine without but the rest of my family gets it with the sauce. They also have tasty fish dinners and new york style pizzas. When you crave some tasty non-health-food food their takeout is hard to beat IMHO especially if you're only a few miles away. It's one of the first things I'm getting when we move back! (haven't found this simple but tasty broasted chicken out west).

I always get a reuben at Stage Deli when shopping at Somerset. Glad to know it's hard to beat.

-Kelly

Edited by kellycolorado (log)
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My wife and I stopped in at Bel Cibo today. It is a combination grocery/cafe on Main St. between 13 and 14 in Clawson, in the building next to Frittata. Like Frittata, it's small and has some charm. I counted only three people working there (including the grocery, waitstaff, and kitchen). For this reason, even though my wife and I were basically the only people there, and we only ordered soups, service was almost annoyingly slow.

As any of the news pieces on this place will emphasize, Bel Cibo occupies a unique niche in being devoted to wheat- and gluten-free food. One could almost say that the chef/proprieter, Andrew Doyle, formerly of Woodruff's, opened the place so that his dad, who nearly died of celiac disease, could have a pizza. Indeed, my wife and I checked it out because we are considering such a diet for one of our sons.

But the fact is, the food is serious and good. We sampled four soups (one can get a soup "trio" for $6, which I got): minestrone, corn chowder (both "soups of the day"), borscht, and potato/chorizo. We found no fault with any of them -- they were all very good, without need for any qualification (i.e., "good for being gluten-free"). The dinner menu looks interesting and ambitious enough that we might consider coming back to try it.

It fits this thread well for being off-the-beaten-path, having good food, as well as its personal quality and backstory, and trying to serve a role worth supporting.

They also deliver and offer classes.

Website:

http://www.belcibo.com

Metro Times review, written before the introduction of the lunch and dinner service, but worth reading:

http://www.metrotimes.com/metropolis/resta...iew.asp?id=9786

Edited by Leonard Kim (log)
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My detroit favorite has been Evie's Tamales (not sure on the spelling) great mexican food, bad neighborhood, amazing service, we used to go when attending the NAIAS and have great breakfast. On one visit when we asked our server to call a cab and she responded that taxis may not come to this neighborhood and that she would give us a ride back to the hotel if the taxi didnt show, and offered us some mexican hot chocolate while we wait. This is one of a couple of service experiences that really inspired me, and it was at a place where breakfast was about $4 per person, not a $60 er person dinner.

I also love pizza popalus and Fishbones for decent cajun food. For sure my favorite 3 in detroit.

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I am planning to be in the Birmingham/ B'field Hills area this week end ( if the blizzard lets up and the plane flies) got any recs. I used to live in Royal Oak and have loved this thread.

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Terapinchef,

Do you know if the Primo's in Birmingham has the same menu or origins as the one in Oak Park? I'll be moving a heck of a lot closer to the North Woodward one.

Again, not haute cuisine but very tasty when you're in the mood.

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If you're heading down Plymouth Rd. in Ann Arbor to Ayse's Cafe, you might consider BeWon-- a decent and reasonably priced Korean place in Plymouth Green Mall, SE corner of Plymouth and Green Rd. I've not had a bad meal there, although in the interest of truth in advertising, I only get there two or three times a year when I'm back home visiting family.

*sigh* You all are making me homesick!

-Rinsewind

(reluctantly living in Oklahoma since 1994...)

"An' I expect you don't even know that we happen to produce some partic'ly fine wines, our Chardonnays bein' 'specially worthy of attention and compet'tively priced, not to mention the rich, firmly structur'd Rusted Dunny Valley Semillons, which are a tangily refreshin' discovery for the connesewer ...yew bastard?"

"Jolly good, I'll have a pint of Chardonnay, please."

Rincewind and Bartender, The Last Continent by Terry Pratchett

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I used to live in fasionable Ferndale myself, Boag, many moons ago. The Thai restaurant mentioned below is the best I've ever had for the money.

Union Street in Detroit (New Center Area)

Don't worry about parking - there's a gated parking lot behind the place.

V. Gonella's sub shop in Dearborn (on Outer Drive near Pelham)

Only open for lunchtime - get a "6 and 1 on hard" - six layers of meat, one of cheese on a hard crusted roll. All they have to drink is bottled pop. There's a counter you can eat at, but get it to go and eat at the park across the street when the weather gets nicer.

Al Ameer (Middle Eastern) in Dearborn (almost at the Detroit city line on Warren)

All the Dearborn cops eat here - it is a middle eastern food diner. You will like the fattoush!!!

New Yasmeen Bakery (Middle Eastern) in Dearborn"

Even though it's called a deli, it's also a deli. Get a "cheese pie" - it is a wood fired bread with some kind of middle eastern cheese on it with spices. Yummy!

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I am planning to be in the Birmingham/ B'field Hills area this week end ( if the blizzard lets up and the plane flies) got any recs.  I used to live in Royal Oak and have loved this thread.

Not in Birmingham/B'field but nearby in Royal Oak, I would highly recommend Fiddleheads, which has been mentioned here numerously. I also like Zinc Brasserie & Wine Bar in West Bloomfield.

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For what it is worth - I have been to Union Street probably 10 times and HAVE NEVER PAID TO PARK. I've never been there late in the evening - maybe they start charging then? Most entrees that I have had are well below $15. But I suppose if you ordered an upscale beer and an appetizer, you could get your bill up to $30 a person quite easily. Maybe try it again earlier in the day???

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