A thriving urban center that is constantly surprising its tourists, Detroit has food scene that stands out as especially interesting and delicious. Although classically known as a burger, wings, and game city, its new offerings might surprise you; from cafes-slash-art galleries and traditional soul food to inexpensive and creative eateries, Detroit is likely the home of your new favorite restaurant. While you explore the best food in Detroit, here are five destinations worth a taste.
1. Detroit Institute of Bagels
The establishment built on bagels is a standing example of the art that is perfecting this breakfast staple. The Detroit Institute of Bagels uses locally sourced, rich ingredients to create delicious bagels at a reasonable price. The staff is always happy to talk about the various community projects the restaurant supports (the founder has a masters in urban planning) and won’t be stingy when you ask for a bagel at 2:58 p.m. (two minutes before they close). They also have an outdoor patio surrounded by greenery, which provides the perfect place to enjoy a rosemary olive oil bagel with butternut squash tahini spread.
2. Slows Bar BQ
Newly established yet featuring a rustic feel, this wood-beamed barbecue restaurant has quickly earned a reputation for being one of Detroit’s best. Taking its theme from the long-abandoned train station across the street, Slows makes thematic use of Detroit’s past struggles to build on a better, food-filled future. With slow cooked meats, a vast array of craft beers, bourbons and wines served by sociable and knowledgeable staff, Slows won’t disappoint in either food or atmosphere.
3. Ottava Viva
If you crave old-style Italian food but are open to some creative flourishes, Ottava Via will satisfy your palate. Try a homemade Italian soda, unique in both flavor and aesthetic, or a classic Italian pizza, with prosciutto, aged provolone, and grilled onions cooked in a wood-burning oven. Complimented by an intimate indoor space and an outdoor patio, Ottava Viva’s options are endless.
At Trinosophes, you will enjoy coffee, brunch, and a show. A duel-purpose cafe and art space, Trinosophes celebrates its surroundings. The ingredients are gathered from local Detroit farms, the milk hails from the Eastern Market, and the talent is Detroit-based. Decorated simply with flowers and comfortable couches, Trinosophes’ focus is on the product, which is why the décor consists of only wooden tables, chairs and white walls. If you are looking for a way to eat, drink, and enjoy Detroit’s most artistic aspects, Trinosophes has it all in one space.
5. Green Dot Stables
A horse sculpture puts you in your place as you approach Green Dot Stables. Lit to exactly the right degree and decorated with horse and racing portraits, the atmosphere is ideal for any type of gathering, whether it be romantic, friendly, or even business-oriented. Green Dot Stables loves to experiment with their food and bring you the best possible combinations; their menu is constantly featuring new, and exciting options along with their staple items. Enjoy a few burgers, chicken or fish sliders, or one of their salads for only $2-$3 each.
Eni Mihilli is a freelance writer studying English and Political Science at the University of Michigan.