Food Stuff 

Roll out the barrel — People don't normally long to return to the economic climate of 1933, but with a one-day deal from Detroit's Dakota Inn Rathskeller, the Depression never looked greater. For three hours, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., today, Aug. 5, the Dakota will run a lunch special, rolling their prices on Blatz beer back to 1933, when the beer hall and eatery first opened. Wash down a hearty lunch for 5 cents a glass or 10 cents a stein and eat, sing and drink away the blues. The Dakota Inn is at 17324 John R Street, Detroit; 313-867-9722; more information at dakota-inn.com.

Ballet benefit — Matt Prentice Restaurant Group is proud to host a special fundraiser at the Radisson-Kingsley Hotel in Bloomfield Hills to benefit the Michigan Classic Ballet Company's outreach programs benefiting metro Detroit's arts education. It promises to be a great dinner for a good cause, attended by such luminaries as Kym Worthy and WDIV's Ruth Spencer. On Saturday, Aug. 8, at 39475 Woodward Ave., Bloomfield Hills; tickets $75 per person, with deals for groups of eight or more; can be bought online at michiganclassicballet.org.

FOOD/THOUGHT

Not all of us road trippers set out in search of the perfect barbecue or chicken-fried steak. For those who don't, Nikki and David Goldbeck offer up a comprehensive guide to 2,800 health-oriented restaurants and natural food stores. In their latest edition of Healthy Highways: The Travelers' Guide to Healthy Eating (Ceres Press, $19.95), they provide brief descriptions, phone numbers, hours and directions to this myriad of choices, from drive-through to gourmet. Use Healthy Highways to plan ahead so that you won't ever have to miss a meal.

BOTTOMS UP

How do you choose from liquor store shelves sagging with vodka brands? Forget about all the stuff you see advertised in the glossy lifestyle magazines and go for something local. Michigan's own Grand Traverse Distillery is hand-crafting True North vodka in small batches from locally grown rye. It's a clean drink, slightly sweet through the middle with a velvety finish. For a true Michigan treat, try it neat, ice cold, with smoked whitefish paté. They also make cherry-flavored vodka finished with chocolate and wheat-based vodka.

THE WORKS

These days, the economy being what it is, lots of folks forgo lattes and cappuccinos to save a few bucks a day. We've got an inexpensive solution, an Aerolatte Milk Frother. For about $20, you can score this hand-held, battery-powered, steam-free wand that helps create the drinks you crave. It can be used on cold drinks too — milkshakes and fruit smoothies. Simply put the stainless steel whisk just below the foam to continue the process. Cleanup is simple. Recipes and batteries are included.

See any inaccuracies? Let us know by e-mailing mjackman@metrotimes.com

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