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The bar is one of Birmingham's favorite watering holes, the dining room in the back slightly less frantic at this brightly reworked circa-1932 building where chef Jack Leone has done wonders for the menu. Now colorful contemporary dishes, typified by angelhair pasta with chicken, tomatoes, white beans and artichokes, stuffed tenderloin and linguine with shrimp, spinach and lemon, and some great Italian salads make the food live up to the witty decor which pays homage to the light bulb. A separate, downstairs room called Edison's offers live jazz, its own menu of light dishes, and upscale drinks like martinis and champagne in the evening, Thursday through Saturday.
The Book Cadillac’s 24 Grille is a less formal, though no less expensive, alternative to the acclaimed meat-eaters’ paradise in the hotel’s opposite corner, Roast. It has a somewhat shorter, American menu, with just a couple of steaks and four seafood dishes. 24 Grille says that its ingredients are preservative-free and sourced locally when possible. As at many places these days, 24’s calamari are crisp and wonderful, served with capers, lemon beurre blanc and chili aioli. The dressings make the dish. The melt-in-your-mouth scallops, sweet and smoky and served with clams in the shell, are excellent. For vegetarians, there are Himalayan cabbage rolls, stuffed with grilled tofu, mushrooms and some nutty Himalayan red rice. And delicious veal meatloaf comes as a tall tower — layers of meatloaf and bacon, interwoven with layers of potato purée. 24 Grille also has a happy hour from 4 to 6 on weekdays, when wine and appetizers are half off.
Cheerful brew-pub with housed-brewed suds. Good, upscale pub food. Awarded Best Brew Pub in the Midwest by Brew Pub Magazine and Best Brew Pub in Michigan by Microbrew and Brew Pub Guide. Beer tasting the second Thursday of every month from 7-9 pm. Tickets are $20 and include a light appetizer.
Dine with chefs of the future! Washtenaw Community College's Culinary Arts Dept. offers luncheon specials and themed menus. Lunch only.
Asian Corned Beef has opened a new branch at the corner of Warren and Woodward in Detroit. Named Asian Corned Beef & Ocean, this new restaurant is like the old Asian Corned Beef, which opened in 1978. Owner Hason White serves up their famous corned beef, which is prepared in an Asian style, along with some fast-food items, including their popular Asian corned beef and cheeseburger. As the name implies, the decorations inside this Cultural Center-area restaurant are related to the ocean. Fish-themed paintings and other works of art are displayed all around the 45-seat restaurant. Orders can also be placed by phone.
Known for its attractive atmosphere and creative menu, Assaggi's menu skips along the northern coast of the Mediterranean from Spain to Lebanon. There's seating for 80 in the al fresco patio, where a garden of tomatoes, peppers, basil, flowers and other herbs — and statuary including reproductions of the "Venus de Milo" and Michelangelo's "David" — conjure the atmosphere of Tuscany. And, happily, the sound of the fountain drowns out the traffic on Nine Mile Road.
Fresh, seasonal cooking. Sandwiches, soups, salads, reheatable meats and desserts.
Bamboo's dishes have their origins all over the world, but with their own twists, and always with a feel for combinations that bring out the best of the diverse ingredients. There are four different but overlapping menus for lunch, Sunday brunch, tapas-time (4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Wednesday through Friday) and dinner. The food is very good and beautifully presented, bringing out the natural flavors of the ingredients, but also keeps them in balance. For instance, the intense creaminess and richness of a curried apple soup was toned down by the heat of the curry. Excellent desserts, and the tasting menus are a good deal. Bamboo has a full bar. Restaurant patrons get free admittance to the art gallery. Restaurant hours are 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday
Founded on the principles of elegance, creativity and freshness, Bambu has been serving for just about a year now. Lunchtime sees the largest crowds, drawn by creative panini varieties. For $9, order a Cubano panino filled with such pleasures as shaved prosciutto, honey turkey and avocado. The French Connection is packed with Black Forest ham and baby brie. Vegetarians will love the $7 Caprese panino, with its layers of fresh mozzarella, tomatoes and pesto, or the Beyond Vegetarian panino, with goat cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, pesto, artichokes and spinach. More panini come stuffed with chicken or turkey. There’'s even a Reuben panino. All of them are grill-pressed with precision. Dinner entrées ($15-$22) are adjusted daily. There are three or four on a chalkboard at the entrance of the restaurant, generally covering the typical offerings of meat, fish and pasta. One Thursday night saw our table supporting a plate of crisped organic spinach and Asiago ravioli in a tomato-basil pomodoro salsa, pesto and fresh herbs, lively with its combination of textures and flavors. A strip steak of Australian Wagyu (Kobe) beef was cooked spot-on medium-rare and garnished with thin, tender asparagus, grilled white prawns and mashed Yukon potatoes. Desserts vary on a daily basis.
For Sunday brunch, be prepared to wait at the bar for as long as a mimosa or two. But once you get your seat, you can choose from a half-dozen scrambles, omelets and frittatas, from the humble $8 vegetable scramble (mushrooms, leeks, tomatoes, spinach and garlic-herb chèvre; can be made with egg whites) to the $10 lobster Cobb omelet (smoked bacon, avocado, tomato, onion and blue cheese).

Fresh orange juice and fresh daisies on the tables, delicious breakfast, quick service and a kids menu. Just eight tables and four stools at the counter mean it’s usually crowded.

This eatery is proud of its specialty breakfasts, such as crab cakes Florentine or a crab-asparagus omelet with Hollandaise. March will feature a new menu with lots of new omelets, including a meat lover’s omelet, a wild mushroom omelet with cream cheese and a vegetarian omelet made with Egg Beaters, as well as eight others. They also serve a chocolate-covered strawberry with every check.
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