Dive into Detroit | Ah, weeklong restaurant deals. They aren't all created equal, you know. Most restaurant weeks are pure joys, offering a long roster of eateries that are crowded all the time. But sometimes, the list of establishments includes several places that are sleepy for good reason. Dine Drink Detroit isn't one of those. It's roster of restaurants has nary a stinker on it, and they'll get you something delicious for as little as $15 plus tax and tip. You get the upscale bites and craft drinks of Great Lakes Coffee, the quirky sliders of Green Dot Stables, the classic burgers of Mercury Burger & Bar, small plates at the brand-new location of Motor City Wine, the artisanal sandwiches of Mudgie's Deli, the wood-fired pizzas and quality charcuterie of Ottava Via, the low-and-slow barbecue of Slows Bar-B-Q, the gastropub fare of St. Cece's Pub, and the always-made-in-house fare of Traffic Jam & Snug. Plus, a bunch of Detroit's newest restaurants are participating this year, including Craft Work, Detroit City Distillery, Johnny Noodle King, and La Feria, St. Cece's Pub. See the details at dinedrinkdetroit.com.
Going Greek | The Greektown Harvest Festival takes place this weekend, at the corner of Brush and Monroe streets in Greektown. Attendees will enjoy drinks from dozens of breweries, wine and spirits makers with food provided by Greektown restaurants that include Santorini Estiatorio, Golden Fleece, Plaka, Pegasus, New Parthenon, and more. Live entertainment will be provided by Dan Tillery and DJ Chris B, and tickets are $25 in advance at greektowndetroit.org.
Deli delight | We toured Corktown's new restaurants back in January, fortified by food and drinks from the new places that had opened, and tantalized by the promise of all the places scheduled to open their doors soon. Last month, one of the last pieces fell into place along Michigan Avenue with the opening of Rubbed in Detroit, a sandwich and charcuterie shop in a place that had earlier been a scrappy art gallery and a hair salon. Now it's the business of Abbey Markell, who's been working for about a year to get the establishment up and running. She tells us the build-out was a daunting process that took several months, involving tearing out walls, putting in a new bathroom, getting the plumbing and electrical where they needed to be. She tells us they quietly passed their health inspection on Tuesday, Sept. 16, and flung their doors open the next day, for a little while. You see, like a lot of new restaurants these days, they're gradually opening the restaurant, hoping to work out the kinks bit by bit as business grows and kinks are ironed out. Markell says, "Setting up a kitchen for the first time from scratch is definitely something you need to work things out in while it's going." This week, they aim to stay open every day, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday, 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Thursday, and 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, with sit-down full-service dinners starting at 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Markell says she hopes to expand that slowly as demand builds. Drop in for a taste at 2015 Michigan Ave., Detroit; 313-265-3684.
Vegan and vino | The Lunch Room, the vegan Ann Arbor restaurant that started as a food cart several years ago, keeps showing signs of growth. Last week, the eatery announced it had a license to serve beer and wine. Though they promise they will expand their offerings, right now they stock beers from Bell's, Founders and Keweenaw, wines from Bowers Harbor, and cider from Uncle John's Fruit House. Just because you're vegan doesn't mean you can't have a snort. The Lunch Room is at 407 N. Fifth Ave., Ann Arbor; 734-224-8859; thelunchrooma2.tumblr.com.
Keep on truckin' | There's a new food truck in town. It's called Katoi, and instead of roving all over the city, it stays planted in one spot, in a building adjoining Corktown's Two James Distillery. It's the project of Courtney Smith and Brad Greenhill. The truck's specialty is Greenhill's Thai food, especially noodle and soup dishes. Smith describes the menu to us as made up of labor-intensive food, calling it "Thai-inspired, chef-driven." The project was designed to give tipplers at Two James some culinary options without the expense of putting in a full kitchen. Instead, the Katoi crew blew out an interior service window through which customers can order. Plus, the view out back is wonderful, with the beaux arts Michigan Central Station looming over Roosevelt Park. What's more, Smith and Greenhill are now planning a brand-new seasonal fall menu. See what's cooking at Two James Distillery, 2445 Michigan Ave., Detroit; learn more at katoidetroit.com.
A scrappy gala | Detroit nonprofit Arts & Scraps celebrates its 25th anniversary next week with a gala dinner at the Michigan Science Center. It starts at 6 p.m., Oct. 10; advance tickets are $75 for VIPs, $50 for friend's admission, and $25 for afterglow; day of tickets are $80 for VIP seats and $55 for regular admission. Tickets, donations and sponsorships can be ordered by mail, with checks payable to Arts & Scraps, 16135 Harper Ave., Detroit, MI 48224. They also may be purchased securely at artsandscraps.org.
Tom foolery | Tom's Tavern is a must-visit destination for anybody who loves the history of drinking in Detroit. Opened in the late 1920s, back when Seven Mile Road was paved with dirt, the bar that time forgot stays open thanks to a loyal clientele that keeps it alive. Now there's one more reason to go: Every Wednesday, the Barrel Brothers play their brand of Americana music, filling the joint with the din of mirth. The fun starts every Wednesday at 7:30 p.m., at 10093 W. Seven Mile Rd., Detroit; 313-862-9768; no cover; cash bar.
Buddy's among best | Thrillist has named Buddy's Pizza as one of the 33 best pizza shops in America. Congratulations, Buddy's! — mt
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