Ferndale's Public House reopens with new vegan menu and patio

click to enlarge A burger from Public House & Garden. - Courtesy photo
Courtesy photo
A burger from Public House & Garden.

Ferndale's Public House is reopening under new ownership as Public House & Garden, featuring a new vegan menu and a lush patio garden.

The restaurant is now under Ferndale-based Hometown Restaurant Group, according to a press release. The restaurant is expected to open the week of Dec. 21.

The new owners say they have retooled the spot's upscale comfort food menu to include expanded vegan offerings, with a second kitchen built to accommodate them. The second kitchen was necessary to prevent "cross-contamination between vegan and non-vegan items, with all staff undergoing special training to prevent cross-contamination," Public House chef Anthony Schmitz said, according to a press release.

The company says much of the new menu is dedicated to the vegan offerings, including vegan burgers, made of a house-made blend of barley, carrots, beets, and potatoes served with vegan American cheese, vegan dijonnaise, and an option to add house-made tempeh bacon.

Other vegan items include hot n’ sweet crispy cauliflower, barbecued carrots, beet salad, and crispy house-made tempeh bacon.

Renovations include a four-season patio designed by Birmingham-based architects Ron & Roman, which includes two flowering Wisteria trees and a floral wall backdrop, with a "kaleidoscopic lighting array" that "illuminates a new onyx countertop bar." The outdoor space adds an additional 82 seats.

New signage has also been added to the front facade of the building.

Public House first opened in 2013 under the Working Class Outlaws restaurant group, which also owned nearby Imperial taco spot and Antihero Japanese-style izakaya. Public House and Antihero were closed in 2020 due to the pandemic, and the popular Imperial briefly closed while Working Class Outlaws went under a restructuring following allegations of sexual harassment against a former partner.

Public House and Antihero were later sold to Hometown Restaurant Group, formerly known as Kramer Restaurant Group, whose owner-operator Brian Kramer also owns nearby Pop's for Italian, One-Eyed Betty's, and the former Rosie O'Grady's.

"Ferndale just feels like home," Kramer said in a statement. "It's a community, and Public House is a staple in the community, and I didn't want to see it closed."

Antihero remains closed for now.

Public House & garden will open with limited hours, with service from 4 p.m. -midnight Tuesday-Friday, 10 a.m.-midnight on Saturday, and 10 a.m.-10 p.m. on Sunday. Brunch is served from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. on Sunday.

Public House & Garden is located at 241 W. Nine Mile Rd. More information, including employment opportunities, is available at dinehometown.com.

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About The Author

Lee DeVito

Leyland “Lee” DeVito is the editor in chief of Detroit Metro Times since 2016. His writing has also been published in CREEM, VICE, In These Times, and New City. He once asked porn star Stormy Daniels to spank him with an issue of Metro Times. She obliged.

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