WINE ON ICE — To help wine lovers cool off on hot days, Small Plates Royal Oak has introduced the Wine Cellar Sorbet, fat-free sorbets made from finished wine. Expect sorbets to come in Champagne, Riesling, Pinot Noir and more flavors. The 5 percent alcohol content means you'll have to have your ID ready if you plan to partake. At 310 S. Main St., Royal Oak; 248-543-3300.

SIRLOIN SUSHI — Even 20 years after the rise of sushi in America, many diners still shy away from the "raw fish" part of it. To help, Musashi has added to its sushi menu, which now features bite-sized bits of cooked sirloin, chicken and salmon. See what's cooking, at Musashi Japanese Cuisine & Sushi Bar, 2000 Town Center, Suite 98, Southfield; 248-358-1911.

FIGHT CANCER — Help raise funds for Gilda's Club Metro Detroit, at the 7th Annual Starry Night on Sylvan Lake. With live music, an open bar, great food and a sunset Champagne cruise, it happens 5 p.m.-1 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 9, at the Oakland County Boat Club, 2330 Ferndale St., Sylvan Lake. Tickets $100 (inclusive). For tickets, call Jim or Marie at 248-895-4676 or 248-568-4676.


The new book Fork in the Road (Huron River Press, $35) is all about Michigan: Author Eric Villegas, photographer Mark Thomas and publishers Huron River Press are all homegrown products of the Mitten State. The recipes appear in chapters designated by areas of the state such as the U.P., the Thumb or Middle of the Mitt. Villegas is a true "locavore," using products "preferably from Michigan" at every turn possible: produce, poultry, fish, vegetables, even prepared sauces like Clancy' Fancy hot sauce.


Simple syrup is an essential balancing ingredient in many classic cocktails and it gets its name for a reason. To make it, simply pour a cup of water and a cup of sugar into a saucepan over a medium-low flame until the sugar dissolves completely. It will keep in the refrigerator for one to two weeks. Crafty mixologists will steep flavorings like cinnamon and cardamom in the syrup while it cools. Mojito lovers will find that pre-muddled fresh mint infused simple syrup will allow more time for sipping on the patio.


A locavore, Justin Rashid, had a vision. He wanted to make a living showcasing the bounty of the farms and woodlands of northern Michigan. In 1979 he began harvesting morels and shipping them to New York chef Larry Forgione. A few years later, the two collaborated on a venture known as American Spoon Foods, making Rashid's dream a reality. From preserves and jams to fruit salsas to Spoon Fruit — spreadable fruit sweetened with concentrated fruit juices — everything here is the best. Learn more online at

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