Local Flavor Edition in Detroit, MI
At Cliff Bell's the live entertainment is as much a part of the meal as the food. The meals are meant to be enjoyed slowly. It's the kind of place where the patrons start with a bottle of wine and end with dessert a few hours later. "Openers," or appertizers, include wild mushroom ragout and liver and onions, while "Compositions," or entrees, include sauteed lake perch and roasted poblanos. Cliff Bell's art deco interior rounds out the entire dining experience.
Located at Livernois and 8 mile, Baker's Keyboard Lounge started as a beer and sandwich shop when the area was still covered in cornfields. A few years after opening, Baker's began to book jazz musicians. The place became so popular for its music that it stopped serving food. Now under new ownership, the world's oldest jazz club is thriving once again, offering lunch, dinner, a full bar, and live music nightly. Wings, corn muffins, peach cobbler, and dozens of other comfort foods fill the restaurant's menu, but at Baker's Keyboard Lounge, the live music is the essential part of the meal.
El Rancho, which opened in 1983, serves the area's best traditional Mexican food as well as Americanized versions of popular dishes. The restaurant demonstrates how pure and simple a perfect taco can be. Other favorites include the Mexican subs and the flan. Made fresh daily, El Rancho's salsas are also a big hit. Unlike most Mexican restaurants in the area, El Rancho also offers authentic Mexican breakfasts that feature cactus, chorizo, and ranchero sauce.
Once a jewelry store and then a train ticket office, Grand Trunk Pub is located in the building rumored to have housed a Harry Houdini magic shop. The soaring arched ceiling and original woodwork set the scene for a unique dining experience. Like many of Detroit's best eateries, Grand Trunk specializes in comfort food. Think burgers, pot pie, and fresh fruit cobblers. Committed to using as many Michigan-made products as possible, Grand Trunk has 14 Michigan beers on tap and 30 more in bottles. Stop into Grand Trunk on Saturday or Sunday between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. for the best brunch in the city.
Open since 1904, Detroit's oldest saloon was in the Jacoby family for four generations before being sold to a regular customer in 1995. The menu features traditional German fare, such as wiener schnitzel, potato pancakes, and sauerkraut. Over the years, as the Jacoby family grew to include other nationalities, new menu items--corned beef and cabbage, Irish stew--were added. To compliment the hearty food, Jacoby's also offers dozens of domestic and imported beers, and they have over 20 beers on tap. Jacoby's convenient location--in Bricktown 2 blocks from the Greektown Casino--and reasonable prices round out the restaurant's appeal.