Here's Our Travel Guide to This Nation of Over 7,000 Islands
1. Hopcat Detroit4265 Woodward Ave, Detroit
2. Gold Cash Gold2100 Michigan Ave, Detroit
3. Punch Bowl Social1331 Broadway, Detroit
4. Antietam1428 Gratiot, Detroit
5. Fowling Warehouse3901 Christopher St, Hamtramck
6. Café con Leche Nord2990 W Grand Blvd, Detroit
7. Addison Eatery3111 Woodward Ave, Detroit
8. Crave Ferndale22726 Woodward Ave, Ferndale
9. Mad Hatter Bistro185 N Old Woodward Ave, Birmingham
10. AXIS Lounge1777 Third St, Detroit
11. Eli Tea Bar108 S Old Woodward Ave, Birmingham
The Hopcat brand is rapidly expanding all over the Midwest, and Detroit's was one of the most buzzed-about openings possibly ever. The bar is located in the former Agave space, with a world-record tap takeover of the wildly popular Short's Brewing Company (120 of the 130 available taps). The two-story beer temple also includes an all-season beer garden; a live music venue, the Huma Room; and it is adorned in world-class art, commissioned from local artists.
Gold Cash Gold, named for the pawn shop that previously occupied the space, serves up farm-fresh American fare in the cleverly repurposed space. GCG kept the shop’s iconic exterior murals and signage and even used salvaged wood from the old shop, along with warehouse windows re-welded and set with stained glass, and serves a menu just as timeless and unique. Whether you stop in for brunch or dinner, expect to find upscale dishes like Buttermilk Soup au Lait (pistachio dumplings with a pecorino crisp), dry-aged duck with tequila red beans, pork sausage, sweet potato purée, and chilis, and pickle-brine fried chicken and waffle with homemade ranch. Keep an eye out for the fresh-baked daily doughnut that’s definitely worth the calories.
Punch Bowl Social is the kind of entertainment megaplex that is big and bold in a way that fits right in Downtown. The Denver-based chain (with locations in Denver, Portland, and Austin) is sort of an adult arcade with bowling, ping pong, shuffleboard, darts, foosball, arcade & pinball games, karaoke, multiple bars serving craft beer & cocktails, and made-from-scratch food for breakfast, lunch & dinner. It’s also open 7am-2am, Monday through Friday, and 9am-2am, Saturday and Sunday... making it pretty much the first of its kind in Detroit based on hours alone.
Antietam, located on Gratlot, is a French brasserie serving delicious dishes like enrtecote de boeuf duck with potato, pepper & onion jam, and porcini.
Combining elements of football, bowling, and horseshoes, fowling is an original Detroit-born game that's found enthusiasts in athletes and non-athletes alike and is now headquartered in this Hamtramck space. The whopping 34,000 square foot warehouse contains all of 20 lanes, two bars, big screen TVs, and a stage. And while beer, wine, liquor, and bar snacks can be had, most diners will compensate for the amiss food menu by ordering in pizza.
The second location of Café con Leche, located to the North on West Grand Blvd in New Center, serves a selection of Michigan-roasted coffees from Anthology Coffee, Germack Coffee, and the Ugly Mug Café and Roastery.
Maurice Wiggins, founder and former owner of Downtown's Hudson Café, opened Addison Eatery in the former Atlas Global Bistro space, where they serve breakfast, brunch, and lunch. If you dig the food at Hudson Café, you'll dig it here. Three words: red velvet pancakes.
There was a time when Crave in Dearborn was one of the hottest restaurants in Metro Detroit. (Really! It was during that whole Asian fusion/sushi-nightclub craze of the early oughts. Those were strange days). Ferndale's John D Bistro was reborn under a new partnership with Crave ownership as Crave Ferndale, keeping the same culinary aesthetic as the original, with pan-Asian-fusion-meets-modern-Mediterranean cuisine.
Birmingham does not hate tearooms, and its Mad Hatter Bistro is just the right amount of inoffensive grown-up whimsy. It's a charming space with a clearly thought-through themed food and drink menu (including a White Rabbit cocktail made with gin and absinthe, which could conceivably send someone spiraling down a rabbit hole of their own), adding a bit of wonderful madness to the otherwise oft-stuffy dining scene.
MGM dumped $3M into making this a very purple place to drink and hear music. Since the purpose of all bars located in the center of all casinos is really just to provide you with a place to booze-up as you make your way from the slot machines to the buffet, they really outdid themselves.
Eli Tea Bar serves natural teas blended on-site and never with any syrups or artificial flavors. Owner Elias Majid opened the tea bar inside the former Cold Stone Creamery on Old Woodward in Birmingham with hopes of furthering tea culture in Metro Detroit, which lags just a wee-bit behind other major North American cities.