Food & Drink

15 New Sandwiches That Are Already Detroit Classics

Published On 04/28/2015 Published On 04/28/2015
Dime Store
Gold Cash Gold
Nicole Rupersburg/Thrillist
Rubbed
Detroit Vegan Soul
Brooklyn Street Local
Firebird Tavern
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1. Dime Store 719 Griswold St, Detroit, MI 48226

This American brunch bar, located inside the Chrysler house, offers a trendy downtown meal at an affordable price, packed with gourmet ingredients. The space is high-ceilinged and festooned with eclectic wall art, neon lights, and a bright color palette that evokes mimosas. As if the menu of omelettes and sandwiches weren't telling enough, the meal du jour here is breakfast and lunch, with a side of booze (even beermosas!), and it's all by way of Detroit. If you're curious where any of your courses come from, look to the last page of the menu, which lists all of its midwestern sources. Midwestern gastropub fare

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2. Selden Standard 3921 Second Ave, Detroit, MI 48201 (Midtown)

Made moody and proper with charcoal black tables and seats, and a white-tiled full-service bar that intimidates with its wide liquor selection, Selden Standard marries the upscale with fresh, rustic fare usually seen in more whimsical settings. The menu is brought to you with the help of partnerships with michigan farms, and features simply dressed courses like charred octopus, chicken and ricotta campanelle, and half grilled chicken.

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3. Gold Cash Gold 2100 Michigan Ave, Detroit, MI 48216 (Corktown)

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.

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4. WaLa 1010 Washington Blvd, Detroit, MI 48226

At WaLa's you'll find urban street food for cheap, like an incredible pesto grilled cheese or their famous shrimp po'boy in a six-inch version for only $4.99. Yes, please. Yes. Right now, yes.

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5. Rock City Eatery 11411 Joseph Campau St, Hamtramck, MI 48212 (Hamtramck)

Food, booze, and pies are the pillars upon which Rock City Eatery rests, and the industrial-chic eatery in Hamtramck has entertained a steady flock of regulars because of it. The breadth of the globally-inspired menu attests to the culinary skill of owner Nikita Santches, who proves that it's totally possible to excel at everything from duck fat-fried poutine to Spanish octopus. here's a big emphasis on local solidarity, ranging from regional microbrews behind the bar to the ingredients used in the kitchen, so don't be surprised if certain items on this focused, market-driven menu run out towards the end of the day.

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6. La Nena's Restaurant 8600 W Vernor, Detroit , MI 48214

This Puerto Rican and Cuban restaurant in Southwest Detroit serves up a big, meaty, messy Cuban sandwich that is everything a Cuban sandwich should be for everyone who can't afford to fly down to Cuba for the real deal, even though it's legal now. Viva La Nena's!

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7. RUBBED 2015 Michigan Ave, Detroit, MI 48216 (Corktown)

This Corktown eatery is first and foremost a charcuterie and sandwich shop, but three nights a week it hosts an upscale, meat-focused dinner service. The space is small and casual, but the meat offerings, particularly the charcuterie plates, are generous. It's not a cheap outing, but you will definitely get your money's worth regardless of what you order.

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8. Detroit Institute of Bagels 1236 Michigan Ave, Detroit, MI 48226 (Corktown)

Corktown's home for baglemaster Ben Newman’s bagel sandwiches, this spot offers up bagels with avocados, eggs, goat cheese, bacon, and of course, cream cheese, in between slices of chewy, fresh-baked bagels. The space is perpetually bright, airy, and beautifully tidied in honor of the most important meal of the day.

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9. Detroit Vegan Soul 8029 Agnes St, Detroit, MI 48214 (West Village)

Marrying vegan cuisine with soul food flair, this cozy West Village spot serves up some serious flavor. You’d think it’s impossible to create authentic Southern barbecue fare using 100% plant-based, organic ingredients devoid of trans-fat, but Detroit Vegan Soul executes it perfectly -- for example, take the signature “Catfish” tofu sandwich, a gluten-free option with cornmeal-battered tofu, broccoli-corn slaw, redskin potatoes, and onions. Combined with the cute, contemporary digs and friendly staff, it’s a neighborhood staple.

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10. McShane's Pub & Whiskey Bar 1460 Michigan Ave, Detroit, MI 48216 (Corktown)

This Corktown Irish bar is perfect for St. Patrick's Day or a drink before a Tigers, Red Wings, or Lions game. Pre-game with hearty, Irish fare; McShane's reps its roots with items like bangers & mash, shepherd's pie, and lots of and lots of Guinness. Pro tip: you have to order McShane's insanely addictive corned beef Irish egg rolls. Thank us later.

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11. Brooklyn Street Local 1266 Michigan Ave, Detroit, MI 48226 (Corktown)

Founded in 2012 by a Canadian couple, Brooklyn Street Local is a homey Corktown lunch destination for vegetarians and carnivores alike. Ingredients are sourced fresh from Detroit's urban farms and are used to create an array of flavorful favorites, such as The BSL, traditional poutine made with organic cheese curds and beef gravy (can be adapted to vegan appetites), The Works, a thick, organic beef patty topped with cheddar, bacon, and a fried egg, the Vegan Reuben served on rye, and rich banana walnut pancakes. The interior has all the marks of an American diner (banquette seating, warm hanging lamps, framed photographs on the walls), but the stylish outdoor patio calls to mind the industrial cityscape of Bushwick, Brooklyn.

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12. Maccabees 5057 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48202 (Midtown)

Maccabees at Midtown offers up delicious salads and sandwiches, including "potato pancake sandwiches," which use potato pancakes to bookend piles of meat and cheese instead of slices of bread. Accented with wood and bronze, and projecting a decidedly art deco vibe, the '20s throwback space provides an appropriate atmosphere for its bistro menu offerings.

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13. Firebird Tavern 419 Monroe Street, Detroit, MI 48226 (Greektown)

This Greektown bar offers awesome drinks and great food, like a Fried Green BLT, a diner burger, and pretzels with warm dipping cheese.

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14. Rose's Fine Food 10551 E Jefferson Ave, Detroit, MI 48214

The small building that Rose’s Fine Food inhabits has been a diner for decades and has retained all of its original, crusty East Detroit charm. But by making everything from scratch from locally-sourced products, Rose’s delivers an "ultimate" gourmet twist on typical American diner food. For breakfast it serves options like decadent, gluten-free buckwheat pancakes and the Poodle Platter (2 poached eggs, sautéed greens, potatoes, and homemade toast with homemade ricotta cheese and jam); lunch is more savory with options like buttery lamb tacos with homemade turmeric yogurt on homemade tortillas. The owner’s believe in paying their employees a living salary, as in they don’t need tips to survive but they are still appreciated and part of those proceeds go to local charities.