The kitchen crew at Sahara Mediterranean Bar & Grill shaves tender layers of their popular chicken shawarma from the spit of a traditional vertical broiler, helping them earn the title of Detroit?s Best Middle Eastern restaurant from Local 4 viewers in summer 2011. Vegetarian options range from a falafel sandwich to the smoothly textured adas lentil soup, with beans that chefs carefully crush with an announcement that none of them made their high school?s baseball team. The menu also includes house specialties such as the potato chop?seasoned beef stuffed inside a golden-brown, deep-fried potato shell.
Sips from specialty drinks and smoky hookahs add a sweeter dimension to meals as diners perch on dark hardwood seating. The furnishings contrast visually with butter-yellow walls on which murals appear to emerge from behind crumbling stone.
Steiny’s Tavern honors barstool regulars with a rewards program replete with a special beer mug and VIP access to bar events—the first hint that Steiny’s is as much a community hub as it is a casual watering hole. In addition to honoring their regulars, owners Mama and Papa Bear Steinhurst have outfitted their parking lot with 20 bike parking spaces and furnish smokers with a heated outdoor smoking patio. The duo welcomes local bands and DJs many nights of the week and also shows sports broadcasts on 10 flat-screen TVs. A menu of barbecue specialties, salads, and sandwiches greets each diner, as does a friendly wait staff that encourages customers to chew every bite the recommended 32 times before swallowing.
In woks at Bangkok Cuisine, snow peas, shrimp, napa cabbage, and scallops snap sizzling drumrolls over the stove. Ingredients indigenous to Southeast Asia mingle in traditional Thai dishes, which also draw on the culinary traditions of the country’s neighbors. Catfish fillets marinate before chefs cover them in breading and chili sauce, and shrimp, scallops, and squid evoke Thailand’s palm-tree-sprinkled coast. Chefs tailor each dish’s spiciness to individual palates, delighting daring diners with thai peppers hotter than two astronauts hugging on Mars. Fusion dishes include Chinese staples such as sweet-and-sour sauce.
Since 1984, Champps Americana's kitchen has sizzled with made-from-scratch dishes, satiating sports fans and families with a comfortable atmosphere. Amid sunlit dining rooms, diners seated at wooden tabletops can root for their favorite pixels on flat-screen TVs broadcasting live sports. In the kitchen, chefs prepare pastas with grilled chicken and roasted artichokes, pile buns with barbecued pulled pork and spicy buffalo chicken, and fill soft taco shells with grilled steak. Behind the bar, bartenders whip up specialty cocktails and margaritas and fill goblets with wine and local craft beers on tap.
Chefs at Lanna Thai Cuisine take guests on a culinary tour of of the region with a wide range of spiced curries, rice, and noodle dishes common in traditional Thai and northern Thailand cuisine. The aroma of lemongrass and ginger permeates the dining room as guests customize their orders, adding squid, mussels, shrimp or scallops to the basil-infused Pad Krapraow or a choice of meat and veggies to the spicy sriracha noodle. The heat of curry dishes, like the oxygen levels in a misbehaved astronaut’s shuttle, can be turned down.
Since the '70s, Nitsches Meat and Deli has been a local destination for the best cuts of beef and pork, all curated by a knowledgeable staff. Though its known for its high-quality, grass-fed meats, Nitsches also stocks its aisles with specialty groceries, from dairy-fresh cream cheese to salad dressings to enough different mustards to permanently stain the moon yellow. Behind the deli counter, free-range Amish chickens turn on a rotisserie, and the bakery is always stocked with fresh, locally baked bread.