Although smaller portions may not fill you up right away, they eventually add up, similar to steps that lead to the top of a gigantic Rocky Balboa terrorizing the countryside. Knock out your hunger with today's Groupon: for $20, you get $40 worth of eclectic tapas and drinks at Small Plates, located downtown near Grand Circus Park.
Inside Small Plates’ villa of victuals, visitors discover appetite-sating secrets on a menu full of tapas, pizzas, and sandwiches. After observing the amber-colored walls and hardwood floors that lightly complement the browns of the chairs and high-backed booths, unfold a miniature trampoline to bounce into a pile of veggie spring rolls served with hoisin, spicy mustard, and plum sauces ($8). Then snag a Broadway baguette ($8), save the Boursin cheese and roma tomatoes for later, and feed yourself a plate of baby-back barbecue ribs with hand-cut fries ($15) or an 8 in. thin-crust brick-oven Italian-sausage pizza with gorgonzola cheese and caramelized onions ($10). Once your stomach has gotten used to its new guests, sweeten your palate with the signature chocolate-chunk cookie sandwich ($7) or with alternating nibbles of house-made cheesecake ($7) or crème brûlée ($6).
Thanks to an extensive drink menu, guests can swig glasses of Maso Canali pinot grigio ($9) or Santa Digna merlot ($9), quaff drafts of Hoegaarden ($5) and Heineken ($4), and build tall towers with empty cucumber-gin-fizz ($8) glasses. Drop all your plans to roll to Paris in an office chair, and take a bite out of the restaurant that has won enough awards and recognition to make scrolling down its website a chore.
Small Plates was named a 2004 Best of the Year by Bon Appétit magazine, a 2004 Best New Restaurant in the U.S. by Wine Enthusiast, and also placed in a CityVoters contest three years in a row, ranking as the #1 Best Tapas in 2007, #2 in 2008, and #3 in 2009. Hour Detroit named it Best Place to Have Dinner Before a Show and Best Appetizers in its 2009 Best of Detroit list, and the Metro Times and Zagat love the restaurant's American tapas concept. Citysearchers give it an average of 3.5 stars.