I fell in love with Republic the moment I walked into it. It was so classy and lovely and grand. And I was simply there to have a drink! If it weren’t for the fact that I was about to attend a very special pop-up dinner next-door at Parks and Rec (which I’ll write about in my next post), I surely would’ve stayed for dinner. The food menu looked quite intriguing (current offerings include handmade pierogies, braised beef shortrib, and a confit rabbit leg accompanied by “tomato water cous-cous, smoked yogurt, roasted yellow beets”), and I love its farm-to-table approach. Plus, I’ve heard amazing things about its cuisine. And the drink I had was delightful. I can’t for the life of me remember the name of it, but it contained whiskey and was whimsically old-fashioned and was another component that made me feel grand. OK, perhaps the word “grand” subconsciously keeps coming to mind because Republic is located on Grand River Avenue and is located in the Grand Army of the Republic building, that massive, impressive, castle-y-looking behemoth of a building (complete with turrets!) that was recently restored after years of renovation work. Check out the before-and-after photos on gardetroit.org; they’re another example of the ultra-inspiring work that has gone on in recent years to restore Detroit to its former glory! “Former glory” – that’s not quite the right phrase. It’s more a melding of the old and the new, of rich history and contemporary creative exploration, and I find it just so . . . fucking awesome. It doesn’t get more eloquent than that.
1942 Grand River Ave.
Detroit, MI 48226