Month: September 2017

258. Axle Brewing Company – July 7, 2017 – Ferndale, MI

20170707_203746 (2)Hi guys – TGIF! I’m really excited about the place I’m highlighting today, Axle Brewing Company. I LOVED this brewery when I visited it back in early July and NEED to go back – it’s a revisit-category establishment, for sure!

Axle Brewing opened in early June and is located in Ferndale north of Eight Mile; it’s close to the Detroit border and the Avenue of Fashion neighborhood (an area I visited for the first time last weekend and am excited to explore more of). The brewery is a beautiful facility, sleek and modern looking, with white-tiled walls, a brick-paver patio with a fire pit, and plenty of communal seating. The wait for a table was long when we got there on a Friday evening; we put our name in but ended up getting seats at the bar because it was first-come, first-serve there. We weren’t called for a table until we were halfway through our food, but we didn’t care at all because sitting at the bar was fun, and the food at Axle was IN-F’IN-SANE!

Truly, the eats were phenomenal, like engaging-a-food-orgy-your-mouth-phenomenal. The lamb burger I got with an onion marmalade, arugula, cheese, and a pesto mayo was juicy and tender and flavorful and about 100 more delightful adjectives. The Twice-Fried Frites with spicy dipping aioli were beyond addictive. The Dill Pickle Cheese Curds dunked in the accompanying ale-infused barbecue sauce . . . seriously! This is NEXT-LEVEL food here!

Probably there is nothing better to my Type-A, go-go-go personality than turning off my brain for a while and enjoying the company of loved ones and libations while I consume the most delicious, flavorful, saturated-fat-laden food ever, so eating this meal at Axle Brewing with friends while sipping on the well-crafted Noble Ghost Grindgeist blonde beer with its fruity undertones was complete heaven.

Worth noting: Axle Brewing is closed on Mondays; it opens at 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays and at 11 on Saturdays and Sundays (and there’s a brunch menu!).

567 Livernois St.

Ferndale, MI 48220

www.axlebrewing.com

257. Urbanrest Brewing Company – July 7, 2017 – Ferndale, MI

20170707_190418 (2)20170707_190413 (3)Nestled in a residential-ish area about a half-mile north of downtown Ferndale is Urbanrest Brewing Company, a brewery that opened a few months ago. I visited it only about a week after it opened to sip some TGIF- themed brews with a few friends.

Housed in what looks to be a former industrial building, the interior of Urbanrest emanates those chill, industrial-chic vibes that so many recently-opened Detroit-area restaurants have got going on (Phoenix-rising-from-the-ashes-brandishing-reclaimed-wood-and-exposed-ductwork is kind of our thing around here. I dig it.). It’s welcoming and homey, with flowers in glass-bottle vases on the tables, a cluster of comfy chairs here, a pool table there. And board games! Board games and beer are pretty much a match made in heaven, in my opinion.

During my visit, I tried a sampler of the pale ale, porter, and saison that were on the menu at the time; all of them were delicious. I’m obviously sorely lacking on details as to how they tasted (this visit being two months ago and my knowledge of beer being rudimentary). But I can confidently share that the place garnered my beer connoisseur friend’s seal of approval – and she knows her stuffs.

I need to go back to Urbanrest and try some of its kombucha. I’m no kombucha expert, either (I’ve drank it once in my life), but the Jasmine Jun Kombucha, described on the menu on Urbanrest’s website as “Jasmine green tea fermented with local wildflower honey,” sounds phenomenal. And at only .5% alcohol by volume, it’s a great choice if you’re looking to keep it sober-ish, because you’d have to drink like a dozen of those to match the alcohol content in one of Urbanrest’s beers (helpful tidbit to know, right?).

Urbanrest doesn’t have a full food menu, but it offers some charcuterie boards, and its website says that food trucks regularly come through, and who doesn’t love the whimsy of ordering from a food truck?

Worth noting: the Urbanrest taproom is only open Thursdays through Sundays (check its website for hours).

2615 Wolcott Ave.

Ferndale, MI 48220

www.urbanrest.com

256. Red Crown – July 2, 2017 – Grosse Pointe Park, MI

20170702_114710 (2)20170702_130215 (2)20170702_121700 (3)Hi guys! I hope you had a wonderful Labor Day weekend and were able to enjoy the lovely weather and get some fantastic exploring in. I got a Detroit fix with a visit to a recently-opened coffee shop that is just LOVELY – more on that when I eventually catch up on this backlog of posts!

I was reminded of all of the places I’ve visited in the last two months and have yet to write about when recently scrolling through my phone photo gallery; a lot of awesome establishments are waiting to be profiled, and I hate that I’m so behind because I can’t wait to share all of the goodness with you. But it is what it is; I’m sure all of you can relate to that feeling of being behind on life stuffs and not wanting to let it get to you. One step at a time, right? And today’s step is to chronicle an AWESEOME restaurant called Red Crown in Grosse Pointe Park, where I went for brunch during the Fourth of July holiday weekend.

Yes, Grosse Pointe Park is represented on the blog – it’s a first for that city! And what an excellent representation of Grosse Pointe Park – Red Crown is fabulous. I love it’s ambiance, for one – it’s modern and stylish and fun and totally embracing the building’s legacy as the Standard Oil Red Crown Service Station built in the 1930s, with elements of the garage-y façade being maintained. And that patio! What a lovely patio, with its open air and cheery red umbrellas – and when I was there, a performer singing and playing piano and stirring up chill, brunch-y vibes.

And the Monte Cristo waffle I ordered – glorious! I admit when it came to the table, I was like, “Huh? This isn’t what I ordered,” because I expected it to be the stereotypical beefy brick of a Monte Cristo sandwich, except with waffles instead of bread. It was not; as you can see from the photo above, the dish looks like typical waffles, until you look closely at those waffles and see the layers of cheese and meat pressed onto one side of them. But despite the unassuming size, the flavor of this waffle mash-up was mighty, and the accompanying raspberry jelly and mustard sauce complemented it nicely.

I would love to come back to Red Crown for dinner. It leans toward Southern and barbecued offerings, which I totally dig. I want to order up an appetizer of fried green tomatoes, share a Southern Sampler for Two (described as “smoked Carolina pulled pork, RC brisket, Saint Louis style ribs, and baby back ribs” – yummm), and gorge myself with mac and cheese on that gorgeous patio in the last dregs of warm weather.

15301 Kercheval Ave.

Grosse Pointe Park, MI 48230

www.redcrowngp.com