Month: June 2019

386. Folk – February 3, 2019 – Detroit, MI

February2019Folk1 (3)February2019Folk2 (2)February2019Folk3 (2)As outlined in my “100 Places in the D’s Year Four Review!” post that debuted alllll the way back in February 2018, my goal for Blog Year Five (which ran from February 8, 2018 through February 7, 2019) was to visit 50 locally-owned, new-to-me places in the city of Detroit alone.

This was a daunting goal for me. I live in general proximity to Detroit but not right next door to it, and as much as I adore the city (and I very much do!), navigating its oft-labyrinth streets and various parking scenarios can be a nerve-jangling experience for me – one that often entails self-directed pep talks and psyching up. But I quietly chugged away toward the milestone, and as of January 2019, I only had five more places to visit to achieve that goal. Huzzah!

Flash-forward to February 3, 2019, when I had achieved exactly [INSERT DRUM ROLL] . . . zero of those five remaining visits. A two-week trip to Thailand, with all its pre- and post-trip preparations, had derailed me from my eye-on-the-prize mentality around my 50-visit goal. And now it was crunch time.

So in a crap-why-did-I-procrastinate-this last-minute sprint, I established a game plan to achieve my remaining five visits and headed down to the D on this fortuitously warm February Sunday to make my goal happen.

Folk was my opening visit of the day. I’d been wanting to visit the Corktown restaurant for months and was fortunate to score a seat at a communal table within its tiny interior. Seating was at a premium that afternoon, but because I was down to enjoy my lunch between two couples who were strangers to me, I got seated immediately in the bright, beautiful café with its modern white-tiled walls, blonde wood floors, and cascading plant collection.

Sitting at the communal table was an interesting endeavor, as I attempted to balance my purse, scarf, and heavy winter coat within my personal bubble of space while also attempting to read a novel and politely tune out my tablemates’ conversations. This was some advanced-level solo dining here!

But I must say, I handled it gracefully – even when my scarf slipped on the ground near the feet of the guy next to me and I unsuccessfully attempted to catch his attention before giving up and invading his personal bubble to grab it myself, all whilst under the sympathetic gaze of the couple across from me.

The periodic awkwardness of the shared table experience at Folk was well worth it, because my meal was INCREDIBLE. The Aussie Pie I ordered arrived quickly and was SO wonderful with its meaty chunks of tender steak and bacon, creamy white cheddar and mashed potato, and perfectly crispy, flaky, buttery crust. MMMM MMMM!

I also enjoyed sipping Folk’s Rose Milk, which is a warming, delicious blend of cinnamon, cardamom, chili, ginger, vanilla, beetroot, rose simple syrup, and steamed milk. Folk’s drink menu included several infused milks at the time of my visit, as well as a selection of teas, juices, and espresso-infused beverages.

Besides proffering the most delectable Aussie Pie, Folk’s food menu contained a variety of breakfast dishes (including a yogurt bowl, seasonal quiche, and an avocado toast blinged up with additions of pea shoots, toasted benne seeds, and beet hummus) and a few lunch items such as the Warm Rice Bowl with vegetables, kimchi, and edamame. Several vegan and/or gluten-free options were available.

Another aspect of my visit to Folk worth shouting-out is the service I received. The staff was prompt and friendly; they were fantastic.

The overall lunching experience was fantastic! This one is definitely worth a visit.

1701 Trumbull Ave.

Detroit, MI 48216

(Closed Tuesdays)

www.folkdetroit.com

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385. The Engine House – January 25, 2019 – Mount Clemens, MI

January2019EngineHouse1 (2)January2019EngineHouse2 (2)My first blog-worthy visit of 2019 didn’t come until the end of January, because I was off exploring a completely new-to-me part of the world (Thailand!) for nearly half the month. Surviving my first post-vacay work week amidst frigid temps and jet-lagged-induced brain fog was cause enough for a TGIF celebration at The Engine House in Mt. Clemens.

The bar and grill has a cozy, welcoming feel and a menu that proffers various salads, sandwiches, appetizers, pastas, pizzas, meat-centric entrée dishes, and a build-your-own-burger option. Daily lunch and drink specials are also available.

Because I never feel more American than when I return from international travel and inexplicably crave a bacon cheeseburger, I chose the build-your-own-burger option and loaded mine up with that sweet, sweet pork-and-dairy-laden goodness. It was delicious, rich and meaty and flavorful and characteristically American in its large-and-in-charge-ness. I enjoyed some crispy French fries, as well.

I learned from the friend who I dined with at The Engine House that night that any time a train goes by, everyone of drinking age in the bar receives a free shot. Sadly, no locomotives lumbered past The Engine House during our dinner, but I love the whimsicality of that gesture and hope to experience it during a return visit.

309 Cass Ave.

Mt. Clemens, MI 48043

www.theenginehouse.net

384. One Night Stan’s – December 31, 2018 – Waterford, MI

december2018onenightstans1 (2)Wayyyyy back when, on the very last night of 2018, I saw a comedy show at One Night Stan’s in Waterford. It was hilarious, and the staff of One Night Stan’s were excellent hosts. And that is about as much as I can say about that, because at the point I’m writing this, that was over five-and-a-half months ago, and yeah . . . the memory is hazy at this point (and not because I enjoyed too many adult beverages during this New Year’s Eve show, I swear!). But I DO know that I had a great time at One Night Stan’s and that I’ll take any excuse to enjoy live comedy, so kudos to its owners for introducing another venue for this hilarious art form to the Metro-D!

4761 Highland Rd.

Waterford, MI 48328

www.onenightstanscomedyclub.com

383. Pewabic Pottery – December 30, 2018 – Detroit, MI

december2018pewabicpottery1 (2)december2018pewabicpottery3 (2)december2018pewabicpottery4 (3)Pewabic Pottery, how excited I am to finally be acquainted with you!

I knew that the pottery studio and shop established in 1903 by Mary Chase Perry and Horace Caulkins had a rich history in Detroit and had long wanted to visit. I didn’t realize until I pulled up to the building on a sunny Sunday afternoon in late December 2018 that it is a National Historic Landmark, with an exterior as gorgeous as the handcrafted goods housed inside.

Entering Pewabic’s first-floor showrooms, I was enchanted by the array of beautiful handcrafted ceramic goods made both in-house and by featured outside artists. I browsed the decorative tiles, vases, ornaments, urns, and serving dishes and selected a snowflake ornament and a sea-foam-green glazed decorative tile that reads “Detroit is Beautiful” to take home with me.

After making my purchases, I walked up to the second floor, where I perused ceramic pieces and written plaques outlining Pewabic’s history.

I’m keeping this post immensely short and sweet for me, because as you may have noticed, this is my first time posting here in over five months (WTF, Self???), and I’m simply happy to be back on the blog and finally showcasing this Detroit gem. It is definitely worth a visit, both for the simple pleasure of browsing the meticulously crafted goods and for the opportunity to support the local artisans who make them.

10125 E. Jefferson Ave.

Detroit, MI 48214

www.pewabic.org