Friday night in Detroit: my heart thrills at the thought! Though of course, I love Detroit any day of the week – and I know I would love visiting Supergeil any day of the week, too. With its fantastic food, drink, and ambiance, there was no way I wasn’t going to fall in love with it.
Supergeil is located in Corktown, just a stone’s throw from Two James. And that’s probably not a coincidence, considering that the owner of that magical bar/distillery also owns Supergeil.
According to its website, Supergeil is “inspired by the energy and food of Berlin’s Kreuzberg district,” where a prominent Turkish population resides. What does that mean for us here in Detroit? Delicious döner sandwiches and cocktails inspired by the flavors of that vibrant German neighborhood.
Even if Supergeil’s cocktails weren’t inspired by Kreuzberg, I know they’d be great, because Supergeil’s bar manager is amazingly talented. He served my friend and I during our visit, as we sat at the bar. When my friend couldn’t figure out what drink she wanted from the menu, he offered to surprise her with off-menu offerings based on her preferences; both drinks he made for her were phenomenal. I loved the drink I ordered from the menu, too, the I’ll Halva Mai Tai. It’s a dreamy concoction of Two James’ Grass Widow Bourbon and Dr. Bird Rum, orange liqueur, a tahini-and-pistachio orgeat, lime juice, a cardamom-and-vanilla tincture, angostura bitters, and baharat spice.
“Well-balanced” was the phrase that kept coming to mind as I sipped these drinks. Some craft cocktails are more a pile-on of liquor than expressions of flavor. But not Supergeil’s. They are potent, yes, but they don’t just taste like booze; they’re beautifully nuanced, a kaleidoscope of discernable flavors that play off and complement each other. They are wonderful! Though because they feature Two James’ spirits, they would likely still be wonderful even if they were all booze.
The food at Supergeil is just as delightful as those carefully crafted cocktails. Of course I had to have a döner during my visit. Having been introduced to that enticing sandwich by my visit to Balkan House in 2019, there was no way I was going to pass one up.
Supergeil offers three different kinds of döner: a lamb-and-beef, a chicken, and an eggplant. I got the lamb-and-beef version and relished its tender shaved meat stuffed in a pocket of fluffy pide flatbread and topped with crunchy cucumber, tomato, lettuce, purple cabbage, garlic sauce, and wonderfully spicy hot sauce. It was SO good!
Even more tasty were Supergeil’s fries, a basketful of which I totally crushed. Wonderfully crunchy, flecked with chilies and drizzled with aoili and scharf sauce (which, I gather from the internet, is a type of German hot sauce), they were utterly delicious and almost impossible for me to stop eating.
Can we talk about Supergeil’s ambiance, too? With its warm lighting illuminating the space of brick walls and peeling sage-green paint, profusion of hanging plants, and vibrantly tiled bar, it feels cozy yet contemporary. The young, hip-looking clientele populating the place on the night of my visit made it seem like the kind of bar where all the cool kids go – the cool cool kids, not the snotty ones. The vibes were good; the employees I encountered were friendly and welcoming. Supergeil is most definitely the kind of place you want to make your neighborhood hang – even if you don’t live in the neighborhood.
2442 Michigan Ave.
Detroit, MI 48216