It’s hard for me to conceive of the concept of bad Mediterranean food, because being insanely delectable is kind of its thing. But why gamble on deliciousness when you can get a sure thing at Shish Palace in Rochester Hills?
I got lunch there back in June: the lemon-oregano Shish Tawook, all rich, savory, citrusy goodness, plus a cup of crushed lentil soup. YUMMM. Our server was attentive and funny, and she kept the free bread and garlic sauce coming (the BEST part about eating in a Mediterranean restaurant EVER!).
165 S. Livernois Rd.
Rochester Hills, MI 48307
(Locations also in Taylor and Allen Park)
A few weeks ago, I had a night on the town with my best homegirl, cheapie style! She had a gift card for Bahama Breeze, where we dreamed of summer whilst sipping tropical cocktails on the enclosed patio; I had a Groupon for La Marsa in Troy, where we dined prior to drinks, stuffing ourselves full of wonderful food, including fabulously free, never-ending refills of pita bread and garlic sauce (essential!).
An elegant dining area, excellent service, and gloriously garlicky lemon-oregano shish tawook makes La Marsa a must-visit if you’re craving high-caliber Mediterranean food. Troy isn’t the establishment’s only location; it also has restaurants in Bloomfield Hills, Brighton, Waterford, West Bloomfield, and two locations in Farmington Hills.
3720 Rochester Rd.
Troy, MI 48083
Ok, so I have mentioned in at least one post (#72 – Café Med) that I’ve worked in Dearborn for the past year but am a complete wimp about driving around there because I find its road system cray-cray. Really, it’s nothing against Dearborn; it’s just all about familiarity for me – I can whip around four-lane, mad-traffic-laden Hall Road like a boss, but Dearborn and Detroit’s looping roads and largely grid-pattern adverse set-ups get me all white-knuckled and frantic. So I’ve largely avoided driving around the neighborhood surrounding my workplace, and honestly, I’m one to bring my lunch to work every day anyway (more money to go out to dinner!). But a few weeks ago, I forgot my lunch at home, and that prompted me to venture at least a few miles out, for Pete’s sake, Jackie! and try out Ollie’s, a Dearborn institution lauded by both Yelp and my coworkers. And you can bet I felt like Rocky after going the distance when I made it there and back. You gotta celebrate your baby steps, no matter how small or silly-sounding to others, right?
Check out that gorgeous patio in the above photo!
16351 Ford Rd., Ste. 100
Dearborn, MI 48126
Ok, so I’ve worked in Dearborn for about two months now, but this was the first time I tried a new place there. Why? Because driving around there is, for me, a maddening experience. Besides being totally unfamiliar with the area and not being a fan of driving in new areas I know nothing about, there is currently construction everywhere. A few weeks before this, I actually tried to pick up carryout from a place a few miles from my work that looked like it would be very straightforward and easy to get to, and it was a complete debacle. When I looked up driving directions online, it didn’t take into account the fact that pretty much the whole route was embattled by hardcore construction and that the amount of time needed to get there was doubled. I only have a half-hour lunch, so I immediately knew upon putting the address into my phone GPS (which does note current traffic times) that I was screwed. Then, once I got to the area where the place was supposed to be I couldn’t even find it, and after calling them and attempting to get more detailed directions, I was feeling so flustered and already due to be late back to work that I just turned around and went back with no lunch (which then consisted of peanuts from a vending machine and some castoffs from the lunch of a kind coworker). I felt like an asshole for abandoning my carryout and a failure for not being able to find this place (which, one of my coworkers conceded, is a pretty tricky place to find). I vowed to never drive around Dearborn again.
But then I forgot my lunch again (which was what had prompted me to head out for carryout that first day), and I was resolved to make it at least to the corner, for Pete’s sake. So I put in my order of a chicken shawarma sandwich and crushed lentil soup with Café Med, a restaurant very close to my place of employment – and I’m happy to report that this time I made it! Never mind the fact that this place is super-close to my work – the route was still weird enough, because Dearborn streets are cray-cray. But the food was delicious, so it was worth it. And I was proud of my little baby step.
3337 Greenfield Rd.
Dearborn, MI 48120
I’m kind of obsessed with mediterranean food right now. If it wasn’t for this blog and the need to diversify and visit new places, I probably would’ve been back to La Saj several times since visiting it in August, for instance. I love garlic sauce and hummus and lemon chicken, which is the dish that I ordered here at Cedar Grille for a late-birthday lunch after the shopping trip in Northville (one bummer about shopping in Northville on Mondays – all of the restaurants I was interested in visiting were closed for lunch – or all day – on Mondays). It was excellent!
5377 Crooks Rd.
Troy, MI 48098