clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Behold 25-Cent Martinis on the Former Hotel Detroit-Leland Bar Menu

No wonder the Purple Gang hung out here.

classics week logo

Earlier this week we put out a request for restaurant ephemera — figments of Detroit's dining past. Reader Jeff Myers responded with a few gems, including an undated drink list from the historic Hotel Detroit-Leland aka the Leland Hotel, founded in 1927. With a glance at the menu, it becomes abundantly clear why the Purple Gang and Jimmy Hoffa hung out here: the cocktail list features a 35-cent Old Fashioned, a 25-cent Martini, and a Royale Fizz made with one whole egg.

Looking at the modern-day Leland, it's easy to forget that this used to be 4-star hotel. Today the building located at 400 Bagley is better known for its low-rent apartments, house music at the City Club and The Labyrinth or the greasy spoon-type diner called Luci & Ethel's. No one thinks of it for craft cocktails. Still, it's nice to imagine that there was a time when you could order a fancy drink in Detroit for less than a dollar.

Have your own piece of Detroit's restaurant ephemera? Send us a photo and a description at the tip line and maybe we'll feature it in a Classics Week post.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Eater Detroit newsletter

The freshest news from the local food world