clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile
overlooking downtown Detroit

Filed under:

Detroit’s Most Anticipated Restaurants and Bars, Winter 2017

All the essential details on the city’s biggest coming attractions

Michelle and Chris Gerard
Brenna Houck is a Cities Manager for the Eater network. She previously edited Eater Detroit and reported for Eater. You can follow her on the internet at @brennahouck.

This fall Detroit welcomed several new spots including the beautifully renovated Parc restaurant in Campus Martius and Fort Street stunner Maru Sushi. In September, Rock City Eatery also finally settled into its expanded Midtown digs and Super Happy Sushi set up shop in MOCAD.

The final push before the end of 2016, means several restaurants are teed up for December debuts including Ferndale’s The Conserva. That spot will officially launch Saturday after several weeks of soft openings. The Bad Luck Bar will also debut on Thursday with high-end cocktails and illuminati-inspired interiors. Further out, diners can look forward to a new Corktown noodle spot, Ima, and West Village’s long-awaited wine bar and bottle shop, Brix. Many restaurants are slated for expansions in the coming year including Detroit Vegan Soul, Atomic Chicken, and Bucharest. Here’s a rundown of the restaurants and bars expected to debut this winter.

Brix Wine Bar

Michelle and Chris Gerard

Location: 7981 Kercheval Avenue

Major Players: Mikiah Westbrooks

The Situation: Located in a rehabbed West Village bank building, Brix is bring a wine bar and bottle shop to the neighborhood with tastings, charcuterie, and retail. The name refers to the amount of sugar in wine grapes prior to processing. Brix will feature a chef's table and additional seating near the bank's old drive-thru service window. While the opening was temporarily delayed, Brix is once again back on course and well into its buildout. Owner Mikiah Westbrooks is confident the wine bar will open between now and March.

Projected Opening: Winter (possibly February)

Caucus Club

Facebook/Caucus Club

Location: 150 W. Congress Street

Major Players: George Sboukis

The Situation: A year since the initial announcement of its revival, renovations of The Penobscot's historic Caucus Club are finally underway. Chef Rick Hussey (Filippa's Wine Barrel) has been tapped to head the steak-filled concept and designer Wendy Silverman his helping revamp the interior with Art Deco influences. Still no word on whether the restaurant's beefy The Bullshot (beef broth, vodka, and spice) cocktail is also making a comeback. The restaurant was initially expected to debut in May but the usual sorts of delay have push back that timeline to this winter.

Projected Opening: Possibly late-December

Bad Luck Bar

Cocktail with smoke pouring out of it Facebook

Location: 1218 Griswold (down a back alley)

Major Players: Detroit Optimist Society’s Dave Kwiatkowski and Marc Djozlija and Yani Frye

The Situation: Longtime Sugar House bartender Yani Frye is spearheading this Detroit Optimist Society project, which promises to be a substantial addition to the downtown bar scene. Partner Dave Kwiatkowski has characterized the “progressive” cocktail lounge as "very high-end, very exclusive," with "experimental and experiential" elements. The 800-square-foot space hidden down an alley behind luxury apartment building The Albert will seat around 30 patrons and a short list of pricey cocktails and rare liquor.

Projected Opening: December 8

La Noria

La Noria.
La Noria.
Brenna Houck

Location: 5517 Michigan Avenue

Major Players: Norberto Garita and Bertin Garita

The Situation: Chef Norberto Garita is known for his Mexican-Italian restaurant El Barzon, but the owner has plans to open a casual eatery right next door. La Noria, which means "water wheel," will offer wood-fired oven pizzas, tacos, tortas, and more in a converted Coney island. The restaurant features a full bar and, most importantly, a beautiful brick patio. Construction is nearly complete. The Italian oven has arrived and the restaurant is teasing drivers on Michigan Avenue with its signage.

Projected Opening: Maybe February but it could get be pushed back

Hearth and Soul Cafe

Hearth and Soul Cafe storefront.
Caryn Laska

Location: 1049 Woodward Ave.

Major Players: Owners Jackie Victor and Ann Perrault, chef Maggie Long

The Situation: Cass Corridor's favorite organic bakery is expected to expand its footprint downtown this winter with the Hearth & Soul Cafe. The 2,900-square-foot venue will offer Avalon breads and pastries, as well as breakfast, lunch and dinner. The owners reportedly recruited chef Maggie Long (formerly of Jolly Pumpkin Pizzeria & Brewery). During the announcement Long teased a menu that would feature vegan items such as salads and soups. Another location of the concept will debut in Ann Arbor in December.

Projected Opening: Early 2017


Gather is located in the center brick building.
Courtesy of Gather

Location: 1454 Gratiot Ave

Major Players: Kyle Hunt, Leah Hunt, and chef Nate Vogeli

The Situation: This 40-seat Eastern Market restaurant startup is gained traction through a series of pop-ups throughout the city including monthly dinners at 8 Degrees Plato. The eatery is expected to feature an open kitchen plan with a wood-fired grill and a menu with dishes like crispy pork belly with "black" squid ink noodles, seasoned bison burgers, sweet potato steaks, soft serve ice cream, and slushies. Kyle Hunt tells Eater they’ve begun the process of applying for a liquor license. Most of the kitchen as well as furniture have already been manufactured.

Projected Opening: Late-February

Lady of the House

Chef Kate Williams
Chef Kate Williams

Location: TBA (Somewhere in Corktown)

Major Players: Kate Williams, Unnamed Partner(s)

The Situation: Chef Kate Williams (formerly Republic, Rodin) will launch her own restaurant Lady of the House, but not in in the former Practice-Space in North Corktown as originally anticipated. Williams tells Eater she’s secured a different space in Corktown, which she’s keeping under wraps for now. Patrick Thompson Design has been tapped to develop the look of the restaurant that will seat 60 along with additional outdoor seating. Williams’ menu is expected to draw on flavors from Detroit’s local farms. Her national pop-up series has featured “ugly food” — produce that’s considered aesthetically imperfect. Lady of the House will initially open for dinner-only but eventually expand into brunch. Williams is expected to release more details very soon.

Projected Opening: Late-winter/early spring

Geiger Eat Shop

Geiger Eat Shop progress
The future home of Geiger Eat Shop.
Brenna Houck

Location: 8044 Kercheval Avenue

Major Players: Greg Reyner (Cafe Muse, Atomic Chicken)

The Situation: Described as a new American restaurant with international influences, West Village’s Geiger Eat Shop will feature a full bar and dining room with seats for approximately 60 diners. The restaurant will also include a 1,000-square-foot patio and private dining space in the basement. In April, chef/owner Greg Reyner described the space as having a Bauhaus aesthetic with "clean industrial lines," exposed brick, banquette seating, and a "fully exposed kitchen." An L-shaped bar will span the west side of the restaurant.

Projected Opening: Maybe Winter

La Lanterna

La Lanterna.
La Lanterna.
Michelle and Chris Gerard

Location: 1214 Griswold St. (The Albert)

Major Players: Da Edoardo Restaurant Group, Eddie Barbieri

The Situation: Reviving an old name, the Da Edoardo family of restaurants is bringing its northern Italian-style offerings to a 2,000-square-foot space on the ground floor of The Albert building. The throwback concept will serve up 10 to 15 “very authentic” pizzas, as well as a small selection of pastas and sandwiches. Delivery will be available. Owner Eddie Barbieri tells Eater the restaurant will seat 57 diners in a “modern traditional” setting. La Lanterna will feature a full bar.

Projected Opening: Mid-to-late January

Detroit Sip

Detroit Sip.
Detroit Sip.

Location: 7420 W McNichols Road

Major Players: Jevona Watson

The Situation: A new addition to Northwest Detroit’s Bagley neighborhood, Detroit Sip aims to create a community hub with its cafe offerings on McNichols near the University District. The storefront has made some big strides towards opening day with a new facade, exterior lighting, tables, and equipment. Expect Detroit-made products and local coffee, tea, doughnuts, and pastries.

Projected Opening: Winter 2017

New Order Coffee Roasters

Brenna Houck

Location: E. Watson Street and Woodward Avenue

Major Players: Patrick Seeney, Elizabeth Rose, Tyler Martin

The Situation: Located next door to Grey Ghost, this 2,000-square-foot cafe will serve coffee brewed by-the-cup using a variety of brewing methods. New Order is aiming to offer an ultra-personalized experience. "Nano-batches" of coffee roasted on-site will allow customers to work directly with staff to develop their own specialty batches of roasted beans. In addition to the Brush Park location, the company teases that a new Ferndale Coffee Lab is in the works.

Projected Opening: March

Cake Ambition

Cake Ambition’s new storefront. Brenna Houck

Location: 4154 3rd Avenue

Major Players: Jessica Bouren

The Situation: A designer cake shop next to a florist seems like a winning combination for wedding planners. Jessica Bouren brick-and-mortar bakery will specialize in custom cakes but will also offer a selection of pastries, desserts, and WiFi to satisfy everyday sweet tooths. Expect a retro ‘50-inspired interior and plenty of whimsical desserts.

Projected Opening: Late-January/early February


ima building Brenna Houck/Eater Detroit

Location: 2015 Michigan Avenue

Major Players: Mike Ransom

The Situation: Located in the former Rubbed space on Michigan Avenue, chef Mike Ransom’s Japanese-influence eatery will offer non-traditional, seasonal noodle bowls, rice bowls, and curries, as well as small plates. While there won’t be a liquor license initially, Ransom hopes to secure one by next spring. The restaurant will seat around 30 diners indoors with additional outdoor seating in warmer months. Expect carryout and quick-service lunch options.

Projected Opening: Possibly December 15 (could be delayed)


Detroit Vegan Soul

Google Streetview

Location: 19614 Grand River Avenue

Major Players: Kirsten Ussery-Boyd and Erika Boyd

The Situation: A West Village favorite, Detroit Vegan Soul is bringing its plant-based menu to the Grandmont-Rosedale area in 2017. The second location is slated to fill the former Blue Moon Ice Cream space on Grand River Avenue. The restaurant has begun the hiring process for its new location.

Projected Opening: January

Go! Sy Thai

The Albert Michelle and Chris Gerard

Location: 1214 Griswold St

Major Players: Cedric Lee and Alex Lee

The Situation: A Capitol Park outpost of fast-casual Thai eatery Go! Sy Thai will fill one of the vacancies on the ground floor of The Albert Building. Sy Thai will have a relatively small footprint with seating for 29 diners and an abbreviated menu to match. Patrick Thompson Design has been tapped to design the space. In addition to the downtown spot, a new bubble tea concept from Gowhnou Lee and Cedric Lee is expected to launch next door to the Midtown location this winter.

Projected Opening: Estimated January 2 (could change)

Bucharest Grill — Livernois

Bucharest on Livernois.
Bucharest on Livernois.
Brenna Houck

Location: 19492 Livernois Ave

Major Players: Bogdan Tarasov

The Situation: The Avenue of Fashion is about to get its own Bucharest outpost. Owner Bogdan Tarasov confirmed the location in November 2015 following much online speculation. Like the mini chain's three other restaurants, Bucharest will serve casual carryout options like chicken shawarma and falafel, as well as hot dogs, salads, and more. Owner Bogdan Tarasov tells Eater he’s confident the new shawarma spot will debut this winter.

Projected Opening: February

Dangerously Delicious Pies

The Strathmore
The future home of Dangerously Delicious Pies — Midtown.
Brenna Houck

Location: 80 W Alexandrine St.

Major Players: Sam Wood, Rodney Henry, and Don Duprie

The Situation: Fresh off the heels of its brick-and-mortar debut in Wyandotte, sweet and savory pastry wizards Dangerously Delicious Pies announced they were moving on to more established digs in Midtown. As Eater first-reported, the group is currently developing a permanent location on the ground floor of the Strathmore Apartment Building near Great Lakes Coffee. The location will offer casual dine-in seating and carryout service. Sam Wood tells Eater restaurant had a soft opening preview on Noel Night and is awaiting final inspections from the city.

Projected Opening: December

Atomic Chicken Detroit

Atomic Chicken signage
Atomic Chicken in Detroit
Brenna Houck

Location: 6500 Woodward Ave

Major Players: Scott Moloney (Treat Dreams, Woodpile BBQ), Greg Reyner (Cafe Muse, Geiger Eat Shop)

The Situation: Atomic Chicken is a chef-driven, fast-casual concept serving chicken & waffles, chicken sandwiches, and smothered biscuits. Located inside a former Popeye's Louisiana Kitchen in New Center, the restaurant will have a liquor license and an online ordering app. The Detroit location has signage and Scott Moloney told Eater in October that about 80-percent of the dining room build-out was complete. With the Clawson restaurant closed for the winter season, the owners will have more time to focus on launching the Detroit restaurant.

Projected Opening: Possibly December

Alley Taco

Alley Taco signs hang inside the former Goodwells Natural Foods space on Willis. Facebook/Alley Taco

Location: 418 W Willis Street

Major Players: Jason Frenkel

The Situation: Marcus Market taco fixer Alley Taco snagged a prime Willis Street storefront after Goodwells mysteriously vacated last summer. Owner Jason Frenkel plans to keep the Marcus Market spot open while offering a more sit-down style atmosphere at the Willis restaurant. Frenkel tells Eater a new menu will roll out at both restaurants when the Willis outpost launches in the New Year.

Projected Opening: Mid-January

Big Moves

Bon Bon Bon (Hamtramck)

The Menagerie (Pontiac)

Eve the Restaurant (Ann Arbor)

Amar Pizza (Hamtramck)

Other Coming Attractions

Detroit Shipping Co. (delayed until spring), Hamtown Soul Food, Breakfast Restaurant and Market in Metropolitan Building, Ladder House #4, Albena Restaurant, Motor City Brewing Works on The Avenue of Fashion, Coriander Kitchen and Farm, Super.Happy.Sushi., Wilda’s, El Cuadro, Unnamed DTE Energy Park Restaurant, American-style Bistro in The Scott, Prime + Proper, Miwaki, Shake Shack, Unnamed Cass Corridor Restaurant, Trumbull Porter Hotel Restaurant and Bar, Pudding Head, Basement Burger Bar (Winter), Unnamed Coffee Shop near Cadillac Square, Lafayette Kitchen and Diner, Ladder House No. 12, Sushi Ono, 2941 Street Food—Midtown, Busy Bee Food Hall, Norma G's Brick and Mortar, Social Sushi, Windmill Pointe Brewing, Chene Street Grocers, Wurlitzer Bar, Opus One Building Restaurant or Brewery, Aretha Franklin Project, Guardian Building Restaurant Space, Brewster Wheeler Rec Center Restaurant, Grand Cirque Brasserie, Gabriel Hall, Slyde, Woodbridge Bikes and Coffee, Unnamed Cafe by Shinola, Unnamed Project by Till, Shag Bar, Smoke's Poutinerie, Second Location of La Strada Dolci e Caffe, Revamp of Lefty’s Lounge, Space Next to Ottava Via, Amar Pizza, Henriette Haus, Kenilworth Club, MUFI Cafe, Itadaku Sushi, Capitol Park Project From Marc Bogoff and Eli Boyer, Eastern Market Brewing Company, Possible ChefStable Projects, NoHo Hospitality Projects in Shinola Hotel, Bakersfield

Ferndale Tracking: Otus Supply Co. (Imminent), Urbanrest Brewing, The Conserva Ferndale (Debuts December 10), Voyager, Axle Brewing Co. Beer Hall, Mystery Concept Next to Public House, New Order Coffee Lab

Royal Oak Tracking: Detroit Dog Co. (Early 2017), HopCat

Pontiac: Fillmore 13 Brewery, Slow's

Ann Arbor Tracking: Diamond Jim Brady's, New Concept by Mani Osteria Owner, Smoke's Poutinerie, Eve the Restaurant, Hearth and Soul Cafe

Oak Park: 8MK Project

Dearborn: Ford’s Garage

Birmingham: Possibly Adachi or Lincoln Yard

All Coming Attractions Coverage [ED]

All Eater Tracking Coverage [ED]

Restaurant News Brief

North America’s Largest Halal Rib Festival Is Landing in Dearborn This Weekend

Eastern Market Brewing Co. Is Bringing a Cafe and Self-Serve Taproom to Midtown

Vecino, a Modern Mexican Restaurant, to Open This Fall in Midtown