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2017 Hatch Detroit Competition Reveals Top Four Finalists

A bar and a restaurant project have advanced to the finals

White coconut rice, boiled platains, sombe, and chicken leg from Baobab Fare.
Facebook/Baobab Fare
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.

Two food and beverage projects have advanced to the final four in the Hatch Detroit 2017 small business competition. The participants are competing for $50,000 in funding from Comerica Bank and $200,000 worth of free startup assistance.

The polls are open in another round of public voting and will close at noon on August 25. That evening each of the four finalists will present their projects before a panel of judges who will help select the winner. Here’s a look at the finalists:

Food and Beverage

  • Bar Botánica is an Afro-Caribbean cocktail bar and cafe aiming to open in the Jefferson-Chalmers neighborhood in spring 2018 at 14522 E. Jefferson Ave. During the day it will serve as a coffee shop and by night will offer cocktails and small plates. The bar will focus primarily on rum, mezcal, and tequilas.
  • Baobab Fare is a restaurant, market, and juice bar, that will offer prepared foods, groceries, juices, and retail products from East Africa. Husband and wife team Mamaba Hamissi and Nadia Nijimbere are refugees who moved to Detroit within the past several years from Burundi. So far they’ve not secured a space for their restaurant and shop but are hoping to open near the West Village neighborhood.


  • The Lip Bar is a beauty brand that aims to “disrupt traditional beauty ideals.” The products are free from harsh chemicals and use natural and organic oils. The products are responsibly made and affordable.
  • Detroit Blows will offer blowout hair styling services that utilize non-toxic, high-performance products in a comfortable atmosphere. Detroit Blows has already secured a space in downtown Detroit.

While they did not advance to the final round, this year’s top 10 semifinalists for Hatch included a large number of restaurant and bar projects including Salvadoran eatery Bendicion de Dios, chef Maxcel Hardy’s Caribbean-Asian influenced food hall restaurant Coop Detroit, and forthcoming brewery Rosedale Beer & Bistro. Several of the projects are expected to open in the near future.

Hatch Detroit 2017 Contest Voting [Official]
5 Restaurants and Bars Named Semifinalists in Hatch Detroit’s 2017 Contest [ED]
All Coming Attractions Coverage [ED]