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Royal Oak Considers Allowing Food Trucks at Downtown Bars Without Kitchens

Plus, chef Matt Prentice considers a comeback and more intel

Motor City Gas/Facebook
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.

Bars and breweries push for new food truck ordinance in Royal Oak

It’s currently illegal in Royal Oak for businesses to host food trucks downtown without special event permits, but a new ordinance backed by Motor City Gas distillery and River Rouge Brewing aims to change that, the Detroit Free Press reports. Neither the brewery nor the distillery have a kitchen, and though they allow customers to order in food, the owners say that patrons are asking for a food truck. The issue has hit a nerve with the Royal Oak Restaurant Association. The association sees bringing food trucks downtown as a potential threat to the bottom line, which it characterizes as already strained by ongoing city parking issues. The city has given preliminary approval for a new ordinance allowing trucks at downtown businesses with liquor licenses but no kitchen. A public hearing on the issue is being held on November 12.

Chef eyes new projects in metro Detroit

Returning to the scene after a series of unfortunate business dealings and a five-year non-compete agreement, chef Matt Prentice is aiming to open a new project inside his former Plaza Deli on Northwestern Highway in Southfield, per the Detroit Free Press. For legal reasons, he can’t use the name and instead plans to call the place Frankin Deli. The deal on the space is still being finalized. Prentice plans to open additional projects in the future.

New restaurant in Eastern Market

Former Rockefeller’s Oyster Bar owner Jai-Lee Dearing has opened a new restaurant called Motown Bistro & Oyster Bar inside the shuttered Bert’s banquet hall in Eastern Market, according to Metro Times. The restaurant appears to have begun taking over the space and serving food more than a year ago. The menu features items like lobster bites, steak, blue crab potato skins, and oysters.

Judge denies request to approve Corktown fire station for restaurant

Developers hoping to turn a former Corktown fire station at 1201 Bagley St. into a restaurant have received another blow. The Board of Zoning Appeals denied Bizantine Holdings request to approve the property for a non-conforming restaurant with a Class C liquor license earlier this year and a judge has declined to reverse the decision. Neighbors near the building had opposed transitioning the building into a restaurant.

Chef shuffle in Ferndale

Kramer Restaurant Group’s Italian eatery Pop’s For Italian has a new chef on board. NBA player Kevin Durant’s former private chef Ryan Lopez will return to metro Detroit to helm the restaurant, according to Crain’s. Lopez is taking over taking over for chef Mike Mazzola.

Development updates

NoHo Hospitality Group has named Sol Andrews as its new director of food and beverage at the Shinola Hotel. Andrews will oversee all seven restaurant, bar, and events spaces at the forthcoming hotel. The Shinola Hotel is expected to open in downtown Detroit in November.

All AM Intel Coverage [ED]

Pop's For Italian

280 West Nine Mile Road, , MI 48220 (248) 268-4806 Visit Website

River Rouge Brewing

406 E 4th St, Royal Oak, MI 48067 (248) 802-0555 Visit Website

Motor City Gas

325 E 4th St, Royal Oak, MI 48067 (248) 599-1427

Shinola Hotel

1400 Woodward Avenue, , MI 48226 (313) 356-1400 Visit Website