Metro Detroiters navigated slick and slushy streets, snow drifts, and impossibly long lines this year to partake in Hamtramck’s most biggest food party of the year — Paczki Day. The event, a Polish take on Fat Tuesday, generally involves feasting on dozens of plump and golden fried pastries filled with various creams and fruit flavors such as apple, strawberry, and prune, but thanks to the thriving bar scene in Hamtramck there’s also plenty of booze involved too.
At local bar and music venue Small’s, for example, Paczki Day means paczki bombs: fist-sized balls of fried dough and filling that the bartenders then infuse with flavored vodka. More than six dozen paczki were ordered in preparation for this year’s paczki bombs. They were served alongside a special collaboration beer between Small’s and Brew Detroit in Corktown called the Sto Lat Lager, named for the Polish birthday song. At the back of the bar, Small’s was slinging sausages and pierogi to soak up all the alcohol.
The party will last until the early hours of Wednesday morning. Photographers Michelle and Chris Gerard explored the whole boozy, fried dough event at mid-day in Hamtramck. Take in the scene in the gallery below.