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Tunde Wey Brings Pop-Up Exploring Race and Privilege to Hamtramck in May

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Plus, the Detroit-style square finds a spot in Modernist Cuisine’s next pizza project

Tunde Wey’s Saartj pop-up debuted in New Orleans last month examining racial wealth disparity.
Tunde Wey/Eater

Can’t get enough Detroit restaurant intel? The EaterWire is your guide to all the food industry news hits you may have missed.

March 26

EVENTWIRE — Revolver co-founder turned SF Chronicle columnist and traveling chef Tunde Wey bringing a new version of his pop-up Saartj exploring privilege to Hamtramck in April. Saartj, named after a black South African woman who was paraded across Europe as a sideshow attraction in the 19th century, will arrive at Bank Suey during the first week in May and will feature something a little different from the month-long project in New Orleans. Local social justice and food activists Malik Yakini of the Detroit Black Community Food Security Network and Devita Davison of FoodLab Detroit will be participating as special guests. Detroit Free Press critic Mark Kurlyandchik spoke with Wey about his goals for the project. Find tickets here. [Model D/Freep]

COOKBOOKS — The authors of multi-volume cooking tome Modernist Cuisine are back with an exhaustive look at bread. They’re also plotting a (shorter) exploration of pizza including Detroit-style squares. [Eater]

BOOZE NEWS — Central business district bars in Detroit could extend last call to 4 a.m. on weekends and holidays under a new bill recently proposed in the state Senate. [Freep]

EXPANSIONS — China Ruby has departed from the Nine Mile strip of Ferndale making way for a new location of La Feast Mediterranean Grill. [Metro Times]

NEWS — The federal government is accusing another Fiat Chrysler-UAW union official, Nancy Johnson, of misusing funds meant for autoworkers to do things such as purchase $6,900 steak dinners for herself and her associates. [Freep]

OPENINGS — From the name to the marketing to the photos of mostly white Detroit celebrities dawning its walls, Detroit’s latest restaurant Asaysia opening continues to baffle. Asaysia owners apparently aim to create a “make-believe world, a fantasy within a dream,” and restaurant critic Mark Kurlyandchik is rightly skeptical of the restaurantone of three projects that seemingly came out of nowhere earlier this month. [Freep]

SPORTS — The brand new Little Caesars Arena’s seats are apparently always empty because the building’s atrium restaurants are so enticing. [Freep]


March 13

EXPANSIONS — Rafael López, owner of Michigan-Martin area Mexican restaurant Señor López, is investigating sites around downtown Detroit and the riverfront for a second location that will lean higher-end than his current restaurant on Michigan Avenue. López intends to hire a chef from Mexico City. The current restaurant and taqueria is getting a new patio. [Metro Times]

COMING ATTRACTIONS — Traveling chef Tunde Wey is plotting a return to Detroit this spring with an unspecified new food project. “I think the idea is to showcase in practice what self-determination looks like and to invest in that process as a way for real transformation, as opposed to, say, looking at the more market-driven or charity-based model,” he says. [GQ]

FOOD MEDIA — Chef Thomas Lents of the Apparatus Room and Chef’s Table at the Detroit Foundation Hotel hates on kosher salt in a recent article about the dominance of that style of salt, calling it the “blunt-force instrument of the seasoning world” and “salt for dummies.” [Tasting Table]

OPENINGS — A restaurant rather unfortunately named Doggy Style opened its doors in Waterford slinging Frito pie, hot dog egg rolls, and Sy Ginsberg hot dogs with a variety of toppings ranging from sauerkraut to Chicago-style giardiniera sport peppers. The restaurant is located at 101 N. Telegraph Rd. [Metro Times]

THE CHAINS — Del Taco franchisee Team Schostak Family Restaurants is bringing 12 new locations to Southeast Michigan. [Crain’s]

IDK — The owner of Mike’s on the Water in St. Clair Shores, Mike LeFevre, has a crazy idea to put a food truck on his restaurant’s rooftop deck and the city council unanimously approved it. When the truck does eventually roll up to the roof it will likely serve lobster rolls. [Metro Times]

CAFFEINE NATION — Anthology Coffee is in talks with Port of Mokha coffee founder Mokhtar Alkhanshali to feature the company’s high-end, Yemeni coffee at the Detroit shop. A set of three 4-ounce boxes of the coffee retails for $158. [Tostada Magazine]

CROWDSOURCING — Coriander Kitchen & Farm in Jefferson-Chalmers recently achieved its $25,000 Kiva loan crowdfunding goal. The money will go toward the restaurant’s buildout. [Instagram]

NEWS — According to recent numbers released by the Detroit Food Policy Council, 48 percent of Detroit households are food insecure and 40 percent rely on SNAP benefits for food. [WDET]

THE SHUTTER — With the shutter of its Sterling Heights location, all of the Tilted Kilt breastaurants in Michigan are now closed. What a shame. [Crain’s]

OPENINGS — Here’s another look at La Noria Bistro, the much-anticipated sibling to El Barzon that debuted on Thursday. The restaurant features a grasshopper pizza. [Tostada Magazine]

FOOD MEDIA — Detroit Free Press critic Mark Kurlyandchik’s film Dinner in Abruzzo is returning to the Freep Film Festival this spring with a companion short called A Wife Called Phoenicia. [Freep]

BOOZE NEWS — Police in Royal Oak are opposing a liquor license transfer for the city’s brand new Taco Bell Cantina. [Daily Tribune]

NOVELTY FOOD — Following in the footsteps of a long line of foods that should not ever be green, El Charro is serving fluorescent green versions of its signature puffy tacos at Campus Martius. What hath St. Patrick wrought? [EaterWire]


March 6

COMING ATTRACTIONS — Downtown Detroit is trying to capitalize on the popularity of the winter downtown holiday market by bringing it back for the spring and summer. Bedrock announced today that it is now accepting applications for restaurants, bars, and businesses to fill 50 pop-up spaces for five months between April and September. The application is open now through March 18. [EaterWire]

BEER HERE — Packard Plant developer Arte Express is still working out the finer details on a new as-of-yet-unnamed brewery poised to open in a portion of the building. A recent report on the development project suggests that a operator for the brewery could be finalized later this month. The brewery would then open by roughly mid-2019. Restaurants are also expected to be part of the overall redevelopment. [Detroit News]

UP FOR GRABS — Antietam owner Gregory Holm listed a portion of the Eastern Market restaurant for sale over the weekend for $650,000 (including a liquor license). As for what he will do after the restaurant closes on March 31, Holm says he may hold on to the neighboring two-story building that houses the restaurant’s main dining room and use the money from the sale of the other property to fund a bed and breakfast venture “in the middle of a neighborhood no one would even imagine.” [Crain’s]

EVENTWIRE — Ferndale-based business The Loaded Die is looking to expand its board game rental business to more restaurants and bars throughout metro Detroit. [Patch]

FOOD MEDIA — All-day brunch spot Dime Store, Bon Bon Bon, Supino Pizzeria, and Selden Standard all get shoutouts in The Washington Post’s latest restaurant journey through Detroit. [WaPo]

All EaterWire Coverage [ED]

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