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Small plates at Peridot.
Small plates at Peridot
Peridot

11 New Restaurants and Bars to Check Out in Ann Arbor

From Vietnamese to burgers to Nashville hot chicken, here are some of Ann Arbor’s latest new restaurants

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Small plates at Peridot
| Peridot

The Ann Arbor restaurant scene is still as vibrant as ever, so why not try someplace new?

New to this list is Peridot’s elevated Vietnamese cuisine and craft cocktails, along with the long-awaited opening of Chef Brad Greenhill’s Spiedo in downtown Ann Arbor. On the far west side, the ambitious Sam Hill is a new destination spot where the food and atmosphere encourages patrons to stay a while. Meanwhile, the south side of town is the home of Mothfire’s gorgeous new brewery and tasting room where aficionados can enjoy their excellent selection of beers. Those looking for something a little sweeter can head to Mochinut for their tasty doughnuts, or Milk and Froth — the Detroit-based maker of handcrafted, small-batch ice cream.

Here are 11 of the Ann Arbor area’s newest, most exciting restaurants to check out now.

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Sam Hill

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This far west side spot was designed to to be a fun and welcoming spot, where friends and family can gather for stay for a while. There’s something for many on the menu — from Upper Peninsula pasties and Mexican queso, to Southern shrimp and grits. Spacious outdoor areas are equipped with plenty of seating and games, making for the ideal place to hang out and chill in groups.

Sam Hill | Courtesy Photo

Taystee's Burgers

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Burger fans from all over have flocked to Taystee’s, the halal-friendly burger spot situated in Dearborn, Dearborn Heights, and elsewhere — thanks to its expansion efforts throughout the region. Ann Arborites can now enjoy one of their specialty burgers, including the award-winning Ali’s Notch-Yo Burger — a stack of patties, beef bacon, jalapeños, grilled onions, three cheeses, and Doritos.

Peridot

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Elevated Vietnamese cuisine and innovative craft cocktails come together at this elegant downtown space. Peridot’s menu has classics like summer rolls and papaya salad, in addition to fresh takes such as a banh mi bruschetta and lettuce wraps with grilled branzino and woven rice noodles. The cocktail list tends to lean in on rum and gin-forward options where their nuance and freshness nicely complement the food.

John Reyes

Milk & Froth Ice Cream

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The Detroit-based artisanal ice cream shop opened its second location in the heart of downtown Ann Arbor. Both standard and vegan ice creams are all-natural and come in a variety of options, from familiar flavors like salted caramel and cherry cheesecake to eclectic varieties like roasted strawberry and matcha pistachio. 

Chef Brad Greenhill’s Spiedo has finally opened in the same space where his Corktown mainstay Takoi first opened as a pop-up in 2016. Armed with only a rotisserie and a griddle, the team puts out an innovative menu and spice-heavy flatbread wraps and salads with flavors that take inspiration from Italy, the Middle East, Mexico, and East Asia. 

John Reyes

Fat Daddy's HOT Chicken & Waffles

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The popular Detroit-area chicken and waffle joint has opened its second location in downtown Ann Arbor. Fat Daddy’s specializes in Nashville hot chicken, available in five spice levels with different sandwich toppings such as coleslaw, mac and cheese, or sweet ranch served on a brioche bun. For an extra decadent treat, try the Suga Momma, which replaces the bun with two glazed donuts.

Mothfire Brewing Company

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Mothfire started producing its beers in a tiny, hard-to-find brewery right before the pandemic started. Since then, the beers have been featured all around town. A new facility on the south side of town features a tasting room and outdoor patio where patrons can enjoy an ever-changing selection of brews and hard seltzer cocktails, while enjoying cuisine from a rotating roster of food trucks.

Mochinut Ann Arbor

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The popular purveyor of doughnuts, Korean hot dogs, and boba has landed in Michigan. The name comes from the spot’s line of mochi (rice flour balls) that are interconnected to form donuts topped with dozens of different toppings and frostings. On the savory side, hot dogs here are encrusted with crispy ramen, crunchy cereal, hot Cheeto dust, potato cubes, or original breading and then deep-fried for an over-the-top corndog-like experience.

John Reyes

El Limōn

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The flavors of Mexico and Lebanon meet at this north side taqueria. Diners can enjoy tacos or burritos along with a fattoush salad, all of which are halal-friendly. For a true fusion experience, try the falafel burrito with jalapeño-infused tahini.

Basil Babe

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Basil Babe gained a loyal following as a pop-up and has successfully transitioned to a physical location in Ypsilanti, next to the Eastern Michigan University campus. The menu features Thai favorites like stir fries, noodles, curries and the menu changes weekly. The papaya salad and dumplings are mainstays and can’t be missed.

John Reyes

The Deep End Cafe & Gallery

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Head over to downtown Ypsilanti for Deep End Café, a place that’s equal parts coffee shop and gallery space featuring works from local artists, poets, and writers. In addition to art, the spot features food and drink options courtesy of Detroit-based The Squeeze Station, which specializes in smoothies, fresh pressed juices, breakfast items, sandwiches, and salads.

Sam Hill

This far west side spot was designed to to be a fun and welcoming spot, where friends and family can gather for stay for a while. There’s something for many on the menu — from Upper Peninsula pasties and Mexican queso, to Southern shrimp and grits. Spacious outdoor areas are equipped with plenty of seating and games, making for the ideal place to hang out and chill in groups.

Sam Hill | Courtesy Photo

Taystee's Burgers

Burger fans from all over have flocked to Taystee’s, the halal-friendly burger spot situated in Dearborn, Dearborn Heights, and elsewhere — thanks to its expansion efforts throughout the region. Ann Arborites can now enjoy one of their specialty burgers, including the award-winning Ali’s Notch-Yo Burger — a stack of patties, beef bacon, jalapeños, grilled onions, three cheeses, and Doritos.

Peridot

Elevated Vietnamese cuisine and innovative craft cocktails come together at this elegant downtown space. Peridot’s menu has classics like summer rolls and papaya salad, in addition to fresh takes such as a banh mi bruschetta and lettuce wraps with grilled branzino and woven rice noodles. The cocktail list tends to lean in on rum and gin-forward options where their nuance and freshness nicely complement the food.

John Reyes

Milk & Froth Ice Cream

The Detroit-based artisanal ice cream shop opened its second location in the heart of downtown Ann Arbor. Both standard and vegan ice creams are all-natural and come in a variety of options, from familiar flavors like salted caramel and cherry cheesecake to eclectic varieties like roasted strawberry and matcha pistachio. 

Spiedo

Chef Brad Greenhill’s Spiedo has finally opened in the same space where his Corktown mainstay Takoi first opened as a pop-up in 2016. Armed with only a rotisserie and a griddle, the team puts out an innovative menu and spice-heavy flatbread wraps and salads with flavors that take inspiration from Italy, the Middle East, Mexico, and East Asia. 

John Reyes

Fat Daddy's HOT Chicken & Waffles

The popular Detroit-area chicken and waffle joint has opened its second location in downtown Ann Arbor. Fat Daddy’s specializes in Nashville hot chicken, available in five spice levels with different sandwich toppings such as coleslaw, mac and cheese, or sweet ranch served on a brioche bun. For an extra decadent treat, try the Suga Momma, which replaces the bun with two glazed donuts.

Mothfire Brewing Company

Mothfire started producing its beers in a tiny, hard-to-find brewery right before the pandemic started. Since then, the beers have been featured all around town. A new facility on the south side of town features a tasting room and outdoor patio where patrons can enjoy an ever-changing selection of brews and hard seltzer cocktails, while enjoying cuisine from a rotating roster of food trucks.

Mochinut Ann Arbor

The popular purveyor of doughnuts, Korean hot dogs, and boba has landed in Michigan. The name comes from the spot’s line of mochi (rice flour balls) that are interconnected to form donuts topped with dozens of different toppings and frostings. On the savory side, hot dogs here are encrusted with crispy ramen, crunchy cereal, hot Cheeto dust, potato cubes, or original breading and then deep-fried for an over-the-top corndog-like experience.

John Reyes

El Limōn

The flavors of Mexico and Lebanon meet at this north side taqueria. Diners can enjoy tacos or burritos along with a fattoush salad, all of which are halal-friendly. For a true fusion experience, try the falafel burrito with jalapeño-infused tahini.

Basil Babe

Basil Babe gained a loyal following as a pop-up and has successfully transitioned to a physical location in Ypsilanti, next to the Eastern Michigan University campus. The menu features Thai favorites like stir fries, noodles, curries and the menu changes weekly. The papaya salad and dumplings are mainstays and can’t be missed.

John Reyes

The Deep End Cafe & Gallery

Head over to downtown Ypsilanti for Deep End Café, a place that’s equal parts coffee shop and gallery space featuring works from local artists, poets, and writers. In addition to art, the spot features food and drink options courtesy of Detroit-based The Squeeze Station, which specializes in smoothies, fresh pressed juices, breakfast items, sandwiches, and salads.

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