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The Royce Detroit Brenna Houck

Here For The Auto Show? Here’s Where to Eat and Drink in Downtown Detroit

From swanky cocktail bars, classic steakhouses, and juicy smash burgers, here’s where to eat downtown

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Downtown Detroit has experienced an incredible influx of restaurants, bars, and cafes over the past decade. For years and years, the dining options were more or less limited to greasy (and sometimes rat-infested) Coneys, overpriced white table cloth establishments, or boring chains. And forget about grabbing a fancy night cap after work.

That’s all changed. And while many longtime residents may lament about how downtown has has lost its character and has been replaced with unoriginal restaurants, the fact remains that if you’re visiting the city for the first time or conducting business, there have never been so many eating and drinking places to choose from in the 21st century.

Whether you’re hitting up Huntington Place for the North American International Auto Show, a conference, or just headed out for a night on the town, here are 30 downtown options ranging from fine dining chophouses, casual walk-ups, interesting cafes, and swanky bars.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.
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The Royce Detroit

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The Royce is the Grand Circus Park-adjacent wine bar and bottle shop situated on the first and second levels of the Kales Building. The storefront features custom shelving made from walnut wood and piping, globe light fixtures, and library ladders. A 12-seat bar fills out the center of the first floor. Owners Ping Ho and Angela Rutherford have curated a massive wine program featuring some 300-plus bottles available for retail, an extensive menu for pours by the glass or bottle, and a selection of cured meats and cheeses. The spot even offers classes for those who want to expand upon their wine knowledge base.

Mister Dips

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Mister Dips, the griddled burger and fancy soft serve joint situated in Parker’s Alley in downtown, features a number of burgers, including the Classic Wedge Dip, made with crispy bacon, tomato, iceberg lettuce, and blue cheese mayo. Round out the meal with waffle fries and one of the spot’s Dairy Dips — sweet soft-serve ice cream cones that come in several flavors.

Evening Bar

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Located behind a nondescript door in Parker’s Alley to the rear of the Shinola Hotel, this upscale, secluded lounge with mood lighting serves a mix of classic cocktails like Death in the Afternoon alongside original drinks. Patrons can also order high-end bar snacks like a fondue pot or mini lobster rolls.

The Skip

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One of the fun attractions to a trip downtown is exploring the decked out alleyways and The Skip, located in the Belt Alley, is worth a stop for a frozen beverage or other tiki-esque cocktails in an open-air alley bar with island vibes. For a snack, grab some street food from the Hell Yeah Dogs cart. For a more elegant affair, reserve a table at neighboring Standby.

Situated inside the Hollywood Casino at Greektown, chef Petro Drakopoulous brings a touch of modern updates to the classic steakhouse with a selection entree-sized salads like the chilled lobster salad, Grecian lamb chops, and the prime butcher burger. Opting to hit the gambling floor? Drakopoulous recently added a full food menu at the casino’s Rock Bar, located in the first floor gaming area. To eat, there’s a selection of sliders, wraps, desserts, a cocktail menu, and dozens of TV screens perfect for catching the sports games.

The interior of Prism inside the Hollywood Casino at Greektown
Hollywood Casino at Greektown

London Chop House

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In 2012, this classic downtown chop house was revived to its original splendor, featuring full caviar service with vodka pours, steaks finished with garlic butter and served with au poivre with chimichurri or béarnaise sauce. Steaks include 35-day dry aged ribeye, American wagyu ribeye, among other premium cuts. Even the “hamburger steak” is opulent and it’s made with A4 wagyu and foie gras.

Dime Store

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This hip, airy all-day brunch spot gets high marks in Detroit for its tasty and creative spins on classics. Made-from-scratch breakfasts include omelets (bacon avocado, house-made sausage), sweet stuff (brioche French toast, malted Belgian waffles), and hashes.

The Hudson Cafe

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Named for the former department store, this downtown breakfast hotspot has a reputation for its mountain of luxuriant savory and sweet breakfast meals. The red velvet pancakes with cream cheese drizzle and the voodoo eggs benedict corn cakes, Spanish chorizo, cheddar cheese, and ranchero sauce are legendary. Reservations are recommended because the lines do tend to get long.

HOUSE OF PURE VIN

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With its Vibe on the Vin DJ nights on Fridays, jazz brunches, and heated igloo seating for up to six guests, House of Pure Vin makes wine sampling an adventure. The downtown wine spot stocks a wide variety of bottles for sale, including half-bottles. Guests can also enjoy virtual and in-person tastings by reservation.

Karl’s, located on the second level of the Siren Hotel in the Wurlitzer Building, features adorable upholstered seating ideal for cozying up with one of the diner’s big salads and a book while overlooking Broadway Street. Or, sit at the bar, order a smart cocktail like a Lady Martini, and feel zero guilt about ordering the spaghetti and duck leg meatballs or pancakes for the table.

Candy Bar

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After enjoying a bite at Karl’s stop by Candy Bar downstairs for a night cap that reveals hints of Hollywood glamor. Reservations are recommended to secure one of the plush booths, but the curved marble bar inside the tiny, luxe space is always open on a first-come, first-serve basis. Take in the hulking glass chandelier bar top while sipping on a rotating menu of cocktails.

Sweetwater Tavern

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Ask a Detroiter where to find the best wings and Sweetwater Tavern in Bricktown probably tops the list. The wings here are a house recipe, marinated overnight, covered in spices, and fried to finger licking perfection.

Sloppy Crab Restaurant

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Located in Bricktown, Sloppy Crab attracts diners with lobster tacos and saucy seafood boils. The restaurant also sports a rooftop deck for laid-back outdoor drinking. To drink, expect premium spirits, specialty cocktails, and to accompany the libations, great conversation with regulars.

Sugar Factory American Brasserie

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The fantastical Las Vegas-based chain Sugar Factory American Brasserie famous for its outrageous Instagrammable sweets has made its way inside the One Campus Martius building. On top of its decadent “Sugar Factory’s Insane Milkshakes” — like the Cookie Monster Make a Wish shake made with cookies and cream ice cream and topped with a blue frosted cupcake — expect an overload of flavors with entrees like the Flaming Hot Cheetos Burger, rainbow-colored sliders, and more. The food and dessert spectacle is naturally set up in an immersive setting ideal for selfie-taking, complete with the obligatory neon sign, floral walls, and a colorful candy heart wall for posing.

Union Assembly

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The menu features Detroit-style pizza, triple pepper buffalo wings, macaroni and cheese, blood orange barbecue ribs, a variety of salads, and an extensive array of beers, wine, and cocktails like the Jobbie Nooner made with Tito’s Vodka, rosemary Demerara, and lime juice. If you’re looking for a little something touristy to write home about, head around the corner to the alleyway window service eatery Mom’s Spaghetti, a collaboration between Union Assembly and Eminem, where diners can get a to-go carton of spaghetti and take a stroll to nearby Grand Circus Park.

Frita Batidos Detroit

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Cuban-influenced burger hotspot Frita Batidos first reached popularity with its original outpost in Ann Arbor and now it’s recreating that vibe on Columbia Street in downtown’s “District Detroit.” Guests can expect to see the spot’s popular Cuban-style burgers, twice-fried plantains, hibiscus shakes, and churros.

Central Kitchen + Bar

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Since 2015, Central Kitchen + Bar has become downtown’s unofficial gathering spot for the city’s movers and shakers. The popular scaled-up gastropub is often packed and lively with loud music, making for an energetic atmosphere. Grab a table indoors or on the patio facing Cadillac Square or at the bar and indulge in a variety of burgers, small plates, and craft cocktails.

This intimate underground restaurant in the Financial District may be hard to find initially, but it’s worth the little extra effort. Featuring superb cocktails, such as the classic espresso martini or the Rip Tide, a twist on the classic negroni made with roasted, pineapple Averna, rum and Bruto Americano, round out the cocktail experience with a fanciful shared plates menu featuring beef tartare, and “escar-no” a vegetarian dish that trades shelled gastropods for mushrooms in buttery sauce.

Mootz Pizzeria + Bar

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This downtown Detroit pizzeria serves New York-style slices with two different styles of service: Customers on-the-go can pick up a meal with to-go cocktails at the small carryout slice shop or dine in with full service and cocktails. The restaurant is currently open for outdoor and indoor dining and also accepts online orders for carryout.

Townhouse Detroit

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Proprietor Jeremy Sasson of Heirloom Hospitality operates Townhouse Detroit, which recently renovated its space into a brighter and more refined aesthetic. The restaurant based in the heart of the city is great for larger parties with its stunning greenhouse-like atrium with a retractable roof. To eat, expect modern American flavors like a dry-aged burger, shareable plates of baby squid or black truffle, caviar, and raw bigeye tuna. This destination also serves lunches, an essential for downtown power players to make deals.

Prime + Proper

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Dry-aged beef in a variety of cuts — prepared by an in-house butcher — is showcased prominently inside in a special display case at this Capitol Park steak fortress. Another Heirloom Hospitality property, this opulent place is all about old-school Hollywood glamour. Make reservations for one of the establishment’s swanky, rounded booths, treat yourself to a Miyazaki Gyu wagyu strip, caviar service, and a bottle of Bordeaux. For a more intimate setting, opt for an experience at Cash Only Supper Club, the fancy new space below.

Eatóri Market

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For a casual bite, generous pours of wine, and the option to grab a few grocery essentials, Eatóri Market is the spot to be. There’s ample indoor bar seating and a limited number of four-top spots, but what makes this spot stand out is its outdoor patio where, weather permitting, one can while away a warm afternoon with people watching in Capitol Park.

Spkrbox

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Josh Greenwood, owner of longtime Capitol Park coffee shop/techno oasis Urban Bean Co., closed his spot during the pandemic to work on its next iteration, Spkr Box, a cafe and bar that flung open its doors on May 27 for a sneak peek during the Movement electronic music festival. The reimagined space underwent an extensive facelift, including upgrades to the spot’s window panes, a tiny second-level bar, upgrades to the DJ booth, a new sound system, a liquor license, and food sourced by Village Hand Pies. One key highlight, the basement Orange Room, a futuristic looking underground lounge with soundproofing that produces crystal clear sound quality. Expect classic cocktails, beers, and of course, boozy coffee creations.

Cannelle Detroit

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This French-style pastry shop serves a resplendent selection of breads and pastries alongside coffee and espresso drinks. Choose from options like rustic loaves of sourdough, golden croissants, chocolate eclairs, and well-seasoned ham and cheese quiche.

Go! Sy Thai

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This casual Capitol Park spot specializes in takeout-friendly Thai food with an array of curry, noodles, rice dishes, spring rolls, and hot and sour soups. Oh, and they’re halal-friendly, too.

Iggy's Eggies

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Grab a hot egg sandwich to-go at this walk-up window in Capitol Park. Iggy’s serves build-your-own breakfast sandwiches, grass-fed burgers, and crispy hash browns daily from 7 a.m. until 2 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on weekends.

Madcap Coffee Company

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The coffee experts from Grand Rapids-based roaster Madcap Coffee provide a full-service experience on the Farmer Street side of the Shinola Hotel complex. The primarily standing room cafe serves the typical coffee and espresso drinks as well as some rotating drink specials that mix coffee with unconventional ingredients like cola and bitters. Don’t miss Madcap’s silky smooth nitro cold brew.

The Monarch Club

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One of the highest rooftop patios in the city, The Monarch Club is perched atop the Metropolitan Building. It’s a chill and elegant place to sip classic cocktails and enjoy small plates while taking in sweeping views of downtown Detroit from three terraces. Make a reservation for seating with a fire pit.

Parc is literally in the middle of all the action in downtown’s always active Campus Martius Park. Retractable windows provide a front row seat to the Woodward Fountain in the summertime and the tree lighting ceremony in the winter.

This sophisticated destination brings an innovative approach to Lebanese food to downtown’s Capitol Park. Owned and operated by the father and son duo behind Birmingham’s critically-lauded Phoenicia, Sameer and Samy Eid, Leila is primarily on mezze, the small snack plates meant to be shared family-style. Guests can mix and match cold dishes like tabbouleh and labneh with hot items like grilled kibbeh, makanek (spicy lamb sausage), and falafel. With an impressive, open interior that looks into an open kitchen, Leila also offers a private dining space in the basement.

The Royce Detroit

The Royce is the Grand Circus Park-adjacent wine bar and bottle shop situated on the first and second levels of the Kales Building. The storefront features custom shelving made from walnut wood and piping, globe light fixtures, and library ladders. A 12-seat bar fills out the center of the first floor. Owners Ping Ho and Angela Rutherford have curated a massive wine program featuring some 300-plus bottles available for retail, an extensive menu for pours by the glass or bottle, and a selection of cured meats and cheeses. The spot even offers classes for those who want to expand upon their wine knowledge base.

Mister Dips

Mister Dips, the griddled burger and fancy soft serve joint situated in Parker’s Alley in downtown, features a number of burgers, including the Classic Wedge Dip, made with crispy bacon, tomato, iceberg lettuce, and blue cheese mayo. Round out the meal with waffle fries and one of the spot’s Dairy Dips — sweet soft-serve ice cream cones that come in several flavors.

Evening Bar

Located behind a nondescript door in Parker’s Alley to the rear of the Shinola Hotel, this upscale, secluded lounge with mood lighting serves a mix of classic cocktails like Death in the Afternoon alongside original drinks. Patrons can also order high-end bar snacks like a fondue pot or mini lobster rolls.

The Skip

One of the fun attractions to a trip downtown is exploring the decked out alleyways and The Skip, located in the Belt Alley, is worth a stop for a frozen beverage or other tiki-esque cocktails in an open-air alley bar with island vibes. For a snack, grab some street food from the Hell Yeah Dogs cart. For a more elegant affair, reserve a table at neighboring Standby.

Prism

The interior of Prism inside the Hollywood Casino at Greektown
Hollywood Casino at Greektown

Situated inside the Hollywood Casino at Greektown, chef Petro Drakopoulous brings a touch of modern updates to the classic steakhouse with a selection entree-sized salads like the chilled lobster salad, Grecian lamb chops, and the prime butcher burger. Opting to hit the gambling floor? Drakopoulous recently added a full food menu at the casino’s Rock Bar, located in the first floor gaming area. To eat, there’s a selection of sliders, wraps, desserts, a cocktail menu, and dozens of TV screens perfect for catching the sports games.

The interior of Prism inside the Hollywood Casino at Greektown
Hollywood Casino at Greektown

London Chop House

In 2012, this classic downtown chop house was revived to its original splendor, featuring full caviar service with vodka pours, steaks finished with garlic butter and served with au poivre with chimichurri or béarnaise sauce. Steaks include 35-day dry aged ribeye, American wagyu ribeye, among other premium cuts. Even the “hamburger steak” is opulent and it’s made with A4 wagyu and foie gras.

Dime Store

This hip, airy all-day brunch spot gets high marks in Detroit for its tasty and creative spins on classics. Made-from-scratch breakfasts include omelets (bacon avocado, house-made sausage), sweet stuff (brioche French toast, malted Belgian waffles), and hashes.

The Hudson Cafe

Named for the former department store, this downtown breakfast hotspot has a reputation for its mountain of luxuriant savory and sweet breakfast meals. The red velvet pancakes with cream cheese drizzle and the voodoo eggs benedict corn cakes, Spanish chorizo, cheddar cheese, and ranchero sauce are legendary. Reservations are recommended because the lines do tend to get long.

HOUSE OF PURE VIN

With its Vibe on the Vin DJ nights on Fridays, jazz brunches, and heated igloo seating for up to six guests, House of Pure Vin makes wine sampling an adventure. The downtown wine spot stocks a wide variety of bottles for sale, including half-bottles. Guests can also enjoy virtual and in-person tastings by reservation.

Karl's

Karl’s, located on the second level of the Siren Hotel in the Wurlitzer Building, features adorable upholstered seating ideal for cozying up with one of the diner’s big salads and a book while overlooking Broadway Street. Or, sit at the bar, order a smart cocktail like a Lady Martini, and feel zero guilt about ordering the spaghetti and duck leg meatballs or pancakes for the table.

Candy Bar

After enjoying a bite at Karl’s stop by Candy Bar downstairs for a night cap that reveals hints of Hollywood glamor. Reservations are recommended to secure one of the plush booths, but the curved marble bar inside the tiny, luxe space is always open on a first-come, first-serve basis. Take in the hulking glass chandelier bar top while sipping on a rotating menu of cocktails.

Sweetwater Tavern

Ask a Detroiter where to find the best wings and Sweetwater Tavern in Bricktown probably tops the list. The wings here are a house recipe, marinated overnight, covered in spices, and fried to finger licking perfection.

Sloppy Crab Restaurant

Located in Bricktown, Sloppy Crab attracts diners with lobster tacos and saucy seafood boils. The restaurant also sports a rooftop deck for laid-back outdoor drinking. To drink, expect premium spirits, specialty cocktails, and to accompany the libations, great conversation with regulars.

Sugar Factory American Brasserie

The fantastical Las Vegas-based chain Sugar Factory American Brasserie famous for its outrageous Instagrammable sweets has made its way inside the One Campus Martius building. On top of its decadent “Sugar Factory’s Insane Milkshakes” — like the Cookie Monster Make a Wish shake made with cookies and cream ice cream and topped with a blue frosted cupcake — expect an overload of flavors with entrees like the Flaming Hot Cheetos Burger, rainbow-colored sliders, and more. The food and dessert spectacle is naturally set up in an immersive setting ideal for selfie-taking, complete with the obligatory neon sign, floral walls, and a colorful candy heart wall for posing.

Union Assembly

The menu features Detroit-style pizza, triple pepper buffalo wings, macaroni and cheese, blood orange barbecue ribs, a variety of salads, and an extensive array of beers, wine, and cocktails like the Jobbie Nooner made with Tito’s Vodka, rosemary Demerara, and lime juice. If you’re looking for a little something touristy to write home about, head around the corner to the alleyway window service eatery Mom’s Spaghetti, a collaboration between Union Assembly and Eminem, where diners can get a to-go carton of spaghetti and take a stroll to nearby Grand Circus Park.

Related Maps

Frita Batidos Detroit

Cuban-influenced burger hotspot Frita Batidos first reached popularity with its original outpost in Ann Arbor and now it’s recreating that vibe on Columbia Street in downtown’s “District Detroit.” Guests can expect to see the spot’s popular Cuban-style burgers, twice-fried plantains, hibiscus shakes, and churros.

Central Kitchen + Bar

Since 2015, Central Kitchen + Bar has become downtown’s unofficial gathering spot for the city’s movers and shakers. The popular scaled-up gastropub is often packed and lively with loud music, making for an energetic atmosphere. Grab a table indoors or on the patio facing Cadillac Square or at the bar and indulge in a variety of burgers, small plates, and craft cocktails.

shelby

This intimate underground restaurant in the Financial District may be hard to find initially, but it’s worth the little extra effort. Featuring superb cocktails, such as the classic espresso martini or the Rip Tide, a twist on the classic negroni made with roasted, pineapple Averna, rum and Bruto Americano, round out the cocktail experience with a fanciful shared plates menu featuring beef tartare, and “escar-no” a vegetarian dish that trades shelled gastropods for mushrooms in buttery sauce.

Mootz Pizzeria + Bar

This downtown Detroit pizzeria serves New York-style slices with two different styles of service: Customers on-the-go can pick up a meal with to-go cocktails at the small carryout slice shop or dine in with full service and cocktails. The restaurant is currently open for outdoor and indoor dining and also accepts online orders for carryout.

Townhouse Detroit

Proprietor Jeremy Sasson of Heirloom Hospitality operates Townhouse Detroit, which recently renovated its space into a brighter and more refined aesthetic. The restaurant based in the heart of the city is great for larger parties with its stunning greenhouse-like atrium with a retractable roof. To eat, expect modern American flavors like a dry-aged burger, shareable plates of baby squid or black truffle, caviar, and raw bigeye tuna. This destination also serves lunches, an essential for downtown power players to make deals.

Prime + Proper

Dry-aged beef in a variety of cuts — prepared by an in-house butcher — is showcased prominently inside in a special display case at this Capitol Park steak fortress. Another Heirloom Hospitality property, this opulent place is all about old-school Hollywood glamour. Make reservations for one of the establishment’s swanky, rounded booths, treat yourself to a Miyazaki Gyu wagyu strip, caviar service, and a bottle of Bordeaux. For a more intimate setting, opt for an experience at Cash Only Supper Club, the fancy new space below.

Eatóri Market

For a casual bite, generous pours of wine, and the option to grab a few grocery essentials, Eatóri Market is the spot to be. There’s ample indoor bar seating and a limited number of four-top spots, but what makes this spot stand out is its outdoor patio where, weather permitting, one can while away a warm afternoon with people watching in Capitol Park.

Spkrbox

Josh Greenwood, owner of longtime Capitol Park coffee shop/techno oasis Urban Bean Co., closed his spot during the pandemic to work on its next iteration, Spkr Box, a cafe and bar that flung open its doors on May 27 for a sneak peek during the Movement electronic music festival. The reimagined space underwent an extensive facelift, including upgrades to the spot’s window panes, a tiny second-level bar, upgrades to the DJ booth, a new sound system, a liquor license, and food sourced by Village Hand Pies. One key highlight, the basement Orange Room, a futuristic looking underground lounge with soundproofing that produces crystal clear sound quality. Expect classic cocktails, beers, and of course, boozy coffee creations.

Cannelle Detroit

This French-style pastry shop serves a resplendent selection of breads and pastries alongside coffee and espresso drinks. Choose from options like rustic loaves of sourdough, golden croissants, chocolate eclairs, and well-seasoned ham and cheese quiche.

Go! Sy Thai

This casual Capitol Park spot specializes in takeout-friendly Thai food with an array of curry, noodles, rice dishes, spring rolls, and hot and sour soups. Oh, and they’re halal-friendly, too.

Iggy's Eggies

Grab a hot egg sandwich to-go at this walk-up window in Capitol Park. Iggy’s serves build-your-own breakfast sandwiches, grass-fed burgers, and crispy hash browns daily from 7 a.m. until 2 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on weekends.

Madcap Coffee Company

The coffee experts from Grand Rapids-based roaster Madcap Coffee provide a full-service experience on the Farmer Street side of the Shinola Hotel complex. The primarily standing room cafe serves the typical coffee and espresso drinks as well as some rotating drink specials that mix coffee with unconventional ingredients like cola and bitters. Don’t miss Madcap’s silky smooth nitro cold brew.

The Monarch Club

One of the highest rooftop patios in the city, The Monarch Club is perched atop the Metropolitan Building. It’s a chill and elegant place to sip classic cocktails and enjoy small plates while taking in sweeping views of downtown Detroit from three terraces. Make a reservation for seating with a fire pit.

Parc

Parc is literally in the middle of all the action in downtown’s always active Campus Martius Park. Retractable windows provide a front row seat to the Woodward Fountain in the summertime and the tree lighting ceremony in the winter.

Leila

This sophisticated destination brings an innovative approach to Lebanese food to downtown’s Capitol Park. Owned and operated by the father and son duo behind Birmingham’s critically-lauded Phoenicia, Sameer and Samy Eid, Leila is primarily on mezze, the small snack plates meant to be shared family-style. Guests can mix and match cold dishes like tabbouleh and labneh with hot items like grilled kibbeh, makanek (spicy lamb sausage), and falafel. With an impressive, open interior that looks into an open kitchen, Leila also offers a private dining space in the basement.

Related Maps