A few months ago I was in Detroit for work, helping small businesses get online at WordPress.com, and while we were there, we were able to meet and eat at local small businesses.
You can see a bit of what we did that weekend in this video below – I make an appearance :) You can see some of the Detroit small businesses using WordPress.com here.
But back to the food. The food! And the coffee.
If you remember when I travel I like to use Google Maps to mark places to eat and visit. As you can see in the video above, it was very snowy and cold in Detroit, but that didn’t keep me indoors. This trip had a lot of pre-planned structure in it but I made sure each morning to go out and get a coffee from a local coffee shop instead of sticking to the super-warm lobby coffee shop.
On my morning coffee sojourns, one morning I went to Dessert Oasis Coffee Roasters (yes, dessert, not a typo):
Though we weren’t in Canada, I thought it was a good idea to get some stick-to-my-ribs poutine at “Iron Chef” victor, chef Michael Symon’s ROAST. It was delicious.
We went into the snow to visit the Heidelberg Project, which is “a Detroit-based community organization designed to improve the lives of people and neighborhoods through art.” The resulting art project is in an actual neighborhood and will either charm you or horrify you. I fell on the side of charmed, and the snow meant it was an empty and semi-haunted landscape punctured by art installations.
Barbecue at Slow’s Bar B Q was so good and I can’t believe they fit 17 of us into the packed restaurant at lunch. I love their barbecue sauce lineup.
I ended up ordering the Longhorn sandwich and tried the Mac & Cheese, too (note: all the food pictured is not mine) :)
We toured Ponyride, a non-profit space that’s a mix between an incubator and co-working space, to meet some of the local entrepreneurs doing interesting things. We started with a coffee from Anthology and heard from some of the residents in the space like The Empowerment Plan and their amazing EMPWR coat.
And a great Thai dinner at KATOI.
I also stopped by The Royal Fresh Market, one of the small businesses we were getting to know, and I loved walking around and seeing what products and specialties are local. Discovering grocery stores in any place or country is one of my favorite things! Hearing of my love for local stuff, the store manager offered me a Faygo Vanilla Creme Soda, which I promptly sent a pic of to my mother, who is from Michigan. Faygo is from Detroit (and their site is on WP!), so it was as local as I could get. And tasted great, too.
Another morning, another local coffee. This time I went to Roasting Plant, and I really loved that they had their milk on tap!
Just as it was time to go, Detroit started to show off. And I was glad to be there to see it.
Do you know Detroit? What should I check out next time I’m in town?