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  • Reports from the ‘High Times’ Medical Marijuana Cup in Clio

    On Saturday we set out to check out the High Times Medical Marijuana Cup in Clio, Mich. — High Times did hold a Cannabis Cup in the Motor City back in 2011, but Detroit police flexing their muscles and making arrests at that event may have been to blame, at least partially, for the choice of a new host city. The event was held this year at the Auto City Speedway, (also known as “B.F.E.” to Detroiters). Nevertheless, the prospect of stopping at the Torch for the best burger in the Genessee County was compelling — and anyway, this was the Cannabis Cup we were talking about. Was it really going to be “work?” It turned out, just a little bit. An inexplicable lack of an on-site ATM meant hiking quite a ways up the road to the nearest gas station, and then waiting for an attendant to restock the ATM with cash. We spoke with plenty of Cannabis Cup attendees at the gas station — everybody knows that the local gas station is a stoner’s best-friend. The two-day festival, for which one-day tickets were sold for $40, was divided into two sections — a general area and a medicating […]

    The post Reports from the ‘High Times’ Medical Marijuana Cup in Clio appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • ICYMI: Forbes rates Detroit #9 on its “America’s Most Creative Cities” list

    Yes, it’s true. Forbes says Detroit is one of America’s most creative cities: “We ranked these places based on four metrics: activity per capita on project-funding platforms Kickstarter and Indiegogo and music sites Bandcamp and ReverbNation. The goal was to capture organic creativity, since many artistic and musical types have “day jobs” outside of creative pursuits.” The Forbes list sandwiches #9 Detroit between #8 Seattle and #10 Oakland, Calif. If you are watching the art and culture explosion happening right now in Detroit, you probably think we should rank higher than #2 Boston and #1 San Francisco, if only for the fact that it’s actually affordable to create here and there is space for everyone to be creative. But hey, those metrics weren’t part of the equation. And there’s always next year.

    The post ICYMI: Forbes rates Detroit #9 on its “America’s Most Creative Cities” list appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Food trucks go to the dogs

    Today, starting at 10am, Milo’s Kitchen Treat Truck will be swinging by the  Cherry Hill Village at Preservation Park on  N. Roosevelt St. in Canton. They’ll be serving the pups (“gour-mutts,” as Milo’s calls them) treats and the dog parents the opportunity of “family portraits.” Milo’s is on a cross-country food truck trip, promoting their “grilled burger bites” and “chicken meatballs” to pup parents from L.A. to NYC, with stops in between, including Chicago, Detroit, Pittsburgh, the Carolinas, and Arkansas. But watch out! Milo’s Kitchen Treat Truck markets “real chicken and beef home-style dog treats” that are are “wholesome” and “authentic” without “artificial flavors or colors-made right here in the USA.” Authentic, processed food that is. Remember what George Carlin said about “home-style”? Their treats are also packed with soy, TVP, wheat flour, tapioca, rice, and sugar–fillers that make the meat go far and aren’t the best for your pup. They’re also packed with preservatives, like sodium erythorbate, nitrates, BHA, sodium tripolyphosphate, and potassium sorbate. Small amounts are probably ok, and no doubt the pup will love it, the same way it’s easy for humans to love carb- and sugar- laden, processed and preserved, treats.  

    The post Food trucks go to the dogs appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Former Tigers Dave Rozema and Ike Blessitt to honor Mark “The Bird” Fidrych

    Coming up on August 16, former Detroit Tigers Dave Rozema and Ike Blessitt will team up with the Navin Field Grounds Crew and Metro Times‘ own Dave Mesrey to honor legend Mark “The Bird” Fidrych. The festivities, known as the annual “Bird Bash,” will be held at the infamous Nemo’s Bar & Grill, and will benefit The Bird’s favorite charity, the Wertz Warriors, and also the Mark Fidrych Foundation. For more information, check out their website or Facebook page.

    The post Former Tigers Dave Rozema and Ike Blessitt to honor Mark “The Bird” Fidrych appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • First Little League game at Navin Field today

    Today Navin Field (the Old Tiger Stadium) hosts its first Little League game on a new field made just to host the youngsters! Here’s a photo of the game happening right now, courtesy Tom Derry and Metro Times‘ copy editor extraordinaire, Dave Mesrey: Stop by the site (corner of Michigan and Trumbull) today to watch history in the making!

    The post First Little League game at Navin Field today appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Twerk du Soleil shakes up Detroit

    Former American Idol contestant Vonzell Solomon weighs in on twerking, natural hair & CEO status. In 2005, recording artist Vonzell “Baby V” Solomon embarked on a journey that changed her life. At the age of 20, Vonzell made it to the top three on American Idol before she was eliminated. But that was not the beginning nor the end of her journey to stardom. Vonzell is one of more than two dozen artists on tour with YouTube sensation Todrick Hall, who is a former Idol contestant as well. Todrick gained notoriety for his fast food drive-thru songs and also for producing parody videos  —  based on popular Broadway musicals and songs. His tour, uniquely entitled Twerk Du Soleil (translation: twerk of the sun), is a combination of his popular YouTube spoofs. Both Vonzell and her ratchet alter ego,Boonquisha Jenkins, made an appearance in Twerk Du Soleil,which stopped in Detroit July 23 at Saint Andrews Hall. Boonquisha opened the show by facilitating a twerking competition among the audience. Next, Vonzell made a reappearance singing a fan favorite – Whitney Houston’s “I Have Nothing.” Later, Boonquisha came on stage screaming “It’s so cold in the D! You gotta be from the D to […]

    The post Twerk du Soleil shakes up Detroit appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

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Best of Detroit 2011

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Photo: Marvin Shaouni

Nutritional Value - Staff Picks

From style to fare to special dishes, our staff picks what's best

Best Fine Dining Value

Saltwater
Inside the MGM Detroit Grand, 1777 Third St., Detroit; 313-465-1646

This up-market seafood spot offers plenty of opportunities for big winners at the casino to show off, such as caviar, Australian A-5 beef at $26 per ounce and Champagne at $1,996 by the magnum. But it offers luscious treats for the less-lucky as well, with some entrées in the low 20s and oysters on the half shell for $2 apiece during happy hour. Whatever the order, it will be prepared sublimely, whether a $16 appetizer of ahi tartare, prepared tableside by your server for a fine show, or a $23 cioppino, the San Francisco shellfish stew in tomato broth. Mid-week partiers can take advantage of the Wednesday wine special: half off bottles costing more than $100.

 

Best Happy Hour

Roast
1128 Washington Blvd., Detroit; 313-961-2500; roastdetroit.com

Hit the bar at Roast during happy hour and you can fill up on a few excellent small plates for next to nothing. Try the 5-ounce grilled hamburger on an English muffin topped with cheese, bacon, pickled onions and a fried egg. Our favorite is fried chicken livers with mushrooms and polenta. Spicy hot peppers stuffed with sausage and the rosemary fries are good too. Since all the items on the happy hour menu are only $3, you'll have a couple extra bucks to splurge on something from their excellent drinks program.

 

Best Restaurant in Macomb County

The Metropolitan Café
52969 Van Dyke Ave., Shelby Twp.; 586-991-6104; themetroshelby.com

Creativity is the watchword at the east side's newest treasure: The menu at Metropolitan Café defies categorization — except to say that it's universally delicious. Chef Alexis Henslee seems to have a knack for turning common ingredients into something entirely uncommon. Be it local perch transformed into a clever Mediterranean dish or a nuanced braised lamb served atop pappardelle, nothing here is expected or obvious. Henslee has established relationships with local farmers and features their ingredients regularly on the menu, which changes seasonally. One might think that such an interesting approach to the cuisine would be accompanied by pretentiousness, but the Metropolitan Café aims for friendliness over fanciness — an exceptional neighborhood restaurant, nothing more and nothing less.

 

Best Restaurant to Mourn

Eve: The Restaurant

Many metro area food lovers may only know Eve Aronoff because of her unceremonious exit from TV's Top Chef, but Ann Arborites had been packing her restaurant, Eve, long before that. With a thoughtful menu full of local ingredients, a wide selection of wines, and well-made cocktails it was, to many, Ann Arbor's best restaurant. Though the approach was decidedly French, the menu always featured bright flavors, often via delicious Asian or African spicing. While Aronoff politely notes that she needed a break anyhow, an unforeseen rent hike is ultimately what saw the Kerrytown favorite close its doors after about five years. All good things must come to an end; but no one expected Eve's end to come so soon.

 

Best New Spinoff

Frita Batidos
117 W. Washington St., Ann Arbor; 734-761-2882; fritabatidos.com

With various upscale restaurants making the transformation from extravagant to easygoing (think Milford's Five Lakes Grill becoming Cinco Lagos, or Troy's Larco's becoming Big Beaver Tavern), savvy restaurateurs are taking note. Leave it to Eve Aronoff of the now-shuttered restaurant Eve to find a niche that caters to the comfort food crowd. Frita Batidos serves fritas (Cuban burgers made from spicy chorizo), and batidos (tropical milkshakes), opening early for the breakfast crowd. The interior is elegant but not austere, with communal seating at large picnic tables, as if to bring street food indoors. With excellent presentation, a short, affordable (it tops out at $12), burger-heavy menu, boutique ingredients, and plenty of pulled pork, grilled cheese and sloppy joes, Aronoff's gamble that her Latin vision of American comfort food would pay off would seem a winning bet.

 

Best Bargain Prix Fixe

Kitchen Sync at Wine Sync
122 W. Main St., Northville; 248-374-9463; winesync.com

Experienced wine hand Alan Verstraete says he always starts building his Saturday night prix fixe menus by choosing the wines; the menu evolves from there. Makes sense, since the restaurant is inside a retail wine store. A first-course salad is perfectly matched with its tipple — say a watercress and pink grapefruit salad with a zippy sauvignon blanc that has a grapefruit tang. Cheese and charcuterie will be complemented with a red, of course, or the second course might be pasta. Entrées (two choices) could be smoked pork riblets or duck breast or pork shank mole — actually, whatever will go with the wine of the day. You can read what's coming up at winesync.com, and it's only $30 for a four-course meal. Reservations required.

 

Best Rising Food Trend in Metro Detroit

Barbecue

Let's be clear: There has always been good barbecue in Detroit, whether it's the ribs at Vicki's or the barbecue served at such places as Milt's, Uptown Bar-B-Q, Parks, Aunt Bessie's and many other old-style joints. But in 2005, Slows took low-and-slow barbecue and added stylish sit-down dining and the biggest beer menu in town. Six years on and the formula has been re-created throughout metro Detroit, in places such as Lockhart's, Bad Brad's, Penny Black, Hoggers, Rub, Red Smoke and Union Woodshop. Driven by demand for casual dining, renewed interest in craft beer, and a fresh look at low-and-slow 'cue, it's also a reaction against anything that smacks of hoity-toityness. The verdict is clear: Barbecue is the best way to combine the decadent and the down-home in one package.

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