Unique Restaurants in Detroit: 12 Places to Eat in Detroit, Michigan

by Jen
Unique Restaurants in Detroit
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Are you searching for the most unique restaurants in Detroit, MI? Here’s your ultimate guide to the best places to eat in Detroit to satisfy your hunger.

Heading to Detroit? Or maybe you’re a local looking to discover new eateries? Well, you’re in for a tasty surprise. Detroit, famous for its cars and music, is also a hidden gem for foodies. From innovative fine dining establishments to quirky eateries, Detroit’s restaurant scene is as diverse as it is delicious.

Detroit’s culinary landscape reflects the city’s unique blend of cultures and its spirit of innovation. The city’s chefs and restaurateurs are constantly pushing boundaries, creating dishes that are both a nod to tradition and a daring leap into the unknown. Whether you’re a fan of classic American fare, crave authentic ethnic cuisine, or want to try something completely out of the box, Detroit has a restaurant for you. In this guide, we’ll take you on a culinary journey through Detroit, exploring the city’s most unique restaurants. These are places that not only serve fantastic food but also offer unforgettable dining experiences. Here’s all you need to know about the most unique places to eat in Detroit, Michigan.

The top restaurants in Detroit right now
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Unique Restaurants in Detroit, MI: 12 Incredible Detroit Places to Eat

Are you ready to discover the most unique restaurants in Detroit? As mentioned above, there’s a wide range of places to eat in Detroit for everyone to enjoy. Keep reading to find out where to eat in Detroit, Michigan.

Are you looking to try new and innovative twists on world-renowned classics? Or would you prefer hearty soul food? Whatever you’d like to eat, there are incredible places to eat in Detroit that can accommodate your needs. Here’s your in-depth guide to the most unique restaurants in Detroit.

1. Selden Standard

Tucked away in Midtown, Selden Standard is one of the best places to eat in Detroit, Michigan. This New American restaurant has made a name for itself with its unique small plates and craft cocktails. The menu is a celebration of local produce, with dishes changing according to the seasons.

The interior is as impressive as the food, with a rustic yet modern design that creates a warm and inviting atmosphere. Whether you’re sitting at the bar watching the bartenders work their magic, or at a table enjoying a leisurely meal, Selden Standard offers a dining experience that’s both cozy and sophisticated.

What truly sets Selden Standard apart is its commitment to quality. From the locally sourced ingredients to the expertly mixed cocktails, every element is carefully chosen and perfectly executed.

It’s this attention to detail that has earned Selden Standard its reputation as one of the finest dining experiences in Detroit, MI. As such, a visit to Selden Standard is a must for any food lover looking to experience the best of Detroit’s culinary scene.

Selden Standard is a Detroit favorite for inventive small plates, craft cocktails, and locally inspired seasonal dishes.
Selden Standard is a Detroit favorite for inventive small plates, craft cocktails, and locally inspired seasonal dishes.

2. SheWolf Pastificio & Bar

When it comes to unique places in Detroit to eat, SheWolf Pastificio & Bar stands out from the crowd. This Italian restaurant, located in the heart of the city, is a pasta lover’s dream come true. The name “SheWolf” is a nod to the legendary she-wolf that nurtured Rome’s founders, Romulus and Remus, symbolizing the restaurant’s deep connection to Roman culinary traditions.

SheWolf’s menu is a testament to the art of pasta making. Each dish is a masterpiece, crafted with care and precision. From the rich and creamy carbonara to the light and fresh cacio e pepe, every pasta dish is a journey through the flavors of Italy.

It’s not just the food that makes SheWolf unique. The restaurant’s modern, open-concept design allows diners to watch as their pasta is made from scratch in the open kitchen. This interactive dining experience, combined with SheWolf’s authentic Italian cuisine, makes it one of the most unique restaurants in Detroit.

If you’re a pasta aficionado or simply looking for a memorable dining experience, SheWolf Pastificio & Bar is a must-visit destination on Detroit’s culinary map.

SheWolf Pastificio & Bar is one of the unique restaurants in Detroit.
Discover SheWolf Pastificio & Bar, an Italian restaurant in Detroit that’s a pasta lover’s dream.

3. Ima

If you’re wondering where to eat in Detroit, Michigan, for a casual yet unforgettable dining experience, look no further than Ima. This award-winning noodle bar, nestled in the vibrant Corktown neighborhood, is a culinary gem that delights with its diverse Asian dishes and relaxed ambiance.

Ima’s menu is a celebration of Asian cuisine, offering a variety of udon, pho, curry, and rice bowls. Each dish is a harmony of flavors, expertly balanced to deliver a satisfying dining experience.

What sets Ima apart as one of the coolest places to eat in Detroit isn’t just the delectable food. It’s the restaurant’s dedication to creating a welcoming environment where good food and good company go hand in hand. The minimalist decor, warm lighting, and friendly staff all contribute to the inviting atmosphere of Ima.

Whether you’re a noodle lover or simply craving some comfort food, Ima is a destination that invites repeated visits. Take it from me, Ima is one of the best restaurants in Detroit that you should make sure to visit on your next trip.

Discover Ima in Detroit, Michigan, an award-winning noodle bar in Corktown that offers diverse Asian dishes in a relaxed setting.
Discover Ima in Detroit, Michigan, an award-winning noodle bar in Corktown that offers diverse Asian dishes in a relaxed setting.

4. Flowers of Vietnam

Venturing into the vibrant Southwest Detroit neighborhood, you’ll find Flowers of Vietnam, a culinary gem that adds a unique twist to the city’s restaurant scene. This Vietnamese restaurant offers a delightful fusion of traditional dishes and innovative creations.

Each item on the menu, from the aromatic pho to the flavorful banh mi, is a testament to the rich and diverse flavors of Vietnamese cuisine. Prepared with fresh, high-quality ingredients, every dish is a sensory delight that promises an unforgettable dining experience.

The restaurant’s retro decor, complete with neon lights and vintage posters, adds to its charm, creating a trendy yet nostalgic dining atmosphere. Flowers of Vietnam offers diners a culinary journey that transports them to the heart of Vietnam.

For anyone seeking a unique dining experience, this is one of the best restaurants in Detroit, MI. If you’re a fan of Vietnamese cuisine or just looking to try something new, Flowers of Vietnam should be on your Detroit dining bucket list.

Explore Flowers of Vietnam in Southwest Detroit, where traditional Vietnamese dishes meet innovative creations in a culinary gem.
Explore Flowers of Vietnam in Southwest Detroit, where traditional Vietnamese dishes meet innovative creations in a culinary gem.

5. Lady of the House

Situated in the heart of Detroit’s historic Corktown neighborhood, you’ll find Lady of the House, an Irish-American restaurant that’s redefining the city’s dining scene. With a focus on local ingredients and a menu that changes with the seasons, Lady of the House offers a dining experience that’s both familiar and innovative.

The menu is a celebration of Irish and American culinary traditions, with a modern twist. Offering dishes including hearty lamb meatballs to delicate Parisian gnocchi, each plate is a testament to the chef’s creativity and commitment to quality.

The restaurant’s cozy, welcoming atmosphere is complemented by its rustic decor and warm lighting. This makes it a perfect spot for a romantic dinner or a relaxed meal with friends.

Without a doubt, Lady of the House is one of the most unique places in Detroit to eat, offering a blend of comfort and sophistication that’s hard to find elsewhere.

Explore Lady of the House, a Corktown gem in Detroit, redefining Irish-American cuisine with local flavors and seasonal innovation.
Explore Lady of the House, a Corktown gem in Detroit, redefining Irish-American cuisine with local flavors and seasonal innovation.

6. Mabel Gray

Mabel Gray, located in the suburb of Hazel Park, is a shining star in Detroit’s culinary scene. This New American restaurant is famous for its ever-changing menu that reflects the best of what each season has to offer. Chef James Rigato, a Michigan native, uses locally sourced ingredients to create dishes that are as beautiful as they are delicious.

The restaurant’s interior is intimate and cozy, with a rustic charm that makes you feel right at home. The open kitchen allows you to watch as the culinary team crafts your meal with precision and care. Each dish is a work of art, with flavors that are bold yet balanced.

Mabel Gray offers a true culinary adventure for diners. The menu changes daily, offering new surprises and delights with each visit. It’s this commitment to creativity and quality that makes Mabel Gray one of the best restaurants in Detroit, MI.

Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion or just looking for a unique dining experience, Mabel Gray is a destination that promises to impress.

Mabel Gray, a culinary gem in Hazel Park, Detroit, offers a dynamic New American menu with seasonal flair from Chef James Rigato.
Mabel Gray, a culinary gem in Hazel Park, Detroit, offers a dynamic New American menu with seasonal flair from Chef James Rigato.

7. Takoi

For a dining experience that’s out of the ordinary, Takoi is the place to be. This Thai-inspired restaurant, located in Detroit’s bustling Corktown neighborhood, is known for its bold flavors and innovative dishes.

At Takoi, you can expect a menu that’s as vibrant as its surroundings. The dishes are a fusion of traditional Thai flavors and modern culinary techniques, resulting in a dining experience that’s both familiar and exciting. From the spicy green curry to the flavorful pad Thai, each dish is a culinary adventure.

The restaurant’s atmosphere is just as dynamic as its menu. The modern, industrial design is complemented by colorful lighting and eclectic decor, creating a space that’s both stylish and inviting.

Takoi is well-known as one of the coolest restaurants in Detroit that offers not just great food, but also an unforgettable dining experience. So, if you’re looking for a place that’s a little different, a little exciting, and a lot delicious, Takoi is a must-try.

Takoi in Detroit's Corktown offers an extraordinary dining experience with bold flavors and innovative Thai-inspired dishes.
Takoi in Detroit’s Corktown offers an extraordinary dining experience with bold flavors and innovative Thai-inspired dishes.

8. Marais

Seeking a taste of France in the heart of Detroit? Look no further than Marais. Located in Grosse Pointe, this French restaurant is renowned for its elegant dishes and sophisticated atmosphere.

Marais offers a unique menu that’s a celebration of French culinary traditions, with a touch of modern flair. With dishes ranging from rich and creamy escargot to delicate and flavorful duck confit, each course is a testament to the chef’s skill and creativity.

The restaurant’s interior is as elegant as its menu, with a classic design that’s reminiscent of a Parisian bistro. The warm lighting and stylish decor create a romantic atmosphere that’s perfect for a special occasion.

Marais is not just one of the best places to eat in Detroit, Michigan; it’s a destination that offers a slice of France in the heart of the city. For those craving a dining experience that’s special and memorable, Marais is the place to be.

Marais merges French culinary heritage and modern innovation in an inventive menu.
Marais merges French culinary heritage and modern innovation in an inventive menu.

9. Chartreuse Kitchen & Cocktails

For a truly unique dining experience, Chartreuse Kitchen & Cocktails is a must-visit. This New American restaurant, located in the Detroit Institute of Arts, is as much a feast for the eyes as it is for the palate.

Chartreuse offers a menu that’s a celebration of fresh, local ingredients. Each dish, whether a classic favorite or an innovative creation, is prepared with a focus on flavor and presentation. The succulent pork belly and the vibrant vegetable paella are just two examples of culinary masterpieces you can expect.

What truly sets Chartreuse apart is its location. The restaurant is nestled within one of Detroit’s most iconic cultural institutions, offering diners a unique blend of art and cuisine. The interior is a work of art, with a vibrant green decor that’s inspired by the restaurant’s namesake.

Chartreuse Kitchen & Cocktails is hands down one of the most unique places in Detroit to eat, offering a dining experience that’s both cultural and culinary. For diners looking for a place that’s a little different, Chartreuse is a must-try.

Chartreuse Kitchen & Cocktails at Detroit Institute of Arts: unique dining, artful ambiance, exquisite cuisine.
Chartreuse Kitchen & Cocktails at Detroit Institute of Arts: unique dining, artful ambiance, exquisite cuisine.

10. Grey Ghost Detroit

In the heart of Detroit’s bustling Midtown, you’ll find Grey Ghost Detroit, a steakhouse that’s redefining the city’s dining scene. Known for its meat-focused dishes and creative cocktails, Grey Ghost offers a dining experience that’s both rustic and refined.

The menu at Grey Ghost is a carnivore’s dream, featuring a variety of cuts and preparations that highlight the quality of the meat. The dry-aged ribeye is a standout, cooked to perfection and bursting with flavor. The restaurant also offers a selection of seafood, poultry, and vegetarian dishes, ensuring there’s something for everyone.

The restaurant’s interior is as impressive as its menu, with a modern design that’s both stylish and welcoming. The warm lighting and exposed brick walls create a cozy atmosphere that’s perfect for a casual dinner or a special celebration.

Grey Ghost Detroit is one of the coolest places to eat in Detroit, offering a unique take on the traditional steakhouse. If you’re a steak lover or just looking for a great meal, Grey Ghost is a destination that’s sure to impress.

Grey Ghost Detroit is one of the unique restaurants in Detroit.
Grey Ghost Detroit: Redefining steakhouse dining in bustling Midtown. Creative cocktails, meat-focused dishes, rustic yet refined ambiance.

11. Detroit Vegan Soul

For those seeking a healthier dining option without compromising on flavor, Detroit Vegan Soul is the perfect destination. This restaurant, with locations in both West Village and Rosedale Park, is Detroit’s first 100% vegan soul food restaurant.

Detroit Vegan Soul’s menu is a testament to the versatility and deliciousness of plant-based cuisine. The restaurant offers vegan versions of soul food classics, like the “Catfish” Tofu and the Smothered Tempeh. Each dish is flavorful, satisfying, and made with fresh, organic ingredients.

The restaurant’s atmosphere is as warm and inviting as its food. The decor is simple and cozy, creating a relaxed dining environment that’s perfect for a casual meal with friends or family.

Detroit Vegan Soul is not just one of the most unique restaurants in Detroit; it’s a pioneer in the city’s dining scene, proving that vegan food can be just as delicious and satisfying as its meat-based counterparts. For a meal that’s healthy, flavorful, and cruelty-free, Detroit Vegan Soul is a must-visit.

Detroit Vegan Soul is a flavorful and healthy 100% vegan soul food in West Village and Rosedale Park.
Detroit Vegan Soul is a flavorful and healthy 100% vegan soul food in West Village and Rosedale Park.

12. Supino Pizzeria

No visit to Detroit would be complete without a stop at Supino Pizzeria. Situated in the historic Eastern Market district, this pizzeria is known for its thin-crust pizzas that are as delicious as they are unique.

At Supino, you can expect a menu that’s simple yet impressive. The pizzas are made with fresh, locally sourced ingredients and come in a variety of unique combinations. The Supino pizza, with its blend of roasted garlic, black olives, chili oil, and ricotta, is a crowd favorite.

The pizzeria’s interior is casual and welcoming, with a laid-back atmosphere that’s perfect for a relaxed meal. The open kitchen allows you to watch as your pizza is made and then fired in the traditional stone oven.

Supino Pizzeria is one of the best places to eat in Detroit, Michigan, offering a unique take on the classic pizza joint. Whether you’re a pizza connoisseur or just looking for a great slice, Supino is a must-try on your next visit to MI.

Supino Pizzeria is a must-visit spot in historic Eastern Market for delicious and unique thin-crust pizzas.
Supino Pizzeria is a must-visit spot in historic Eastern Market for delicious and unique thin-crust pizzas.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about the Most Unique Restaurants in Detroit, Michigan

Looking to further your knowledge of the most unique places to eat in Detroit? Here are some common questions I get asked a lot about the best restaurants in Detroit, MI.

What is the most famous food in Detroit?

Detroit is known for several iconic dishes, but the most famous is probably the Detroit-style pizza. This unique pizza is rectangular in shape, with a thick, crispy crust and cheese that goes all the way to the edges. It’s traditionally topped with pepperoni and a tangy tomato sauce.

Is Detroit a foodie city?

Absolutely! Detroit has a vibrant and diverse food scene that caters to all tastes and preferences. From its famous Detroit-style pizza to its innovative fine dining establishments, Detroit offers a culinary adventure for foodies of all kinds.

Are there vegetarian or vegan options in Detroit?

Yes, Detroit has a variety of restaurants that cater to vegetarians and vegans. One standout is Detroit Vegan Soul, which offers a plant-based take on classic soul food dishes.

Freshly prepared and colorful vegetarian dish with a variety of vegetables, grains, and plant-based proteins.
Freshly prepared and colorful vegetarian dish with a variety of vegetables, grains, and plant-based proteins.

What types of cuisine can I find in Detroit?

Detroit’s food scene is incredibly diverse. You can find everything from classic American and soul food to Italian, Vietnamese, Thai, and more. The city is also known for its unique fusion restaurants that combine different culinary traditions.

Are there any unique dining experiences in Detroit?

Definitely. Detroit is home to several unique restaurants that offer more than just great food. For example, at Chartreuse Kitchen & Cocktails, you can enjoy a meal in the Detroit Institute of Arts, and at Takoi, you can experience a Thai-inspired menu in a vibrant, modern setting.

What can you only get in Detroit?

Here are some food and drink items that are uniquely tied to Detroit:

  1. Faygo Soda: A popular soft drink that originated in Detroit, available in a wide variety of flavors.
  2. Vernors Ginger Ale: Known as the original ginger soda, Vernors has been a Detroit favorite for over 150 years.
  3. Coney Dogs: A Detroit-style Coney Dog consists of a beef hot dog with an all-meat chili, mustard, and chopped onions. Many Coney Island restaurants throughout Detroit serve their own unique versions.
  4. Better Made Potato Chips: Produced in Detroit since 1930, these potato chips are a beloved local snack.
  5. Detroit-Style Pizza: This rectangular pizza with a thick, chewy crust, topped with Wisconsin brick cheese and a signature sauce on top of the cheese, is a Detroit original.
  6. Sanders Bumpy Cake: A well-known dessert created by Sanders Chocolate & Ice Cream Shoppe in the Detroit area. It’s a type of buttercream cake with distinctive bumps on the top.
  7. Square Knish: A delicacy found in Detroit’s Jewish bakeries, different from the typical knish found elsewhere.
  8. Al-Mar Orchards’ JK’s Scrumpy Organic Farm Cider: This particular cider is an example of a product from the Detroit area.
  9. McClure’s Pickles: A brand that started in Detroit, making hand-packed, all-natural pickles.

These culinary items represent the distinct flavor and culture of Detroit and are a testament to the city’s rich and diverse food scene. Many of these products are available only in Detroit or are best experienced there.

Wrapping up Detroit’s Unique Restaurants

Detroit’s culinary scene is as diverse and dynamic as the city itself. From the hearty soul food at Detroit Vegan Soul to the innovative dishes at Takoi, each restaurant on our list offers a unique dining experience that reflects the spirit of the Motor City.

Whether you’re a local looking to explore new flavors or a visitor seeking the best the city has to offer, these unique restaurants in Detroit are sure to satisfy your culinary cravings. Next time you’re in Detroit, why not embark on a culinary adventure? Explore the city’s neighborhoods, taste its diverse cuisines, and discover the stories that each unique restaurant has to tell. After all, food is not just about nourishment; it’s about community, culture, and the joy of discovery. And in Detroit, there’s always something new and delicious waiting to be discovered.

The top restaurants in Detroit for all types of travelers
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