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Ann Arbor area pubs?

  • s

I'm looking for a cute, cozy pub to have a delicious and reasonably priced meal on a chilly autumn evening. Any suggestions? I'm looking for something off the beaten path. There must be some gems in the small towns around Ann Arbor but I haven't found any yet.

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  1. I have always been rather partial to the Arbor Brewing Company (114 E. Washington). There is also the Grizzly Peak Brewing Company (120 W. Washington), but I have only been there once, for lunch.
    For a more traditional pub (that would probably more closely fit your idea of cute/cozy) there is Conor O'Niell's (318 S. Main)

    Though none of these is really off the beaten path.

    1. The Brecon Grille in Saline might fit your idea of a pub, and Saline might be considered by some to be "off the beaten path". The food is decent enough. I think that on Friday evenings they have an all-you-can-eat fish and chips special. They have a nice bar with a good beer selection and some wine, and the owner is friendly.

      1. Arbor Brewing and Grizzly Peak are both brewpubs. I am not a fan of either one, neither beer nor food.

        Conor O'Neil's is an Irish bar, with better than average pub fare. But it becomes a bit of a meat market in the evenings.

        1. Casey's Tavern near the Ann Arbor train station. The burgers come highly recommended.

          3 Replies
          1. re: bellmont

            Sandwiches too ... Casey's is a gem. From the very northern end of State St., take a left.

            In Chelsea, Seitz's Tavern is ridiculously cheap and has loads of character. The only adjective from your list I might not use is "delicious," but it's still worth a visit.

            1. re: Jim M

              LOVE Casey's... food isn't really anything to write home about, but their onion rings are great. Casey's is one of the few things I miss about Ann Arbor.

              I'll also agree with ABCs and suggest the Sidetrack in Ypsilanti, though I've seen some recent hemming and hawing on here about that one.

              I know there are some others in Dexter, Chelsea, etc., but I've never been... hopefully someone else will chip in.


              1. re: gromit

                If I'm not mistaken, Casey's has gone smoke free too(?). In the past I was not fond of all the smoke in there, but I haven't been in quite a while.

          2. Conor O'Niell's is one of our favorites to hit in the area. We live about 30 minutes away and we run there 5 or 6 times a year.

            1. I hate Conor O'Niells. Typical over cooked cabbage and corned beef, the music is too loud and the service is terrible.That said, the beer is good.

              If you want a really nice place try The Common Grill in Chelsea. It's about 20 minutes west, but well worth the ride. It's an Emeril's style place, great, unique dishes and the atmosphere is really nice, located in a quaint town, home of Jiffy Mix!

              1. You're right about Conor O'Neill's concerning food. I don't know anyone who's had a decent meal there. But I must disagree about the Common Grill. True, Chelsea is "off the beaten path", but the Common Grill is hardly a "cute, cozy pub". Anyway, I haven't had a good meal there in four tries. Yes, some things were good (soup, bread, salad), but main dishes did not meet expectation, especially after reading their description in the menu. Perhaps I ordered the wrong things. That said, some of the people I was dining with were oohing and ahhing. I think that Seitz's mentioned by Jim M would suit Steph better.

                1. Hello everybody:
                  Thanks for all of your suggestions. We went to the Brecon Grille because we live in Dexter and wanted something outside of Ann Arbor. It was OK - we both had burgers and beer. Wasn't exactly cozy...but it fit the bill for the evening. We live in Dexter and have been to Dexter Pub - I think the Patty Melt at Dexter Pub is great, if ordered medium rare. Overall I prefer Dexter Pub to Brecon Grille but it still isn't cozy. I have been to the Common Grille - again, good food, not cozy.
                  What I'm looking for in the AA area I've found in Mineral Point, WI (http://www.brewerycreek.com/brewpub.php) and in Fort Atkinson, WI (Cafe Carpe).
                  I'm looking forward to trying Casey's, Seitz's, and Sidetrack...

                  1. Hmmm, looks like I'll have to get up to Dexter and try the Dexter Pub. I love patty melts. You're right, of course. The Brecon Grille isn't cozy, per se. Somehow, the word "cozy" is conjuring up a fireplace and somewhat isolated booths. Maybe Milan has something. I'll have to find out. Please report on Casey's, Seitz's, and The Sidetrack.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Summerfield

                      Just to make it clear about Seitz's, we are not talking about gourmet food here. The time to go there is when you're in the mood for a liverwurst sandwich. And want to pay about a dollar for it, and wash it down with a beer.

                    2. Did you ever try the Old Town in Ann Arbor? I don't know why I didn't think of it before. Been around a long time.

                      Del Rio's is gone, but Old Town always was good. In the Bohemian part of AA, which imo, is definitely on the wane.

                      That might be along the lines of what you're looking for.

                      1. I second the suggestion about Old Town. It is the coziest bar I can think of in Ann Arbor, in part because it's considered a townie place, so the atmosphere tends to be very mellow, low-key and conversational. (They keep the music at a very reasonable volume)

                        The other reason I mention it is that the food is quite good too. Awesome burgers, soups, and tex-mex.

                        Casey's would be good too as far as coziness, but it has become overrun by hordes of yuppies and screaming children. It stopped feeling bar-like quite some time ago. Their food is still excellent, however, if you are willing to wait for a long time to be seated.

                        1. I agree about Casey's. I go early in the week and usually call ahead to see if there's a wait. Very good food and I've always had pleasant service.