Clarkston Cafe (Clarkston, MI)
The Clarkston Cafe, recently acquired by the people who run the Clarkston Union Grill a few blocks away, was closed for several months while a complete remodeling took place. They finally reopened and it looks lovely. However, I couldn't tell you about the food, because they neglected to train their host staff. Three well-meaning teenagers were running the host station last Friday night and between the three of them, none of them had a clue what was going on. It took them nearly five minutes to determine that they were completely booked for the evening. I'll give it a shot again in a few months, after these young ladies either get trained or get fired.
I was there 3 weeks ago on a Thursday evening for dinner and live music. I have never had better service or food in my life (and, yes, I've been to all those *other* restaurants everyone lauds). It was pricey for a whimsical weeknight dinner, but so worth it.
I don't know if those "young ladies" were trained or fired, but the part of the restaurant with the entrance is now a more casual bar, so maybe they fit right in there by your standards.
Give it another chance. So many wonderful things about this gem.
I recently dined at the newly aquired and remodeled Clarkston Cafe. My experience was the best I have had in over ten years of dining out. I believe everything from the staff to the decor was extraordinary.
The hostess greeted my party with a professional and friendly manner and explained the difference between the two very different menus to us. We decided to eat in the Supper Room for some American French Cuisine. Our hostess took us to our table and explained that we would be well taken care of by our server momentarily.
I will not go into our service experience in great depth, but may I say that it was EVERYTHING but very, very spotty. Our waiter was very professional and had a caring demeanor. The hostess did not misinform us, we were more than well taken care of.
The food we ordered was to die for. I took the suggestion of our waiter and ordered the tenderloin. This was the best filet I have ever had. Other dishes on our table were mussels, salmon, and an ahi tuna dish. Everybody was very happy with their choices as much as I was with mine. We also started with escargo and crab rangoon's which were marvelous. I only have one negative thing to say and that is our food took an extremely long time. Our waiter informed us several times that our meal would be coming up shortly and did not ignore us like they do in some places. I was very pleased that he kept us up to date on the situation in the kitchen. Good things are worth waiting for, and we were in no hurry to leave, so it did not effect our great time. This place is the kind of restaurant where you don't want to be rushed in and out like cattle anyway.
I believe the Supper Room has been open for two months now and I suggest everyone get there as soon as possible. You will only be hurting yourself if you don't go. I am very pleased to have a special place like this right in Clarkston, but I would easily drive to France to get an experience this magnificant.
All in all I feel as though The New Clarkston Cafe is able to compete with any of the fine dining establishments claiming to be the best restaurant in Detroit. The fact that is only two months old makes it even more impressive.
We were all so effette by the time we finished drinking great wine and eating our meals that we didn't even have room for any of the wonderful desserts explained to us by our waiter. He told us about some chocolate box that had my sweet tooth instant message my brain. I was full this time, but I will be visiting and revisiting The Clarkston Cafe on a regular basis.
Kudos to everyone who makes this place great!
I can tell you that the food is better than anything in Clarkston right now.
The service is typical for Kurt's places - very very spotty.
The Onion Soup is the most concentrated, reduced I have ever seen - no idea if this is correct or not, but the flavor was immense. Duck 2 ways was also fine.
I will be going through the entire menu over the next few months.
Make a resevation and give this place a try, but don't expect great service - actually reminded me of eating in France/Germany - the service that is.