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Nov 14, 2007 09:05 AM

Ideas for interesting ethinc dinner in detroit burbs

I am looking for an neat ethnic place to go to with my wife, mother in law and her husband. We are very adventureous! I've been to the Blue Nile (Ethiopian), Bi Bam Bap (Korean) in Novi, various sushi places around town, Indian, Mexian, quite a few more. Looking for place thats not necessarily fancy but rather not go to a "hole in the wall" (although I know some of these places offer great food) - something that has a fun atmosphere is preferable. Anywhere in town (from Ann Arbor, Rochester, even Windsor).


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  1. you can try the royal kubo in downtown clawson for filipino food and since you're looking for a fun atmosphere, you can show off your vocal talent with their karaoke (or make fun of other people trying theirs)

    3 Replies
    1. re: hoi polloi

      Looked up a review on Metrot Times from 1999 - looks like a cool place. Still put out good food? It seems like there is/was a Royal Kubo in Oak Park. Has it closed?

      1. re: nielubow

        yes, the oak park location closed when they lost their alcohol license so they moved to the clawson location last summer.

        1. re: nielubow

          I can second this nomination. I recently tried Royal Kubo for the first time, and enjoyed myself. I especially enjoyed the bone-in beef short rib cuts, which was nicely flavored, but the "garlic rice" that came with it was really disappointing. Other than that, it was very good...nothing ultra-goumet, but certainly pleasing.

          While Molly Abraham loves the eggroll-esque appetizer they offer (whose name escapes me at the moment), I merely liked them, and wish that the price and portion had both been smaller. Still, they were good.

          The nicest thing about the place was the friendly atmosphere and staff. I did eat at the bar, but it was extremely comfortable to do so, and John (the bartender and possibly the owner) was very easy-to-deal-with, and helpful, as well as attentive. He recommended the beef dish to me, and I was glad he did.

      2. Have you tried the Fiddler on Orchard Lake for Russian? I haven't been but friends say it's pretty good. Not too many Russian places around here! I like Zinc on Orchard Lake for the French bistro experience--it's loud but food is good.

        You didn't mention Middle Eastern--if that's because you haven't tried it, you definitely should. I'd say head to Dearborn and go anywhere except La Shish (because of their apparent support for terrorists--not that I totally believe the goverment, but still...)

        4 Replies
        1. re: coney with everything

          Never heard of Fiddler and have I never had Russian food. I'll have to keep it in mind. Is it similar to polish food?I have been to Zinc and really enjoyed it. Yes, I have been to La Shish - very good. But I have heard similar accusations about that place.

          1. re: nielubow

            the owner talal chahine fled the country months ago. then this came up 3 days ago.

            what a disaster. too bad, because i love a fatoush and a mango smoothie from la shish.

          2. re: coney with everything

            What about a Belgian-inspired evening of feather bowling and a pot of mussels at Cadieux Cafe? Bastone in Royal Oak is a more high-end Belgian experience but if you're adventurous and don't mind the cozy tavern/beer hall atmosphere go to the Cadieux.


            Or, for something completely different (Note: I've never been to this place):
            17168 Fort St., Riverview
            "Perhaps the most unusual world cuisine is here in our very own backyard—Riverview, virtually the only place you will find muskrat (a large amphibious rodent native to North America) on the menu. Of the few restaurants Downriver that serve this exotic delicacy, Kola’s is probably the best known—because Johnny Kolakowski gets the most press. Kola’s is known far and wide for their unusual menu (we like the alligator medallions and the homemade sliders), and “Kola” himself is the author of a wild game cookbook called Cooking Wild with Johnny so you can try some of his famous muskrat recipes at home. So how does the muskrat—a.k.a. water rat—taste? Let’s just say it’s an acquired taste, a gamy meat that definitely does not taste like chicken."

            Finally, La Shish is fine, still standing and still serving good food. Go there and eat well.

            1. re: coney with everything

              La Shish is *not* the best food in Dearborn. Expensive, with a "fun" atmosphere, perhaps, especially when the lady was baking bread in the middle of the place. Not all the restaurants have this atmosphere -- the one next to the men's club is awful, not surprisingly. Charlie's in Ann Arbor used to be a La Shish franchise, but not anymore, so you can check that out. And do NOT just pick anywhere in Dearborn.

              If you want something aside from the usual grilled meat, I'd suggest a lunch (not dinner) at New Yasmeen. There's tons of stuff already made and ready to go. It's hot and fresh. You can get homestyle food, such as their delicious chicken leg or eggplant with beef, served with rice, for about $4.50. Sandwiches and salads. Breads of all sorts. It is very busy. And you'll be next door to Shatila, which has a lovely seating area and good Arab sweets (it has European style too, but the Arab ones are much better), and delicious ice cream. There are other sweet stores in Dearborn as well. Masri Sweets is especially awesome.

              2370 Carpenter Rd., Ann Arbor, MI 48108.
              (734) 973-2737

              New Yasmeen Bakery
              13900 W. Warren, Dearborn, MI 48126,
              (313) 582-6035

              14300 W Warren Ave, Dearborn
              (313) 582-1952

              Masri Sweets
              6235 Schaefer Rd
              Dearborn, MI 48126
              (313) 584-3500

              Also, Hamtramck has large Polish, Albanian, and Bangladeshi communities.