Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Great Lakes >
Aug 4, 2010 07:10 AM

Ann Arbor -- looking for ethnic food

Going to be working in Ann Arbor the next two weekends and staying Brighton. Looking for ethic food, not too pricey. Well price isn't the issue its just I'll be working long hours and won't have the energy to sit through an hour dinner.

I would like to find Vietnamese, Thai and maybe another Korean. Last time in town I went to Seoul Garden for a late lunch. Food was pretty good but service was slow.

I'd like to find an Italian restaurant as well. I went to Palio downtown but would like find something else.

So what's your favorite ethnic restaurant? Obviously I like Asian but I will try pretty much anywhere....Indian, African, Italian, Irish....

Seoul Garden
3125 Boardwalk St, Ann Arbor, MI 48108

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Italian: Paesano's may not be super fast, but the pastas and salads are tops and quite authentic. Avoid fish dishes. Convenient to U.S. 23.

    Thai: Marnee Thai downtown and Lotus Thai off Ann Arbor-Saline Rd. S of I-94 are run by the same people and are both decent, with beer and wine. Try duck in coffee-tamarind sauce if available. Also decent: Siam Square, in the hotel at Washtenaw and U.S. 23, with some unusual northern Thai dishes.

    Korean: Try Be Won in Plymouth Green center, just west of 23; also Arirang on Ann Arbor-Saline Rd. Neither has alcohol. I think the only one with alcohol is Seoul Garden. The Korean diners near the U-M campus are all good. Try University Cafe on Church.

    Indian: Fun street-food place called Neehee's on Ford Rd. in Canton, 20 min. away. No booze. In Ann Arbor-Ypsilanti there are some pretty good places; no standouts. Try Temptations on Washtenaw in Ypsilanti.

    Vietnamese and Irish: You'll do better in the Detroit area. Vietnamese population center is in the suburb of Madison Heights; several good places there. One-hour drive.

    Authentic but expensive Japanese food: Yamato in the Kerrytown shopping center, downtown Ann Arbor. Competent, fun place with dinners, faster service, a bit cheaper: Saica on Plymouth Rd.

    Best ethnic food in SE Michigan: Middle Eastern. Generally no alcohol. Most places very informal. Try Sheesh on N. Main in downtown Ann Arbor.

    Seoul Garden
    3125 Boardwalk St, Ann Arbor, MI 48108

    Siam Square
    3750 Washtenaw Ave, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

    Lotus Thai Restaurant
    2803 Oak Valley Dr, Ann Arbor, MI 48103

    Arirang Restaurant
    3135 Oak Valley Dr, Ann Arbor, MI 48103

    Marnee Thai Restaurant
    414 S Main St, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

    Saica Restaurant
    1733 Plymouth Rd, Ann Arbor, MI 48105

    1. Not too pricy Thai - No Thai it's quick too....also for Indian, I like Mahzek. No booze at either but if you are working long hours, maybe you will be too tired for drinks.

      No Thai
      222 N 4th Ave, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

      5 Replies
      1. re: momskitchen

        Was debating whether to recommend Mahek (note spelling) because I haven't been there lately. But I too have had good meals there.

        1. re: Jim M

          Thanks for the spelling tip! I knew it didn't look right when I typed it. (I gave it a Polish speling LOL) I have only been to Mahek for the lunch buffet, but I really liked it. Generally, when we go out to dinner we like to have a cocktail, and they don't have that, so I haven't been there in a while.

          1. re: momskitchen

            I really like Shalimar on Main St (and have tried Mahek and Raja Rani as well). The vindaloo has both heat and flavor. Prices are very reasonable and they serve beer.

            1. re: ooroger

              Wanted to provide an update to my last post. Had a takeout lunch from India Cafe (a small nook located at the back of the Foods of India shop at Broadway/Plymouth).

              Chose the chicken vindaloo with garlic naan and a portion of vegetable samosa ($15). It was hands-down the best vindaloo I've had in years. Creamy, well-spiced, and not too full of vinegar.

              All of the food was prepared right in front of me and was done in about 10 mins. This is my new favorite take-out

              Foods of India
              1143 Broadway St, Ann Arbor, MI 48105

              1. re: ooroger

                I love that place, especially in warmer weather when you can take the food outside and eat by the little stream.

      2. Ann Arbor needs a Taco Truck....

        That is all.

        1 Reply
        1. re: JanPrimus

          Yesterday I saw "Darcy's Cart" at the AA Farmers Market. They sell kim chi quesadillas & tacos, among other things. I didn't try it, but am intrigued and looked up its FaceBook page.

        2. There are more Korean restaurants in Ann Arbor than any other ethnicity. Pacific Rim started as Korean but is now, wait for it, Pacific Rim.

          There is good Mexican at La Fiesta Mexicana in Ypsilanti and Taqueria La Fiesta, which are owned by the same family.

          Taqueria La Fiesta
          4060 Packard St, Ann Arbor, MI 48108

          1 Reply
          1. re: crw77

            I know this is a reply to an old posting, but I am in the Ypsilanti / Ann Arbor area on business, and tried La Fiesta Mexicana in Ypsilanti for dinner. Great skirt steak, the beans and rice were excellent and delicious nachos. Friendly service, small sized mom and pop place, but big in heart. Clean. Authentic. Near Eastern Michigan U.

            La Fiesta Mexicana Restaurant
            1801 Ward Ave, Hudson, WI 54016

          2. For Indian I really love Shalimar. Very good and nice service. In the Kerrytown Market there is a cool Korean restaurant. There is a small area to sit and eat or you can get it for take out.

            Shalimar Restaurant
            1043 Broad Ripple Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46220

            3 Replies
            1. re: Elyssa

              Eh, I wouldn't call Kosmo's a Korean restaurant. It's more of a diner that does a few Korean inspired items. I love their tempura and egg rolls though.

              407 N 5th Ave, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

              1. re: moose734

                True, but I love it too! The bulgogi hoagie is so comforting and tasty. Also, my favorite Indian place is Madras Masala on Maynard. Not as fancy pants as Shalimar, but really good, particularly all the vegetarian stuff, and the dosas are cool and unique.

                Madras Masala
                328 Maynard St, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

                1. re: karsch

                  Totally agree Karsch Madras Masala is indeed my favorite Indian restaurant in Ann Arbor.

                  Madras Masala
                  328 Maynard St, Ann Arbor, MI 48104