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Looking for an elegant jazzy supperclub in the lower Michigan area

maggiwun Nov 12, 2010 05:39 AM

Does this exist anymore? I'm thinking dressy, elegant surroundings, sultry jazz singer, drinks, perhaps food, but not necessary. Hubby saw it in a movie ("An Education" set in England) and said, "I want to go to a place like that". Ha! How can I not try to fulfil his wishes? We live in the Detroit metro area, but aren't afraid to drive a distance.

  1. r
    RedTop Nov 13, 2010 01:05 PM

    No one has mentioned Dirty Dog Jazz Cafe in GP, so I will. Be aware, they are all over the map on recs from restaurantsdb.com, Yelp and urbanspoon. These roller coaster reviews have made me hesitant to visit.

    Dirty Dog Jazz Cafe
    97 Kercheval Ave, Grosse Pointe Farms, MI 48236

    3 Replies
    1. re: RedTop
      vdoucette Nov 14, 2010 05:43 AM

      I've never been to the Dirty Dog, which is why it slipped my mind.

      Owner Gretchen Carhartt Valade is an heiress to the Carhartt clothing company fortune. She's a lifelong jazz lover who runs three or four record labels. She donated about $10 million th the endowment of the Detroit International Jazz Festival a few years ago when it was just about bankrupt. I am sure that the music will be first-rate. (As with Cliff Bell's, I have friends who play there and love the place.)

      When my employment situation improves, I'll check it out.


      1. re: vdoucette
        coney with everything Nov 15, 2010 05:21 AM

        Definitely would like to see any enterprise belonging to Gretchen Valade supported.

        Doesn't the Earle in A2 do this sort of thing? haven't been in a million years, so can't speak to food or music..

        1. re: coney with everything
          archfan Nov 16, 2010 08:19 AM

          From the Earle's website:

          Our dining room features live jazz five nights a week. On Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday a solo piano or solo guitar begins at 7 p.m. On Friday and Saturday our Jazz Trio plays, beginning at 8 p.m.

    2. b
      boagman Nov 12, 2010 02:14 PM

      Another rec for Cliff Bells. I really liked my time there, and I was just there for the food! The setting is really nice, too, and would be helped even more by the fact that there isn't smoking allowed there anymore. Even better.

      2 Replies
      1. re: boagman
        JanPrimus Nov 12, 2010 04:45 PM

        While I love Cliff Bells.......I think you still should hit up Bakers Keyboard Lounge REAL QUICK.

        Bakers is the longest running Jazz Bar in the WORLD. That place has serious history. The menu used to be about some seriously good soul food. Great Fried Perch, Awesome Greens and killer Sweet Potatoes. I have no idea who is running the kitchen now....but this is a place that deserves its respect and should not die. I have had many great nights here. If anyone wants to get together and help them out, by getting some drinks and enjoying some music, I will GLADLY meet you.

        If there is one Jazz venue in Detroit that should stay open it is this place.


        1. re: JanPrimus
          vtombrown Nov 12, 2010 05:21 PM

          Very classic Detroit-ish (bankruptcy and all). I'll certainly grant you that!! I have cherished personal memories from Baker's, but I'm glad it's your endorsement rather than mine, because I've taken people there, on a couple occaisions, who didn't get much into the cramped, big-hatted vibe or the spotty featured menu items. For me, it would be sad to imagine a world without places like this. But, I'm not currently in a situation where I can supportively patronize them, so I'll leave it to others.

      2. m
        Markcron Nov 12, 2010 08:39 AM

        I have heard good things about Bakers Keyboard Lounge, but have yet to experience it myself.
        Baker's Keyboard Lounge
        20510 Livernois Avenue
        Detroit, MI
        ph# 313-345-6300.

        Baker's Keyboard Lounge
        20510 Livernois Ave, Detroit, MI 48221

        2 Replies
        1. re: Markcron
          vdoucette Nov 12, 2010 11:59 AM

          I've not been to Baker's in a while, but the place has recently gone into bankruptcy. AFAIK it is still operating. Call first to check and see if they are open and who is playing. When I was last there the food was very underwhelming. As great a place as it once was, it is now a shadow of its old self.

          OTOH, Cliff Bell's is a very cool place -- Art Deco decor lovingly restored and some really good sight lines in the room. A good friend of mine has a standing Wednesday-night gig there, and he loves it. I can't speak for the food, but I love the atmosphere.

          1. re: vdoucette
            vdoucette Jan 9, 2011 03:41 PM

            The bankruptcy sale of Baker's has been set for 1/31/11, according to a reliably jazzy friend.

        2. x
          xman887 Nov 12, 2010 08:10 AM

          check out cliff bells. might be just what you are looking for. very cool old bar that has been restored to its splendor. i have only been for drinks but the food reviews on chow have been good.


          1 Reply
          1. re: xman887
            maggiwun Nov 12, 2010 07:30 PM

            Thank you xman! That sound like exactly the kind of place I might be looking for!

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