*Enough* with the Restaurant Weeks already!
Bit of a rant here I guess. I truly do like Detroit Restaurant Week, and the fact that it's twice a year seems about right...not too often, not too spartan.
Really, though...the "Me, too!"-ishness of the other local municipalities doing their *own* (usually far, far crappier) versions of Restaurant Week just seems ridiculous, in poor taste, and ultimately waters down or even destroys the concept that DRW really aims for. Plus, some of the local communities really don't/can't even justify their own RWs, as participation is usually lax, the participating restaurants aren't really culinary draws, and there doesn't seem to be any real uniformity to making all of the places offer X number of courses for Y price.
I'm not saying that DRW is absolutely perfect, but for the most part, they're at least two cuts above the other local RWs in terms of consistency, draw, value, and quality. All I need to do is look at the participating venues in places like St. Clair Shores or Royal Oak to dismiss them...having a look at their RW menus/prices is often a laugh.
It's not just them, though...Troy, Birmingham, and what seem like myriad others. Most of them (there are rare exceptions, I suppose) seem like half-baked attempts to try and duplicate the warranted success that DRW has grown from the ground up. I, for one, would now like the hangers-on to unleech themselves, so to speak, or at the very least, get a lot, *lot* better, or just plain stop the stupidity of having their own RWs.
Am I off base here? It seems as though this should have been said earlier.
Agree 100%. IMO, the "Me, too!" RWs tend to feature such everyday, plebian restaurants, where one actually pays *more* for a RW special menu or 3-course than one can manage to pay on just a regular day. That, to me, defeats the entire purpose of a RW, which is to make high-end restaurants accessible to the masses for just one week.
I know DRW tends to emphasize the restaurants in Detroit proper. But perhaps if they expanded their footprint to include high-end restaurants in the 'burbs (that of the Due Venti, Forest Grill ilk), there would be no need for the 'burbs to make their own RWs featuring their lone high-end restaurant and a half-dozen plebes.
Just asked my wife if she wanted to go out to dinner at any of the participating restaurants during Nautical Mile Restaurant Week, which starts today. Her reply was a shrug. We do frequent almost all the restaurants participating, so this special event is not really special to us.
And one thing that irks me is that the promotion tells us, the three course meals "start at about $20", dependant on the venue..
I've got to disagree. I see no reason why another municipality's restaurant week "waters down" DRW. No one ever goes to Royal Oak thinking "ooo I'm in Detroit." Detroit and DRW are stand-alones in their respective categories (big city/high-end food versus suburbs/mom-and-pop storefronts).
Why knock other localities trying to get people out to places they've never tried, thereby increasing their revenue and hopefully gaining repeat customers? I just have a problem with bad restaurants, I don't have a problem with small-scale concepts of good promotional ideas.
For what it's worth, Ann Arbor's restaurant week is pretty successful and even if some of the lower-end places have more plebeian offerings, at least you usually get an ok deal.