We arrived in Detroit from our road trip from Kalamazoo and checked into our hotel. We actually weren’t staying in Detroit but rather Utica, Michigan. As someone who has done her share of road trips around the west coast all the way to Wyoming and then along the East Coast, I wasn’t quite prepared for the way the roads were in the general Detroit area. The main roads are a few lanes wide and you’re constantly cutting to the side to wait for traffic to die down so you can make a giant u-turn. It’s kind of terrifying because people are driving quickly in that area. And you kind of have to commit. Sometimes the u-turns are two lanes going at the same time which is equally terrifying.
We settled into our hotel and the decided we needed to go find somewhere to eat. We had been really excited about this portion of the trip because it was the only part of our trip where we were staying more than one night. So we took a look at some Thrillist lists to see what was available and recommended in Detroit. We picked two places for the two nights we would be in Detroit. We’d go to a place called Selden Standard in Midtown for our first meal and then the next night we would check out a placed called Johnny Noodle King for the second night that we were in town.
We drove over to Selden Standard, parked and then walked into one of the most adorable hipster-trendy-modern restaurants I’ve been in for awhile. It was a very open concept where you can see into the kitchen with all gray, black and white tones everywhere with a hint of gold. We were taken out to the adorable patio and seated in the center where we could people watch. There were vines everywhere, and string lights all over making for the perfect hipster atmosphere. We ordered our dinner, I ordered a lamb bolognese with peas (which was a weird touch… not sure I appreciate peas in my bolognese), and enjoyed the atmosphere.
I have to admit that I wasn’t quite sure what to make of Detroit. This place has always been an interesting place to me because of what happened with the financial crisis and the way it impacted the city. Driving to Selden Standard, it was quite the experience because there are definitely areas that are up and coming. There are places that are renovated, new, trendy, and rebuilding itself but if you walk a block over there are buildings covered in graffiti or broken windows, abandoned parks, etc. It’s an interesting contrast wandering that city and seeing how it’s recovered or not recovered from the financial crisis.
The city itself an an aura similar to what I saw in Christchurch, New Zealand. A city trying to become a better version of itself and become reborn. A city covered in graffiti and broken buildings but so many new additions around every corner. It’s really a very fascinating city with lots to offer.
After finishing our pasta, we decided that we were still hungry so we decided that Johnny Noodle King would be the perfect way to end the evening.