Caribbean Escape at River Bistro

ver wanted to get away without having to board a plane? Chef Maxcel Hardy wants to evoke the feel of a destination spot for your taste buds at River Bistro. His new Caribbean-and-soul eatery in the Grand River and Rosedale district is a good spot for business traffic – and holds some fond memories.

"My grandmother and grandfather would always come over here on the weekends to shop," he says. "Grand River is one of those main streets in the city. I thought it would be cool to give back to the neighborhoods."

With River Bistro, Hardy was interested in forging a concept that would speak to a downtown crowd but in a neighborhood setting. Some popular menu items include jerk ribs, maple-cured salmon, shrimp and curry and shrimp fritters. As Hardy explains, the Caribbean evokes words like "light," "refreshing" and, of course, "vacations." The joy for him as a chef is pulling its flavors – along with "low country" and African cuisine – together into a real melting pot.

This quaint environment, which has a "real island nautical feel," aims to provide a new-yet-familiar dining experience. "It kind of gives you a real Midtown, New York, San Diego, San Francisco vibe right in our backyard."

River Bistro

18456 Grand River Ave., Detroit



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