Motor City Seafood Contributes to Detroit's Culinary Renaissance

Motor City Seafood Contributes to Detroit's Culinary Renaissance

Detroit has been through a lot, but it is gracefully coming back as a world-class city.

One way to confirm this is through the city’s growing culinary offerings. For example, high-quality seafood.

Although, chefs “get most of the glory when it comes to dining… a chef is only as good as their vendors,” as pointed out by “Detroit Metro Times” reporter Tom Perkins.

Perkins was referring to Matthew Wiseman, in particular, co-owner of Motor City Seafood.

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James Rigato: Keeping It Real in Detroit

James Rigato: Keeping It Real in Detroit

By Dorothy Hernandez, Foodable Contributor

Millennial chef James Rigato dishes on his new restaurant Mabel Gray, the most important lessons learned while being a “Top Chef” contestant, and why he’s sick of a white-collar food industry.

Before he appeared on the 12th season of “Top Chef,” James Rigato had already built a reputation in Michigan as one of the area’s top chefs with his award-winning restaurant, The Root, in suburban Oakland County in Michigan. 

Even though the 31-year-old chef was unceremoniously booted for a “meh” seafood salad that critics panned, he brought a lot of attention to his beloved Great Lakes State, to which he pays homage to in his dishes, as well as made new chef friends with whom to collaborate, one of his favorite culinary endeavors.

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How Chefs in Detroit Are Addressing Winter Sourcing Challenges

How Chefs in Detroit Are Addressing Winter Sourcing Challenges

By Dorothy Hernandez, Foodable Contributor

A strawberry grown out of state in December versus a strawberry grown locally in June. It’s no question which fruit is superior in terms of taste. So what do you do during the winter when you’re a Michigan chef who focuses on seasonal cooking and local sourcing?

“Everyone asks me that question,” says Chef James Rigato, known for his contemporary American cooking with a Michigan focus at The Root in White Lake, Mich., and now his ever evolving menus at the recently opened Mabel Gray in suburban Detroit. “What you’re really talking about [is] field growing, that’s what you lose [in the winter] — the wild foraging, you lose field growing, but there’s still a lot of food production going on.”

In recent years, more artisanal food producers have cropped up, and these products have excited chefs like Colin Brown, the executive chef at the Royal Park Hotel in Rochester, Mich. The hotel recently opened Park 600 Bar and Kitchen, which features locally sourced products and craft cocktails; it replaced the upscale hotel’s fine dining restaurant.

“I’ve seen a big change in the last 10, 12 years with new products coming on,” says Brown. “Artisan producers are really coming to the forefront with great products in Michigan.” 

Some of these products and producers include maple syrup, local bakers, and cheese makers.

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