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If you are looking for an authentic German dining and drinking experience in Detroit, look no further than Jacoby's German Biergarten. Established in 1904 in downtown Detroit, it happens to be one of the oldest bars in the city, and serves up great German food like sausage soup and Jager Schnitzel. There is also an amazing selection of nearly one hundred different varieties of beer from around the world, with new selections being added often. The wood-dominated interiors, exposed-brick walls and subtle lighting choices create a cozy atmosphere in the bar. The space is available for private events as well.
Level Two Bar and Rooftop is located in Greektown neighborhood of Detroit and attracts the more youthful crowd. The place is done up just right for relaxing and having a good time. If you are a sports lover, you can catch your favourite games on the large screens here.
The Leland City Club is an industrial and goth themed bar that is locally famous. International DJs spin dark tunes for the dancers to enjoy. After hours, the space turns into a full bar. Crowd-watching is part of the fun here, as most patrons dress up for their night out.
Hockeytown Cafe is garish and gaudy, with the one of the brightest video screen and ticker scroll outside, along with a gigantic hockey puck and images of Wings legends. The inside is massive, memorabilia-choked and always crowded. The beer is cooled by a seven-inch-wide "ring of ice" and the food is more varied than the usual sports bar fare.
Located in downtown Detroit, the TV Club is the perfect place to enjoy a night of dancing and drinks with friends. Great local DJs are spinning nightly, and the bartenders are all very friendly and knowledgeable. There is a roomy outdoor patio for use during the warm summer months. This is a neighborhood hangout that is the perfect place to get a little local flavor.
Located in the trendy Corktown neighborhood, Our/Detroit is a unique micro distillery. Once a former billards hall and then a liquor store, this old, dilapidated building has been resurrected, much like the city it resides in, to become a welcoming and inviting space for intimate gatherings. Producing some of the finest vodka, Our/Detroit is made with locally sourced ingredients, then elevated and transformed in the tasting room with their signature cocktails.
The headquarters of Belgian culture in Detroit, the Cadieux Café has one of the first feather bowling alleys in the United States. The bowling alleys are concave and players roll huge wooden wheels and try to land closest to a feather. Tucked away in a residential neighborhood on the East Side, the Cadieux Café is also famous for its fabulous mussels, which are served in more than six different ways. The rest of the menu is typical pub grub and Belgian dishes, and the Old World decor and cheery atmosphere provide a good taste of Belgian bonhomie. It is recommended to book bowling lanes in advance, but it's almost as much fun to watch the old-timers bowl as to play yourself.
Gigi's is a popular gay bar in Warrendale (just outside of Dearborn). The space features a bar, pool tables, elevated seating and a stage used for drag shows and dancing. Different days host different events, such as karaoke, but Saturday is the day to go to catch the famed drag show. There's usually a cover charge and an additional cost to park in the adjacent parking lot. Please note that Gigi's is cash-only.
The adage "Don't judge a book by its cover" can be applied to Baker's Keyboard Lounge, which looks like a hole in the wall establishment but is one of the oldest jazz clubs in the United States. So if you're a jazz fan, this is the club to visit when you want to watch jazz locals mix it up. Another fun feature here is the piano key painted bar, where locals spend many a night listening to their favorite tunes. If you are longing for a bite to eat while you enjoy the music, Baker's has a wide menu with some no-nonsense favorites sure to please.
Dragonmead Microbrewery creates world class beer that fits any taste. They have a wide variety of beers, including American Ales, German Style Lagers, Belgian Style Ales and more. The Willy's Oompa-Loompa Stout is especially good. Their pub has a casual atmosphere with medieval decor. Although this microbrewery is obviously known for their beer, you should also try their custom-made sodas in flavors like Dragonroot Beer and their Strawberry Cream.
If you're looking for a truly whimsical dining experience, head to the Mad Hatter. This bistro, bar and tea room features an Alice in Wonderland theme that can be seen everywhere, from the crazy clocks to the doorknobs, Alice illustrations and other special touches that make a trip to Mad Hatter truly wonderful. Visitors can opt for a full bistro meal of internationally-inspired dishes, or for afternoon tea (by reservation only,) complete with tea sandwiches and scones. Alice lovers will delight in a trip to the Mad Hatter.