Almost everyone hates having to do jury duty. It’s never convenient, as jobs, family life and other major plans must be put on hold, but it’s also a sacred civic duty that all citizens must perform when called upon – otherwise our judicial system would crumble. On the other hand, some people revel in being called for jury duty as a responsibility and temporary escape into the world of the legal system’s inner workings. Either way, one thing everyone can agree on is that a good lunch can make any day better; whether it’s when stuck in a deliberation room or just waiting to see if you’ll be selected for service. Here are some of Detroit’s best restaurants located near downtown and the 36th District Court – one of the country’s busiest and most-impressive court systems.
4130 Cass Ave.
Detroit, MI 48201
Tapas is all the rage in the food world, and even if it wasn’t, this restaurant would still be near the top of this list. The bite-sized portions here offer diners the opportunity to order a plethora of different dishes: hot and cold, salty or sweet, and everything in between. La Feria is located in the heart of the hip Cass Corridor and at peak times, can get quite busy, but it’s well worth the wait (which usually isn’t too long). If you need to grab a quick few bites at lunch, the turnaround here can be your best friend. The 2012 winner of the Hatch Detroit Contest is no slouch. Top props for the tostada baguettes with goat cheese! Be sure to come back and try the homemade sangria when you’re not due back for jury duty right after your meal.
Wright & Company
1500 Woodward Ave., 2nd Floor
Detroit, MI 48216
Wright & Company is certainly trying to pull off a specific look and aesthetic from the moment you first enter; one of an era of “Mad Men” and business men in ’60s-style suits and dapper haircuts. The good news? They pull it off quite well. If you’re going to be dressed up for a day of jury duty, you might as well eat in comfort and luxury, both of which this great new upscale restaurant has in droves. The food is extravagant, but well-suited (pun intended) to the decor. Have a long break planned? A late lunch after being let go early? This is the best spot to eat on both counts.
Not everyone relishes in fine broiled roasts and sautéed meats; sometimes, it’s the lighter and more healthy fare that diners are looking for, without skimping on any of the taste. Detroit Vegan Soul is located near the court system and caters to a growing clientele of young professionals who are a bit more conscious of the food they are eating these days. Also a past winner of the Hatch Detroit contest, Detroit Vegan Soul beat out a very large number of other restaurants with its consistent and well-grounded dining game plan: the best food and affordable prices aiming toward a burgeoning base of consumers. Just two short years later, this eatery is off and to the races, garnering top praise from food critics.
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Rose’s Fine Food
10551 E. Jefferson Ave.
Detroit, MI 48214
Only open for just a few months so far, since July of 2014, Rose’s Fine Food is quickly becoming a downtown favorite thanks to its great prices and small, “homey” charm. If you have to leave the house and report to jury duty for an extended period of time, Rose’s can offer a little piece of home while you’re away in the city. Always open for breakfast and lunch, this new restaurant is sure to be a Detroit staple for some time to come. It’s just a quick trip down Jefferson Avenue along the scenic Detroit Riverwalk.
Lafayette and American Coney Island
118 W. Lafayette Blvd.
Detroit, MI 48226
Far be it for us to pick a side in this age-old debate on who stands supreme in Detroit concerning the world famous coney dog, but if you’ve only got time for a quick snack while stepping away from the court, either Lafayette or American Coney Island simply cannot be beat for affordability and the best localized treat anywhere in the country. Americans all over know what a Coney Island is (whether or not they’ve ever been in one) and the Coney Dog is Detroit’s answer to that city-centric food. When you think Detroit, you think Coneys, and there’s no better place than these two originals who got the whole thing started!
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Michael Ferro is freelance writer and a graduate of Michigan State University where he majored in Creative Writing and received the Jim Cash Creative Writing Award. Born and bred in Detroit, he currently resides in Ypsilanti Township. Additional writing can be found at Examiner.com.