Unique ethnic mix


One of Detroit’s most hotly anticipated restaurants, Cork & Gabel, finally opened its doors in mid-December after originally being slated for last spring. “Honestly, for an opening of a brand new restaurant, it went perfect...I don’t think it could have gone better for us,” said chef Matthew McGrail, who collaborated on the restaurant with building owner Joe Mifsud. Inside its 4,450 square feet at 2415 Michigan Avenue, guests will find a menu filled with German, Irish, and Italian food. They’ve only been open a few weeks, but there are already some popular menu items, including the Guinness Stew (which McGrail said they are still tweaking), Schnitzel BLT, Lamb Bolognese, and a half-pound beef burger that’s covered in two house-made cheeses and Guinness caramelized onions. Speaking of the beloved Irish stout, the bar at Cork & Gabel is stocked with wine, beer, bourbon, Scotch, and as many Irish whiskeys as they could get. The wine list will look different than other places, though. “The wine list is something I wanted to try and it seems to be working,” he said. They offer 12 types by the glass and bottle, but only have one of each varietal. McGrail said for right now they are only serving dinner, with plans to roll out brunch this winter, and lunch coming in the spring. Their menu will also be changing throughout the year with plans for a chicken dish and vegan option coming soon.

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Birmingham, Michigan

Metro Intelligencer is a periodic column about the vibrant and changing restaurant/dining scene in the metro Detroit area, reported/written by Dana Casadei.