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Under the big tent

Mark Zarkin’s latest restaurant endeavor – he owns Steven Lelli’s Inn on the Green in Farmington Hills – is going to have some unconventional hours. Open from 6 a.m. until 4 a.m. the circus-themed restaurant, Grand Circus Diner, at 1570 Woodward Avenue, Detroit, will be ideal for those looking for a late-night option. Open since mid-April, the menu includes steaks, burgers, spaghetti, soups, salads, vegan options, and homemade desserts. Then there’s the bar, with five liter mules, fish bowls, craft cocktails (described as circus meets tiki), and a few frozen selections. There’s also a kiosk with coffee and doughnuts made-to-order. As for the name, that was inspired by their location in Grand Circus Park. “We want to make this a really fun atmosphere and a great dining experience,” Zarkin said. “Everyone’s welcome.” The family-friendly restaurant is full of circus elements, like glass balloon chandeliers, glitter embedded in the floor, and the waiters’ attire.

­Metro Intelligencer is a monthly column devoted to news stories, tidbits and gossip items about what's happening on the restaurant scene in the metro Detroit area. Metro Intelligencer is reported/created each month by Dana Casadei who can be reached at with news items or tips, on or off the record.

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