Experiencing Great Restaurants and Delicious Libations

Archive for November, 2014

Gold Cash Gold (PREVIEW) – Detroit MI

“A Modern Farmhouse Kitchen”

In the Historic Corktown Neighborhood, 2100 Michigan Avenue Detroit MI

On the same block as Slows Bar Bq, Astro Coffee, and Sugar House Detroit.


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November 30, 2014

I was invited as a guest to preview the newest addition to Detroit’s fast growing restaurant scene – Gold Cash Gold.

This former pawn shop has been transformed into a self-proclaimed “modern farmhouse kitchen” under the direction of Phil Cooley (Slows and Ponyride). Chef Josh Stockton, as I researched online, brings his culinary experience from the Culinary Institute of America,…. and he brings his pigs from Tennessee (really). I also discovered that he worked at the Daniel Boulud Brasserie in the Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas (I have dined there –  and it was supurb).

The Preview went off without a hitch. The food was delicious. I recommend the Chef’s Plate Appetizer, the Fried Chicken, the Frites, and the Polenta Desert. The light levels were low and I didn’t want to use a flash for my pics to disturb the patrons, but the food looked even better “in person”.

The Dad’s Trophy cocktail was very good as well. Check out the names of the craft cocktails when you go….very clever.

The space is warm, comfortable and friendly. The ceiling is made from recycled furring strips from the demolished walls and the eagle flooring is recycled from a school gym. The iconic “GOLD CASH GOLD” signage in a new reimagined gold version was installed on the facade today just before the preview. It is a catchy and humorous nod to the pawn shop that previously occupied the building.

I will be back after it opens and update my post when I have sampled more items on the menu.

Opening day may be as early as this Saturday, December 6th.

Click here for all of my Detroit Restaurant posts.

Core Kitchen & Wine Bar – Dove Mountain AZ

Located in the Ritz-Carlton Dove Mountain Resort


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Visited November 15 2014

I had a breakfast and a dinner experience at the Core Kitchen & Wine Bar, the Ritz-Carlton Dove Mountain’s fine dining restaurant.

As I found consistent throughout the Ritz-Carlton property, the staff at Core was exceptional in every way. Greeting me by name, offering reading material, offering what ever area in the dining room I desired, the presentation of each course was perfectly timed and they anticipated my every need.

The food was exceptional. From a simple breakfast of coffee and Huevos Rancheros to a hearty New Zealand Venison dinner, every element was consistently good. For dinner I started with a Farmer’s Blend Mushroom Veloute Soup with a house made truffle mascarpone ravioli. It was poured at the table over the ravioli and fresh mushrooms. My entree was a chef’s special, New Zealand Venison with elderberry and micro-root vegetables. Dessert was creme brûlée with french macaroons. It was probably the best meal I have had in a couple years.

The dining room has several types of dining experiences, both inside and outside. There is counter seating around the open kitchen, a large private dining room, a high ceilinged room with a two sided fireplace, several lower ceiling areas for more intimate dining. Outside there are covered terraces with water features and fire places, as well as open terraces with the spectacular Dove Mountain valley views.

Adjacent to the restaurant is it’s own citrus grove, providing the freshest oranges, tangelos and red grapefruit you will find in a restaurant anywhere.

For my review of the Ritz-Carlton Dove Mountain Resort click here

The Core Kitchen & Wine Bar website click here

Ignite – Dove Mountain AZ

Located in the Ritz-Carlton Dove Mountain Resort


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Visited November 13-15 2014

The Ritz-Carlton Dove Mountain Resort’s lounge and terrace has lunch and dinner service. For most of my visit the large glass wall between the lobby lounge and the terrace was open making it seamlessly feel like one space. Inside there are fireplaces and outside the terrace has numerous fire pits and fire towers -hence the name “Ignite”.

The hotel has staff rangers that host hiking tours through the desert and mountain valley and provide information on the animals and cactus found in the resort. At 5:15 on the Ignite terrace, the rangers give a talk about the native american history in the Dove Mountain Valley. There is a legend about a native american flute player that played in the valley at dusk, and the music was heard throughout the valley. They continue the tradition every evening with a flute player way off in the distance on the mountain, and the flute music can be clearly heard and enjoyed on the Ignite terrace with you favorite libation.

They have an impressive whisk(e)y  list of over 100 choices  (but alas only 4 gins).

To view the Ignite web page click here

For my blog post on the Ritz-Carlton Dove Mountain Resort click here

Turquesa Latin Grill – Dove Mountain AZ

Located in the Ritz-Carlton Dove Mountain Resort


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Nestled alongside the inner arc of the main swimming pool, Turquesa Latin Grill is open for lunch and drinks poolside. You cannot beat the setting for a relaxing casual meal. The staff here (and everywhere in the Dove Mountain Resort) is as good as you will find anywhere – pleasant, friendly, efficient, informative and they anticipate your every need. The food was fresh and good, although I ordered fairly basic fare – a chicken burrito.

Although only open for lunch, they do host private events poolside where the pool, trees, and cacti are bathed in colors and illuminated balloons hover above.

For the Turquesa Latin Grill website click here

For my blog post on the Ritz-Carlton Dove Mountain Resort click here

Selden Standard – Detroit MI

Opening Night November 9, 2014

3921 Second Avenue, Detroit MI

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UPDATE: 2015 Restaurant of the Year as published by the Detroit Free Press!

Opening Night was a great success for the latest addition to Detroit’s growing restaurant scene.

Selden Standard’s food is delicious, the staff is well selected, and the restaurant design is great.

It is a sophisticated minimalist interplay of white glazed brick and wood planks levitating below a blacked out ceiling with rows of exposed-filament bulbs suspended in gaps between the planks.

The chef checked every plate that left the kitchen, and I can say that each of my plates were perfectly presented.

I sampled the Kale Caesar Salad with crispy chicken skin, lemon and sourdough croutons; Roasted Beets with Ricotta, pomegranate and walnuts; Lamb Meatballs with tomato, olives, yogurt and mint; and the Pumpkin Tart with heirloom pumpkin, and vanilla spice cream. It was all very, very good.

I look forward to trying out the other menu options soon in this well designed restaurant space. I will update my post when I have had a chance to dine at a table and get the full Selden Standard experience.

Andy Hollyday – Executive Chef

Tadd Heidgerken, of et al. Collaborative – Detroit – Architect

UPDATE: The architect now has a project profile page on their website showing floor plans, sections, renderings and finish details for the architectural minded. Click Here!

(Note: I am not affiliated in any way with the Architect, Chef or Restaurant – just a discerning diner that is also an architect, and very happy that this restaurant is conveniently on my way home from work!)

Selden Standard Website

Detroit Free Press Article

Detroit Eater Webpost

Click here for all of my Detroit Restaurant posts.