Standby Sip and nibble your way through the menu of The Belt's new hotspot
225 Gratiot Ave., Detroit, MI 48226
- Neighborhood: Downtown
- Price Level:
- Vegetarian Options
- Cards Accepted
A raw industrial door, an oversized gas lamp, a wooden sign.
It feels like you’re stepping into the London of Sherlock Holmes, where mysterious clubs and brooding characters await at every turn. You could just as easily be strolling through the Golden Gai district of Tokyo, where winding alleyways reveal shanty-styles bars and hidden nightclubs.
At the same time, it feels uniquely Detroit.
Inside, the Standby is a snug hideaway with just nine stools at the bar, and a series of blue leather banquettes and cafe tables filling the rest of the room.
This is the kind of spot where you could easily spend an entire evening tucked into a corner booth, sipping your way through their extensive cocktail menu and nibbling every tempting morsel on the bill of fare. Delicious surprises await you on every corner of the menu.
Libations are sorted by spirit – whiskey, agave, rum, gin, brandy, hot drinks, bubbles, wines. A handy key on the menu lets you know how the drinks are prepared – shaken or stirred, on tap or on nitro tap – and what shape its glass will be.
The Cold Front is a refreshing, citrusy fall mix of Plantation 3 Star white rum, sweet spice and lime. Penicillin is a bold and spicy cocktail that shakes together White Horse scotch whisky, fresh lemon, honey ginger syrup and a dash of Laphroaig. You can also find classic cocktails like a gimlet, margarita and sazerac on the menu.
If you’re in the mood to celebrate, the tiki-inspired Fibonacci’s Curse is appropriately festive. It’s a tropical, spicy and fresh concoction made for two or four people. The recipe mixes St. George green chile vodka with a house verdita, cinnamon and tiki bitters. It’s served in a giant silver pineapple the size of an ice bucket – showy enough to feel like a party but subtle enough not to be crass.
Man cannot live on tiki drinks alone, so you’ll need something to snack on like an addictively tasty bowl of duck fat fried almonds with candied black Manhattan cherries. Stanby also offers appetizers like charred romaine salad or beef tartare served with parmesan, black garlic, a perfectly poached egg, crostini and butter lettuce.
If you’re in the mood for a full meal, scarf down a doner sandwich, which pairs marinated pork with cucumber raita, lettuce and fried onions. Or savor Standby’s tagine of vegetables and legumes, served with olives, a potato nest, mint and an egg. Be a little adventurous and sample the sturgeon served with crispy chicken skin, spinach, pickled mushrooms, confit gizzard, and a tea-smoked creme fraiche. Your taste buds and your tummy will thank you. Rounding out the entrees are a mouthwatering bacon cheeseburger, venison loin, Moroccan steak, and a turkey leg with braised cabbage.
End your meal on a sweet note with desserts like Wisconsin apple churros. They look like mini churro sticks stuffed with cheddar and caramelized apple, served alongside a dreamy vanilla ice cream and caramel coated apple.
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