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Burgers & Brisket to Pizza & Tapas: New Eats in the D

By: Toni Cunningham | November 4, 2013

If there’s one thing we Metro Detroiters enjoy, it’s food. This is evidenced by the fact that a new restaurant pops up somewhere in the area practically every week. Whether you crave Mexican fare or something grilled, I guarantee there’s a newly opened eatery to suit your taste buds.

We’ve all got our own favorite local restaurants, but there’s absolutely nothing wrong with giving your palate something new and different to try. Plus, you just might find yourself a new favorite. Get hungry, grab your wallet, and prepare to check out the following new Metro Detroit eateries.

CAYA Smokehouse Grill, 1403 S. Commerce Rd., Walled Lake, had its grand opening in late August, and if you haven’t visited yet, you’re seriously missing out.

The menu includes house-smoked beef and pork, fresh seafood, and an array of entrees made with local ingredients. Chef Jeff Rose, former opening chef at Michael Symon’s Roast and executive chef at Toast in Birmingham, is responsible for preparing all of the delicious dishes.

There are nearly 10 burger varieties on the menu, and items from the smoker include Beef Brisket, Baby Back Ribs, Turkey Breast, Pulled Pork, Asian Beef Short Ribs and Pulled Squash.

CAYA’s handcrafted cocktails include the Front Porch (Bulleit Bourbon, soda, peach pecan water and lemon on the rocks), Tennessee Margarita (Espolon Blanco, lemonade, watermelon ice, basil and soda served on the rocks) and CAYA Tea (Tito’s vodka, mint, lemon, lime, honey and green tea).

Whether you dine in or carry out, you’ll have an unforgettable dining experience at CAYA.

Republica, 1999 Coolidge Hwy., Berkley, is now open after an initial soft opening mid-September. Coined a “food and drink revolution,” Republica has plenty of gluten free and vegetarian choices on the menu. Some such items include small plates like Plato’s Potatoes (French fries tossed with feta, lemon and oregano), Lobster Grits (topped with parmesan reggiano), Tomato Fennel Soup, and Roasted Beet & Arugula Salad.

There are also plenty of mouth-watering choices for omnivores, including the B.K.T.D., a BLT-like sandwich with bacon, kale, tomato and duck, served on whole-wheat toast. Other choices include Maxwell’s Pork Chop sandwich, Chicken Chili, and The Revolution, a burger topped with smoked Gouda, bacon, tomato, a fried egg, arugula, and Sriracha mayonnaise.

To ensure your meal is a hit, Republica serves Michigan craft beer and specialty cocktails.

Blaze Pizza, 112 Main St., Royal Oak, opened its doors at the end of October and celebrated by offering a free pizza to each customer the very next day! The promotion was a hit, and had patrons lined up along the block, waiting for up to an hour to get a personalized pie.

Whether you choose to create your own pizza or pick one of the menu’s signatures, your pie will be ready after only two minutes in a scorching hot oven. All of the pies are made of thin crust, and a gluten free option is available.

Signature pies include the Green Stripe (grilled chicken, roasted red peppers, garlic, mozzarella, arugula, and pesto), Meat Eater (pepperoni, meatballs, red onion and mozzarella), Link In (Italian sausage, roasted red peppers, sautéed onions and mozzarella), and Veg Out (zucchini, mushrooms, red onion, gorgonzola, and mozzarella).

Salads and dessert also grace the menu, but the star here is obviously the pizza.

La Feria, 4130 Cass Ave., Detroit, is a Spanish tapas restaurant that held its soft opening on Halloween. As of today, the restaurant is fully open for both lunch and dinner.

If La Feria sounds familiar, it might be because the restaurant won Hatch Detroit 2012, a yearly competition that helps launch a Metro Detroit restaurant or business. Prior to opening, La Feria also participated in a pop-up at Detroit’s St. Cece’s Pub.

Now that the doors are officially open, La Feria is ready to serve up some seriously tasty tapas to the people of Detroit.

B Spot Burgers is scheduled to open in The Village of Rochester Hills next month. The second Michael Symon restaurant to debut in the Metro Detroit area, B Spot Burgers uses a custom blend beef for its burgers.

With over a dozen burger varieties on the menu, there is no shortage of options. There’s everything from the Plain Jane (topped with lettuce, tomato and onion) to the Fat Doug (topped with coleslaw, pastrami, Swiss cheese and mustard) to the Atomic (a spicy option topped with ghost chili, pickled jalapenos, cilantro, red onion, pepper jack cheese, and habanero sauce). You can, of course, build your own burger, or choose something from the Bologna and Brats category.

No B Spot Burger meal would be complete without a Bad A** Shake, so try out the Chocolate Banana Marshmallow or Vanilla Bean Apple Pie Bacon varieties.

Basement Burger Bar, 42452 Ford Rd., Canton, will open its second location (the original is in Farmington) before the year is out. The All-Star Burger menu includes over a dozen specialty burgers, with your choice of patty: angus beef, Kobe beef, bison, black bean, portabella cap, chicken or turkey.

A few choices include the Tropical Burger (with smoked BBQ ketchup, lettuce, tomato, red onion, apple smoked bacon, grilled pineapple, and Swiss cheese), Italian Stallion (with marinara sauce, lettuce, tomato, mozzarella sticks, and cheese) and the Mushroom Burger (with pesto, spring mix, grilled portabellas and Swiss cheese).

In addition to the great food, Basement Burger Bar has different drink specials every day of the week, so you’ll be in good hands no matter when you go.

With all of these great restaurants now open and nearly open, you’re going to be doing a lot of sampling. Get ready to eat!