Steve Siekierzynski & Chris Thompson

Their stylish menus are enticing enough to attract a loyal clientele of discriminating diners, but no matter how expert they are, restaurant people like to take a break from their own kitchens for a taste of someone else’s cooking.


“When I’m not at La Dolce Vita, which is pretty rarely,” says Steve Siekierzynski, executive chef at the restaurant on Woodward Avenue north of Six Mile Road in Detroit, “my wife and I like to go out, and we usually keep it pretty low key. We really like Slows Bar BQ. Their brisket enchilada is a killer appetizer!” In fact, he says, he’s a big fan of the entire sandwich section of Slows menu. The couple also have a favorite burger joint.

“We absolutely love Stables Bar & Grill in Livonia,” he says. “Their burgers are thick, the soups are made in-house daily, and their service is awesome.” Another favorite is Al-Ameer in Dearborn, where they order raw kibbee — “the best in town.”

Some people find a restaurant that suits their taste and pretty much stick to it when they have a chance to get away for an evening. Chris Thompson, executive chef of City Kitchen in Grosse Pointe and a veteran of the late, lamented Joe Muer’s, is one of them. His longtime favorite dining-out destination, along with his wife, Tenisha Wallace-Thompson, is “the Traffic Jam, aka TJ’s,” he says. Particular favorites at the Midtown spot are the turkey Reuben, sweet-potato fries, and fried smelt.

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