Side Street Diner & Luca's Chophouse

Restaurant veteran Molly Abraham noshes around town, tracking down some top spots


STREET TREAT: Sidestreet Diner’s corned beef on grilled Breadsmith Rye with natural Swiss, sauerkraut, and Thousand Island dressing. (Photo by Joe Vaughn)




Cousins Meghan Spicer and Sheila Taylor have steadily improved their friendly and unpretentious spot, adding a beer and wine list that’s in keeping with the small dimensions and affordable price structure of the place. The duo preside over a menu of classic American diner dishes, including sandwiches, salads, oven-roasted turkey, meatloaf, and notably good soups, from chicken noodle to beef barley. Old-fashioned layer cakes line the counter.

630 St. Clair, Grosse Pointe; 313-884-6810, B, L & D Mon.-Sat., B & L Sun. $12 H



The balconied space in Papa Joe’s Plaza has a sophisticated ambience and subtle color scheme as a setting for a menu of beef, lamb, and pork that’s natural and free from antibiotics. It’s the second outpost for proprietor Luca Gjonaj, whose original is in Grand Blanc. A plus for both of his restaurants are the prices. Even the biggest cut — the 24-ounce porterhouse — is well below $40, with a 6-ounce filet at $25. In addition to red meat, there are pasta choices, as well as a list of sandwiches at lunchtime. Service is emphasized.

6870 N. Rochester Rd., Rochester Hills; 248-266-6370, L & D Sun.-Fri., D Sat. $24 H


Symbol: H Handicap accessible
Note: Dollar amount is the average entree price
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