Restaurant veteran Molly Abraham noshes around town, tracking down some top spots.
LE PETIT ZINC /// At the other end of the restaurant spectrum downtown is this hideaway on the edge of Corktown, where Karima Sorel keeps alive some Gallic flair in a single room with a zinc-topped counter overlooking the tiny kitchen and a handful of tables topped with crisp brown paper. Those who appreciate a quiet oasis will find a menu of such French classics as quiche Lorraine, Swiss or brie-filled crepes, nicoise salad, a sturdy ratatouille, and fruit and cheese plates. Espresso, lattes, and an array of tea and soft drinks are the beverages. 1055 Trumbull Ave., Detroit; 313-963-2805. B & L daily. $12
TOWNHOUSE DETROIT /// The Birmingham original has spawned a second location in Detroit. It’s big and bright and has added excitement to downtown. A retractable glass roof over its atrium opens when weather permits. Other seating options include a spacious dining room and a handsome bar. The menu allows diners lots of leeway, with options including the excellent Townhouse burger, seafood offerings, and many sharable dishes. Chef Brennan Calnin, formerly of Imperial and Public House in Ferndale, is in charge of the big open kitchen for proprietor Jeremy Sasson. 500 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-723-1000. L & D daily, Br. Sun. $18