Molly’s Picks: Maraias & Trattoria Da Luigi

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


The new French-inspired restaurant in Grosse Pointe caters to an audience that appreciates fine dining in a classic, white-tablecloth setting. Chef/proprietor David Gilbert and his well-dressed professional staff are turning out beautiful, highly detailed plates typified by butter-roasted halibut with lobster salad and passion fruit sauce; trio of roasted veal tenderloin, braised cheeks, and sweetbreads; and rack of lamb, accompanied by an extensive wine list spotlighting champagne. 17051 Kercheval Ave., Grosse Pointe; 313-343-8800; D Tues.-Sat., $65 H

Lasagna al Forno – classic lasagna from Southern Italy (grilled eggplant, peas, eggs, and mozzarella). // Photograph by Joe Vaughn


The rustic setting of brick and old wood with strings of vintage light bulbs overhead has a romantic feeling at Luigi Cutraro’s new restaurant in Royal Oak. The wood-burning oven tucked into one corner that was inherited from the previous regime made pizza almost obligatory. And it’s very good, with toppings of grilled eggplant, prosciutto di Parma, arugula, and capers. So are the pastas, especially pappardelle con Marsala e funghi (wide ribbons in a light mushroom and Marsala sauce) and such main courses as the classic saltimbocca alla Romana (veal, sage, and prosciutto). Desserts follow the Italian theme with a tray of cheeses one of the options. 415 S. Washington Ave., Royal Oak; 248-542-4444; D Tues.-Sun. $21 H

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