For Brunch last weekend I visited Antietam, located in Detroit, on Gratiot Avenue, just outside of Eastern Market. I had been hearing some rumblings about how amazing this spot is through the grapevine and had been waiting for my opportunity to check them out.
In my mind due to all of the excitement, I was imagining an ultra-lux, exclusive, and perhaps gated establishment randomly located in some secret garden in Detroit. I am pleased to announce that Antietam was not any of those, but held other pleasant surprises inside.
As you walk up the restaurant, the facade is reminiscent of a French coffee shop. There is no real signage alerting you to the fact that you have stumbled upon something truly special. The host asked us if we had reservations and luckily we were early enough that we beat the crowd so it did not necessarily matter, but it may be worth remembering to call ahead to ensure a seat when you arrive.
My party was quickly sat in the dining room in which the bar is located. The booth upholstery is made of Elk skin leather, the pull up seats were designed by the owner and commissioned by a student from The Cranbrook School in Bloomfield Hills. The tin roof ceiling and unique floor are the two remaining original characteristics of what use to be a confectionary on one side and a knife sharpening shop on the other during the 1930’s.
The emphasis in detail is apparent from the uniquely designed prohibition style bar, to the poured cement tables up to the crocheted metal chain accents on each of the individual light fixtures, which were designed by Monica Hofstadter, granddaughter of Nobel Prize wining Physicist, Robert Hofstadter. In addition to all of this beauty, apparently Antietam has also been boasted locally as one of the best lite restaurants in Detroit for its evening hour ambiance.
For brunch I chose the special of the day which was a pulled pork slider topped with avocado salsa, fried egg, pickled onion, pickled jalapeños, served open faced on a toasted baguette. It was literally delicious, until then I have honestly never tasted so many flavors within a brunch option. The pork was seasoned to perfection yet not overpowering which could be a concern as an early morning option.
Now let’s talk booze. As I have mentioned before, I am not a huge Bloody Mary person but for some reason this week I chose the Bloody Mary. It was dressed with fried okra, a snap pea, green olive, pickle and lime. It was spicier then I would have preferred but it was my fault. I did not really think to ask for mild spice, but I do believe if I had, I would have enjoyed it more. The fried okra was a nice and random compliment that I did find unique and intriguing. Overall if you like Bloody Mary’s I would suggest trying Antietam’s, as had my waitress.
I definitely recommend Antietam and I plan to return and check out the rest of their menu and experience their Dinner. If at all possible sit in Maggie’s section, she’ll provide great service with a smile as well as serve as curator.
Based on this brunch experience, I give Antietam four and a half Bloody Mary’s out of five.
Location: 1428 Gratiot Ave, Detroit, MI 48207