Ivy Kitchen & Cocktails now open in East Village with eclectic American cuisine
The polished Detroit restaurant debuted in late December and is launching weekend brunch service this weekend
The newest eatery on Detroit's east side is Ivy Kitchen & Cocktails. The American restaurant, which opened one month ago, has upscale decor, casual but attentive service and an eclectic menu.
Owner Nya Marshall lives in the area and owns the building the restaurant is housed in, which had been empty for decades. She said she heard from her neighbors in the area that more dining options were needed.
"People kept talking about the lack of quality food, lack of access to quality food and not having to go to Grosse Pointe and go downtown," she said. "That's kind of how Ivy was born. Unfortunately, there are many pockets of Detroit that are food insecure and not just from a grocery perspective but where you only have coney islands and things of that nature. So I wanted to change that and add value."
The fare here is what Marshall calls "new American."
"American is multicultural and we're indicative of that," she said. "We have Mediterranean, we have Asian, Italian and we also have classics like a burger and chicken sandwiches."
Marshall, a 17-year veteran of the automotive industry — this is her first foray into the restaurant industry — hired former Matt Prentice sous chef Terrence McDonald to man the kitchen, which she wants to produce eclectic cuisine to reflect the diverse neighborhood.
Attractive starters include smoky mezcal chicken wings and shrimp bruschetta with mozzarella mousse. Among the entrees are a whole branzino, short rib stroganoff and garlicy shrimp linguine pomodoro with squid ink pasta.
The back wall of the dining room is home to a well-lit bar with a few seats and a full array of booze, beer and wine.
Craft cocktails include the Village Sour with gin, sugar, egg whites and lemon juice and a twist on a Rusty Nail called a Rusty Screw has tequila, Drambuie, orange and jalapeno. There's also a few draft and bottled beer offerings and a selection of wine by the glass or bottle.
In spite of the upscale, yet comfortable decor, Marshall says she wants diners to feel like they can come to dinner as they are; there's no dress code here.
"We're a neighborhood restaurant and we want people from all walks of life to stop in here," said Marshall.
Ivy Kitchen & Cocktails is open daily at 4 p.m. at 9215 E. Jefferson in Detroit. Brunch service launches this weekend and is 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Sat.-Sun. Reservations are recommended, especially on the weekends. Call (313) 332-0607.
Sign up for Detroit Dinner Bell, our food and dining newsletter