It was storming and pouring when I finished work, so I asked Fred for a ride home. He surprised me by driving not home, but to the Red Brick Kitchen & Bar in Dexter. It’s about the season we usually venture out to Dexter for their cider mill and to stock up on raspberry wine from the Sandhill Crane’s tasting room. There was unfortunately a 40 minute wait, but since we had come all the way, we put our names down and walked around, our umbrellas only somewhat protecting us from the rain.
Once in a while, we’ll hear about a fantastic restaurant that’s a little ways away. Kevin told me about The Sardine Room in Plymouth a couple months ago, but it took a while for us to be able to make the drive over. They feature “buck-a-shuck” dollar oysters during their happy hour, which runs 4-6PM Monday-Friday. Although I grew up in Boston, I always found oysters to be strange-looking sea creatures that belonged in a harbor rather than on my dining plate. I must truly be an adult now that I have not only tried oysters, but found them to be delightful little bursts of lemony-ocean flavor. Also, they’re so photogenic!
Every year when we visit the Dexter Cider Mill, we always stop by the Sandhill Crane Vineyards tasting room located in a little corner room of the barn. I still have not found a dessert wine that comes close to their wonderful raspberry wine, and every year try to stock up on a few bottles to last us through the holiday season.
Summer’s fading fast, and it truly feels like fall. Each year since I’ve been in Ann Arbor, I’ve taken a trip to the Dexter Cider Mill sometime in September or October. People travel here in all sorts of methods – driving, biking, or even canoeing. Time has really sped up these last few years, with a year passing before I even realize it. When I try to think back of the last time I went apple-picking with friends, I’m always shocked by the realization that it was a whole year ago. I appreciate these yearly traditions more, now that we are all getting so busy and have to actively make plans. So without further ado, I present a local favorite, the Dexter Cider Mill.
I had visited Yotsuba a few years ago, but didn’t take photos. All I remembered was that their sashimi slices were extremely generous, more than a centimeter thick, huge hunks of meat that felt more on par with little steaks than the thin strips of fish I’m used to. I thought that we were overdue for another visit!
This year, it feels like the transition from summer to autumn happened almost overnight. One day, I wore sandals and a dress, and the next, took my trusty North Face fleece out of the closet. It’s also the beginning of the application cycle for residency, so it feels like everything is in flux. I was super excited to hear about a new wine bar opening on Liberty, and immediately thought of local blogger The Food and Wine Hedonist, who checked it out on opening night and tweeted about its wide selection. VinBar is a collaboration between three Michigan wineries – Black Star Farms, Good Harbor Vineyards, and L. Mawby Winery. You can have half glasses, full glasses, or bottles of everything from bubblies to dessert wines. I love the feel of the space, wide open, light streaming in and wooden floors with a good number of seats.
Despite having lived in Ann Arbor for several years now, I never got the chance to visit the West End Grill. We got a lovely seat in the window, and the evening light just made for absolutely beautiful photos.