Road Food Reviewed
Another kind of road trip--a Sunday bike ride to Ypsilanti--rewarded me with the pancakes I favor. The long-standing Wolverine Grill on Michigan Avenue, refurbished and reopened last year by cook/owner Kevin Hill, has a stack of buttermilk pancakes, dotted with optional blueberries and accompanied by sausage links, ham, or bacon--which is my ideal.
My husband's ideal, after the physical excursion of pedaling rather than driving, was the much healthier special--the Growing Hope frittata. Rather than the usual thick cake of eggs and vegetables, Wolverine Grill's frittata is a thin omelet topped by feta cheese and a saute of vegetables--squash and kale, when we were there in May--supplied from Ypsilanti's Growing Hope Urban Farm. Accompanying it were thick slices of whole-wheat toast, deep-fried potato chunks, a fruit cup, and a shot glass of V-8 juice--a real energy boost rather than the indulgence my breakfast had been.
Wolverine Grill's weekend vibe, orchestrated by a swinging jukebox that reflects Hill's interest in Michigan music and rock in general, is relaxed and fun, and attracts clientele ranging from Eastern Michigan students and hipsters to families and older couples. As at the Grass Lake Diner, friendly strangers often chat across tables. Although music posters and memorabilia decorate the walls, the place retains the character of a 1950s-era diner. A long counter with revolving stools still lines one side of the restaurant, with Formica booths opposite and a black-and-white checkerboard floor underneath.