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Sunday January 21, 2018
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Ulrich's Is Still in Limbo

But momos and macaroons are in the works.

by Sabine Bickford

From the September, 2017 issue

Lotus Thai, in the Oak Valley shopping center off Ann Arbor-Saline Rd., closed in mid-July after fifteen years in business. Wichai Cheva, who also owns Marnee Thai downtown, says the restaurant was impacted by the influx of restaurants at nearby Pittsfield Place--Five Guys, Bob Evans, Texas Roadhouse, Subway, and Pancheros all opened in the past two years, and Buddy's Pizza recently announced a projected fall opening. Plus, he says, "my wife and I are in our seventies. Managing two restaurants is hard!" Now they'll be able to concentrate their efforts on Marnee Thai.

Himalayan Bazaar owner Pem Dorjee Sherpa is taking Lotus Thai's spot for his Everest Sherpa Kitchen. Sherpa has taken on two chefs from Cardamom and plans to serve Nepali, Tibetan, and Indian cuisine. Sherpa hopes to open before his next trip to Nepal in late September.


Perpetua Boutique Organique has also closed its doors; we couldn't reach Catheryn and John Snyder, who opened the eco-friendly clothing store in 2010.

The spot on Fourth Ave. between Liberty and Washington will become an outlet of fledgling East Lansing bakery Le Bon Macaron. "As a family we have always loved the city of Ann Arbor, the downtown in particular, so when we decided to open a third location we decided Ann Arbor was our ideal location," emails founder Kelly Toland, who owns the business with her parents and two siblings. They hope to open by early September.


This spring, workers at Ulrich's Bookstore were told that after the store's longtime campus location closed at the end of April they'd move immediately to a temporary location a block away. By the time we wrote about the closing in June, the reopening (and rehiring) date had slipped to July; in early August, the store still hadn't opened. Though Ulrich's website continued to promise that it would open "in a few short weeks," when we called, an employee told us they still don't have a move-in date.


Folks waiting to wet their

...continued below...

whistle at the proposed brewpub on South Ashley (In the Works, December 2016) may wait indefinitely. When we stopped by in August, the former Carter's Auto Service was little changed since our last visit; an older fellow with multicolor suspenders standing an open bay said the owner "got taken to the cleaners"--but was unable or unwilling to elaborate.

When we talked to owner Joel Flowers last fall, he said he expected to open in thirty to ninety days. He didn't respond to a recent interview request, nor did his corporate offices in Bloomfield Hills return calls; the number at his Big Buck Brewery in Gaylord is disconnected. Rebecca of the Gaylord Chamber of Commerce says Big Buck "closed for renovations and never reopened," while Shelby of the Western Michigan Better Business Bureau says they contacted the brewery in July "but we haven't heard a response." City records show that Flowers still owns the ramshackle building at the corner of Ashley and Jefferson.    (end of article)

[Originally published in September, 2017.]


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