Shinola will open this month, and if anything can resurrect retail on Main Street, this is probably it. It has the deep pockets of an international brand, and that tantalizing, blue-collar eau de Detroit that has captured hearts ever since Eminem’s phenomenally successful Super Bowl ad for Chrysler in 2011.

Shinola is owned by Dallas-based Bedrock Manufacturing, which also owns Seattle-based Filson, maker of durable, first-class outdoor wear. Bedrock is essentially a company that invents and leverages brands, and its canny marketers took the name of a hardworking 1940s shoe polish and applied it to a high-quality, high-priced product mix. Among them: thousand-dollar single-speed bicycles, $500-and-up watches, leather-bound journals made locally by Edwards Brothers Malloy, other leather goods, and more products to come. The bicycles, watches, and notebooks all have a tough, functional, and, to some eyes, even clunky look, but they’re luxury goods.

“Sure, there’s some marketing around the story,” says Shinola’s creative director, Daniel Caudill, “but the story is real. We’re really building all this stuff here,” like the watch movement (“the little engine that runs the thing,” he explains). The tiny parts are made in Switzerland and shipped to the Detroit factory where “seventy to 100 parts are assembled into something about the size of a nickel. It’s microscopic, and really remarkable.” (Factory tours are given every Friday, if you want to see for yourself.) Three hundred of Shinola’s 400 employees are in Detroit, according to Caudill, and he’s one of them: He moved to Detroit two years ago; his job is to “work with designers and product developers so everything feels like it’s coming from one voice.”

Shinola has seven stores besides this one–six in the U.S., one in London–and ten more in the works. How does Ann Arbor, only forty minutes away from the flagship store and factory in Detroit, rate a store? “We have a lot of people who come from Ann Arbor to the Detroit store, so when we thought about opening more stores Ann Arbor was a very natural step.” In fact, last December, Shinola bused in customers from Ann Arbor all day long for holiday shopping, and the buses were always decently populated.

The Ann Arbor store will carry everything the Detroit store does, and, like the Detroit store, will have a coffee shop on the main floor. There will be extra seating in the basement, equipped with wall outlets and wi-fi. As at Lena/Habana, kitty corner from it, the basement extends under the sidewalk–buildings of the period often had sidewalk hatches that allowed them to take deliveries directly from the street.

The complete renovation of the building, bought from Elaine Selo and Cynthia Shevel last year by Reza Rahmani, has gotten high marks from a number of people with architectural knowledge and design accolades to their name. “He wants to do right by the building. People will never know how much work he put into infrastructure,” says Caudill. Jon Carlson, whose 2Mission Design company does similar rehab work on old buildings, was impressed. “It’s gorgeous,” he says, “and Shinola is a huge win for Ann Arbor.”

Shinola, 301 S. Main, hours not yet set.

Ruth’s Chris got its oddly placed apostrophe when Ruth Fertel bought a Texas steak house called Chris. There are now about 150 of them, though Fertel died in 2002. The local Ruth’s Chris Steak House is on Fourth Ave. in what used to be Maude’s or the Dream Nite Club, depending on your generation. The building was renovated and grew a second story. Rohit Mehra, general manager, doesn’t want to pin the opening to anything more precise than “late spring.”

This is only the third Ruth’s Chris in Michigan (the others are in Troy and Grand Rapids). About half of the stores nationwide are company owned, and half are franchises. This franchise, Mehra says, is owned by “several private investors with Michigan ties. Unfortunately I can’t disclose their names.” It becomes a little clearer what this restaurant’s mission is, and where it fits into the local restaurant landscape, when he says that the second floor is divided into various rooms for private dining, with names like “Victors” and “Big Ten.” Ruth’s Chris will undoubtedly be the site of much sports-related U-M fundraising and revelry.

Mehra, from Mumbai, trained in hospitality at Johnson & Wales University in Rhode Island. He comes most recently from Chicago, known for its great steak houses. He’s aware that Ann Arbor thinks it already knows good steak but says: “We guarantee you’ll be blown away. The steak we offer is grain-fed prime beef. Do you know that less than 2 percent of beef in the U.S. is prime?” he asks (that USDA certification has to do with marbling and age). “It’s fresh, never been frozen, and we cook it over an eighteen-hundred-degree flame and bring it to the table on a five-hundred-degree plate,” the perfect temperature, he says, to keep it warm until you finish eating without overcooking it.

When asked specifically about Ruth’s Chris proximity to local stalwarts the Chop House and Knight’s, he says, with no hesitation: “I’ve dined at other steak houses. I’m not going to say the name, but there is no manager, no customer service. We are proud of our training program that every server and bartender goes through to make sure we understand our guests’ needs. Every server will stop by your table, follow up, and ask if your steak was cooked to your liking.” He says a dinner at Ruth’s Chris will probably set you back about $50 to $75 and recommends either the filet mignon, or, for real beef lovers, the twenty-two-ounce porterhouse, though he says that one’s meant for sharing.

Ed Shaffran, who owns the building next door housing Mezzevino, says “I’ve eaten in a number of them around the country. They’re very good. It may not have been what everyone is looking for, but they’ve taken a building, a non-attractive building, and made a positive replacement for what was there.”

Ruth’s Chris Steak House, 314 S. Fourth Ave., 585-5155. Daily 4:30-11 p.m. (bar with full menu open until 1 a.m.)