Downtown dining options continue to increase in Detroit as Mike's Kabob Grille
, a restaurant featuring authentic Lebanese fare, will open come mid-February. Mike Abdallah, son and collaborator of the restaurant's owner, says that they are currently prepping a first floor space in Bedrock Real Estate's
Chrysler House. As they pull the proper permits for the restaurant, workers are painting walls and installing kitchen equipment and booths. Soon, Detroiters will be able to stop in for grape leaves and shawarma in the heart of downtown.
Food is the Abdallah family business. Mike's father opened his own Lebanese restaurant in Metro Detroit in the 1990s. Mike started working as soon as he could. "I've been working in a restaurant since I was 12 years old," he says. "That's 13 years of my life." That experience has paid off for Mike, a Wayne State graduate.
An Abdallah-run catering company was providing food to workers at Title Source in Troy. When Title Source started moving jobs to downtown Detroit in 2012, the catering company followed. That's when things really started going well. Mike says that the enthusiasm for the dishes was so high that customers started asking them to open a permanent location. After searching a bit, the Abdallahs found the Chrysler House space. Mike calls the whole experience a blessing.
One of Mike's main goals is to provide downtown workers a more healthy place to eat, he says, as he extolls the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet. He emphasizes keeping the food fresh and lean. He's excited, too, to prove himself with a hands-on role and continue the legacy of his family's business.
The Abdallahs plan on hiring at least 12 workers for the downtown location.
Source: Mike Abdallah of Mike's Kabob Grille
Writer: MJ Galbraith