24 hours in Detroit with Steven Reaume (the 2020 shelter-in-place edition)

The stay-at-home order has been extended until May 1, so we still have at least a couple of weeks of sheltering in place. We understand you might be getting a little stir crazy, so we reached out to Steven Reaume — party promoter, publisher of The Detroit I Love, and pop-up chef — who shared his perfect day out and about in the city last fall. Here are his suggestions on how to enjoy and support the city from home (except for a quick trip out for essentials like hand sanitizer and whiskey).

Wake-up call with local coffee

Like many of us, Reaume starts the day trying to remember what day it is but gets his mind right with a cup of Populace Coffee, with beans from the roaster’s online shop. “They supply special blends to Sister Pie and Rose’s Fine Food that you can now buy online, with a portion of the proceeds going to the establishments,” Reaume says.

Update The Detroit I Love website

Reaume is the founder and publisher of the website “The Detroit I Love,” which is a curated list of events in Detroit. “With everything getting closed down it was necessary to refocus our purpose. Our front page now includes a listing of resources to get help and to provide help to our community. Recently we have added back an event list of broadcast and livestream events,” he says.

Procure provisions

Reaume, an experienced chef who perfected cooking Italian food while working at culinary staples like La Dolce Vita and whose pasta prowess is on display during his NOODL pop-ups (obviously on hiatus now), orders food through Mercato. The online shopping platform delivers from Devries & Co. as well as Marrow in West Village, he says. Other food establishments that get his support include Brooklyn Street Local, which is providing weekly pickup of items from FishEye Farms. He also puts on his “Stay Back 6 Feet Mask” from Well Done Goods when he picks up hand sanitizer at Two James Spirits as well as “their great whiskey.”

Body and soul

To keep physically fit, he suggests free virtual dance classes from ArtLab J, online sessions through Citizen Yoga, and morning yoga by Sidewalk Detroit. To exercise the mind, he likes Quarantine Poetry by Matthew Landrum, Playground Detroit’s “In The Studio” artist series, and online meditation presented by Mindful Detroit. Reaume’s expert tip: If you have a library card, you can access “a huge library of ebooks and audiobooks from the Detroit Public Library.”

Dance party at home

Pre-pandemic you could find Reaume at many hot spots around town. While that is not feasible right now, he’s found some of his favorite regular club nights have moved to livestream events, such as: “Michael Fotias with Jazz Vinyl Club (normally at MotorCity Wine) and his new weekly show The_Decade streamed from his laundry room. DJ Gino’s weekly Snacktime (normally at TV Lounge), DJ Erno and Eastside Jon’s Slow Jams (normally at Woodbridge Pub), and BLDG01 has been live-streaming their resident DJs as well as guests every weekend, to name a few.”

Dinner and a movie

Some of Reaume’s favorite restaurants are still offering delivery and pickup. For pizza his picks include Grandma Bob’s, Michigan & Trumbull, Checker Bar, Pie-Sci, or Mootz. For carryout, he likes Louisiana Creole Gumbo, Pietrzyk Pierogi, Grey Ghost, The Peterboro, or The Charlevoix in Grosse Pointe Park. For more suggestions and to see what’s open, he recently updated The Detroit I Love’s neighborhood guide.

Local independent movie houses The Film Lab, Senate Theater, Redford Theatre, and Cinema Detroit have been doing some great online screenings, Reaume says, adding “What is a film without concession snacks? Cinema Detroit has been offering carryout concessions for pickup.”

Support the community

At the end of the day, it’s all about supporting the Detroit he loves. “We have created The Detroit I Love Artist Fund to support musicians and DJs. 100% of the donations go directly to Detroit artists in need,” he says.

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Read more articles by Dorothy Hernandez.

Dorothy Hernandez is a freelance writer and editor who frequently writes about food at the intersection of culture and business. She has contributed to NPR, Midwest Living magazine, Eater, and a variety of other publications. Visit her website and follow her on Twitter @dorothy_lynn_h.