By Molly Abraham
Of all the new restaurants popping up around town, I’d say the Apparatus Room at the revamped fire department headquarters on the corner of Washington Blvd. and Larned is without a doubt the most glamorous.
Every detail seems to have been addressed by the designers, who had the task of transforming the room that once housed fire-fighting equipment – thus the somewhat awkward name of the room, which is about the only thing I don’t like about it – into a dining room that would fit the talents of executive chef Thomas Lents, who arrived with two Michelin stars from previous stints. And I applaud the fact that he is a Michigander, born in Grand Rapids and happy to be back at this major addition to downtown Detroit dining.
Now about that ambiance: its spacious two-sided bar is lit by clusters of glittering open-filament bulbs hanging from above – even those who drive by can see them through the big windows. Seating arrangements range from sturdy wood tables to leather couches and coffee tables. The inner side of the bar is available for dining in the evening too, by reservation.
But here’s the rub: in the early going many people are walking in looking as if they are going to a neighborhood hamburger joint. Come on, folks. You don’t have to put on your finest, but a little more care in choice of attire would seem to be in order. At least, that’s my opinion.
Photos by Korey NASA