If you haven’t been to midtown Detroit lately, it’s time to go. This is the Detroit you’ve been hearing about. . . the one you need to experience. New restaurants are opening everywhere and though it’s not brand new, Jolly Pumpkin Pizzeria and Brewery was new to most of our monthly Dinner Club. Good food, good company, some laughs — what else do you want in an evening out? Jolly Pumpkin did not disappoint.
There was a generous, lively crowd when we arrived, but ample seating inside and out, much of it communal style. It’s walk-up, counter service to order. You’re given a number and in under 10 minutes our food was delivered to the table.
Jolly Pumpkin is located in what used to be called the notorious ‘Cass Corridor’ many years ago — the connotation, visuals and stories of crime in the corridor were rampant — but the area has been dramatically transformed and is now welcoming, thriving and renamed Midtown Detroit. Also in the area are Traffic Jam and Snug and Motor City Brewing Works — Come back in September for the Traffic Jam and Snug review.
This fresh mint spiked lemonade hit the spot on a warm summer evening, though you won’t go wrong with any one of their cocktails made with specially infused spirits. Beer drinkers have a large selection of artisan beers to choose from too.
So many great food options that I would recommend sharing to cover more food ground. We started with the Truffle Fries with Rosemary Aioli and as my daughter put it — you could easily sit on the couch with a basket full of them, along with a glass of wine and binge on Netflix ♥.
I’m not one to usually eat fries without ketchup but these shoestring fries with a hint of truffle flavor in every bite were amazing on their own. The Rosemary Aioli was an unexpected, shut-the-front-door bonus.
From there we moved onto pizza. So many unique and delicious sounding options, but we decided on the Lamb: tomato sauce, perfectly seasoned lamb, roasted red peppers, mozzarella, feta, arugula and the most delicious pickled red onions that literally made the pie!
We also tasted the Mushroom pizza: shiitake mushrooms, creamy goat cheese, mozzarella, truffle oil and also a bed of arugula in the center. This one alone will having me coming back.
Don’t wait until you’re in the area to stop in. There’s something for everyone at Jolly Pumpkin — it’s worth a special trip.