With bright colors, bold flavors and fun music, River Bistro takes you to the Bahamas.
"Everything you see really speaks to who I am as a chef," says River Bistro owner Maxcel Hardy. "I wanted a pop of color, you know, so when you walk in it kind of brightens you up already. We want to give you that fun island vibe. In the Bahamas we always say vibe is everything so we want to give you the island vibe as well."
Maxcel Hardy is originally from Detroit but has spent many years traveling and honing his craft as a chef before coming back to the D. Instead of going downtown or to Corktown or Midtown, Hardy wanted to put his restaurant where he grew up, in the Grandmont Rosedale neighborhood.
The restaurant is cozy, with communal tables and the menu is written up on the wall. The menu has some quirky names like "My Main Thang" for entrees, "Side Chick" for sides, and "Walk of Shame" for desserts, this naming scheme was inspired by places Maxcel Hardy traveled to.
"When you think of Williamsburg and Brooklyn, when you think of LA , you think of all these major food cites...you see those kind of fun nuances in restaurants and so forth, so I wanted to just bring you the same thing," says Maxcel.
The inspiration for the food, however, came from Maxcel's home. His mother is from the Bahamas so they play with Caribbean dishes, fusing them with Asian and soul food classics.
"So when you think of Island food you think of spice, and fun and just a lot of vibrant colors and flavors and so that's what we wanted to do. So our whole menu is very vibrant and full of flavor," explains Maxcel Hardy.
If you would like to to try River Bistro Detroit, they are located at 18456 Grand River Ave. Detroit, MI. For more information please visit their website here.