Meet the chef crowned Restaurateur of The Year

Hour Detroit gives local chef this new honor for his food and philanthropy

Hour Detroit's Restauranteur of the Year on Live in the D

Having the title of Restaurant of The Year is something any local restaurant owner would be proud of, but to be crowned Restaurateur of The Year is next level. Local publication Hour Detroit has taken it to that level. They have awarded Chef Maxcel Hardy, owner of Coop Detroit and Jeds Detroit, as the Restaurateur Of Year. This is the first time Hour Detroit has given such an honor. Lyndsay Green, the Dining Editor for Hour Detroit and Chef Max joined Tati Amare to talk about how this award came about and what it meant for Hardy to receive it.

Normally Hour Detroit picks a Restaurant of The Year. This year however, they switched it up to restaurateurs to reflect the year the industry has had. Green, says the pivot really reflects this reality. According to Green, Hour Detroit’s typical Restaurant of The Year award is based on the indoor dining experience. That unfortunately was just not possible this year considering the pandemic, so like restaurants themselves, they changed things up and awarded Chef Max this new honor.

Chef Max says he truly honored and overwhelmed to receive this title. It means the world to him to be recognized like this and be embraced by the community at large. Green says Chef Max deserves this award because he was able to overcome the challenges of year. He never shut down his existing restaurant, Coop, and was also able to open his new restaurant Jed’s. On top of that Chef Max launched a philanthropic effort, serving the community with 75,000 meals.

Community and good food are at the heart of Chef Max’s restaurants. With his newest restaurant, Jed’s, he is continuing this mission by focusing on sustainability. Chef Max says Jed’s menu often features different specials with ingredients that are sustainable and local, which gives people and additional reason to come out.

Green isn’t sure if Hour Detroit will continue awarding a Restaurateur Of The Year, but she does say that Hour Detroit is looking to recognize more restaurants who, like Chef Max, are giving back to the community or making some other type of philanthropic contribution.

About the Author:

Natalia is the Producer with Live in the D and has been with Local 4 since April 2019. She loves to highlight the fun things happening around the D.