Birmingham made a big statement on the Metro Detroit dining scene in 2012, after two of the city's newest eateries made the Detroit Free Press top 10 list of the best new restaurants in Metro Detroit.
Hyde Park Prime Steakhouse and Social Kitchen & Bar joined restaurants from Berkley, Southfield, Ferndale, Plymouth, Bloomfield Township, Detroit and Ann Arbor in this year's list of the region's best new eateries, made of up resturants that opened between Dec. 1, 2011 and Dec. 1, 2012.
According to Free Press food critic Sylvia Rector, when Hyde Park Steakhouse opened, they made sure it was all about the steak.
"If steakhouses were 'in' this year, Hyde Park was in all the way," Rector writes. "It features more than 20 steak entrees of various cuts, weights, garnishes, ages and types."
"Yes, it's a chain — from Ohio, no less," she adds. "But here's why it makes our list: When you want the pure, unapologetic excess of the steakhouse experience, this place has it all ... The night you want to go big or go home, Hyde Park fits the bill."
Hyde Park, Birmingham's third steakhouse, opened in early June, moving into the old Forte location on South Old Woodward, later expanding into the former Zuma Coffee House spot next door.
"We do our own thing," Hyde Park's co-founder Joe Saccone told Patch before Hyde Park's opening in November 2011.
Also making the list is one of Birmingham's newest bistros, Social Kitchen & Bar, owned by Executive Chef Zack Sklar. The East Maple Road eatery opened on June 21 and with a rooftop dining deck and tables in the adjoining alley, Social Kitchen features a menu that takes an upscale twist on classic American cuisine.
According to the Free Press review, Social Kitchen was "mobbed from day one."
"There's still a wait, but things have smoothed out, and the all-from-scratch kitchen has hit its stride," Rector notes. "Much of Sklar's 'refined comfort food,' as he calls it, can sound like everyday stuff on the menu, but it nearly always exceeds expectations on the plate."
Also making the list is Bloomfield Township's Roadside B&G at 1727 S. Telegraph. The retrofitted roadhouse is owned by Birmingham restauranteur Bill Roberts, owner of Streetside Seafood.
Birmingham is no stranger to the Free Press's annual list. Last year, Bella Piatti and Townhouse were named to the 2011 top 10 list of new restaurants.