Food & Wine


High on Fine Food At Aerie, the Grand Traverse Resort’s renamed and revamped gem, the cuisine is as good as the view. By Patty LaNoue Stearns ACME–The fanfare had reached its crescendo after more than 3,000 people submitted entries to rename Trillium restaurant, which had been closed since May. On the eve of the mid-June …

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Up North Dining

Worldly, spicy, hard to find Northwest Michigan’s culinary scene is increasingly global — but you have to know how to find it. By Patty LaNoue Stearns, Photo by Brian Confer Not too long ago, about the only type of authentic ethnic food available Up North outside of a Cornish or Finnish pasty might have been …

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Werner Absenger

Fresh, Pure and Delicious Sure, organic ingredients are healthier — but they just plain taste better, too. The chef de cuisine at the Amway Grand Plaza hotel in Grand Rapids did his apprenticeship in Austria and cooked in several European ski resorts before he came to Mackinac Island’s Grand Hotel in northern Michigan. He cheffed …

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La Dolce Vida

The Sweet LifeThis hidden gem in Palmer Park is what makes Detroit so hip. By Patty LaNoue StearnsPhotos by John Sobczak I spent my early adult life ensconced in the architectural splendor of Palmer Park, a neighborhood with curvy streets and ornate apartment buildings designed by Albert Kahn and other famed architects of the1920s through ’50s. …

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Profusion of Fusion

Fans line up outside tiny Georgina’s Taqueria for a taste of Tony Craig’s spicy, earthy cuisine. By Patty LaNoue Stearns Photo by Tracy Grant It’s 3 p.m. on a Wednesday afternoon and Georgina’s, the tiny eatery at the east end of Front Street, is slammed. This is supposed to be Tony Craig’s slow time of the …

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Food as Memory

My Mother’s Muse How I rescued Mom’s Doufeu pot. Hardly gourmet, but delicious every day BY PATTY LANOUE STEARNS My late mother, Irene LaNoue, was never by any stretch a gourmet cook. With a husband, seven kids and who knows how many extra friends at our dining table every evening, just getting enough food into …

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Good Taste

The quintessential compendium on the best bites in Northern Michigan, from artisan breads to ziti and star-rated restaurants in between. This is the Introduction to my 2002 book, Good Taste: A Guide to Northern Michigan Cuisine, now out of print: As a kid growing up in the Detroit area, I took regular treks with my family …

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Cherry Home Companion

My Groovy Gourmet Cherry Cookbook The definitive hardcover guide to cooking with cherries. This 200-page, spiral-bound hardcover book features mouthwatering recipes for breakfast. lunch, dinner, appetizers, desserts and drinks. Michigan’s finest restaurants, chefs and food writers around the U.S. and Canada contributed to this book, published by Arbutus Press in 2002.  Available on and