|Detroit's Eastern Market (Photo by David Landsel)|
June 19, 2011
Why we're doing what we're doing:
The first question many people ask about Detroit: Is it really that bad.
The answer: Yes.
Lots has been written about Detroit since the bailouts in 2008. Very little of it has been wrong. Detroit today is essentially a failed state. There are those who might like to debate that, but we are not here to blow sunshine up your ass.
Be it ever so dysfunctional, however, Detroit is still considered home by more than 700,000 people -- many of them among the friendliest, most welcoming Americans you will ever meet. There's no place quite like Detroit, a place we often refer to as a small town, trapped in the body of a big city. It's a place the world needs to know about. A place we are proud to call home.
In addition, the city is just one piece of the vast and unique puzzle that is our region, an ethnically and economically diverse place of nearly 6 million people, one that spans an international border and includes everything from the largest population of Middle Eastern expatriates on the planet to one of the East's most up-and-coming wine regions, not to mention one of the oldest Mexican-American communities east of the Mississippi River. (The tacos around here are really, really good.). From hakka noodles to pupusas to late night izakayas to the world's greatest -- locally made, almost since the dawn of time -- hot dogs...you name it, you can find it, all within a short drive of Downtown Detroit.
The city itself is full of surprises, from the growing urban agricultural scene to the country's largest historic market district -- more vibrant than ever, happily -- to entrepreneurs running farm-to-table food trucks and selling jam / bagels / pickles / whatever out of their apartments. Have you tried the soul food around here? Or been out to the West Side to eat rib tips? (The place you want is the one that disgraced/former Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick goes to every time he gets out of jail.)
Simply put, there's a lot about Detroit -- beyond our vast selection of abandoned buildings and a list of glaring problems so long it makes one's head spin -- that the world doesn't know yet, and we see telling those stories as our primary task. We'd love to help you be a part of this effort, to show the world the Detroit that Detroiters love, a city and region that lots of us feel lucky to call home.
So, whether you're reading this in Norway or Novi, Michigan, we invite you to come on down and have a look around. If you're working on a story, we'll be more than happy to give you the grand tour. Let us introduce you to some of the people and places that make Metro Detroit so special.
Also, if you can't make it here and are working on a story and need some assistance or just want to ask questions -- about anything, not just the food scene -- please go ahead and reach out. We're happy to help. Not only do we know the city and region inside and out, we also have years of combined experience working as reporters ourselves. We specialize in getting things done quickly. (And also not being full of it.)