Anchor Bar gears up for Red Wings fans

Anchor Bar waitress Jean Matias, takes an order from hockey fans Steve O’Keefe, left, David Raft and Jeff Gillow, all of Saline. The Anchor Bar is a popular stopping-point for gamegoers downtown. (Photo: Steve Perez , The Detroit News )

In Metro Detroit, fall colors go beyond yellow and orange to include red and white, as the Red Wings gear up to kick off their regular season. As fans walk to and from Joe Louis Arena downtown, a popular pit stop is the longstanding Anchor Bar, located just around the corner at 450 W. Fort.
“Once we get into hockey season, everybody comes down here,” says Vaughn Derderian, third-generation owner of the Anchor. Derderian says as a business owner he’s happy to have the Red Wings back in full swing after the shortened season a few years ago, and as a fan he’s excited for the new players.
“Since the shortened season we’ve really been working on streamlining our operations and improving the food and our service,” he says. “We’ve made a lot of improvements in the kitchen and (service) during the hockey games is quicker and more efficient than it ever has been.”
One of most popular additions to the menu is totchos, which are nachos made with tater tots instead of tortilla chips. “We almost can’t cook them fast enough,” says Derderian, whose grandfather took over the Anchor in the late 1950s. Daily specials range from fish and chips to taco salad, and the classic bar burger is always available.
Like many bars and restaurants, the Anchor has also started to focus more on local craft beer. The bar stocks around 40 craft beers in bottles and four or five rotating on draft. Even so, Labatt Blue remains a huge seller with the hockey crowd.
Brief beer news
■Royal Oak’s Bastone Brewery and brewer Rockne Van Meter were named Small Brewpub and Small Brewpub Brewer of the Year at the Great American Beer Festival last week in Denver, Colo. Short’s Brewing Co. also took home a gold medal for its Key Lime Pie beer in the experimental beer category.
■Michigan’s Founders Brewing Co. announced Monday it will bring back its Black Rye for a limited run this January. The dry-hopped dark ale was available briefly in 2006 and developed a cult following.
Food and beverage events
Savor Detroit at Great Lakes Culinary Center: Each night, two acclaimed chefs will team up for a four-course meal with wine pairings. The dinners are preceded by a cocktail hour with appetizers and drinks made by bartenders from the Sugar House. Chefs include James Rigato from the Root Restaurant & Bar, Benjamin Meyer from Iridescence, Garrett Lipar of Torino, Reva Constantine of Great Lakes Culinary Center and Takashi Yagihashi of Slurping Turtle. 6-10 p.m. today-Fri. $125, $1,150 for table for 10. 24101 W. Nine Mile, Southfield.
Vodka Rox at Royal Oak Farmers Market: Tickets include 15-20 three ounce samples of premium vodkas and craft cocktails. 8-11:30 p.m. Fri. $45, $65 VIP and $15 designated driver. 316 E. 11 Mile, Royal Oak.
Oktoberfest at Royal Oak Farmers Market: More than 125 beers, plus German-style games, food and live music. 7:30-11 p.m. Sat. $45, $15 designated driver. 316 E. 11 Mile, Royal Oak.
Sicilian Wine Dinner at Paesano: A five-course dinner paired with Passopisciaro wines from Mount Etna, Europe’s largest active volcano. 6:30 p.m. Wed. $100. 3411 Washtenaw, Ann Arbor. (734) 971-0484.
Brew at the Burgh at Burgh Historical Park: A craft beer and food event with a Halloween twist. 6-8:30 p.m. Oct. 16. $20 (includes six drink sample tickets). Civic Center Drive and Berg Road, Southfield. (248) 796-4620.
Michigan Wild Game and Bourbon Dinner at Ravens Club: Harlen Wheately from Kentucky’s Buffalo Trace Distillery will be on hand to walk guests through the seven award-winning bourbons. They’ll be paired with a five-course meal from chefs Frank Fejeran, Brennan Calnin, Lamar Farhat, Nick Janutol and Jeffrey Sartor. A portion of the event’s proceeds will be donated to nonprofit 826michigan. 6-10 p.m. Oct. 16. $100. 207 S. Main, Ann Arbor. (734) 214-0400.
Baconfest Michigan at Royal Oak Farmers Market: More than 1,500 bacon-lovers attended last year, and this year is expected to be just as popular. Participating restaurants, food trucks and guest chefs are to be announced. 7-11 p.m. Oct. 17. $75. 316 E. 11 Mile, Royal Oak.
Detroit Lions Breakfast Buffet at TAP at MGM Grand Detroit: Before each Lions home game, get down on a buffet that has all the breakfast fixings, including an omelet station, French toast, bacon and more. 7-11 a.m. Oct. 19, Nov. 9 and 27 and Dec. 7 and 14. $18, $10 children. 1777 Third, Detroit. (313) 465-1234.
Detroit Lions Game Day Brunch at Hard Rock Cafe: Pre-football brunch features omelet and waffle stations, fresh fruit, fried chicken, bacon, biscuits and gravy and more, including $5 Bloody Marys and mimosas. Take advantage of free parking and a shuttle to the game. 9 a.m. Oct. 19, Nov. 9 and 27 and Dec. 7 and 14. $16, $9 younter than 11. 45 Monroe, Detroit. (313) 964-7625.
Oktoberfest with Leadership Oakland at Oakland County Market: Michigan beer, farm-grown products and networking opportunities. 6-8:30 p.m. Oct. 22. $25-$35. 2350 Pontiac Lake, Waterford Township.
Takashi Yagihashi Cooking Demo at Macy’s Somerset: Takashi will share his award-winning holiday recipes. Guests can sample, and those who purchase $35 or more in the home department will receive a copy of Takashi’s book and $10 Macy’s gift card. 6 p.m. Oct. 23. 2750 W. Big Beaver, Troy. (248) 816-4000.
Black Wine Nights at Vinotecca: This blind wine tasting comes with eight wines and five courses of small plates. The wine glasses, food, decor and attire are all black. 7-9:30 p.m. Oct. 29-30. $49. 417 S. Main, Royal Oak. (248) 544-6256.
Melody Baetens

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