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  1. #1
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    Default Imported Foods In Detroit Area-Ethnic Markets

    I vaguely recall sometime back in the mid-eighties when I first started exlporing Detroit, traveling, I think it was somewhere between Eight and Six mile roads, a German themed store that sold food and assorted goods imported from Germany,maybe someone has a recollection of the place. Anyhow where are the good spots in Detroit to buy imported -ethnic foods. There is an African Marketon (Livernois) that sells fresh Kenke, and I noticed a Carribean foods store on the Blvd that I think is closed now. Obviously Southwest Detroit is loaded with markets that sell imported food, how about the rest of the city.

    I remember visiting a small mom and pop Italian market between and Eight and Six mile back in 96, think it was named Julians? There are some markets in Dearborn that are loaded with imported foods from Germany;Balkans;Greece;Egypt;Yemen etc. Joe and Eddies market on Schaefer has a large selection of bulk nuts and raisins (not sure where they were harvested but the price is much lower in Dearborn than the markets around Ferndale) A very large selection of sweet treats and goodies can be found. Maybe its because we have so much mass produced food here, or the soil is better-whatever the reason the food quality to me seems better on much of the imported yummies. I gobbled a wafer bar covered in chocolate that was made in Lebanon and it tasted much better than the Little Debbie crap Ive ingested. Same with the Balkan cheeses and meats...honey made in Germany....Italian pastries....mmm
    Also world cultures have for many centuries have been modifying and perfecting flavors...
    Last edited by terryh; July-14-10 at 09:54 PM.

  2. #2
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    There are some more Arab imported markets ( NOT the ghetto brand liquor stores) in Detroit.

  3. #3
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    I recently discovered a Lebanese Cedar Valley grocery on Van Dyke just north of Utica. They're new so I'm sure they'd appreciate some business. It's a very clean store.

  4. #4
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    There is a West Indian market on 6 mile, just west of the Lodge - Tropical Taste. In addition to Ting, Peanut Punch, Grace label food/canned good, jerk & other seasonings - you can get Jamaican patties, Sorrel (with rum!) and some Caribbean produce that is hard to find elsewhere.

    On 7 Mile, there is a Jamaican restaurant (Jamaica Jamaica) that sells home made juices (Sorrel, Ginger Beer, Carrot Juice, Punch Back, Irish Moss) and also baked goods, including rum cake and cocoa bread.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by terryh View Post
    I vaguely recall sometime back in the mid-eighties when I first started exlporing Detroit, traveling, I think it was somewhere between Eight and Six mile roads, a German themed store that sold food and assorted goods imported from Germany,maybe someone has a recollection of the place. Anyhow where are the good spots in Detroit to buy imported -ethnic foods. There is an African Marketon (Livernois) that sells fresh Kenke, and I noticed a Carribean foods store on the Blvd that I think is closed now. Obviously Southwest Detroit is loaded with markets that sell imported food, how about the rest of the city.

    I remember visiting a small mom and pop Italian market between and Eight and Six mile back in 96, think it was named Julians? There are some markets in Dearborn that are loaded with imported foods from Germany;Balkans;Greece;Egypt;Yemen etc. Joe and Eddies market on Schaefer has a large selection of bulk nuts and raisins (not sure where they were harvested but the price is much lower in Dearborn than the markets around Ferndale) A very large selection of sweet treats and goodies can be found. Maybe its because we have so much mass produced food here, or the soil is better-whatever the reason the food quality to me seems better on much of the imported yummies. I gobbled a wafer bar covered in chocolate that was made in Lebanon and it tasted much better than the Little Debbie crap Ive ingested. Same with the Balkan cheeses and meats...honey made in Germany....Italian pastries....mmm
    Also world cultures have for many centuries have been modifying and perfecting flavors...
    The German store you are talking about may have been Old Country Imports located on Gratiot across from the former Montgomery Wards a block north of 7 Mile. They closed in the later 80s when owner Lucy Evans died.

    The last metro area German only import store (Buchholz Imports on Old 13 Mile in Warren) closed last summer. However many German products can be found in Nino Salvaggio's, and Meijer's. In fact Meijer's has a special aisle just for imported items (at least they do at their Roseville store).

    And each of the 3 Polish Market locations sells many German items, since many German companies (Bahlsen, Dr. Oetker) sell the same items with either German or Polish printing on the packaging.

    Due to the borders between Germany and Poland changing so often over the last 500 years, about 1/2 of all their food specialties are common to both countries.

  6. #6
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    [quote=tkierpiec;164047]There is a West Indian market on 6 mile, just west of the Lodge - Tropical Taste. In addition to Ting, Peanut Punch, Grace label food/canned good, jerk & other seasonings - you can get Jamaican patties, Sorrel (with rum!) and some Caribbean produce that is hard to find elsewhere.

    On 7 Mile, there is a Jamaican restaurant (Jamaica Jamaica) that sells home made juices (Sorrel, Ginger Beer, Carrot Juice, Punch Back, Irish Moss) and also baked goods, including rum cake and cocoa bread.[/quote/]
    mmm rum cake and cocoa bread. I got some take out from a Jamaican restaurant, when I got the fish dinner home it was a whole fish that had the head intact It was tasty nonetheless!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gistok View Post
    The German store you are talking about may have been Old Country Imports located on Gratiot across from the former Montgomery Wards a block north of 7 Mile. They closed in the later 80s when owner Lucy Evans died.

    The last metro area German only import store (Buchholz Imports on Old 13 Mile in Warren) closed last summer. However many German products can be found in Nino Salvaggio's, and Meijer's. In fact Meijer's has a special aisle just for imported items (at least they do at their Roseville store).

    And each of the 3 Polish Market locations sells many German items, since many German companies (Bahlsen, Dr. Oetker) sell the same items with either German or Polish printing on the packaging.

    Due to the borders between Germany and Poland changing so often over the last 500 years, about 1/2 of all their food specialties are common to both countries.
    There was a German Deli on MapleRd. in Troy? some years back. a tall blonde German frauline worked the counter.. Holiday market in Royal Oak also has a German variety of goods Gistok.

  8. #8
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    Yes, there are a few German butcher shop/deli's still around metro Detroit. One formerly known as Nietsche's on Gratiot at 12 1/2 Mile is now called the Dearborn Ham Company.... but they still carry an extensive line of German import food products, as well as meats and lunch meats.

    And there are a few German bakeries. But there are no longer any full line import stores (gift items as well as food) left in metro Detroit.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by terryh View Post
    mmm rum cake and cocoa bread. I got some take out from a Jamaican restaurant, when I got the fish dinner home it was a whole fish that had the head intact It was tasty nonetheless!
    I've noticed that most of the best Mexican places in SW Detroit serve the fish the same way. Although not a market, I forgot to mention that Caribbean Citchen on 7 Mile (yes, they actually spell it that way, haha!) also has ackee and saltfish, the national dish of Jamaica. I don't think you can get it anywhere else in Metro Detroit.

    What an ugly run-on sentence. Sorry!

  10. #10
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    There is also Udeon Jamaican Patties. http://www.udeonjamaicanpatties.com/ They had a few groceries behind the glass, and had vegetarian patties.....


    Rono's restaurant has Jamaican food and drink. It's old location was just west of Evergreen on Mc Nichols, but they are now directly across from Sinai-Grace....


    I frequent the French African market on Grand River one block west of Lahser as well.
    21631 Grand River, Detroit

    I like the Nescafe (all robusta- like the Clasico Nescafe at Walmart but better) Milo and good Fanta when they have them in stock.....


    I did not know the Phillipine/African market on the Blvd had closed. There is a similar market in the big strip mall @ 12 1/2 and Southfield accross from the Target. It is near the Lee Beauty Supply (sign just says Asian market, but they have Caribbean stuff as well). This strip mall also has an Ethiopian restaurant....
    Last edited by rooms222; July-16-10 at 08:38 AM.

  11. #11
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    Nortown Bakery on 7 Mile at Van Dyke sells some harder to find Romanian products and the proprietor makes his own Romanian style smoked meat products (salam and carnatzi). Wine Castle on 7 Mile in Livonia at like Middlebelt also sells a few Romanian products. Max's on 15 mile at Ryasn has the largest selection of Romanian and former Yugoslavian goods (including somewhat current magazines from RO). You need to be careful with the expiration dates though. Karbala Market on Warren at the Sfld Fwy is run by very nice people that donate to charities helping in the Detroit Arab community. Those are just a few that I frequent, but I know there are many more.

  12. #12
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    Thanks for reminding me about Nortown Frumoasa....I was presented a flavorful tray of cheeses and smoked meats from the Balkans when I was dating a Serbian lady...Im going to have to check out Nortown on my next day off...mmmm mmmm mmmmm.

    Oh and a little heads up on soaps and oils, that may be produced in the USA, im not sure at this writing, but a lot of African vendors(and Black Whole Collective) sell these 'exotic'soaps made with honey, mango and assorted natural ingredients..great stuff! And say hi to Coonjuice Man at Black Whole....hell spin and play some funky spunky mixes for youre shopping pleasure....

  13. #13
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    Default Old Country Imports, Gratiot - Terryh, Gistok

    I just joined this forum and hope you might be able to help me with some information. A few months ago some of you (Terryh, Gistok) were talking about an old store that used to sell imported German goods. It was Old Country Imports on Gratiot. Someone mentioned it closed in the latter 80s when the owner, Lucy Evans, died. Do you know about the store's earlier history? I believe a couple named Walter and Christine either owned it or worked there, at least in the 1970s. My father emigrated to the U.S. from Slovenia in the 1950s; I have some old letters to him from kin. A letter from 1979 talked about relatives; Walter and Christine at Old Country Imports, 14408 Gratiot, were mentioned as kin. Does anyone know their last name? Know anything of this family, if they switched businesses, etc? I've seen some older photos posted from time to time. Does anyone have a photo of this business or these people? I hope to hear from one or more of you. Thanks. Pavla

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimaz View Post
    I recently discovered a Lebanese Cedar Valley grocery on Van Dyke just north of Utica. They're new so I'm sure they'd appreciate some business. It's a very clean store.
    I've been there a number of times and their carry out food is delicious. They also have a lot of dry goods and other Arabic foods.

  15. #15
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    Welcome to the forum, Pavla!

  16. #16
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    Thank you, ljbad89!

  17. #17
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    There are a large number of Chinese and Vietnamese groceries and bakeries along John R. from 10 mile up to 14 mile. There is an especially good Chinese bakery up just north of 13 mile on John R.


    There used to be a lot of Korean groceries along west 7 mile in Detroit, but they departed along with the Korean population. There was a Korean grocery out John R around 19 mile.

    Back in the forties and fifties, there were any number of different European specialty groceries in Detroit.

  18. #18
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    I love it... love to find these kinds of stores in the city and out. Great produce and deli to be found at Warren and Miller and Greenland Grocery store in east Dearborn, just outside the Detroit border. Grape leaves, and curried and other tasty rice dishes fresh from their deli very, very low prices. Baked chicken, pastries etc. Olive bar, and a juice bar too! Wee. I am getting hungry!
    Quote Originally Posted by terryh View Post
    I vaguely recall sometime back in the mid-eighties when I first started exlporing Detroit, traveling, I think it was somewhere between Eight and Six mile roads, a German themed store that sold food and assorted goods imported from Germany,maybe someone has a recollection of the place. Anyhow where are the good spots in Detroit to buy imported -ethnic foods. There is an African Marketon (Livernois) that sells fresh Kenke, and I noticed a Carribean foods store on the Blvd that I think is closed now. Obviously Southwest Detroit is loaded with markets that sell imported food, how about the rest of the city.

    I remember visiting a small mom and pop Italian market between and Eight and Six mile back in 96, think it was named Julians? There are some markets in Dearborn that are loaded with imported foods from Germany;Balkans;Greece;Egypt;Yemen etc. Joe and Eddies market on Schaefer has a large selection of bulk nuts and raisins (not sure where they were harvested but the price is much lower in Dearborn than the markets around Ferndale) A very large selection of sweet treats and goodies can be found. Maybe its because we have so much mass produced food here, or the soil is better-whatever the reason the food quality to me seems better on much of the imported yummies. I gobbled a wafer bar covered in chocolate that was made in Lebanon and it tasted much better than the Little Debbie crap Ive ingested. Same with the Balkan cheeses and meats...honey made in Germany....Italian pastries....mmm
    Also world cultures have for many centuries have been modifying and perfecting flavors...

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pavla View Post
    I just joined this forum and hope you might be able to help me with some information. A few months ago some of you (Terryh, Gistok) were talking about an old store that used to sell imported German goods. It was Old Country Imports on Gratiot. Someone mentioned it closed in the latter 80s when the owner, Lucy Evans, died. Do you know about the store's earlier history? I believe a couple named Walter and Christine either owned it or worked there, at least in the 1970s. My father emigrated to the U.S. from Slovenia in the 1950s; I have some old letters to him from kin. A letter from 1979 talked about relatives; Walter and Christine at Old Country Imports, 14408 Gratiot, were mentioned as kin. Does anyone know their last name? Know anything of this family, if they switched businesses, etc? I've seen some older photos posted from time to time. Does anyone have a photo of this business or these people? I hope to hear from one or more of you. Thanks. Pavla

    Here is a 1983 book called Detroit Guide that lists Mrs. Evans as the owner.....

    http://books.google.com/books?id=IRP...ed=0CCUQ6AEwAA

  20. #20
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    Julian's Italian bakery and foods is still around, they are on Rochester Road south of 14 Mile in I think Clawson now.

    You can find Scottish food imports and fresh made at Ackroyd's on Five Mile just east of Beech.

    Holiday Market has quit having the whole grain German bread. Anyone know where I can get some?

  21. #21
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    As soon as I opened Windows IE and went to the forum page, this was the banner I saw.


  22. #22
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    Default Thanks!!! re Old County Imports

    Thank you, rooms222!! I appreciate your telling me about the book!! Pavla

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pavla View Post
    I just joined this forum and hope you might be able to help me with some information. A few months ago some of you (Terryh, Gistok) were talking about an old store that used to sell imported German goods. It was Old Country Imports on Gratiot. Someone mentioned it closed in the latter 80s when the owner, Lucy Evans, died. Do you know about the store's earlier history? I believe a couple named Walter and Christine either owned it or worked there, at least in the 1970s. My father emigrated to the U.S. from Slovenia in the 1950s; I have some old letters to him from kin. A letter from 1979 talked about relatives; Walter and Christine at Old Country Imports, 14408 Gratiot, were mentioned as kin. Does anyone know their last name? Know anything of this family, if they switched businesses, etc? I've seen some older photos posted from time to time. Does anyone have a photo of this business or these people? I hope to hear from one or more of you. Thanks. Pavla
    Pavla, I wonder if the Christine (of Walter & Christine) that you refer to is actually the person that I know as "Christl"?? I knew an employee there named Christl, and her husband was often in the store (Walter?). I'm going to see another former employee there (Nellie) this Friday, and ask her.

    I do know that Christl and her husband bought the store contents after Lucy Evans died in the 1990s and moved to Port Richie Florida. They had a hurricane go thru the area a few years back that destroyed their house, but left the import store intact. I'll get back to you....

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