We discovered the perfect 40 mile bike loop that of course includes a decadent brunch at the half-way point (our motivation for the ride!). Departing from my house just off Miller Ave in Ann Arbor, we take Huron River Drive northwest as we make our way into the darling bedroom community of Chelsea. It is a beautiful ride because we are along the Huron River for the majority of it and fortunately little car traffic.
Arriving to Chelsea’s Main Street a little sweaty (we brought a sweat rag for a half-ass attempt of cleaning ourselves), we parked our bikes and headed right to the Common Grill. You can imagine after a challenging 25 mile trek we were ready to eat! This was no ordinary brunch menu. The last time I was here I brought my Mom when I was a student for dinner because it is one of the best restaurants in the state and a special treat that seemed fitting for a parent visit. You can’t go wrong with whatever you order. The local papers describe it as “uncommonly grand” and I could not agree more.
Being a sucker for fish tacos (I have a mild obsession), I fell for their beer battered halibut fish tacos. Each main course starts with a soup or salad. I opted for their gazpacho as an appropriately cooling tomato and cucumber soup. It was served in an ice cream sundae like glass and topped with croutons. Incredibly flavorful and exactly what I needed after being overheated the last 2 hours.
How could I forget the hot rolls of buttery bread that came out as soon as we sat down! These rolls are like crack so before we knew it, we had consumed the first basket and immediately our server assumed we needed another (I don’t think we needed it, but we welcomed the basket happily). One of my favorite Rikisms (Riki is my Dad) is “You can always tell the quality of a restaurant, by the quality of it’s bread”. The Common Grill did just that!
I wish the bread wasn’t so good because I almost didn’t have room for my main course after the bread and gazpacho. Good thing I burned a gazillion calories beforehand
Take the trek to Chelsea and treat yourself to uncommon food for the common man. If you are really ambitious, do the ride – it’s a fantastic workout, beautiful scenery, and a well-deserved meal at the end of the tunnel.
Next time, HOWEVER, we are calling the boys to pick us up so we can add some brunch cocktails to the feast and load the bikes in the car for the drive back. The ride home was a little less enjoyable with a full belly, but we survived!