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Lovers Only

August 14, 2019

  • 34 E. Grand River Avenue
  • Detroit, MI 48226
  • (313) 986-1174
  • Website
  • Menu

Our third and final day working in Detroit was long…but not as long as the previous day.  We only worked about 14 hours instead of the 19 we did on Tuesday.

We worked through lunch before heading downtown where we were meeting up with another group of co-workers and setting up shop for the day.  I got my partner set up with what he needed then I told him I needed to go for a walk and find a Pepsi.

I did a little bit more than find a Pepsi.  I had walked around a little bit on Tuesday and was kind of shocked with downtown Detroit.  I don’t go down there very often but I don’t remember Detroit looking like this much of a city.  There were shops and restaurants and most importantly, people.

I hadn’t eaten so I went looking for someplace to grab a quick burger.  I came up to the corner of Grand River and Griswold Street.  There is a business there at street level of the 28 Grand building that didn’t sound like it should be a restaurant at all.  My mind went some place much seedier but as I walked past it, I noticed signs for sandwiches.

Lovers Only is not a porn shop.  It’s actually a really delicious counter service burger joint about a block west of Woodward Avenue on Grand River Avenue in downtown Detroit.  After eating there, I assume the name means something like (Burger) Lovers Only.  But, let’s be honest.  The name is what really got my attention and likely the reason I chose to stop in and see what it was all about.

The restaurant is a fast casual counter service place that hands you a number then brings you the meal once it’s cooked.  There is a large menu hanging over the order counter near the front door with their limited but tasty menu offerings.

The decor, as described in this Eater Detroit article, is  “part mid-century modern, part finished basement.”  It’s an interesting mix of pastel plastic school room chairs and subway tile.  It’s an upscale way of getting a simple look and feel to the restaurant that gets a lot of it’s brightness from the large windows that look out on to the busy Detroit streets.

The menu at Lovers Only is pretty similar to a lot of other burger places.  They keep it simple with burgers, sandwiches, fries, and shakes.  There is a beer and cocktail menu as well if you’re dining in but I was on the clock and taking it to go so that was out of the question.

I ordered the Classic Smash with a double patty minus the mayo and an order of Fresh-Cut Fries.  The cost was just under $15.  I took a seat at one of the nearby tables and waited for my name to be called.  It took about 10 minutes for the paper bag to be handed to me.

I started in on the fries on my walk back to where my co-workers were set up.  The fries lived up to the name.  They were fresh cut and french fried.  They were that perfect mix of crispy yet soft and had just enough salt that you could taste it but it wasn’t overpowering.

The burger was pretty great.  Each patty was a 6 oz piece of meat that is smashed on the griddle.  The American cheese had melted in to all the nooks and crannies of the fresh beef so you got a proportional bite of meat and cheese every time.  The bun was a grilled white bread bun that was simple but really brought the whole sandwich together.

If you can’t tell, I really enjoyed my meal from Lovers Only.  Burgers should be simple and delicious and that’s exactly what Lovers Only gets right.

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