Our/City

Happenings & Thoughts

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You’re a star

magic_jake!

Pictured here: Magic Jake of King Tuff, it’s a great band by the by.

I am a guitarist that specializes in Classical, Latin , And Flamenco styles. I’ve been involved in just about every musical style in the past and visit them often as well as compose my own music and arrangements. What I would want people to know is I really enjoy life and music composition & performance. Spontaneity in life and improv are what I enjoy the most and I’m digging in the past and abroad to find new sounds and structures. My musical process is simply absorption & performance.  Most music I ever hear in my head is usually drone like. When I hear it I think it’s great but I wouldn’t like to perform it much, I think what I’m capturing there is the basic root of something and it doesn’t have a picture to it. Compositions I like or create seem to replicate the ebb and flow of nature, create a beauty or unsettledness, or have a profound surprise…..or just be super intense.

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FEATURE FRIDAY: MEET STEVE JAROSZ

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Detroit inspires me for a few reasons. These are very important to me. The riverfront development greenway ideas, and our army of urban farmers make the land of michigan fully visible in an urban environment. Also I feel the people that came to Corktown started a chain reaction in the service industry with an unstoppable DIY ethic of empowerment. It’s now branched out into manufacturing and engineering so you’re always encountering new designs, ideas, with quality on par with any other urban area. Where I live I get no hassles and a lot of love from everyone and it’s very diverse on many levels. The people in the suburbs I work with are very pro Detroit and we are surrounded by positivity. I’d like to see that vibe be a contagion in divisive attitudes in partisan politics, but by definition, they’ll always be the last to catch on. Detroiters should not fear anything. A positive relationship with those around you is a handshake away.

 

I worked with Our Detroit by invitation. I already knew the great people involved but also met the crew from the UK and Europe and after working and partying with them, I could see it was a great match! 

 

My plans for the future are to explore, record, collaborate, and enjoy a beautiful life in a great place with this wonderful community!

Feature Friday

whatupdough

Who are you and what do you want people to know about you? 

I am Mary Beth Carolan. I recently trained at the University of Michigan in the art of fine arts (MFA). This and my previous study of  architecture (BFA) has perfectly positioned me for a career in cookie dough.

What do you make? 

I make frozen cookie dough from scratch in single batches. I specialize in complex concoctions and good texture. Customers get 1/2 dozen hand scoops of dough rolled up in parchment paper for easy no-mess baking. This is my main business. I also make Icebergers from the same dough. To make the Iceberger the baked cookies are stuffed with a generous scoop of all natural vanilla ice cream and rolled around in complementary crunchy bits.

 

What is your baking process? 

Brainstorming, whiskey, music, comfortable shoes, jamming with good friends, and late night mad science… and Whammo! Complex flavors of handmade frozen cookie dough for you to bake at home or a few steps later… and Bam! The frozen goodness of Icebergers direct from a freezer near you (right now – Parker Street Market and Our/Detroit).

How are you inspired by Detroit? 

Detroit inspires me as a place of ingenuity and production. Even though my assembly line is just me right now, I’m always improving my methods for efficiency while focusing on the individual quality of each unit.  I’m making and producing a product that people have real love for. It’s rewarding. I come from a blue collar background. Working hard is a given. I love to work when the work is good and the pay is fair. I now have a business can offer that because I design the system. I decide the playlist. 

Also, people in Detroit are bold, fun, creative, and friendly. It’s inspiring and so helpful. Shout out to Paul, Steph, JJ, Jason, Jaime, Joe, Jeff, Patrick, Phil, Christie, Cheryl, Karen and Johnny!

 

Why do you work with Our/Detroit? 

Icebergers and vodka – Yum!

What are your plans for the future?

This winter I am developing a full line up of 6 flavors and I will introduce the What Up Dough?! ‘variety pack’ when I’m satisfied with the line up. I’m also working on getting What Up Dough?!  into an independent market near you. Check out the website here

What up Dough?!

marybeth_colorColor_whatupdoughcolor_bikephotos by: Olivia Gilmore

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Private Events

Interested in partnering with our/detroit for a special event? email: Detroit@ourvodka.com and request an event form. We can accommodate private parties on Monday and Tuesday nights in the tasting room. If your a non-profit ask about sponsorship as well!

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Who are you and what do you want people to know about you?

My name is Sarah Pappas. I have a small flower farm in Woodbridge called Fresh Cut.

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Fresh Cut Friday

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What do you make/do?

I grow flowers! And I arrange them, for weekly bouquet customers, special events, and a few special businesses in town. I worked for some of the farming nonprofits in town before this, doing a lot of growing and also a lot of organizing and educating, and I can’t help but get some of that into my time now. I’m doing my best, from a social/interpersonal angle, to help growers and potential buyers find each other (this basically means a lot of farmer/entrepreneur parties).

 

What is your growing and harvesting process?

Growing begins with planning. Planning begins… well, it has a couple cycles that it operates on, but let’s go ahead and say that it begins in the late summer/early fall. I plan what I’m going to grow, in a mix of annuals, perennials, and biennials. I look at the colors and textures present, and the spread of bloom time over the season. I skew towards things I’ve grown before, but always mix in a few newcomers. Bulbs go in in November, then direct seeds and transplants (bought from local nursery growers) go in in a couple of waves, beginning in March and ending in July. Well, but here it is September and I’ll be planting some 1 and 2 gallon-sized perennials that I started from bare roots in the spring and grew up over this summer. We just tilled a new field at the edge of Rosa Parks and I’ll be aiming to establish a windbreak of sorts, because that wind from the west is strong!
Got a little off track there, sorry. As for harvesting, that happens on Mondays and Wednesdays, about 10 buckets or so each day. This prepares me for my accounts on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and Friday morning deliveries. Most of my flowers have a great shelf life, well over a week. Some of them (dahlias I’m looking at you) are not so strong, so I harvest them the morning that they’ll go out.

How are you inspired by Detroit?

So many ways! I’ve grown personally so much in the 4 years that I’ve been here. My consciousness about class, race, and privilege has grown by leaps and bounds, pushed along by friends and neighbors who are generous, interested, hopeful, angry, triumphant, compassionate, and restless. People have shared so much of themselves with me, and I am so grateful for it. This year I’m so inspired, gratified, and honored by the interest that people/businesses/press have shown in Fresh Cut. There has been enough demand for me to buy supplemental flowers grown by other friends in the city! This was part of my 5 year growth plan, so it’s exciting that demand is high enough to necessitate it now.

Why do you work with Our/Detroit?

They pay me to bring them flowers! What could be better? They trust me to bring what I think will work best for them; they are going out of their way to divert their capital into the very local business and artistic economies; and they make vodka and coffee taste delicious together.

What are your plans for the future? 

More perennials in the ground, bringing more unusual and beautiful blooms to Detroit. Saturating the local market before I extend delivery into the suburbs. Hiring more help – on the farm, deliveries, design and event work. Forcing more customers to put their face in a flower and SMELL. Buying more flowers from more local growers. Building a hot tub at my house. Managing the woodlot next door to grow shade-loving perennials and maybe even mushrooms. Trading perennial divisions and cuttings with gardeners from all over metro Detroit. Building an amazing haunted house experience that takes up the whole block. Improving my Arabic and Spanish skills so that my business is tri-lingual. Fostering bonds with more rural Michigan farms.

 

Buuuttt, in the shorter run: helping to organizing the Black Farmers Conference http://blackurbangrowers.org/, supporting Friday markets at Live Coal Gallery http://livecoalgallery.com/, pre-selling next year’s Weekly Bouquet Service, pre-selling Thanksgiving centerpieces, and collaborating with a couple local friends on a very nice plant-based gift for December. my homepage freshcutdetroit.com  and on social media: Facebook & Instagram

 

(Bring your own food)

Hungry? There are some great local food options to ‘take out’ or ‘order in’ Ask one of our bartenders for recommendations and we’ll give you the inside scoop. Get the best of both worlds, get your food in Detroit and eat it while you sip on some yummy cocktails or take a bottle to go!

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Feature Friday: Line Studio

 

This week we sat down with Andrew Ward, the man behind Line Studio. Learn about his design process and the making of the Our/Detroit bar!

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Who Are You And What Do You Want People To Know About You?

We are Line Studio Detroit, specializing in cast concrete.  We make concrete countertops, vanities, bar tops, fireplace surrounds, water features, tables, benches and much more.  We love  concrete because the material lends itself to personalization, whether for individual needs or style and personalization with respect to location or context. Our mission is to create products and relationships that are built to last while igniting our personal drive to push the limits of what’s possible in our medium.  Andrew began making concrete in 2003 and brought his wealth of experience to Detroit in 2013.  His goal is to have his experience with the concrete and dedication to his craft be evident in the surfaces he creates.  “I want every piece to be built upon the ones that came before it, and I believe that is evident with the bar at Our Detroit.”    Jessica, Andrew’s wife and partner, grew up in Detroit and after being away for 13 years decided it was time to come back home.

 

Why Did You Build The Our/Detroit Bartop?

We wanted to  showcase the possibilities of concrete, while keeping the context of the space at the front of our mind.   The qualities intended to be expressed were elegance, mass, nature, and the history of building.  We want our work to come in contact with as many people as possible, almost like a piece of public art, but a highly functional one. I believe in Our/Detroit’s mission to create community, have great love and respect for the owners, and are grateful to have been a part of this project.

 

How Were You Inspired By Detroit For This Project?

The buildings of the city loom large over me.  I am interested in their shape and think of the people who occupied the buildings in the past, wonder who will be in them in the future, and I’m especially fascinated by how the buildings were constructed.  Ponyride, where my shop is located, is a concrete building.  The concrete floors and walls, poured in stages, make up  a frame that is filled in with large windows, flooding the interior with light,  This type of building is an example of the factory style utilitarian building championed by Detroit architect Albert Kahn and was significant for several reasons. The amount of light the windows brought in the building created a better working environment,  the building cost was economical, and if properly done the building would last a long time.   Board forming is the building technique used to construct buildings such as Ponyride.  The forms for the floors and walls  were made from various widths and lengths of pine boards, and if you look closely at the ceilings, stair wells, and sections of walls that haven’t been covered over the years, the imprint of the board is plainly visible.  The imprint of that wood is a fossil, a legacy of building, craftsmanship, and innovation.  Visually, the grain pattern of the wood contrasts well with the straight line of the boards and cold mass of the concrete.

 

What Is Your Artistic Process?

The base of the bar was cast first.  I used the process of board formed concrete to cast the base of the bar with white concrete.  It began with oak boards taken off an old trailer that I milled flat and seamed together to create the curved form for casting the base.  After the base was cast and the form disassembled, the boards I cast against were milled down again and used to build black tables throughout the tasting room.   About a week after the base was cast, the bartop was cast.  This involved building a form nearly out of thin air, as there was no cabinetry for the top form to rest on.  The top was cast, demoulded, polished, a HUGE mess was made, cleaned up, and finally sealed.

 

What Are Your Plans For The Future?

We plan to grow roots in Detroit.  Currently the majority of our business is custom projects.  As that continues to expand, we will begin offering small housewares, bathroom vanities, and planters to be shipped across the country.  We also want to explore large outdoor public works such as water features, gardens, or sculpture and build upon the legacy of those types of works in Detroit.  We’ve started a more in depth blog about this project here.

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Feature Friday

The Patty Cools: Mary Ann’s Soda strawberry soda, balsamic vinegar, house made black peppercorn simple syrup, and basil.

PattyCools

Mary Ann’s Soda has been a working concept for a while now, but came into being this May 2014. Seeing that there was a lack of handmade craft sodas, specifically those made in the Detroit area, that paired well with alcohol, we saw it as our golden opportunity. The passion and creativity for our offerings comes from the balance of the four co-founders that we have balancing all facets of the business. And also, the relationships that we have with our partners. We have already been approached by several businesses to partner on custom sodas specifically for their business – everything from plum soda to a jalapeno soda to a coffee soda. Which leads me to our passions about the Motor City. The resurgence of a city that’s fallen on hard times has only been possible – thus far and in the foreseeable future – through partnerships, friendships, networking and teamwork. They are traits that have always been present in metro Detroiters, and will be the cornerstone on which the reemergence of Detroit rests. Our product and service would not be possible without the amazing relationships and partnerships that we’ve built thus far. We are fortunate to have been very selective as to where our product is featured. There are only a handful of bars/restaurants who currently carry Mary Ann’s, and we would like to keep it special and discerning. And in terms of where we would like to go with the company, we see no reason why we should put a cap on our growth. As long as our partnerships are fulfilling for both parties and we are able to provide product to those who have helped us along the way, we would love to be able to grow exponentially. Offering a line of seasonal, artisanal sodas is what we enjoy, and we would be thrilled to be able to grow our client base. Check out their Website

 

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Detroit, don’t let summer float away..

Our tasting rooms opens back up this Wednesday-Friday 4pm, Sat & Sun 1pm. Hope to see you here! If not, make a request to your local watering hole, party store, or favorite restaurant.. Ask them to carry Our/Detroit Vodka!