Thursday, October 23, 2014

Detroit Reborn in Colors Worker Owned Restaurant

I was a disbeliever.

Growing up in the shadow of Detroit, I had an image of food there as Greek Town, Coney Island or  high-end unaffordable chic restaurants but little in-between. But this was different. The concept?A restaurant called “Colors” serving local food prepared by worker owners who were training in the restaurant business and were earning a living wage. What? I had to shake my head.  Those terms are traditionally not found in the same sentence let alone in one that has real potential to create social change. I just didn’t believe.

At the Making Good Food Work conference held in Detroit Mi, April 19 the Colors team presented their project “Colors” with verve and energy that shook the room, they were enthusiastic, flipping and shouting and pounding the beat to “We Will Rock You”.  As members of the conference we were asked to join a group whether project based or issue based and the presentations were to entice us. Although normally a somewhat boisterous person, I was a little taken aback by the level of enthusiasm and the youth, it seemed sort of  naive ………………..

But the concept was intriguing. As a chef, food educator and having been a restaurant worker for years, I wanted to know more. So a group of us came together; community organizers, chefs, community gardeners, food coop staff,sustainable food systems  outreach educators, marketing directors, students- people from all walks of life. And it was life they breathed into this lofty concept and brought it to earth and helped to give it limbs and a brain and marching orders.

Watch out for delicious, fair food, showing up at “Flash FOOD Mobs” in Downtown Detroit, lunch pedaled to your office door in earth friendly food carts and a place you can feel good about supporting.

Did I say, I was a non-believer? Not anymore……………


The restaurant “Colors” will open September 11, 2011 in Harmony Park in Downtown Detroit. Watch for it, it’s going to change the way you think about a decent lunch. The Spirit of Detroit, manifested in food…………….


COLORS; A worker owned restaurant that will provide not only jobs, but job training to underserved marginalized food service workers, sustainable and affordable local food to the community and  contributing to the economy of  Detroit’s growers.

Office for ROC Detroit (Restaurant  Opportunities Center)

Minsu Longiaru, ROC Detroit Co-ordinator

(313) 962-5020

ROC New York


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  1. [...] Harmonie Park to Get New Restaurant DOWNTOWN 'Colors of Detroit' is planning a new location for the Virgil Carr Bldg in Harmonie Park. The restaurant is an affiliate of the New York City organization that provided jobs to displaced restaurant workers after the 9/11 attack on the Wold Trade Center. In Detroit, the restaurant will provide training to food industry workers to help them move up into more livable-wage positions in the restaurant industry. Colors of Detroit will also source as much of its ingredients as possible to local farmers, especially those in the City of Detroit. The restaurant will serve farm to table meals in a sophisticated, contemporary setting. Colors of Detroit plans to open September 11, 2011. Detroit Reborn in Colors Worker Owned Restaurant _The Eclectic Kitchen : The Eclectic Kitchen [...]

  2. ROC-Michigan says:

    [...] “Detroit Reborn in COLORS Worker-Owned Restaurant,”  The Eclectic Kitchen (4-12-2011), click here [...]

  3. [...] here for a link to the article This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. [...]

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