The Vegetarian Option: Little Market Brasserie
Little Market Brasserie's menu has a couple touches of Chef Ryan Poli's love of Spain—namely the summer sangrias and ceviche—but the vast majority of the menu is in the style of an "American brasserie." Think grilled cheese, iceberg wedge salads, and lobster rolls—but all for sharing.
There are also plenty of vegetarian options on the menu, but my favorite was the grilled asparagus dish with red quinoa, almonds, crispy kale chips and cherries. Considering the time of year, I'm not surprised at how thick, crunchy, and sweet the asparagus was. However, I'm impressed by how well the red quinoa accompaniment, along with fried kale chips, sliced almonds and pickled dried Michigan cherries complement the spears. It was my favorite dish of the night and probably the healthiest thing we ordered, but I didn't for one minute feel like I was eating a "health food," as I looked to my companions for permission to scarf down the last spear.
The deviled eggs ($5.50) have a whipped filling, including a punch of cremini duxelle inside, that's not too heavy. They're topped with parmesan tuiles, making for a fun first bite for dinner.
The thin slices of sunchoke and Asian pear on the sunchoke salad ($11.50) are hard to visually distinguish, but offer a playful contrast in flavor atop arugula and cheddar. A simple red wine vinaigrette tops this dish off.
Mushrooms on toast ($11.50) sounds bland, but that's not the case with this creamy and garlicky warm stew of beech, cremini, and portobello mushrooms, which soaks right into the crunchy crostini. A little bit of shallot marmalade on top cuts through the richness.
This risotto ($14.50) has a nice balance of savory and sweet, with truffle oil and sweet corn kernels throughout, along with a sprinkling of herbs. It may not look too intriguing (risotto rarely does) but is more flavorful than you might expect.