Metro Detroit's VegFest, which celebrates all things 100% vegan, is returning June 4 in Sheds 5 and 6 at Eastern Market.
VegFest is presented by VegMichigan, an organization that promotes a plant-based lifestyle. It runs 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and admission is free. The event draws thousands of people and offers cooking demonstrations, food samples (including comfort foods and sweets) and educational materials.
More than 100 vendors will be on hand, including many metro Detroit vegetarian restaurants. They include Aratham Gourmet To Go, Cooking with Que, Gora's Grill and Planthorpie. Among those doing cooking demonstrations will be Quiana (Que) Broden from Cooking with Que and the Kitchen by Que on Woodward Avenue in Detroit's New Center area and Suzy Silvestre, owner of Chive Kitchen in Farmington. For information: vegmichigan.org.
Beach-themed bar and restaurant opens
BrisaBar, the popular beach-themed spot at Campus Martius Park, is now open for the season. It made its debut last summer and offered lunch and dinner as well as drinks and happy hour fare.
BrisaBar is an outdoor covered bar and restaurant with table and lounge chairs where patrons can relax, have a cocktail and dine in a beach-like setting. Its menu includes salads, small bites and sandwiches such as its shrimp po' boy and Brisa burger. Specialty cocktails include Havana Hurricane, Kiss by the Beach and Brisa-Rita.
This year, the establishment has expanded its hours. It's open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday for lunch and dinner. Happy hour is 3-6 p.m. Monday through Friday. BrisaBar is from the Elia Group's Iconic collection, which also includes Parc near Campus Martius and the Anchor Bar on Fort Street. For information: 313-209-5301 or brisabar.com.
Burger Battle tickets on sale
Mark your calendars for one of Detroit's favorite summer food events. Burger Battle Detroit, a competition where local chefs and restaurant battle for the best burger title, takes place noon to 4 p.m. June 25 in Eastern Market's Shed 5.
Fifteen metro Detroit chefs will be competing at the 2023 edition of the event, which is in its eighth year. Among them will be 2022 champ Max Hardy of Coop Caribbean Fusion.
Event ticket holders get to vote for their three favorite burger, and the top five vote-getters move to the judges table. (Full disclosure, I am a judge at this year's event along with other local foodies.) The winner earns $1,000 and a Burger Battle trophy.
General admission tickets are $30 (plus fees) and on sale now. VIP tickets are available for $40 (plus fees), which allows for event entry at 11 a.m. and exclusive access to the burgers and chefs. The event will include local vendors selling merchandise and a cash bar. All ticket holders get unlimited burger samples while they last. Tickets are available at eventbrite.com.
Barbecue book celebrates 25 years
An old favorite book for barbecue cooks is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year.
It was in 1998 that grilling guru Steven Raichlen provided an in-depth culinary guide for outdoor cooking enthusiasts. Raichlen spent more than three years traveling the world to research “The Barbecue! Bible” (Workman, $29.99), which covered everything from grilling basics to barbecue tools and included lots of how-to advice and recipes. The book explored grilling in different regions of the U.S. as well as cultures around the world.
Now, with more than 1 million copies in print, Workman Publishing has re-released “The Barbecue! Bible” with a new cover and all the same recipes — more than 500 of them. Since its publication, Raichlen has delivered a series of cookbooks on topics such as smoking foods over coals, turning out perfect brisket and whipping up sauces and marinades.
Every year, Raichlen issues grilling trend predictions. Some of this year's predictions involve budget-conscious grilling (thanks to higher grocery prices), rotisserie grilling and some exotic grilling flavors. Check them out at barbecuebible.com.
Contact Detroit Free Press food and restaurant writer Susan Selasky and send food and restaurant news to: email@example.com. Follow @SusanMariecooks on Twitter. Subscribe to the Free Press.
This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: VegFest returns June 4 to Eastern Market