Red, white & green? — Don't have plans for Fourth of July weekend? Look no further than Dooley's in Sterling Heights and Roseville. They'll be open 6 p.m.-2 a.m. July 1-4, with burgers and dogs, giveaways and drink specials ($15 fish bowls). Drop in at 12414 Hall Rd., Sterling Heights (586-323-3501) or 32500 Gratiot Ave., Roseville (586-296-BREW). See dooleysirish.com for more info.
Blues & cruise — If you like Motown, food and boating, you might want a ticket for the Detroit Princess' Motown Dinner Cruise. The Prolifics play your favorite Motown hits during a two-and-a-half-hour cruise on the Detroit River. Tickets are $50-$60, and boats depart from Hart Plaza at 6:30 p.m. The next outing is July 3; see detroitprincess.com or call 877-338-2628 for this month's schedule.
Yippie-ki-yay! — Congrats to the Fly Trap. Food Network Magazine recently named the best breakfast locations in each state, and Fly Trap took the top spot for Michigan for its "Cowboy Curtis" dish: a rib-eye steak complete with "wild west" sauce, two fried eggs, potatoes and bread. The award-winning meal is $9.95, available for carry-out at 22950 Woodward Ave., Ferndale; 248-399-5150.
Rick Bayless knows how to party. Fiesta at Rick's: Fabulous Food for Great Times with Friends (W.W. Norton & Company, $35) showcases 150 unique Mexican recipes, delicious choices to make the book's four party themes successful gatherings for you and your friends. Various spins on guacamole, chipotle-roasted almonds and Champagne margaritas get things started. Creamy chicken and greens with roasted poblano and caramelized onions should get guests oohing and aahing. And chocolate-pecan ice cream should leave everybody soothed.
Somewhat under the craft beer radar, Battle Creek's Arcadia Brewing Company has been crafting quality, small-batch English-style suds since 1996. We particularly like Arcadia's flagship beer, Angler's Ale. At the proper serving temperature, it shows a complex malt character with flavors of toffee and toast, before finishing dry with an herbal bite from Goldings whole leaf hops. It is what our drinking friends overseas like to call a "session" beer. Purchase a mixed 12-pack to sample Angler's Ale along with three other Arcadia brews.
These flag-themed dishes, bowls, napkins, spreaders, serving trays, even salt and pepper shakers are whimsical, colorful and patriotic, all adorned with red, white and blue stars and stripes. They're the perfect complement to any Fourth of July gathering. Broadcast your allegiance to the good old U.S.A. with these variations on Old Glory. We found these at Sur la Table.