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March 15, 2012 - Image 64

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2012-03-15

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arts & entertainment >> the best of everything

Pot CY Gold

St. Patty's Day leprechaun would find rich delights at O'Mara's.


oing into the restaurant business
without previous experience is
more than just a challenge ... It's
like diving into the ocean without know-
ing how to swim.
Kevin O'Mara knew how to make sure
the olive oil in restaurants wasn't seep-
ing from cans ... And how to swab meat
grinders to make sure they were clean.
Everybody laughed ... his CPA, banker
and friends, while shaking their heads
and talking to the wall in telling him he
would lose his shirt.
Kevin did have a little of the restaurant
feel as a line cook one time at Blind Fish
in St. Clair Shores,
and he did know
how to make corned
beef and cabbage
and Shepherd's Pie.
If St. Patrick's Day
was all the time,
Kevin could have
the biggest laugh
at the skeptics ...
At last year's mid-
Kevin O'Mara
March Irish fest, his
O'Mara's restaurant
on 12 Mile and
Coolidge in Berkley, went through more
than 300 pounds of corned beef and more
than 200 pounds of cabbage ... And his
Shepherd's Pie today is a specialty at the
But these two dishes alone didn't make
Kevin a success in the dining business ...
as O'Mara's restaurant celebrated its 18th
anniversary last Saturday.
Customers breathe easy knowing
that the owner is also an environmen-
tal engineer and has his own chemical
analysis company that checks places like
restaurants for dangerous impurities ...
Inspecting products like those that may
say "95 percent fat free" for the Food &

Drug Administration (FDA)
March 15 through Thursday,
or making certain that items
March 22 ...Siegel's Deli,
meet FDA standards.
Maple just west of Haggerty,
The familiar faces of broth-
Commerce Township.
ers Lewis and Harry Sawyer
have been at O'Mara's since it
... By Jerry Silecchia ... "I
opened, taking over the for-
recently took my wife, Doreen,
mer Chuck Joseph's Place For
to Lelli's Inn on Opdyke
Steak building ... Lewis is the
Road in Auburn Hills. We
personable restaurant host
hadn't eaten at Lelli's since
and Harry its executive chef
it left Woodward and Grand
... Also there since opening
Boulevard but always remem-
is Todd Starks behind the bar
bered its famous steaks and
and waiter nephew of Dorothy and the late chops with zip sauce.
Chuck Joseph ... 18 years, too, for waitress
"After briefly perusing the menu we
Bernie Pitts and Lee Riesch, waiter and
both settled on lamb chops. Doreen got
the meal that comes with antipasto, min-
Among O'Mara's heavy sellers is a
estrone, salad and dessert, while I selected
whitefish prepared several different ways,
from their new a la carte menu that con-
sauteed, battered and encrusted with pota- siderably lessens the cost.
to ... Also wanted items like crab cakes,
Piping-hot rolls and butter were brought
salmon, premises-made meatloaf, etc.
to the table, always a tempting treat. First
On the heels of O'Mara's March 10 anni- course was a large, tasty salad that we
versary ... is its always-big St. Patrick's
easily shared, followed by a sumptuous
Day festival reeling with entertainment, a
chilled antipasto for one. The bowl of min-
special menu and Kevin's singing.
estrone was not the usual chunky-style
Seating at O'Mara's is 120 plus 25 at the
but more of a puree and quite delicious.
bar and 60 more at an outdoor patio used
We split the side of spaghetti that
when weather permits ... Hours are 8
blended tomato, basil and ground beef in
a.m.-11 Sunday-Thursday ... and 8 a.m.-
this Bolognese-style sauce that stuck to
midnight Friday-Saturday ... The bar
the spaghetti and made the bread more
remains open until 1 a.m. each day.
instrumental as we dredged it through the
This year also marked the first time
remaining sauce.
that O'Mara's has been open for breakfast
"Then came the prime baby lamb
all seven days, 8 a.m.-2 p.m.
chops' piece de resistance, each with two
Kevin is still active in the environmen-
twin-bones done to exact consistencies
tal world with his Midwest Analytical
sitting in Lelli's famous zip sauce.
Services in Ferndale ... But his baby that
"The entire meal was refreshing and
has grown into a full-fledged restaurant
delicious. And our visit will certainly not
of coveted popularity is still the reason for be the last time."
Kevin's chest getting bigger with pride.
MAIL DEPT. ... "Your recent mention
DANDY DINING DEAL ... 10-12 oz.
of the stuffed animals that were sold at the
whitefish, broiled or baked ... Includes
old London Chop House rang loud bells
choice of four soups or salad plus pota-
in my head. The Fred Silber Co., owned by
toes and vegetable ... $6.95 ... Thursday,
my dad and me, was the seller to LCH of

those stuffed toys, and it was amazing just
how many they sold there. Thanks for the
memory" ... Dennis Silber
"What was the name of the Greek res-
taurant that was owned years ago by the
owner of Big Daddy's? And is it true that
he is opening Big Daddy's Again?" Sybil
[Tom Peristeris was a co-owner in
three of them ... Mykonos Supper Club
on Beaubien and Lafayette and Old
Parthenon on Monroe, both in Greektown,
Detroit, and Big Daddy's on Orchard Lake
Road, West Bloomfield ... He is slated
to soon open a Big Daddy's in Livonia,
with eyes open wide to someday again
have a Big Daddy's in West Bloomfield or
Farmington Hills.
MILD, SPICY AND other varieties
of concoctions again as Brotherhood
of Temple Emanu-El, 10 Mile east of
Greenfield, Oak Park, has its annual Chili
Cook-off, Sunday, March 18, starting at 5
p.m. ... Bingo will follow the judging by
journalist Jack Lessenberry,
Brotherhood President Mitch Meisner and
me ... Marla Schindler's chili was 2011's
selection by the judges, and attendees
chose David and Mitchell Hart's chili
... This year, prizes will be given to the
top three chills ...$5 per person, $12
families, no charge for 7 and under ...
Brotherhood will supply the hot dogs, bev-
erages, etc. ... Chairpersons are Michael
Phillips and Howard Sherman.
CONGRATS ... To Dr. Michael Zuroff
on his birthday ... To Sherman Char on
his 70th birthday ... To William "Willie"
Stone on his 88th birthday ... To Jason
and Denise Dunn on their 14th anniversa-
ry ... To Richard and Judy Moss on their
55th anniversary.

Danny's email is dannyraskin@sbcglobal.net .



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56 March 15 • 2012

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