food & grocery: Frugal Friday at Roger Monk's Yappy Hour - restaurant offers treats for you and your pooch each week on the back deck
Mary Bilyeu | Contributor
Roger Monk's is today's Frugal Floozie Friday feature for many reasons. It's got great food, and it offers a wide variety of appetizers, drinks and desserts for $5 or less — our mandatory per-person budget — during its weekday Happy Hour.
But not only does this casual, comfortable, but still sophisticated restaurant welcome humans, on Thursdays it also welcomes dogs at its fabulous Yappy Hour. Yes, well-behaved humans and their adorable leashed owners can gather on the back deck for food and fun — a chance to chat with fellow animal lovers and furry friends.
Jeremy, Stuart (Jeremy's dad, my ex-husband), Poochie and I recently took advantage of a perfect summery day to enjoy some fabulous food. We started with appetizers, each of which costs $5: a very generous portion of chips with a slightly spicy salsa, crisp-coated and tender chicken satay with a creamy peanut sauce, and enormous mussels braised in a lemon-wine sauce. These were delicious, as well as being perfect for sharing. The two other options we could have chosen were hummus served with toasted pita bread and a duck liver mousse served with crackers.
We drank water — as did Poochie, who was given his own personal bowl of water even before the humans were taken care of; and it was served refreshingly with orange rather than the ubiquitous lemon. But if you're in the mood for something a bit stronger, 20-ounce pints of draught beer cost $4; glasses of wine and drinks such as Martinis, a Daiquiri, or a Cosmopolitan cost $5.
And then there was the temptation of dessert. Desserts, too, cost an even $5 — perfect for our budget. As good as the appetizers were — and they were very good — these were absolutely the stars of the show.
Jeremy order the utterly decadent chocolate mousse pictured at the top of the post. It was as thick as ice cream, rather than pudding-like as some can be. It was intensely chocolatey and simply addictive. You'd be tempted to keep eating if the portion were larger, but the full coffee cup of this treat was a perfect and generous serving.
As soon as I heard a few of my very favorite words — "bread pudding," "cherries," and "caramel" — all in the same sentence, as our server recited the dessert options, I knew that this would be mine. Bread pudding featuring tart cherries and a bourbon caramel sauce... oh, be still my heart! This was rich, sweet, had a bit of a kick, and was just perfection. I loved the dessert, but would happily have just taken a spoon to a jar of the sauce and eaten it "as is" even without the tender, fabulous pudding base.
Stuart was in the mood for a hot fudge sundae, which isn't on the menu; but our very kind and helpful server, Dennis, offered to bring a serving of vanilla ice cream (which is a standard offering) topped with the bourbon caramel sauce. Although one of my personal pet peeves is customers who make special orders — hard-working restaurant staff are not personal chefs — I was very pleased to know that great service and keeping customers happy was high on the agenda at Roger Monk's.
There are many public places that dogs aren't welcome, so it's wonderful that on Thursdays you can linger over great food and cool drinks at Roger Monk's while your dog gets to play with new friends. Poochie was fussed over by the staff and by other customers enjoying the fabulous weather, and he just loves being the center of attention!
We had a grand time at Roger Monk's, and highly recommend its Happy and Yappy Hours for fabulous treats at reasonable prices. What a great opportunity to unwind at the end of the day!
5400 Plymouth Road
Ann Arbor, MI 48105
Tuesday - Saturday: 3-10 p.m.
Sunday: 3-9 p.m.
Happy Hour: Tuesday - Friday 3-6 p.m.
Yappy Hour: Thursday 4-7 p.m.
writes about her adventures in the kitchen - making dinner, celebrating holidays, entering cooking contests ... whatever strikes her fancy. She is also on a mission to find great deals for her Frugal Floozie Friday posts, seeking fabulous food at restaurants on the limited budget of only $5 per person. Feel free to email her with questions or comments or suggestions: email@example.com.
You should visit Mary's blog — Food Floozie — on which she enthuses and effuses over all things food-related. And be sure to look for her monthly articles about holiday foods and traditions in the Washtenaw Jewish News.
The phrase "You Should Only Be Happy" (written in Hebrew on the stone pictured in this post) comes from Deuteronomy 16:15 and is a wish for all her readers - when you come to visit here, may you always be happy.