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Modern Mideast food

By Katie Deska
News staff
12/29/2015 - 2941 Street Food, the new fast casual Mediterranean restaurant at 87 W. Auburn Road in Rochester Hills, gets its name from the geographic coordinates for the Middle East and Mediterranean regions, 29 degrees North, 41 degrees East. Owner Jacques Von Standen partnered with restaurateur Joe Vicari, head of Joe Vicari Restaurant Group, which includes Andiamo, Joe Muer Seafood, and others, to offer diners what Von Standen called "a modern version of modern Mideast cuisine." Von Standen grew up in South Africa and came to the states as a teenager with a chef's ambition. In Washington D.C., Von Standen opened Café Au Lait, where he cooked for 17 years. "I had a Lebanese boss who inspired me to get into Lebanese and Mideast cuisine," he said. "From '96 to '97, I spent a year just eating Mideast food and studying. It was a lot of fun, eating hummus for 12 months!" In addition to salads and snacks, 2941 specializes in build-your-own dishes, which can be prepared as an Honest Bowl, Stuff It sandwich, Jar Chow piled in a mason jar or the Bazaar Meal, which allows diners to choose nine different dishes. On draft are Michigan craft brews, while the bottles come from Lebanon, Greece, Israel, and Turkey. The menu pulls from those countries as well as Egypt, Tunisia, Cyprus, and others.

Front/Back is reported each month by Katie Deska. We welcome news items or tips, on or off the record, about what's happening in the front or back of the house at metro area restaurants.

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