Larry Mongo’s speakeasy first opened in the ’80s—during those years, his son, Jerome, ran it as a night club with a focus on rap music. The space shuttered for more than 10 years during the ’90s and early ’00s when downtown Detroit was at its most desolate, but friends convinced Mongo to re-open for a one-night-only event in 2007 and he hasn’t closed since. The place, which is cluttered with kitschy antiques and old photos, has live music on Fridays and Saturdays. Mongo himself can always be found somewhere in the restaurant, entertaining visitors with his crazy stories and often jumping on stage to sing karaoke with the band—he’s a total character and very much beloved by locals from every part of the city.

You may also like