Change and Grow

The Rattlesnake Club sees changes, and growth, in business.


A golden and ruby beet pyramid salad at Detroit's Rattlesnake Club.

When auto sales declined sharply in late 2008, the Rattlesnake Club, one of Detroit’s oldest fine-dining restaurants, quickly learned how closely its fortunes were tied to the OEMs and their suppliers.

“It’s been a lot of fun rebuilding the business,” says John Stroh III, chairman and CEO of The Stroh Companies, which acquired the 25-year-old restaurant after popular chef Jimmy Schmidt left in 2010. “We’ve watched the Caucus Club, Pontchartrain Wine Cellars, and Opus One close their doors, but our goal was to stabilize the business and then grow it.”

Where the popular eatery once relied greatly on auto industry parties, both at the restaurant and offsite  — Big Three executives often had the restaurant cater events at their offices or inside their homes — today the Rattlesnake Club has built up an impressive list of wedding and corporate hospitality clients.

“We’re getting the restaurant more involved in the community, whether it’s a special offer for the (recent) Il Volo concert at the Fox Theatre, events at Eastern Market, or in our atrium here at Stroh River Place,” Stroh says. “A lot of those outside events serve to draw additional traffic to the restaurant.”

Stroh also embarked on several renovations, including the decor, private rooms, and atrium. Executive Chef Christopher Franz added an herb garden. The restaurant, which offers an idyllic setting along the riverfront, handled 30 weddings this year; so far, another 20 are booked for 2014. db

Edit Module
Edit Module Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Related Articles

Virtual Care

The telemedicine trend.

Food Smart

It's a Duesy

Gilmore Car Museum expects new Duesenberg exhibit to attract more visitors to Hickory Corner

The Son Also Rises

A formerly down-on-his-luck restaurant worker now owns multiple eateries in Royal Oak and Howell.

Community Business

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. Macomb County Tops Country for Manufacturing Job Growth
    The U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics recently reported that Macomb County is...
  2. Beaumont Health Announces Retailers for Royal Oak’s Woodward Corners
    Beaumont Health today announced retailers for Woodward Corners, a $32.8-million,...
  3. Taubman in Bloomfield Hills Sells Shares of Three Asian Shopping Centers for $480M
    Bloomfield Hills-based Taubman Centers Inc., a large luxury shopping mall developer, has agreed...
  4. Southfield’s 123Net Partners with Stockholm’s Telia Carrier to Expand High-speed Fiber in Michigan
    123Net, a large data center services provider based in Southfield, today announced it has...
  5. Leaders Named for Historic Ford House, Fair Lane Estate
    The boards of trustees of the Edsel and Eleanor Ford House in Grosse Pointe Shores and Fair Lane,...
  6. Wolverine Packing Opens New Storage, Packing Facility in Detroit’s Eastern Market
    Detroit’s Wolverine Packing Co. has opened a new, 180,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art meat...