PAO Detroit Brings Asian Fusion Cuisine to Detroit’s Grand Circus Park

Prime Concepts Detroit has announced the opening of PAO Detroit, an Asian fusion restaurant and lounge, located in Detroit’s historic Michigan Oriental Theater, which originally opened in 1927.
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PAO Detroit
PAO Detroit has opened and is housed in the 1920s-era Michigan Oriental Theater. // Photo courtesy of PAO Detroit

Prime Concepts Detroit has announced the opening of PAO Detroit, an Asian fusion restaurant and lounge, located in Detroit’s historic Michigan Oriental Theater, which originally opened in 1927.

Located at 114 W. Adams Ave. in Grand Circus Park, the remodel preserves the historical elements of the theater while adding a contemporary dining space. The restaurant includes glass garage-style doors that open to patio seating, while a mezzanine overlooks Grand Circus Park.

Howard Barnes of Prime29 Steakhouse in West Bloomfield Township, former chef for the Pittsburgh Steelers, Chicago White Sox, and Spiaggia Chicago, is the executive chef. The menu includes fried oysters, king crab truffle gnocchi, creamy rock shrimp, 48-hour marinated lamb lollipop, prime filet mignon, and more.

“PAO means to escape, which is the feeling we wanted to capture when we (designed) the lounge-inspired space,” says Joe Barbat, chairman of Barbat Holdings, the real estate management company for the restaurant and parent company to Prime Concepts Detroit. “Our modern, upscale food and beverage experience invites guests to kick back and relax, while taking in the original building’s architectural details and history that we were able to preserve.”

Stolion Liti is head of the service team. The bar offers Asian spirits, sakes, whisky, wine, Champagne, and cocktails, and the team offers wine pairings.

“A couple of fan favorites are Mother of Dragons, made up of Buffalo Trace bourbon, coconut lemongrass sake, pineapple juice, and simple syrup, or Blushing Buddha, which is 1738 Remy Cognac, Knob Creek Rye, hibiscus syrup, mole bitters, and orange peel,” says Liti.

The restaurant will be open 4-11 p.m. Monday-Wednesday and 4 p.m.-1 a.m. Thursday-Saturday. Happy hour is 4-6:30 p.m. Monday-Friday. More information and the menu can be found here.

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