The other day I was reading the Detroit News and I almost dropped my iPad when the following headline caught my eye:

“Papa Joe’s Gourmet Market & Catering weighing Detroit location”
Say what? Papa Joe’s? THE Papa Joe’s? Considering a Detroit location?
Guys, for those of you that aren’t familiar with Papa Joe’s, it’s a nice market. Very nice. Very upscale. In other words, it ain’t cheap. But it’s definitely good. It’s where my wife and I get our raw oysters. Top quality. Never had a bad oyster from them in years.
Which brings me to the point of this story. Evidently, downtown Detroit is making such progress in its revitalization efforts that Papa Joe’s is seriously considering an offer to come down. Here’s a little on that from the article:

Tony Curtis, part owner of Papa Joe’s, told The Detroit News the market is trying to determine the viability of the project.

“All I can say is that I scrutinize every offer that every developer offers to me to see if it can be a viable location and opportunity for both Papa Joe’s and the community,” Curtis said in an email. “I believe that if enough business people put enough time, money and effort into Detroit, we can make it a great city once again.”

Papa Joe’s, around for more than two decades, is known for its variety of gourmet products and fresh produce. The market offers full catering services, wedding cakes, pastries, floral products and gift baskets.

Curtis did not disclose where the market is considering setting up shop. Bedrock Real Estate Services, one of Detroit-based Quicken Loans Inc.’s family of companies, confirmed it is in discussions with several grocery stores to locate downtown, but declined to name any candidates.

Bedrock — owned by Quicken Loans founder Dan Gilbert and partners — owns nine buildings downtown and has added new tenants in the past month, including Chrysler Group LLC in the former Dime Building that is now called the Chrysler House.

It is unclear whether Papa Joe’s is seeking incentives.

A Michigan Economic Development Corp. spokesman said he is unaware of any incentives for a Papa Joe’s store. 

I hope this happens. Would be great for downtown. Proof that things truly are turned around down here. I could even pick up some oysters for dinner on the way out of the office.

That would be cool. Very cool.

Read the full article here.

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