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On Never Knowing Who You’re Going to Be at Dinner With


By Kris Franks, MBA ‘18

One of the most interesting things that I’ve experienced about Ann Arbor is that you never really know who you’re going to be at dinner with.

Ann Arbor attracts some of the brightest and most talented people in the world. There’s a reason Ann Arbor is the smartest city in the U.S. You could literally be at the same restaurant as a Nobel Peace Prize winner, someone working on groundbreaking cancer research, a traveling violinist, the next founder of a billion-dollar startup, or the CEO of any of a number of powerful global corporations. It really makes going out to dinner an experience.

Before moving to Ann Arbor I was living in Charlotte, N.C. I loved Charlotte because I could always find a great restaurant with elevated Southern comfort food. So, Ann Arbor has been a welcome experience because there are so many diverse food experiences to be had.

From authentic dolsot bibimbap to the creamy deliciousness that is the Slows Bar BQ mac and cheese, pick a type of food and you can find it around Ann Arbor.

Even though there are an unimaginable number of options, if I had to choose how to spend my last day in Ann Arbor, I would spend the entirety of it eating at Aventura (now possible thanks to their incredible brunch menu ;) ).

Aventura is a beautifully designed restaurant, with aesthetics only to be matched by its amazing food. It’s is a local eatery that specializes in modern Spanish tapas, and it is consistently rated one of the best restaurants in the Midwest.

I understand why — it has some of the best paellas I’ve ever had.

As an MBA student on a budget, a lot of my meals consist of whatever I can grab on the go. But, I make it a priority to have “adult meals” at actual restaurants on weekends. My first trip to Aventura was one of these occasions.

The atmosphere is perfect for connecting with friends. I would say providing a venue to have great conversations over delicious small bites is one of their specialties. That night my friends and I must have ordered at least half of the menu.

I had a revelation that night while trying to decide whether to order another Patatas Bravas or not. I realized that, sure I’ll be getting a great education from the University of Michigan and Ross, but in the meantime, I only have two years to eat as much of Ann Arbor as possible.

So, yeah, waiter... we’ll take another when you get the chance.