Broadway Café and Cheese Steak Hoagie
1139 Broadway St. Ann Arbor, Michigan 48105
734-769-8900 | broadwaycafehoagie.com
Closed Sundays and Holidays
The Short Course
1. Kid-friendly: Yes, with some effort
2. To avoid wait: Before noon for lunch or any evening
3. Noise level: Low
4. Bathroom amenities: No changing table
5. High chairs? No
6. Got milk? Or Juice? No, but they have water and soda
7. Kids’ menu? No
8. Anything healthy for kids? Yes
9. Food allergy concerns? Case by case
Broadway Café and Cheese Steak Hoagie has been serving traditional Korean food and cheesesteak hoagies in Ann Arbor’s Lowertown neighborhood on the Northside since 1986. That’s right. Cheese steaks and Korean food— a combination that had us wondering whether this small, locally owned eatery was established solely because of how much fun it is to say “Bulgogi Hoagie” aloud. At least, that is what our 2- and 4-year-olds demonstrated. As it turns out, Broadway Café does well with these two food genres, finding a way to uniquely meld them together, without losing the appeal of either on its own.
New space, same unique combination
The casual interior is bright, fresh and cozy— the result of a renovation completed last year after a vehicle crashed through the front windows. No one was injured, but the setback rallied the owners to do a complete remodel, supported, in part, by donations from the community and regular customers.
How to say hoagie in Korean
The menu has two primary sections, traditional Korean items and hoagies, with two hoagie options: the traditional American Cheese Steak Hoagie (steak, American cheese and onions) and the Bulgogi Hoagie (Korean-style beef with onions, carrots, mushrooms, green peppers and cheese). Our family was delighted with the Bulgogi Hoagie. The sweet and savory Korean beef was well-suited to become part of an American hoagie host with fresh veggies and creamy cheese, making this creative fusion a winner. Bonus tip: To take this fusion meal to the next level, ask for Gochujang sauce to dip your side of crispy fries. The Bulgogi Hoagie is now on our list of “must-try Ann Arbor foods” when visitors come to town.
Traditional Korean fare
We started our Korean course with the fried dumpling appetizer. The dumplings were fried extra crispy to the enjoyment of our 2-year-old and the veggie filling was fresh and tasty. The sweet and sour chicken, a well-executed version of the classic, was a quick favorite of our 4-year-old. He loved that the chicken was extra crispy with a great balance of sweet and sour flavor. For those unfamiliar with Korean fare, the BiBimBop is a solid kid-friendly option, as it is served deconstructed with sliced veggies, crispy rice, fried egg and shredded Korean beef (or you can substitute tofu or chicken) which can be easily shared before mixing it all together with the sweet and spicy Gochujang sauce. The Soon Dooboo, the adult stand-out, is a spicy tofu and seafood stew richly packed with tofu, shrimp, squid and mussels. The seafood was fresh and the spice was just right— leaving us ecstatic with our winter visit, as this stew is hearty enough to aid in recovery from the common cold.
Broadway Café was great for our family, but visitors should note a few things. First, there were no high chairs or booster options and no changing table in the bathroom. Since there is no specific kids’ menu, be sure to choose items that can be shared easily with kids. Also, there is no dessert menu, so make sure to set expectations appropriately! If these dine-in limitations won’t work for your family, consider carry-out which accounts for many of Broadway Café’s customers. But be sure to leave your car in the parking lot, as they’re not quite ready for another renovation!