Street’s building dates back to the early 1900’s when a hardware
store/auto parts store were part of a thriving Woodward Avenue.
Across the street was the Garden Bowl and the Majestic theatre
built in 1915.
In the 30’s, the famous Italian restaurant
opened, thus the long running history of restaurants at 4145
Woodward Ave. Arturo’s was owned by relatives of other Detroit
eateries, namely, Mario’s and Lelli’s! Arturo’s was also a social
club for the
in Detroit. Down the street was the magnificent Greystone Ballroom
where the Big Band’s played and people danced all night long.
The Greystone bar, now Canfield’s had a gym above it where Mohammed
Ali worked out as a young boxer.
The area was “happening” with people and activity and a nightlife
we long for in Detroit today. Imagine the streetcars full, theatres
and restaurants going all night long, wow, maybe we can do it
In the 60’s, Arturo’s closed down and
Mad Wayne Anthony’s opened. The name was appropriate for this
“wild” neighborhood hangout. Entertainment of all “sorts”, along
with a “party” atmosphere certainly added to its reputation.
The neighborhood continued to decline and Mad Wayne Anthony’s
closed. The entire block sat empty before Tom Brandel saw its
potential and opened up Union Street in the mid 70’s.
Union Street was a famous street in San Francisco with several
bars and restaurants. Tom reopened the kitchen and started a
Jazz & Blues tradition at Union Street. Tom Brandel is a well-known
restaurateur in Metro Detroit with Tom’s Oyster bar as well
as several other successful establishments. Union Street became
a well-known restaurant under Tom’s guidance and vision.
Greg Gedda and Tony Balsys bought Union
Street from Tom in 1986. Two inexperienced hometown boys were
in for the journey of their life. They not only dealt with a
costly business, but the Cultural Center had all the major problems
of Detroit at that time.
Union Street evolved from a San Francisco
pub to a “Motown” hangout. The first few years were quite a
party, Union Street even had an “after hours” club for over
a year just to make it happen. Under Ron Stewart’s food regime
and John Lopez’s floor command Union Street finally got a review
by Molly and we really took off!
Spot, our in house pet was Tony’s dog
- a beautiful & gentle “Pit Bull”! Spot was a part of the early
zany days at Street. Our original “logo” was a still picture
of Spot sitting at our bar; Tony added the motto-“I was spotted
at Union Street”
Tony left the business, but without his
zany contributions, who knows what would have happened. We became
the 1st “hot spot” in Detroit in years. The “way cool” place
to be. Our Art Gallery, poetry readings and eclectic bar crowd
were propelling us into the “Big Time”.
the mid 90’s, Union Street became a full-fledged restaurant.
We build a brand new kitchen in order to grow into our expanding
market. We totally remodeled the “Michigan Room” in the exact
replica of our art deco look in the main dining room.
Union Street continues to grow and expand into new areas. Our
catering and in-house parties have grown along with our theatre
crowd. Union Street is the neighborhood “hub” for community
activities. We are committed to the community at large, always
working to improve the neighborhood we proudly represent!