The Root Restaurant & Bar
The Root Restaurant & Bar

The Root Restaurant & Bar

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.therootrestaurant.com/
  • Phone: 2486982400x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Monday - Thursday: 4:00pm - 10:00pm
    Friday & Saturday: 11:00am - 11:00pm
    Sunday Brunch: 10:00am - 3:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Carte Blanche,Diners Club,Discover,JCB,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: American, Contemporary American
  • Executive Chef: James Rigato
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Smoking Area, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Catering: The Root Restaurant & Bar will cater any event large or small. Chef James Rigato
    and staff catered under their company Ripe Catering for 3 years before opening
    The Root. Please contact The Root with any inquiries regarding your event.
  • Private Party Facilities: The Root Restaurant & Bar will accommodate large parties in house as well as book the restaurant for private events, weddings, showers, work parties,
    brunches and any other gathering. There is also a private business dining room
    in Royal Oak, MI that The Root will book for private events and meetings. Please contact The Root with any inquiries regarding private dining.
  • Private Party Contact: Jenn Rigato 2486982400x

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Elizabeth Lake Rd.
  • Parking: Public Lot
  • Parking Details: The Root is located in The Village Lakes Plaza in White Lake on the corner of M-59 and Elizabeth Lake. There is a large, well lit parking lot surrounding The Root.
A word from The Root Restaurant & Bar
The Root Restaurant & Bar is a locally owned and operated business that showcases the seasonality of food and beverage in Michigan and its surrounding areas. The comfortable yet refined dining room and bar, accented with stained ash wood and limestone, feature an open kitchen and a chef's counter where the customers can sit and watch their food being made. Chef James Rigato's menu changes often and has a variety of options including a local grass-fed beef burger, house-made desserts, fresh seafood and in-house smoked meats. The Root Bar has 8 Microbrews on draft and a full selection of wines, bottled beer, alcohol and house cocktails incorporating a number of Michigan breweries, distilleries and winemakers. The Root prides itself on offering casual dining with a higher standard of food, beverage and service.
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerAmerican
  • Diners' Choice WinnerFit for Foodies
The Root Restaurant & Bar reviews from OpenTable diners
153 reviews since May 5, 2014
Overall Rating4.5
  • Food4.5
    Service4.4
  • Ambiance4.1
    Noise LevelModerate
94% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (124)special occasion (93)neighborhood gem (75)romantic (41)hot spot (37)good for groups (34)notable wine list (33)great for lunch (31)great for outdoor dining (22)great for brunch (18)vibrant bar scene (15)kid-friendly (7)late-night find (7)scenic view (1)Show More
  • Won't be the last
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    Without question, The Root is one of the five best restaurants my wife and I have ever enjoyed. Every dish we has was amazing, and the service was impeccable. It's simply a must.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    Food was very creative and excellent. Prices were somewhat expensive, but worth every penny (or rather dollar!). Service was more than good. However my wife was disappointed in the ambiance. For the price and quality of the food here she expected a more upscale ambiance. Decor was OK, but the menu range from sandwiches on up and the crowd it caters to seems a blend of nighborhood walk ins and foodies going to a destination place. While this seems like a good business arrangement for owners, it takes away from the experience.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Fantastic Service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    Recently dined at The Root for an anniversary meal and the service and food were exceptional. Vegan tasting menu was absolutely perfect and we couldn't have asked for a better night out!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Excellent food
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    A great menu with something for everyone on it, including fried bologna! The cheese platter is a "must have" and the tasting menu is a steal - very affordable, even with the wine pairing. I had a 5 course menu and each course was really wonderful. Service overall was good, albeit a bit slow to start. It took probably 10 minutes for our first drink to arrive. It was a Friday night and a packed house. The star of this restaurant is definitely the food - affordably priced and well balanced.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The Root
    Eugene
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Fabulous dining experience! No wonder they were voted a Best Restaurant in their first year along with honors in Detroit's Hour magazine.c
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Can't wait to go back
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/27/2014
    Food was best I've tasted since my trip to Rome. Creative and flavorful. Service just right. Not to pushy but very knowledgable and helpful
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • the root rocks
    JBC11
    Dined on 8/24/2014
    My wife and I had been planning a trip the "The Root" for more than a year after reading about it in the Detroit Free Press. We love great food and are into the "slow" food movement and were intrigued by James Rigator's "Farm to Table" approach. We had brunch on Sunday and it did not dissappoint. My wife had the fried chicken and waffles and I had the steak and ribeye. We both enjoyed French Presses and had sides of bacon and fresh fruit. Portions were worthy of a lumberjack's appetite. We had enough food that our take-away provided a second meal for each of us. Our server, Kylie, was prompt and courteous and knowledgable with a dash of good humor. The Root carries our highest recommendation for brunch. It was A-W-E-S-O-M-E!!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Root Rocks
    zootboy2000
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    The food was excellent and creative. The service was attentive without hovering. We got the wine and beer pairings with the tasting menu, and everything was top notch. I would recommend Root to any of my foodie friends.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Lives up to reputation
    michigandailys
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    My daughter and I wanted to come here before chef James Rigato was appearing on Top Chef. Had heard the food was great and it certainly was - even though all we had was sandwiches - they were really good sandwiches! Loved the pastrami one and the fries were also great - crisp and garlicy - yum! The price was very reasonable too. Lunch is only served Friday - Sunday.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Amazing Food
    VandyVIP
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    Some of the best food in any restaurant in Southeast Michigan
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Rock 'n Roll brunch, you say?
    StillStuffedVIP
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    Our group of six enjoyed our first Rock 'n Roll brunch at The Root last weekend. The food was great; the mimosas were nothing special - lacked the imaginative touches I'm used to at this creative restaurant.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Johnboy
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    Our food and presentation of the entrée were excellent. We recommend and will be back soon.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Yum..
    Perfect
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    Have had Breakfast, lunch and dinner here...all above expectations! a true Gem
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Excellent food and service
    rj582
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    We celebrated my wife's birthday with excellent food and service. The one thing lacking is a scenic view of a lake.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Date with a foodie, and it paid off
    Randizzle64VIP
    Dined on 8/12/2014
    I think it says a lot when your date is not only a trained sommelier, but a foodie as well, and she raves about the meal. Yes, if you are curious, the company was very good too. :-) With a menu that changes seasonally, commenting on specific dishes has a time sensitive value, but the pork belly with kimchi, and scallops were both great starters. I definitely recommend this place.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Delectable and unique presentations
    SJ28
    Dined on 8/12/2014
    This was our 2nd time at The Root. I got the scallop appetizer and morrocan chicken, both were really delicious. My husband got the tasting menu and loved the choices as well. Everything was excellent, even the coffee.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great place, supporting MI
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 8/11/2014
    We had a wonderful experience at The Root. Our server, Travis, was knowledgable and appropriately attentive. His recommendations were great, including the amazing shrimp and grits that utilized, locally farmed shrimp. We loved that The Root used locally grown or raised food as much as possible. All of our food was delicious. I have no problem, with a restaurant in a strip mall, as long as when you get inside, you are no longer acutely aware that you are in a strip mall. The Root should create an ambiance that takes you away from the strip mall. It would help if they covered or reduced the amount of plate glass window in the front. Additionally, the area to the right as you walk in, feels detached from the rest of the restaurant.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Probably better at dinner
    Earnstone
    Dined on 8/10/2014
    The buzz for this restaurant is off the charts so we had high expectations -- which were dashed rather quickly. Staff was bored beyond belief. Our specific wait person seemed to wish to be somewhere, anywhere else. Its new brunch menu sounded good but was quite routine in taste and appearance. Admittedly, we came at at bad time - 1:30 on a hot sunny summer Sunday so we got what we deserved. But given that The Root is renowned for its inventive chef and fresh offerings we'll try again at dinner.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Birthday dinner
    sunshinenwhine
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    Took fiance there for dinner, great meal- scallop's app was outstanding. Good cocktail list, wine list seemed slightly limited. Service was terrific as well.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great Food Experience
    LaurieS
    Dined on 8/8/2014
    Dinner was great as usual! They have the best vegan options in the area - I love to be surprised by the unique selections they put together for the vegan dinner and I am never disappointed . Local ingredients helps make the food great as well.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • The Root
    Luvorganic
    Dined on 8/7/2014
    How lucky we are to have The Root in White Lake. Interesting, extremely tasty food, great service and soothing surroundings.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • quick stop
    matt
    Dined on 8/6/2014
    my wife and i were intrigued by the bologna sandwich so we split one and wow, it was fantastic! nice atmosphere. great service. i ordered a leelanau black ale, which was a little lacking in flavor.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A real night out
    Kitchenshrink
    Dined on 8/4/2014
    My friends in from Sonoma Valley needed some "real" food. They couldn't have been more pleased. In addition our server (I didn't pay the bill but I think her name was Karen) was incredible. Keep up the great work. I'm glad I'm in the neighborhood.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • The Root of it all
    LiveLife07
    Dined on 8/2/2014
    Food was excellent! Only draw back was that we had 7:00pm reservations and were not seated until 7:45pm. The host was very gracious though and offered us a glass of champagne and an appetizer which was a house specialty. The restaurant is under going remodeling during the day while still serving in the evening. So the decor seemed very disjointed and barren in some areas and we thought it strange until we asked. One of our group had recalled a delightful decor prior and felt that the dark brown massive blank wall spans were depressing. As the sun set, the dining room became very dark and cave like. Some patrons finally asked if the lighting could be turned up since it was difficult to see the delicious food being presented.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always delicious!
    foodies
    Dined on 8/1/2014
    This is our third visit and this one the best! We brought our friends this time and I was worried they wouldn't like it as we do. They loved it! The Thai salmon special was wonderful, my husband had the tasting menu and loved everything, and although a different way with shrimp and grits, our friend from gulf shores, AL. loved it. He thought a few too many 'onions' but I though it was great. I did not have the pickled peppers and it certainly didn't suffer from flavor. The only reason I didn't give it five stars was because I requested seating on other side of bar and that was ignored or forgotten. I didn't say anything. Our waiter, Brad, was great; however my water was almost gone so I found someone to refresh it.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Waste
    MrFood
    Dined on 7/28/2014
    Well if your looking for a bang for your $ don't bother here, if your a bunch of girls looking for a small portion, overpriced salad and a chair to sit in all day, maybe you'd like it. Oh, and if you don't plan on drinking you don't belong at the Root, they'll make you wait so long for your food, you'll have to drink to keep your cool.. and empty out your wallet. We waited an hour for a bologna sandwich and salad! The bologna sandwich still had the skin ring on it. Out of 2 salads, a cup of soup, and a sandwich, we could only stomach one salad halfway and considered stopping at McDonalds after we left so we actually have dinner,
    Special Features:
    notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • First day of brunch service
    jenny
    Dined on 7/27/2014
    The menu had a nice variety and the items we ordered we wonderful. The service was slow but I suspect this kink will be worked out as they are open more Sunday's for brunch. We love The Root!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food!
    Lauren0723
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    I went here for my birthday with my family and everything was great! Everyone ate something different and all of us enjoyed our meals! Great choice of a restaurant if you are looking to try something different from your everyday restaurant food and the best part is everything is fresh and from Michigan!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Outstanding choice to dine
    Foodiejunkis
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    I love this place. I've come in groups, alone, lunch, dinner, etc. It's always excellent. I am disappointed they are closing for lunch M-TH. This was a favorite spot for a friends lunch during the week. I wish they would keep the daily lunch hours and add Sunday dinner.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Very Impressive
    DTSTVIP
    Dined on 7/24/2014
    We live in Tucson, AZ and were visiting friends in Fenton. They recommended the Root and OMG, one of the better meals I have had in a very long time. Service were steller and the food was out of this world.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • New seasonal menu - great as always
    JFRuschVIP
    Dined on 7/22/2014
    Seasonal menu changes in place - the new beet salad is awesome. Soups are great as well. Even the fries are comforting but come with dipping sauces that set them apart. Good for a special night out or any time you want a good meal. Now open for brunch. Check the calendar for events
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Good but, not as good as usual.
    OkDinner
    Dined on 7/21/2014
    We went to the Root on a Monday evening. A little suprised by the service, and the food was just ok. Normally, very good but steak was chewy (tasty but chewy). Also, we had to ask for silverware and napkins when our bread came. Server never brought us plates for the bread. I know that is a little nitpicky, but just went along with the kind of average experience. We have been before and loved both the food and the service, so I am willing to chalk this up to just one of those nights.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Quality and Creativity
    PJG1VIP
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    Clearly this is a restaurant with great thought to the quality and creativity of the food. I did feel that some of the dishes would appeal only to a limited set of diners - like the fried boloney sandwich. Also some were 'over' spiced - Moroccan Chicken. I had the special fish - salmon. Great taste but almost non-existent side dish. Under the salmon was a piece of eggplant - very bland. Seemed like they had more dessert choices than entree choices.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great Place!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    I have eaten here several times over the past couple of years. Always great food and great service! I love the idea of using Michigan resources! Will continue to return and recommend this restaurant. Thank you.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great area restaurant
    JoanieVIP
    Dined on 7/18/2014
    Healthy food with grass fed beef good veggie choices and locally grown
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • A Restaurant Beyond Compare!
    cleach8974
    Dined on 7/14/2014
    The Root experience this week was my third time there, and the whole dining experience just keeps getting better. The food is utterly spectacular! My brother-in-law had a steak, and he said it was the best steak he's ever had. I had the sloppy joe and jalapeno sandwich with house fries. The jalapeno lent a unique texture to an already superb sandwich, and the fries were every bit as delicious. If you're an 'Eat Local' foodie, this is your place: all their wines and beers, and most of their food, are Michigan products. How they do what they do, for the prices they do it, is utterly mystifying. The Root rocks!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion, great for lunch, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Anniversary dinner
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 7/12/2014
    My wife and I both chose the tasting menu with wine and beer pairings. Everything was amazing and the alcohol pairings were perfect for each course. We were even given a free desert for our anniversary!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Sweetly Stuffed
    fregonaa
    Dined on 7/12/2014
    My sister and I enjoyed 8 courses of excellence. We loved the pork belly on the creamed corn and the steak. The beef was so tender and flavorful. Our scallop appetizer was perfectly cooked. My least favorite dish we tried was the bbq chicken with couscous and pickled egg. It wasn't bad, but not my favorite flavor pairings. We had the charcuterie board and beat salad too, both very tasty. Dessert was to die for as well. I had the banana cream pie. Not too rich or overpowering, just delicious. You practically had to roll me out of the restaurant, but it was so delightful. We love good food and couldn't have been happier with our service at the Root.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Menu change
    GnMB
    Dined on 7/11/2014
    As long time and frequent diners at Root we always enjoy it. But I must say we were not thrilled about the latest menu change. The best salad good but we thought it was better in its previous cold version. Needs a better seafood variety.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • kenn
    Dined on 7/11/2014
    Have been there food has been very good, but not this time.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate