Joe's Hamburgers offers an all-American menu. This is a small restaurant with only 12 tables, serving hot dogs, fresh-cut fries and sliders. You can eat-in or call ahead to place an order for a pick up. Wyandotte residents can get home delivery. It has weekend game night specials..
When Jeremy Sladovnik was younger, he lived just a few blocks from the iconic, and now closed, Watkins Hamburgers.
That's where his grandfather, Joe Kuzia, took him for a slider, fries and a milkshake. "My grandfather has always been a big influence on me," the 36-year-old Wyandotte native said. Sladovnik also has fond memories of being in the kitchen with his "busia" (grandmother). Because food was such an important part of his upbringing, he thought it was only natural to open a restaurant of his own, Joe's Hamburgers, 125 Elm St. He opened it in October 2009. "I named it after my grandfather," Sladovnik said. "I kept the name a secret for a little while until I secured the building."
"Our main staple is the slider. Sliders are a little smaller than regular hamburgers. It's the taste and smell - you can be a block away and the smell brings back memories of the '60s." Besides its sliders, Joe's Hamburgers also features fresh-cut french fries, pirogi, Dearborn Sausage brand hot dogs, chili, grilled cheese sandwiches, milkshakes, malts, sundaes and a variety of homemade soups.
"Our soup changes every couple of days. I like to do something different. We've had chicken paprikas, vegetable potato, beef and rice, beef dumpling, butternut squash... They are all very hearty with big chunks of carrots, meat and celery."
Joe's also offers a unique (and popular) dish called "poutine," which consists of french fries layered with cheese and brown gravy. Poutine is a diner staple in Canada. "Once you try it, you're hooked," Sladovnik said.
The decor in Joe's Hamburgers features many photos of family and friends, including a few of Sladovnik playing hockey. "I've been playing hockey my whole life," he said. "I played in the minors for awhile." Several years ago, Sladovnik got the opportunity to work for the Detroit Red Wings as a dressing room attendant, where he assisted players and coaches.
"I love the customers that come in here," Sladovnik said. "They're the best. I've made so many friends." Right now, Sladovnik basically eats, sleeps and lives the restaurant. "From the time I wake up until the time I go to bed, it's all about the restaurant," he said. "It's well worth the effort."
This is his first foray into the restaurant business. Previously, he worked for the city of Wyandotte and also owned a bead and jewelry store called Busia's Beads, named after his grandmother, of course.
As a bonus, Sladovnik said his grandfather, 86, comes in every day to taste the food. "Everytime he comes in, he smiles," Sladovnik said. "I'm so glad, because this way I get to spend a lot of time with him."