How does one define ‘local’ or ‘locally grown’?

Some may define it as just within the neighborhood, and others may accept locally grown to be statewide or anything within a two-hour drive or 100 miles.


I was interested to learn my friend’s definition. Jeff defines his ‘comfort zone’ much smaller that me – that of about 5-blocks square. I guess that falls in the ‘neighborhood’ category. When we discuss Carlyle Grill’s immediate or local vicinity, it encompasses an area using a 5-mile radius, and beyond focusing on our nearest neighbors in Dexter and Ann Arbor.

But you see, Jeff is a city dweller, Chicago to be specific, a large city in a small footprint and made up of several communities.


Jeff was telling me that Andersonville, a neighborhood north of downtown, had a Swedish influence.  He also mentioned Chinatown on the south side of the City, Little Italy west, as well as Bucktown North filled with craft cocktails and boutiques.  I guess the later is Hipster influenced.

Each had its own flavor. But that didn’t stop each from being eclectic and serving food from a variety of places.  

Caryle Grill is similar in that we get our:

  • Cheese from Farm Country Cheese House
  • Meats from Michigan Turkey Producers and Thunder Ridge Natural
  • Pickles from McClures and
  • The list goes on….


He mentioned that in Andersonville, he could leave his condo, head south on Clark and have a selection of restaurants that included:

  • American
  • Adriatic
  • Mexican
  • Irish
  • Italian
  • Moroccan
  • Japanese
  • Chinese
  • and the list continued.

I asked him, “how do you pack so many in such a small place?”  He said, “Vertically”, and chuckled.


Carlyle Grill caters to it’s neighbors but we define our neighborhood with a slightly larger footprint.  

Perhaps it’s because we’re in Michigan where our ancestors manufactured the automobile giving us the mobility and ability to live further away from work, own tracts of land and raise a family in the suburbs. Or perhaps it’s because our guests know they can come and enjoy food from a variety of communities in only one stop:

  • Greek Salad (Greece)
  • Linguine & Meatballs (Italy)
  • Prime Rib (Texas)
  • BBQ Chicken & Ribs (Alabama)
  • Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes (San Francisco)
  • Lake Perch (Michigan)

Either way, we get our food products from those we consider our neighbors and which is locally grown and transported for freshness.