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On Thursday night, ten semi-finalists were announced for the annual Hatch Detroit Contest out of more than 160 applications that were received.

If you’re not familiar, Hatch Detroit is an annual contest where the winner will receive $50,000 from Comerica Bank and more than $200,000 in pro bono support from Hatch Detroit and its partners. It must be a brick and mortar business that is or will be located in Detroit, Highland Park or Hamtramck.

But in order for a winner to be chosen, there needs to be a vote by the public. This is where you come in. You can help pick your favorite business to make it to the top four and the Hatch Off on August 25.

Voting is open from Friday, August 11 through Thursday, August 17. The top four finalists will be announced on Friday, August 18.

There are multiple ways to vote for your favorite semi-finalist. You can do so on HatchDetroit.com, Hatch Detroit’s Facebook page, or can even vote in person at these locations:

  • Monday, August 14 – Cadillac Square from 11:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, August 15 – Southwest Detroit Business Association from 11:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.
  • Thursday, August 17 – Grandmont Rosedale Farmers’ Market from 4:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m.

Now that we have how you can vote out of the way, let’s get to the semi-finalists.

Having talked to the finalists last night, I was impressed with every single one of the businesses that were chosen.

Baobab Fare- This East African restaurant will offer a juice bar as well as a market that will feature items unique to East Africa. The owner was a refugee and stayed at Freedom House when he first got to Detroit. He would like to help others who are coming to the United States.

Bar Botánicais a craft cocktail bar and café. It will be located in the Jefferson-Chalmers neighborhood. This business takes its inspiration from the shops that sell plants, herbs, candles and other mystical products used in Afro-Caribbean spiritual practices. Let me tell you, the rum punch I tried was delightful.

Bases– Bases will help customers get customized organic skin and hair care products. The business will be located in Highland Park.

Bendicion de Dios- The owner of Bendicion de Dios is hoping to open a brick and mortar Salvadoran restaurant. She has been doing catering for the past four years. The restaurant would be located in Southwest Detroit.

Coop Detroit– This restaurant is part of the Detroit Shipping Co. development. They will offer locally sourced chicken dishes that blend Caribbean and Asian flavors.

Detroit Blows– The name might be tongue and cheek, but Detroit Blows is a blowout salon that will be located on Library Street downtown. The salon will offer non-toxic and high-performance products for everyone.

Fam– This store will offer handcrafted contemporary menswear. The clothing they manufacture is made with fabrics that are made in the United States.

Rebell Nell– The jewelry company that takes fallen graffiti and turns it into beautiful jewelry is hoping to move into a larger space. The space would provide a small storefront, larger manufacturing space, and learning space. This will also allow them to help more women to get on their feet.

Rosedale Beer & Bistro– The restaurant and brewpub will be located in the Grandmont-Rosedale neighborhood. Customers can expect fresh cuisine, handcrafted house beer, as well as wine and cocktails.

The Lip Bar– Sick of traditional beauty ideals, the owner of The Lip Bar started making lip products in her kitchen. She now has her items manufactured in California, but if she wins Hatch she would move production back to Detroit. Her products are cruelty free and are free of harsh chemicals.

So which one is your favorite? I’ll be following this and look forward to seeing who makes it to the “Hatch Off” this year.