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The Four

From Michigan, With Love: Michigan Treats to Kick-Off the Fall Season

We’re talking fall food in this month’s ‘From Michigan, With Love’. Franklin Dohanyos is talking smokehouse specialties along with some bakery specialties like breads, butters, and jams – all made right here in the Mitten.


Country Smoke House is located in Almont and has become the state’s largest processor of deer. The business was started in 1988 just as a deer processor but has grown into an incredible store featuring all sorts of meats made in-house, including all sorts of venison products.

The store features many made in Michigan specialty items and continues to grow in size.

It actually burned to the ground a few years ago, but has been rebuilt much larger than what it was and looks like you’re walking into a lodge. They have the best hot dogs in Michigan, and a huge selection of prime cuts of meats and sides to go with them. The kitchen has eight chefs working the new catering operation.

In 2006, Country Smoke House opened an outdoor BBQ over an open fire pit and in 2008 a BBQ cabin was constructed – now known as the “Best BBQ in the North” with outdoor seating. The store specializes in Southern BBQ meats, including pulled pork, beef brisket, tender baby back ribs, turkey drumsticks, and more In 2017, a full bar with 16 craft beers on tap, 16 signature hand-crafted cocktails, and a variety of wines was added.


Natalie’s Bakery was opened in 2010 by Sokol Koacca in Madison Heights. Sokol learned his trade in Italy and came to the United States to start a bakery and perfect his craft.

In May, his delicious dessert breads were put in all Kroger stores throughout the state, including zucchini, walnut, banana walnut, carrot, cranberry orange, cinnamon, and blueberry scones.

The dessert breads are also available at Meijer brand Corner market stores.

An interesting fact about Natalie’s is that during the pandemic when many businesses lost employees, he actually grew his business and added employees, including a second-generation family member The breads are absolutely delicious with butter, jams, and other spreads. Natalie’s offers many other types of breads and baked goods and they can be shipped all over the U.S. Sokol is always experimenting to design a new tasty treat