BonChon - Seven Hills, OH
In a little Cleveland suburb, there exists a Korean chicken wings joint that was my father-in-law’s suggestion a few years back. Now, we go almost every time we are in the area. It’s got great food, great cocktails, and an environment that we are okay bringing little sibling-in-laws to.
They sport a menu of choices other than the wings with an appetizer menu full of different Asian small plates such as potstickers and takoyaki. We often use these to help supplement the table of wings and strips we order.
West Side Market
Among the many beautiful places to see in Cleveland is the West Side Market, a destination for anyone who enjoys food. Like many big city vendor markets, it has a wide variety of vendors. It holds a special place in my heart as the first of it’s kind that I ever visited. I have loved it since my first taste of a cannoli, my first wide eyed stroll down the rows of vendors.
I first tasted a cannoli at the famous Theresa’s stand, a small bakery that gets my business every single time I visit Cleveland. They are, of course, best known for those cannolis, but I have fallen in love with their macaroons. They have a wide variety of flavors to choose from as you make a package. My husband and I always have a short wait til we order, and we need every second to decide on what kind of macaroons we could agree on.
This year, they had a fruity pebbles flavored macaroon that truly did taste like that bowl of cereal from my childhood. The creamy middle mimicked the taste of the cereal milk perfectly to compliment the berry flavored cookies that surrounded it. They also had the flavors you might expect this time of year, such as pumpkin and cheesecake. My husband laid claim to those right away.
Beyond these confections, West Side Market is packed with produce, meats, cheeses, and spices. I dream of one day being able to shop in a place like that for all of my food needs. Not only is the selection beautiful, but many of the vendors are locals. Supporting locals is the best part of places like this. Did I mention that Great Lakes Brewing, only two blocks away, sources much of their food for service from the vendors at the Market?
Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Thanksgiving is the time of year that, without fail, I land in Cleveland with my husband. We have a few things we must do every year. A Black Friday visit to Great Lakes Brewing is one of those things. The brewery is one of many excellent local groups, but it is without a doubt my favorite in Cleveland.
Great Lakes operates a brew pub across from the famous West Side Market, and it was a very busy friday. We reserved a table for our family and spent the wait downstairs at one of two bars in the building. The little oasis has more than once kept us busy while waiting for a table. You can stand or sit, and they’ll serve you a beer even if you haven’t gotten a table or a seat at the bar.
Progressive Field Food Adventures
Once upon a time, baseball was synonymous with hot dogs. Today, so much more is available, and Progressive Field is at the cutting edge of the new trend of crazy amazing food. I had the privilege to visit Progressive Field for the Astros versus Indians game with my husband and my father-in-law over Memorial Day Weekend, and let me tell you, everything was delicious.
Practically every brewery in the state had their own stall along the promenade serving both beer and food. Specialty vendors lined the walls. Local restaurants even had small stalls to serve quick food to baseball fans. There was a lot to see and a lot to eat, more than what I had available to me at Camden Yards in the previous month.
Some of the best ballpark food comes out of Progressive Field. Melt Bar and Grilled is one of the local restaurants featuring a stand at the park, and they were voted the nation’s best ballpark food in 2016. I tend to agree. We’ve visited one of their stand alone locations in the past, but the speed with which they produce an amazing grilled cheese at this kind of venue is truly amazing.
The husband and I shared a mushroom melt. They only serve half sandwiches out of the park, but that was more than enough for us after the food we had earlier in the day. It’s a texas toast grilled cheese served with spinach, assorted mushrooms, and I believe swiss cheese. The stick this bad boy into one of those roller toasters with the cheese already on it, and then they top it, cut the bread in half, and serve. The line sure as hell moved a lost faster than the 14 inning game we saw that day.
Before the game even started, however, we got a platter of Momocho nachos to accompany our giant glasses of Great Lakes beer. They fry their tortilla chips right there behind the line, and they have a variety of toppings for you to choose from. As a team, we chose carnitas, onions, pickled jalapenos, and black beans. For the record, I did forgo my pescetarian diet this week. I only kind of regret it. The food was amazing.
Baseball is changing. Gone are the days of hotdogs and peanuts. You can eat well and experience the game in a new way everywhere you go.
An idea born in Normal, Illinois, Eating Normal hopes to chronicle the eating Experiences of a Red bird.
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