This week’s version of Travel Thursday brings us to Cleveland, Ohio, where the food is delicious and the guys are thick and juicy (hayyyyyy Roxxxy Andrews).
I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a culinary snob seeing as I live in arguably the greatest foodie city in the world: Manhattan. My mind on this topic has shifted over the past couple of years with each travel assignment I complete. So many cities provide their own version of what tastes good, and Cleveland is certainly no different.
I stopped by the city known for The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the place where Drew Carey’s 90’s sitcom took place and the location of the classic movie A Christmas Story last month for a couple days of R&R, excitement and more.
Cleveland is an interesting place to visit. It’s on the breakthrough of being something along the lines of Chicago or The Big Apple when it comes to the amount of construction that has taken place for it to look like either of those areas. You also have the best of both worlds when it comes to its big city and suburban vibe that was seen throughout my stay.
Food was a vital part of this trip as I was excited to sink my teeth into what Cleveland had to offer me. Yes, the men were hot and all, but something that this city really has going for it is a diverse and wonderfully delicious foodie scene that is worth perusing the next time you find yourself there.
Take a look at five places you must check out when you are in Cleveland.
Spice Kitchen and Bar: 5800 Detroit Avenue
Farm to table has become one of the trendiest things to hit the culinary world in the past decade and it is a concept that Spice Kitchen and Bar expertly does so well. Their ever-changing menu, created by Chef Ben Bebenroth, provides its customers with a whimsical take on farm to table that leaves them feeling comfortably stuffed by meal’s end. Standout dishes while I was there was their Mac N Cheese with Beet Ketchup (the first time I ever truly enjoyed beets) and Spice Acres Vegetable Pad Thai with sesame marinated Cleveland Tofu (same with the Tofu). More info here.
West Side Market: 1979 West 25th St
The West Side Market is a foodie’s dream. Everything you could possibly want in a food market is available in this fantastic spot that serves hundreds of Cleveland residents and tourists daily. I was mesmerized by the amount of options available inside that focused heavily on meat items (hehe). Frank’s Bratwurst and Pierogi Palace are heavenly as are sweeter places like Campbell’s Popcorn Shop. It is a great place to be if you are in the mood for a day of fun food shopping and more. More info here.
Larder: 1455 W. 29th Street
If Deli’s are your thing then Larder is the place to be. Larder provides its guests with mouthwatering sandwich options that they can enjoy inside its location (which happens to be an old firehouse). Come hungry as you’ll enjoy stacked options like a delicious Pastrami sandwich (that I ate in about 5 minutes it was that good) as well as house-made breads and pastries. Yum! More info here.
Barrio Tacos: Multiple Locations
I was introduced to Barrio Tacos by a friend who is local to Cleveland. I was thoroughly impressed by the variety of tacos you can eat as they go beyond the traditional types you see at all the conglomerate locations we inhabit. Everything from Thai Chili Tofu to Coca-Cola Marinated Steak can act as your base as you build your taco mile high with other fresh ingredients. Barrio acts as a neighborhood hangout spot for anyone and everyone in the area, and when you pair that kind of vibe with its delicious food, you are in for a good night ahead. More info here.
ABC The Tavern: 1872 W. 25th Street
Dive bars are a key place to stop in no matter what city your visiting. ABC The Tavern is a no musk, no fuss kind of deal. Just a great spot to kick back, enjoy some bar bites and cheap drinks, and chill with your buddies. More info here.
Definitely want to give a quick shoutout to the Aloft Hotel Cleveland Downtown (1111 W. 10th Street) for a fabulous stay! Comfortable rooms and a plush atmosphere make it a great place to rest your head at night and wake up to in the morning. It is also walking distance from several other foodie spots that inhabit its area. More info can be found at the Aloft’s homepage.
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