Friday, October 19, 2007

northeast ohio: apples, dining, insight

apples, more apples, apple cider, apple butter, a vast array of apple options...

indian corn too...

the freshest corn....ever....

Sages Apples in Chardon Ohio

Many loves about Ohio include the apples and corn that are grown lusciously there. Forget about the overwaxed dull supermarket apples - ever since we left Ohio we've been left to scrounge for styrofoam filled mounds disguised as the 'apple'.

*My love* went back for a recent trip out yonder to northeast Ohio for his grade school reunion. Who has a grade school reunion? It's absolutely unheard of where I come from - but actually it has been an often time tradition for *my love*'s grade school to catch up on each other's lives. And of course they always meet at the same spot......

Btw, the apples from Sages Apples are to write home about.

Hmmmm, that is so sweet.....: *My love*, the apples, grade school, grade school reunions, the midwest - back to grade school; how do you even remember names???

*my love* with childhood friend are 'off to the reunion'

The Cabin's mascot: The Cabin in Willowick Ohio has been the annual locale for THE grade school reunion*

The Guys, The Reunion, The Cabin....

I didn't attend this last one; but went to one about 8 or so years ago at The Cabin. I recall many of the wives/spouses were at this one and we all hit if off well. Yet I also recall the evening went into the wee hours and as the former classmates were still rocking the house; many of the spouses disappeared and their were a few of us sitting to the side twirling our drinks with a straw clockwise then counter clockwise: repeat. Well at least the boys were having a good time....!

*My love* mentioned this year he noticed less spouses in attendance or maybe he just didn't notice them at all in the midst of 'catch up' with his classmates and old teachers....

Of course the food - the food at The Cabin via their menu appears to be classic Continental steakhouse flair with a slight Italian twist. But it's definitely one of those places that have been there for years; loyal following and what you would call a neighborhood 'institution'. I didn't see it on their on-line menu; but I recall walleye perhaps on their specials during my first and only jaunt to The Cabin for the first reunion. I never heard of walleye until we moved to Cleveland and I recall their walleye hit the spot.....alongside their prime rib which is my usual staple anywhere they offer prime rib. And they offered the gallant sliver of standing roast with au jus, horseradish sauce AND grated horseradish much to my glee.

I recall my approximate five years of living in Cleveland; aside from the sweet memories of sleet slapping against my neck and my knuckles freezing to the bone while I pushed the baby stroller stock full of kids over an iced asphalt parking lot to the Great Lakes Mall just to get outta house. I do recall good food and dining experiences (outside of the mall that is). There were always those neighborhood 'institutions' and other off the beaten track finds especially in Tremont and Cleveland Heights.

I came across a great read from my often time visits to Cleveland based food writer and food blogger Michael Ruhlman's blog. He's a born and raised Cleveland-ite and for those of you that are watching Food Network show The Next Iron Chef; he's one of the judges as you prob know. Which btw you prob know ANOTHER Cleveland-er is in hot compete on the show is chef Michael Symon of Lola in downtown Cleveland and Lolita in the historic Tremont district.

Anyways; I came across a great read on Mr. Ruhlman's blog about THE BEST BAR IN THE WORLD aka The Velvet Tango Room located in historic Ohio City. The photos on this post are classic (there's sunlight)as well as the mention about the author's wife 'suffering' from living in Cleveland (which I can relate; yet do know there are aspects about the n.e. OHIO I cherish - that's why I've dedicated this post!); hence he would take her to The Velvet Tango Room. I had never been there; but perhaps because I was *expecting* the whole time I was living in Cleveland.......

After the reunion, *my love* ventured for dining in the 'burbs and came across NOOSA Bistro......good pix below for a newborn foodist:

located in the 'burbs on Mentor Ave.....

can't go wrong with the lure of Ginger Snap Crusted Calamari: a loving partner of lemon aioli, cilantro & marinara alongside

and mussels once alive alive - oh......

Soy-Ginger Glazed Salmon with asian slaw, toasted sesame seeds, tobiko aioli & sticky rice

don't yu luv when rice & soy sauce marry like that???

Another great find: *my love's* classmate makes pasta! Check out Ohio City Pasta....

a gem like**

find at**

Ohio City Pasta**

Sages Apples
11355 Chardon Rd.
Chardon, Ohio
Tel 440.286.3416

The Cabin
28810 Lakeshore Boulevard
Willowick, Ohio
Tel 440.943.5195

Noosa Bistro
7418 Mentor Avenue
Mentor, Ohio
Tel 440.953.1088

Ohio City Pasta
Stand E3
West Side Market
1979 West 25th Street
Cleveland, Ohio
Tel 216.696.3388
check out other locations here

*photo courtesy of The Cabin of Willowick
**photo couresy of Ohio City Pasta

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