People & Places

Best Place to Take Out-of-Towners 

West Side Market

Go to the West Side Market on a Saturday morning, and you're likely to hear 10 different languages within your first 10 steps through the door. This is what Cleveland is all about -- a wonderful melting pot of people, surrounded by some very large cuts of meat. Of course, the deals are sweet, with produce at about one-third the price of a conventional grocery. There's also a killer selection of chow, from Slovenian sausage to Hungarian pasta to fresh cheese and bread. It's Old World shopping at its finest: Merchants still take pride in a fine cut of meat, and hawkers wax poetic about the merits of their watermelon. But what makes the West Side Market truly special is the ambiance. You won't find a better place to people-watch in town. And while yuppie towns try (unsuccessfully) to re-create this vibe with their farmers' markets, this is the genuine article: one of Cleveland's great treasures.

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