With the opening of Viaduct Lounge, restaurateurs Linda Syrek, Randy Kelly, and Alan Glazen have moved one step closer to fine dining.
It's a progression that, despite their protestations to the contrary, has been under way since the team opened Ohio City's ABC Tavern in late 2009. The stepping stone between ABC and Viaduct, of course, is XYZ Tavern, a Gordon Square spot that falls somewhere in the middle on the Swank-O-Meter.
You can't dress down a room like Viaduct. Formerly Ponte Vecchio, the restaurant on the old Superior Viaduct is genuinely one of a kind. Long and fairly narrow, the space features a main aisle that meanders gently from the front door to the tall windows in the back, creating multiple zones for guests to gather along the way.
As a result, coming here feels more like attending a posh cocktail party than plunking down for a meal at a noisy restaurant. Couples and foursomes sip bubbly from slim crystal flutes before a backdrop of bridges, buildings, and twinkling lights. It is Cleveland in its finest attire.
For drinks, there are some 20 sparklers — five by the glass — ranging from affordable Spanish cavas to lavish French Champagnes. There are champagne cocktails too, like the Cava Julip, a sweet marriage of mint and bubbles. Fleshing out the menu are craft beers, wines, and ports.
Diners won't find the now-famous ABC Burger here. Rather, the focus is on snacks and small plates: seafood platters from the raw bar, meat and cheese boards from the pantry, and hot plates like prosciutto-wrapped shrimp or crispy pork belly from the kitchen. A half-dozen entrées — priced at $20 or lower — include steak frites, seafood stew, and cider-brined pork chops.
Viaduct is open Tuesday through Saturday, 4 p.m. to close. Find them at 2100 Superior Viaduct; call 216-556-8200 or visit viaductlounge.com for more info.
FAMILY FEASTING: "It's going to be a lot of fun, a lot of food," Paul Minnillo says of the new Sunday Italian dinner option at his Moreland Hills restaurant Flour.
The family-style meal, served from 4 to 8 p.m., will include wedding soup and big bowls of sausage, pastas, and chicken parmesan.
Prices are per person, with adults paying $25 and kids under 12 paying $10.
The family-style option will be available on Mondays too, from 5 to 10:30 p.m. For those who prefer to order à la carte, the regular menu will also be available.
Flour is at 34205 Chagrin Blvd. For more info, call 216-464-3700 or visit flourrrestaurant.com.
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