This laid-back little coffeehouse serves up some of Venezuela's finest in chocolates, coffee, and the sweet and savory creations of chef-baker Carmela de Abreu. Among the freshly made picks: El Rey hot chocolate, with cinnamon and cardamom; cream of black bean soup; and beautiful Tres Leches cakes. Beverages and pastries are always available, but if you want a meal, be sure to visit between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., Monday through Saturday.
Mesquite-grilled steaks are the stars at this handsome Cal-contemporary dining room in Brecksville, where guests can dine by the fireplace, at the bustling bar, or in cozy booths. Beyond the beef, faves include plush pulled-pork sammies, savory baby back ribs and wood-grilled salmon. A roundup of 'small plates' caters to more modest appetites.
This little 'Polish heritage' kitchen cooks up homey, ethnic-style comfort in the form of pierogi, kielbasa & kraut, kolachke, and more. Order at the counter, then enjoy in the casual dining space.
Always energetic and occasionally riveting rustic Mediterranean and American cuisine leads the way at this chef-driven bistro in Kent. Above-average desserts, too, from an in-house pastry chef.
Perched on a hill overlooking the Ohio countryside, this rambling lodge offers a lovely backdrop for Executive Chef Brandt Evans' hearty American fare. While entrées like short ribs and mac 'n' cheese may sound homey, count on Evans to update them with luxury ingredients and season them with culinary magic.
Nestled into a rustic, rambling structure on the Mario's International Spas' campus, The Cabin offers an enticing menu of mostly Mediterranean fare, featuring wood-fired pizzas, plush pastas, and well-executed seafood, chops, and steaks.
A suburban outpost of the Cleveland Heights original, Aurora's Café Tandoor serves precisely prepared Northern Indian food in an attractive setting. Among our favorites are the restaurant's unusual cashew-and-pistachio-crusted naan, warm from the tandoori oven, and the unusually good kheer.
Big, crisp, creative salads and reduced-cholesterol omelets make this bright, airy restaurant a hit with both area cube farmers and health-conscious hipsters. Meanwhile, sloths, slackers, and the rest of us can dine just fine from the menu's collection of burgers, hot dogs, and deli treats.
Despite its small size, Casa D'Angelo has a remarkably large and varied menu of Italian meals, including some you aren't likely to find anywhere else. Excellent choices include lemony Chicken alla Palermo and the creamy Veal Gamberetti Luigi with shrimp.
This neighborhood eatery and tavern may be far removed from the cutting edge; still, it draws big crowds, hungry for ample helpings of well-prepared ribs, chicken, salads, sandwiches, and chops. In season, a pretty outdoor patio in the namesake courtyard makes a popular lunch and dinner retreat.
Hibachi-table preparations of steak and seafood are the stars of this casual Japanese restaurant's menu, although the well-made sushi also earns its props. And a bucolic outdoor patio, overlooking a wooded ravine, is a warm-weather treat.
The architecture of downtown Hudson may be the epitome of preppy, but tripping through the doorway into Dave's is like waking up back at Kent State circa 1969. Yet even without the psychedelic decor, we would gladly stage a love-in here, just to savor Dave's oversized subs, stuffed with fresh ingredients and wrapped in the best crisp-crusted rolls in the region.
Every town needs a good family-owned and operated deli with offerings that range from corned beef and burgers to hot dogs and pulled pork; in Hudson, Deli on Rye is it. A long list of classic deli combos many named after surrounding communities adds to the fun, especially when paired with a cold beer.
Cleveland's own Hospitality Restaurants scores again with this Italian-accented steakhouse, where the menu includes everything from rib, sirloin, and strip steaks to salmon, spicy veal meatballs, and Boursin-stuffed Sicilian peppers. An extensive wine list and professional service are additional reasons to visit.
It's easy to imagine a gaggle of heavy-set, cigar-chomping underworld figures hunkered over dry martinis and enormous steaks at this downtown Akron institution, but even today's suburbanite will enjoy the juicy steaks, chops, and seafood that make up Diamond Grille's simple, timeless menu.
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