In a region boasting scores of neighborhood taverns, the Linden stands out as one of the best for its comfy decor, friendly service, and large assortment of well-prepared eats. For this, thank the Eglinski family, the taverns operators since 1989. For a real taste of Clevelands heritage, dont miss the fresh Lake Erie perch and pierogi dinner, washed down with a locally brewed Dortmunder Gold.
Yup, it's a little bar all right: dim and a tad dingy. But that said, it's worth seeking out for its first-rate burgers, juicy ribs, freshly cut French fries, and a daily "comfort food" special like chicken Parmesan over penne pasta.
The pool room has been turned into a music room, with both local and touring indie bands of all stripes. But the two-level ’60s-style lanes with hand pinsetting are still intact.
Owner, namesake, and painstaking chef Marta Runza works magic on her Eastern-European repertoire, turning out succulent, slow-cooked sauerbraten, ephemeral Czech dumplings, and the best roast duck of any nationality in town. And while the tiny dining room and bar are no more glam than Granny's rec room, the friendly Old World charm is priceless. Try the bar's unusual Czech specialties.
Rightly praised for its gigantic stuffed and toasted grilled cheese sandwiches, this home-grown phenomenon fills bellies and buoys spirits. Fillings range from the austere to the ridiculous, such as the pair of cheese pierogies inside the Parmageddon. Wicked beer list, kitsch-filled dining room, and rockin' tunes create a festive atmosphere.
Probably the only restaurant in the region to have an X-Wing fighter stationed in the parking lot, Mike's Place is full of weird decor and wacky humor. Nonetheless, the inexpensive food huge portions of casual fare thrown together with wild abandon is seriously tasty, ranging from tall homemade biscuits to Mike's award-winning barbecue. Large beer list.
The ornamental leprechauns may be suspect, but the rest of the Old Angle is more Dublin than Dublin. Folk and blues musicians play solo by the fireplace hearth at the end of the bar.
Known more for its ribs than its rock, Pacers features DJs on the weekends. A mammoth TV and lots of booths make it a good place to watch sports.
This funky, art-driven café specializes in all matter of spicy brews, or, as they like to call them: "Hot pots o' soul." The star here, no surprise, is chili, made from hand-chopped meats, fresh chiles, and proprietary spice blends. Varieties include Texas beef, chicken verde, spicy vegan, and white-hot pork. Chili also finds its way onto kick-ass chili dogs, Sloppy Joes, and nachos grande. Other items include tacos, chicken wraps, gazpacho and milkshakes.
A taste of Vegas in downtown Cleveland, this sprawling complex boasts four distinct vibes: pumping house music in the martini bar, national comedians in the Hilarities theater, an open kitchen and piled portions in the bright restaurant, and sequined performers in original revues at the cabaret.
Launched by Wooster chef-restaurateur Mike Mariola, the Rail is one of the most attractive adaptations of the gourmet burger bar to hit Northeast Ohio. Mariola's meat methodology consists of using local, grain-fed beef for his meaty half-pounders. Pair them with crunchy starters and sides, great craft beers, creamy hand-dipped milkshakes, and a trio of salads.
Town and gown unite behind the swinging doors of this venerable tavern, where the burgers sizzle, the French fries rock and the beer list goes on and on.
This dim watering hole is the quintessential neighborhood bar, but with one important twist: The homemade grub is several cuts above the competition. Especially noteworthy are the boffo burgers freshly ground, hand-formed giants, done to order and served with style and the plump pierogies, smothered with grilled onions and sour cream. Full bar, live music on weekends.
Part of a small but growing Columbus-based chain, this neighborhood eatery offers a family-friendly vibe, a casual sports-bar motif, and a big menu of generally well-prepared comfort food (try the meatloaf!). Long international beer list.
An unpretentious neighborhood bar on steroids, sprawling Stampers offers an extensive menu of craft and draft beers, a familiar but well-executed pub menu, and a roster of some of the area’s top blues and rock performers and singer-songwriters.
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