Bites: R.J. Boland's Opening

And more local food news

It's been over three years since a business operated at 728 Prospect. The address most recently was home to the Waterhouse, but before that, it housed Phil the Fire and Diamondback Brewery. If all goes as planned, the new tenant will be up and running by late October. Described by its owner as a high-energy American saloon, R.J. Boland's will combine a sports-bar design with upscale pub grub. Partner and executive chef Doug Fulton, opening chef of McCormick & Schmick's, says guests can expect familiar but high-quality food dished up in a casual environment. Minor cosmetic changes will be made to the space, including dark-wood accents and the addition of numerous flat-screen TVs. If the proposed "American saloon" décor sounds a bit like BlackFinn Saloon, a 10-shop chain destined for Cleveland, it is no coincidence. Boland's owner Rossi Penney is a former operating partner with that organization. Down the road, locals can look forward to Martini Suite, an ultra-lounge-style club with bottle service to be opened upstairs.

Michael Herschman has left the kitchen. The former chef and owner of Mojo and most recently chef at Metropolitan Café is now wearing a suit and working as the GM of Melange (2101 Richmond Rd., 216.378.9755, In addition to fine-tuning front-of-the-house operations, Herschman is putting his stamp on the wine program. He just unveiled Flight 271, a flights menu that gives guests the opportunity to explore various grapes and regions in one sitting.

This year's Cleveland Browns Taste of the NFL 2009, which benefits the sorely needed Cleveland Foodbank, will kick off at 6 p.m. Monday, Sept. 14. The celebrity-studded fundraiser will boast 31 food stations manned by the area's top culinary talent. Suffice it to say that your favorite eatery (and winery) will be there. Check for a complete listing. Tickets are $150.

Fungus fans should make plans to see the movie Know Your Mushrooms, which makes its Cleveland premier Sept. 10, 11 and 13, at Cleveland Institute of Art Cinematheque (11141 East Blvd., 216.421.7450). Written and directed by documentary filmmaker Ron Mann, the trippy flick explores the wonderful world of fungi. Film from the annual Telluride Mushroom Festival in Colorado is combined with animation and old footage to expose the shadowy subculture to the light of day. The Flaming Lips provide an appropriately psychedelic soundtrack.

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About The Author

Douglas Trattner

For 20 years, Douglas Trattner has worked as a full-time freelance writer, editor and author. His work on Michael Symon's "Carnivore," "5 in 5" and “Fix it With Food” have earned him three New York Times Best-Selling Author honors, while his longstanding role as Scene dining editor garnered the award of “Best...
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