United We Brunch returns to the Madison Sat., March 14. Limited tickets still available!

Bites

Friday, February 21, 2020

22 Hole-in-the-Wall Burger Spots You Should Have Tried By Now

Posted on Fri, Feb 21, 2020 at 3:57 PM

City of Cleveland to Hire Outside Consultant to Examine Changes and Improvements at West Side Market

Posted By on Fri, Feb 21, 2020 at 10:32 AM

ERIK DROST/FLICKR CC
  • Erik Drost/Flickr CC
Frustration over the city's management of the West Side Market doesn't seem to be subsiding, and as the community and some elected leaders pressure Cleveland to turn over management to a non-profit or seek another solution to the problems, Cleveland today announced it has issued an RFP for a consultant to evaluate possible changes at the Cleveland landmark.

“We are in search of a consultant that can think outside of the box to enhance the Market’s competitive edge,” Chief Operating Officer Darnell Brown said in a press release. “As the historic institution continues to adapt to the evolving demands of 21st Century customers, the City of Cleveland seeks a consultant who can evaluate and recommend ways to enhance overall customer experience, vendor mix, and quality of products and services. We also want to create a process for customers to be able to provide feedback.”

The city had recently announced a set of goals for 2020 that included online purchasing, concierge pick-up, improved tenant relations, improved seating and expanded marketing.

The consultant, once hired, will "help reshape the West Side Market customer experience by evaluating existing practices and developing a strategic action plan to drive change at the Market."

Four main areas of focus the city will ask the consultant to examine:

· Administrative: Create a process and establish a tool to evaluate vendor performance and vendor selection. Develop a tool to receive customer feedback and evaluate customer satisfaction.

· Entrepreneurial Growth & Recruitment: Provide recommendations on vendor recruitment. Develop recommendations to diversify products and services. Analyze the role of the Market as a business incubator and identify specific services required to support the success of vendors. Make recommendations for creative revenue streams that encourage repeat customer visits.

· Facilities Management & Capital Planning: Review West Side Market Capital Plan to focus on customer access to products, services and events. Review and assess the day to day maintenance practices of the facilities and provide recommendations on ways to increase efficiency, streamline project coordination and enhance communication with vendors and outside departments.​

· Encourage Community Engagement, Outreach and Bridge Building: Review and assess the WSM 2019 Community Survey and 2019 Marketing Plan to create tools that measure customer satisfaction going forward as the vendor recommendations are implemented. Conceptualize a plan on how the WSM can enhance its strategic relationships while adhering to its core mission. Engage in collaborative partnerships with community partners (i.e. RTA, VA, Hunger Network, Cleveland Restoration etc.).
Results of a customer survey show shopper support many of the ideas already floated by tenants — changes in hours, utilizing vacant space, etc.  — and WSM Tenant Association President Don Whitaker says the city is already moving toward executing some changes soon, albeit in predictably Cleveland fashion. Via the PD:

A year ago, Whitaker said, the vendors offered to update their operating hours to “be here when the customers want to be here.”

The recommendation included opening later and staying open later to get after-work crowds, as well as staying open until 8 p.m. on Wednesdays in the summer, “as long as [the city] marketed it.”

Now that the survey has confirmed shoppers want later hours, the city is on board. But not in a well-planned manner, said Whitaker.

“After not hearing anything since April. they called me into the office on February 5 and said, ‘We’re changing the hours February 17 and I need you to sign this document.’

“I said, ‘What’s your plan?’ and they said, ‘We’re going to print out flyers and put the hours on our website and send a press release.’ ”

“You’re talking about changing 50-year-old hours in less than 10 days. You need a better plan than this,” Whitaker said.

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All Saints Public House in Battery Park Opens This Saturday

Posted By on Fri, Feb 21, 2020 at 10:18 AM

DOUGLAS TRATTNER
  • Douglas Trattner
Update: All Saints Public House in Battery Park officially opens tomorrow, Saturday, Feb. 22, at 2 p.m.

For more on the revamped space and concept, which debuts in the spot occupied by Battery Park Pub, Graffiti and Reddstone, check out our first look below.

***

(Original story 1/29/2019): Business partners Chris Brauser and Stephen Stopko believe they have the formula to succeed in a spot that has seen more than its fair share of turnover over the past few years. Since 2012, this Battery Park tavern in Detroit Shoreway has been home to Reddstone 2.0, Graffiti and Battery Park Pub, some ventures lasting as long as three years, others as brief as 11 months. Of course, many old-timers remember this building as Snicker’s, a joint that lasted (under various owners) for almost two decades.

Brauser and Stopko, who got the keys to the building in early October, appear to have put in the time, money and attention to create a space that looks and feels like a new business as opposed to a simple retread of operations past. All Saints Public House (1261 W.76th St., 216-999-7074) offers up the atmosphere of a warm, welcoming and polished neighborhood pub.

“We focused on bringing the building back to its prime era,” notes Brauser, adding that the building dates back to 1909. “Over the years and different restaurant concepts, the character got stripped away, as did the bar’s position in the neighborhood.”

DOUGLAS TRATTNER
  • Douglas Trattner
Following months of work, the main barroom has reclaimed much of its turn-of-the-century elegance; an intimate space for 45 anchored by a handsome mahogany bar and capped with a pressed tin ceiling. Warm lighting, soft seating and a wall decorated with photos of local boxer Johnny Kilbane combine to create an appealing spot that feels like it’s been here all along.

Back in the day, the corner tavern served as the company bar for employees of the Union Carbide plant. For All Saints to thrive, says Brauser, it once again has to serve the immediate community.

“We are a neighborhood bar that bridges the divide between new and old,” he states. “For this place to have success, it has to be the place that the neighborhood loves.”

DOUGLAS TRATTNER
  • Douglas Trattner
Chef Cody Heppler will put together a menu of approachable but well-crafted items that will include wedge and Cobb salads, pulled pork sliders, grilled cheese sandwiches served alongside tomato bisque, beer-battered fish and chips, smoked beef Reubens and a grilled sirloin steak. Those dishes will be supplemented by nightly specials.

“I don’t even want to use the term gastropub, because that sounds too fancy,” Brauser explains. “This is solid pub fare.”

DOUGLAS TRATTNER
  • Douglas Trattner
The upper level received equal attention, turning an underutilized overflow space into a clubby but attractive lounge with a more casual vibe. Comfy couches, multiple large-screen TVs and a second bar make the space more conducive to groups, private affairs and events like trivia or comedy nights.

“The way I describe it is, if I meet a girl and have a first date, we’ll eat downstairs,” Brauser says. “On the weekend, when I’m with my friends watching sports, upstairs is where I’m going to hang.”

DOUGLAS TRATTNER
  • Douglas Trattner
Out back, the patio will also get a much-needed refresh. Come spring, guests can look forward to a patio space that is leveled, relit and refurnished.

Look for All Saints Public House to open in mid-February.

DOUGLAS TRATTNER
  • Douglas Trattner
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Thursday, February 20, 2020

Waffle Bar to Open Permanently at Bookhouse Brewing in Ohio City

Posted By on Thu, Feb 20, 2020 at 2:14 PM

PHOTO BY DOUGLAS TRATTNER
  • Photo by Douglas Trattner
The pop-up waffle shop that's been operating out of Bookhouse Brewing in Ohio City for the past year is getting a permanent home ... at Bookhouse Brewing.

The 25th Street brewery, run by partners Luke Brevoort and Vaughn Stewart, made the announcement official earlier this week on Facebook, saying that 
chef George Gazdick and his Liege-style waffles are getting their own small kitchen in a corner of the family-friendly space.

"In this new era of waffledom, you’ll have your choice of sweet, savory or vegan/gluten-free batter, with an expanded menu of toppings that can take things in a sweet or savory direction," Bookhouse Brewing announced.

The Waffle Bar's official grand opening is Saturday, March 21, starting at noon. A special Waffelbiere, which was brewed with maple syrup and Waffle Bar batter, is going to be on tap for the event.

After the party, expect waffle options every day the brewery is open. On some weekends, the bar's menu may also expand.

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Falafel Cafe Reopening in New Uptown Space in March

Posted By on Thu, Feb 20, 2020 at 11:34 AM

FALAFEL CAFE CLEVELAND
  • Falafel Cafe Cleveland

After two long years since it closed after its lease ended with UCI, Falafel Cafe is set to reopen in March in a new Uptown location at 11454 Uptown Ave., which was most recently the home of Simply Greek.

Owner Mae Elassal, who founded and operated the casual University Circle restaurant with her late husband for 18 years before closing up shop, will be bringing back the affordable Middle Eastern fare that made the shop a popular and affordable option in the neighborhood.

“We were in University Circle when nobody was there. We’ve witnessed all this change there,” she said. “That’s why I want to go back, because I love my customers.”

The new location comes with a three-year lease from Case Western Reserve University, which owns the property.

“We are pleased to provide Mae the opportunity to reopen her restaurant in Uptown,” Kevin Slesh, the university’s director of real estate, said in a press release. “Falafel Café was a University Circle pioneer, a staple, and we’re thrilled to see its return.”

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Come March, Say Goodbye to The Morehouse in Willoughby and Hello to Nora's Public House

Posted By on Thu, Feb 20, 2020 at 10:59 AM

NORA'S FB
  • Nora's FB

The owners of The Morehouse (4054 Erie St.) in Willoughby yesterday announced that by next month the BBQ and Southern comfort restaurant will be no more.

Citing a glut of BBQ restaurants in Northeast Ohio, the owners will instead transition the space to an Irish pub and bar called Nora's Public House.

The announcement, made via Facebook, is below.

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Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Freddie's, a Philly Sandwich and Fry Shop, Now Open in Tremont

Posted By on Wed, Feb 19, 2020 at 2:02 PM

PHOTO BY SPORTSBOYTONY
  • Photo by SportsBoyTony

The former Sesame & Soy spot in Tremont on Professor Ave. has been claimed.

Freddie's (2173 Professor; 216-417-0867), whose menu focuses on Philly sandwiches and "dirty fries," has opened in the space.

Manager Strong Chien tells Scene some of the ownership group and a hefty portion of the staff bring experience from Dale's Deli in Euclid, which shares similar menu items, including those "dirty fries" — basically your preferred Philly style (chicken, steak, corned beef, shrimp, etc.) served over fries. Customers can also get those on top of fried rice, or in a traditional sandwich.

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Freddie's is open for lunch Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 4 to 9 p.m. for dinner, Saturday from noon to 9 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 8 p.m. It's closed on Tuesdays.
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