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Friday, November 27, 2020

Graeter's Introduces New Line of Vegan Ice Creams

Posted By on Fri, Nov 27, 2020 at 9:23 AM

  • Graeter's

Whether you're vegan for health reasons, personal choice or simply preference, one of Ohio's favorite ice cream chains will soon be offering a sweet treat just for you.

Graeter's has partnered with California-based food technology company Perfect Day to introduce a brand new line of ice creams, "Perfect Indulgence," using animal-free dairy protein.

The vegan series of ice creams will feature traditional favorites like cookies and cream, mint chocolate chip, black cherry chocolate chip, chocolate, Oregon strawberry and chocolate chip — with plans to eventually roll out additional flavors such as Madagascar vanilla bean.

It should be noted that their most popular flavor, black raspberry chocolate chip, is not on this list. Perhaps it falls into the category of "flavors to come."

On the creamery's website, they note that the vegan treat does contain certain milk allergens and that folks with sensitivity to "other dairy" should read through the panel of ingredients.

“The taste of Perfect Indulgence is exactly what our customers have come to expect after 150 years of bringing them irresistibly indulgent ice cream,” said Richard Graeter, fourth-generation family member and president and CEO of Graeter’s Ice Cream in a press release.

“We are excited to finally be able to serve authentic Graeter’s indulgence to guests who choose to eat vegan or cannot enjoy our regular ice cream due to a lactose intolerance. Until now, we couldn’t put our name on a vegan product because it simply did not live up to our standards. But now, with Perfect Day, we can.”

But how does it compare to the decadent dairy delight we've grown to love over the past 150 years? The Graeter's folks say it's "virtually indistinguishable" from their typical cream-based offerings, by incorporating "animal-free protein from microflora rather than cows, which makes for a kinder, greener and more sustainable future," the press release reads.

"We’re honored to partner with Graeter’s Ice Cream, a venerable brand beloved across generations for its great taste and uncompromising quality," says Perfect Day. "This is just the beginning of what we see as a tremendous opportunity to share delicious, animal-free dairy with people in a mainstream capacity.”

The vegan line of ice creams will be available online beginning Nov. 27, and will be ready for scoopin' at stores starting Dec. 1.

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Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Facing Eviction, Owner of Moriarty's Pub Downtown Seeks Financial Assistance to Relocate Storied Bar

Posted By on Wed, Nov 25, 2020 at 1:58 PM

  • GoFundMe
We’ve already lost so much this year that the thought of losing anything else seems too heavy a burden to bear. But if you thought this year was done slinging misery, just wait until hear what Morgan Cavanaugh has to share. Cavanaugh is the owner of Moriarty’s Pub on East 6th near Short Vincent, a whiskey-soaked watering hole with approximately 100 years of Cleveland history under its belt. On top of the usual pain and suffering dealt to bars and bar owners at the hand of the coronavirus, Moriarty’s (1912 E. 6th St.) is being threatened with eviction by the new owners of the building.

“It has been a rough year for all of us,” Cavanaugh writes of his predicament. “Here at the pub we were not spared. On top of all the chaos and loss, the Baker Building (where Moriarty’s is located) sold this year to out of town buyers. The new landlords are telling all the tenants to vacate around the end of the year.”

Rather than simply vanish, thus erasing all those great (albeit fuzzy) memories, Cavanaugh hopes to relocate his bar and all the fixtures to a new spot. But he needs some help doing so, so he launched a GoFundMe page to solicit contributions.

“I am on my own here,” he writes. “The cost of the move is all on my shoulders. Morts is priceless to me and I want to keep it going down the road. Unfortunately I am not as liquid as I would hope to be.”

If you’ve ever enjoyed a drink at this legendary downtown dive – or if you haven’t and you hope to one day rectify that wrong – here’s the link to his page.

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Cleveland Chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier Launches ‘Out of the Box’ Online Fundraiser

Posted By on Wed, Nov 25, 2020 at 10:08 AM

Over the years, the Cleveland Chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier (LDEI) has raised money through its annual fundraising events to seed scholarships and grants that help Ohio women attend culinary school and teach Northeast Ohio residents about the link between food and the farmers who produce it.

But this year, the COVID-19 pandemic has compelled planners at LDEI to get creative about their fundraising efforts. In place of the annual SummerDine event, the non-profit has announced “Out of the Box,” a Cleveland-themed auction and sale that features items from small, local businesses that happen to be perfect for gift giving.

“Social distancing required by the pandemic has forced us to think OUT OF THE BOX to raise the funds for our 2021 philanthropic efforts,” says Melissa McClelland, Chapter Chair. “After much creative thought, we’re going online with gift boxes for purchase by friends of LDEI and the general public, just in time for the holidays.”

From now through early December, supporters can purchase and bid on gift certificates, products, dinners and experiences. The items – ranging in value from $35 to $500-plus – will be listed on LDEI Cleveland’s Facebook page.

Highlights include:

Vitamix A3500: Vitamix’s top-of-the line, high-performance blender

Wine Tour and Overnight in the Grand River Valley: Includes weekend stay for two at Lodge at Geneva-on-the-Lake with immersive winery tour

12 Beer of Christmas from Der Braumeister: 12 1-liter howlers of exclusive German and Belgian brews

Brunch for 8 at Lucky’s Café: Just like it sounds

Holiday Ham and Charcuterie: Feast includes cheese board of meats, charcuterie, cheeses, preserves and crackers as well as a 10-pound, nitrite-free, smoked heritage ham prepared by Ohio City Provisions

There also will be various dinners for two, a Canton Food Tour, honeybee seminar, breakfast-in-bed box and more.

“We are also putting together exclusive Made in the CLE boxes that include food products from local entrepreneurs,” McClelland adds. Those boxes will include products from Cleveland Kraut, Le Cracker, Mama Jo Homestyle Pies, Pat’s Granola, Storehouse Teas and others.

The chapter awarded its 2020 Culinary Scholarship to Gabrielle Shipta of Seven Hills. She’s using the $2,000 prize to help with tuition at Cuyahoga Community College.

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Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Remixx Ice Cream and Cereal Bar, Now Open on Clifton, Combines Two Great Comforts in One

Posted By on Tue, Nov 24, 2020 at 2:59 PM

Lost in the fog of Covid was the recent opening of Remixx Ice Cream and Cereal Bar (11512 Clifton Blvd., 216-205-4844​), a novelty shop that combines two of our favorite treats into one delicious cup, cone or milkshake. Opened in September by Vicki Kotris (who also is the co-founder of Cleveland Cookie Dough Co.), the colorful and festive shop is bound to brighten anybody's day.

Whether you call it breakfast for dessert or dessert for breakfast, Remixx transforms ice cream, cereal, mix-ins and sauces into one dreamy, creamy confection.

Everything starts with vanilla ice cream, which gets combined with a choice of cereals like Apple Jacks, Lucky Charms, Fruity Pebbles, Froot Loops and Frosted Flakes. Next up is a choice of crispy, crunchy, tasty "mixins" like Oreos, M&Ms, Butterfinger and, naturally, cookie dough. The final addition is a "drizzle" of honey, caramel, chocolate sauce or whipped cream before it all heads to the aptly named Sir-Mixx-A-Lot machine. The perfectly blended result lands in a cup, cone or shake. Vegan options also are available.

For those who would rather leave the decision making to the pros, there is a menu of pre-designed creations — here called the Top Remixx Playlist — that eliminates any dilemma. One such concoction is the Smooth Creaminal, which combines vanilla ice cream, Cocoa Puffs and Frosted Flakes with chocolate chips and chocolate dip.

Note that Remixx will be closed Thursday and Friday of Thanksgiving week.

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All Saints Public House in Battery Park Closed Indefinitely. Will Reassess Weekly

Posted By on Tue, Nov 24, 2020 at 2:05 PM

  • All Saints Public House
All Saints Public House (1261 W.76th St., 216-999-7074) had the unfortunate distinction of opening its doors in late February, enjoying a few great weeks before Covid shut them — and everybody else — down in March for the foreseeable future.

All Saints reopened in late May and managed to eke out a successful summer and fall thanks to splendid weather and a spectacular patio. But all that ends (again!) today as the owners have decided to pull the plug.

"It's just not safe for anyone right now," owner Chris Brauser states.

While he and partner Stephen Stopko used the word "indefinitely" to describe the closure, management said that it will reassess the situation on a weekly basis to see if and when a reopening would be feasible.

Like all restaurants forced to close in advance of the winter season, All Saints will face an uncertain future until the situation improves drastically.

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Momocho and El Carnicero Transitioning to Take-Out Only Until County's Stay-at-Home Advisory Expires

Posted By on Tue, Nov 24, 2020 at 9:14 AM

  • Photo via Yelp

Count Eric Williams among Cleveland chefs who are shutting down dine-in operations until Cuyahoga County's stay-at-home advisory is lifted in mid-December.

Market Garden, Parnell's, Gunselman's and others have made similar moves. Nighttown owner Brendan Ring recently announced his Cleveland Heights restaurant and jazz club would be shuttered until at least spring.

"Out of an abundance of safety and caution El Carnicero and Momocho will temporarily close inside/patio dining during the current Cuyahoga County stay-at-home-advisory," Williams announced on Sunday. "However, take-away service will continue. We need to be part of any solution that helps prevent the spread of Covid-19 for the health and safety of our front line medical workers, community and co-workers."

Ohio has seen near-daily records for new Covid cases with health officials sounding the alarm on abiding by mask and social distancing precautions. Cuyahoga County may see as many as 2,000 daily cases alone, while the city of Cleveland has set records for cases numerous times in the last week.

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine last week ordered a statewide 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew for three weeks, a half-measure in the face of an unprecedented Covid surge according to many experts in the face of business pressure to avert a statewide shutdown of bars and restaurants.

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Friday, November 20, 2020

Michael Symon Closes Flagship Eatery Lola Bistro After 24 Years, Citing Covid Crisis as Untenable

Posted By on Fri, Nov 20, 2020 at 9:14 AM

  • Food Network
Barring unforeseen circumstances, Michael Symon’s flagship restaurant Lola Bistro is closed and will not reopen. The James Beard Award-winning chef announced the news to Scene in an emotional call. While not entirely unexpected, the timing of the closure was propelled by the discovery that two employees recently tested positive for Covid, requiring a temporary shutdown at the least.

“Unless something miraculous happens, they’re closed permanently,” Symon says. “We started looking at the numbers and decided that we just can’t do it.”

Michael and Liz Symon opened Lola in Tremont in 1997, long before Symon was a nationally recognized chef and television personality. There, in the fiery open kitchen, the animated chef whipped up electric dishes like slash-and-burn grouper, herb-crusted walleye with lobster pierogi and long bone beef chop with gorgonzola risotto. Just a year later he would land on the cover of Food & Wine’s Best New Chefs issue, followed by a long string of accolades, not the least of which were high-profile TV gigs like Iron Chef and co-host of “The Chew.”

Symon famously relocated Lola from Tremont to E. Fourth Street in 2006, doing for that neighborhood what he and Liz did for Tremont, which is to say transform it into the epicenter of Cleveland dining and entertainment. Prior to the pandemic, Symon and his partners have long discussed the next phase for the 23-year-old restaurant, perhaps reinventing it for the next decade. But the world had different plans, apparently.

“Lola would have been open 24 years in March,” Symon states. “We’ve had 24 busy, successful years, and we thought that whenever we decided to end it, whenever that was, it would be on our own terms. It wouldn’t have been like this.”

All restaurants – at least the ones that have managed to remain open – are struggling. But keeping open a fine-dining eatery like Lola requires considerable revenue just to break even, revenue that had been drying up for months, says Symon.

“Before this latest surge the restaurant was at about 30-percent of normal sales,” he says. “This last surge cut that level of business in half. We would do more on a busy Saturday than we do in an entire week.”

Symon added that had he and his partners continued to operate Lola, he might not have been able to pay all of its bills, a nonstarter for him.

“We’re at a point now where we can pay all of our purveyors, to pay everyone, but there’s a breaking point where I’m not comfortable staying open and to not be able to keep paying our bills,” he says.

Also closing for good are the B Spot restaurants in Crocker Park and Strongsville. Mabel’s BBQ and B Spot Eton will remain open.

“We came to the conclusion that we could either keep two open and have a chance or keep five open and they all close,” he says.

The most challenging aspect of all of this, says Symon and his colleagues in the restaurant world, is the unknown.

“If someone could tell me that this will all be over, whatever, pick a month, then you plan to make it to there,” he says. “But no one knows. I’m fortunate to be friends with some of the smartest people in the business and nobody has an answer because you don’t know what the future holds.”

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