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Eating Cleveland

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

3:53PM - Restaurant Review: Taste on Lee rd

Taste is a new restaurant at 5248 Lee Rd next to Atma (yoga) Center. It's owned by the same guy that owns Cafe Tandoor, or at least he's involved anyway.
Tiff and I popped over last sunday for dinner. 2 people 3 courses couple drinks and coffee about $100. They also have a prix fixe menu which is 3 courses and 2 glasses of wine for $45 which we should have gotten but we prefer the freedom of à la carte.

I had the chicken spring roll appetizer which was good but not mind blowing. Tiff had the beets she didn't squee over them.

for entrees I had the rack of lamb w/cumin mashed carrots and tiff had the pork belly. I had a bite of hers and both were delicious. the carrots were a good idea that i don't think came off as perfectly as possible but I certainly enjoyed them nevertheless.

Dessert was where it all fell apart I had the red bell pepper cheesecake which was a lot like the carrots, also too thick/hard. Tiff hard the carmel thingy which was just a lot of caramel on some pie crust w/ice cream. She sent it back after nibbling the ice cream.

the people next to us were overheard to say the wine list was good. I can never tell.

Overall 7.7 out of 10.

Next time i'm in that area i'll hit anatoly across the street instead or if i really want rack of lamb i'll go to Nighttown. actually if i really want rack of lamb i'll settle for tiff's grilled trader joe's frozen lamb chops.

Monday, December 22, 2008

11:44AM - Found : Good Middle Eastern Restaurant

So Tiff and and I were traipsing about the westside of Cleveland yesterday and it become lunchtime after much deliberation we decided to go to Villa Y Zapata or whatever at 80th and Madison but they were closed and then we decided to go to Phnom Panh's original location and our way there we passed a Lebanese place that we had never seen and were tempted and decided to go straight there if Phnom Panh was closed which it was. So we turned around and went to

Sahara Restaurant
12501 Lorain Ave
Cleve OH 44111
216-671-9300

The first thing that caught our attention was they brought us a little plate of pickles and pickled horseradish (red) which immediately made me think of a Jewish place. Pickled veggies were excellent due to a different array of spices.

For appetizers we ordered Kibdeh (Lamb liver) and Stuffed Grape Leaves. No Kibdeh on sunday, the butcher that brings it fresh everyday is closed on sunday. well shucks. So I had a spinach pie that was pretty good. but I do love Liver and I'll be back for that later.

They listed an Arabic Salad and I bumped my house salad up to this. And it was awesome. Lemon and Olive oil dressing and lots of mint on lettuce cuke, tomatoes and onion dressing nothing super crazy just a nice twist on a regular salad.

For entrees Tiff had Shish Kafta and I had the Kaliyah skillet (sauteed veggies) w/lamb. Mine was excellent especially combined with the rice they brought out.

Anyway, we were favorably impressed it was a small place that had a very authentic taste. I confirmed the presence of a little old lebanese lady cooking in the back.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

11:14AM - Food in cleveland

So after a few days absence (I've been moving) I notice there a couple posts about food. When I first got on LJ I joined eatingcleveland in hopes of being referred to little nooks and crannies of eating goodness here in cleveland or NE Ohio even. unfortunately..

This board is dead.

But it shouldn't be, and it doesn't have to be.
So I'm making up this meme-like thing


1) Your personal favorite restaurant in NE ohio not the best, just your favorite.
2) A restaurant you would like to go to but haven't for whatever reason (price, distance, etc.)
3) Your most recent hot Discovery
4) What side of cleveland you live on. Clevelanders will of course know what I'm talking about.

So for me this would be
1 -My current fave is Superior Pho on superior near E 30th
2 -I've never been to Sokolowski's in Tremont
3 - Lola (or Lolita, whichever) in Tremont does $5 kobe beef burgers w/egg during happy hour! [also that there's a Kosher dairy restaurant I haven't been to]
4 It's not the dark or the light side (no it's not.) It's the EAST SIDE

Sunday, July 31, 2005

3:53PM - Bella Lucca - Lakewood - 18405 Detroit Ave.

Hidden, in a little building in the west end of Lakewood, located on Detroit Avenue, across the street from John's Diner is where you'll find something delicious. The space has housed Curcio (never went) and Amici's (there through most of the 90's). It is tiny, with linen table clothes and a fairly sparse decor, not formal really.

I've been to Bella Lucca probably a dozen times and have enjoyed myself with every visit. Most of those times were for lunch, which I'll miss. (Last week, they closed for lunch due to lack of demand. I don't know what's wrong with people-- in that area, it was the best high quality deal around.)

Things I've really enjoyed:

- sesame peppercorn seared yellowfin ahi tuna w/ ginger jasmine rice and a spicy peanut sauce
- duck w/cornmeal stuffing and baby vegetables (perfectly prepared, a little rareness, seared a bit, really absolutely wonderful!)
- lobster bisque (very very smooth which some sherry and a forced to be reckoned with)
- the vegetarian orecchietta (the pasta is always a bit toothsome, just how it should me, I really enjoyed its lunchtime counterpart with the most delicious mild sausage)

Normally, it is it a pretty quiet place without too many people in it, I'd really recommend visiting.

The entree prices range from $14-$29. I felt compelled to mention this place because I'm quite fond of it and I'm surprised that there aren't more people there. Nearly every meal I've had has been outstanding (except perhaps the chicken and tomato vodka sauce which seemed to be lacking excitement, but really was fine.) My only other complaint really is the pellegrino water is $5, but everything else seems pretty reasonable.

---

Bella Luca
18405 Detroit Ave
Lakewood, OH 44107
216 227-6200

Saturday, July 16, 2005

10:25AM - Udupi Cafe - Parma Heights, OH - 6339 Olde York Rd.

I've meant to visit the Udupi Cafe for quite some time, but wasn't up for the drive to the uncharted lands of Parma On the Heights. My interest was particularly piqued earlier this year when the PD reviewer, John Long, declared that although it is a strictly vegetarian restaurant, the meat will not be missed. John, looks to be a fellow who likes a lot of meat, so I took this to heart.

The place is easy to miss, I did the first time-- you need to find the intersection of Old York and Ridge Road and enter the humble shopping center housing a Goodwill store. Upon entering the restaurant on a Friday night, they were doing what looked like a good business, and it took a minute for someone to realize we were there, but that wasn't a problem. As I learned, you don't go here for knock-your-socks-off service, you come here for some interesting good food at a very fair price.

This isn't like your normal area Indian restaurant for two reasons: no meat and not your usual cuisine. India is a big place. Like China, another big place with many regional styles, India offers a lot of variety. I'm really not deeply familiar with the regions and their foods, but I've been to a lot of Indian restaurants and am always up for something new. (Sometimes when a new restaurant opens up, people on the staff recognize me-- which I've always found funny. Although I may be ignorant of the styles, I do love the food and that has to mean something.)

Yes, you can get by on the usual standards like palak paneer (mmmm, cheese) or a somosa or naan or something, all good, but this place has all sorts of things I haven't seen before-- crêpe-like dosa and super puffed-up bhatura (it looks somewhat like the cloud associated with hydrogen bomb tests and is as big as my head).

I really don't know everything that I ate, I'll probably have to return a couple of times. All I know is that I enjoyed everything I ate. They smartly just leave everyone with a pitcher of water and are generous with their chutneys and sauces. At one point I was like a food DJ, mixing it all up, I think I probably had a dozen different sauces and chutneys-- too saucy? I enjoyed my salted lassi (even if it appeared the order had been forgotten and required a gentle reminder from my unreticent dining companion.) And, for two people, who ordered more food than we could ever eat, I spent about $35 per visit. If your appetite is larger (I doubt it), maybe, just maybe you could spend $40-$45, but I'd say on average, dinner would cost about $25-$30 for two. Oh right, and the place is clean. Clean!

My only complaints are that the service could have been a bit friendlier, the should have bigger forks, and it would be nice if they were closer to me and moved to Cleveland. (A note on the service, in one instance, the table behind me probably spent ten minutes going through the menu when ordering, and the staff was very patient, knowledgeable, and helpful. That's what really counts.)

--

Udupi Cafe
Parma Heights, OH
6339 Olde York Rd.
440-743-7154

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

9:25PM - Eating Cleveland

It is my plan to eat all of Cleveland-- from its lowliest Lorain Avenue hot dog hole-in-the-wall to its most exalted pierogies to Johnny's hoity toity beef au poivre to the weekend BBQ pits you can find in a parking lot somewhere on the near east side.

Join me as I execute my plan.

Here is a place where you, too, can share your experiences shopping or dining in the Cleveland area.