Cleveland, Ohio – My Favorite Things


Growing up in Detroit we always referred to Cleveland as “The Mistake By The Lake.” Their rebuttal is “At least We’re Not Detroit.” Touche.

Me and the Missus like to take weekend road trips from Detroit to regional destinations, so it was only a matter of time before we ended up in Cleveland. Even the dirtiest mine has some gems hiding. Here are the gems we found.

Gem #1

There is a restaurant chain in Ohio call The Melt. The menu consists of many different grilled cheese sandwiches. On our first trip we got the bacon mac & cheese grilled cheese. It was to die for. They also have rotating seasonal menu, many craft beers on draft along with meads and ciders. We don’t go to Ohio without stopping at Melt.

You’re drooling. I’m not sorry.

The only bad thing I have to say is the wait. It is often an hour+. The bar is FCFS, we have been lucky with a little hovering and have never had to wait too long.

Gem #2

We got a local to clue us in to Bar Cento. Wow! They had a good selection of draft beer, 300 bottled beers (!), and a huge wine selection. This may be the broadest selection I have seen in one building.

Belgian Fries!

The food here is top notch. Order anything with confidence. My personal favorite are the Belgian style fries: fried twice in duck fat with garlic and rosemary. My mouth is watering while I write this.

Since they were voted best pizza in Ohio by Food Network and Zagat, I should probably mention their pizza. We sampled 4 of them and they were all amazing, including the Sunnyside which won all the awards (runny egg yolks, provolone, and house made pancetta on a thin crust). Don’t deprive yourself of this place if you are visiting Cleveland.

It is in the Ohio City neighborhood, which is full of many other gems as well like the West Side Market, Koffie Cafe, The Flying Fig, and…

Gem #3

Most awarded porter of all time


…award winning Great Lakes Brewery.

You can take a tour here and see how the beer is made and get 25 cent samples at the end.  They also have a brewpub.

Protip: go here for the beer, not the food.


On top of this there is the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame which we never visited.  The Botanical Garden we never visited. Museums and playhouses we never visited. We did go to the Zoo, it was good, but we have visited 30-40 zoos now and I would say it’s average, nothing more. Good to visit once.

What did we miss? Post a comment below.

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Trip to Cleveland