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Food

Cleveland Cookie Dough Company

The smell of baking fills the kitchen. Nothing beats the aroma of vanilla, sugar, and butter; fresh baked cookies straight from the oven. The scent of chocolatey goodness hits your nose and you’re instantly transported back to your childhood days; coming home to grandmother’s house. I remember the days we spent making chocolate chip cookies together. I don’t know about you, but as a child I was always yelled at for eating the extra raw cookie dough after making a batch of cookies, because it’s “bad for you.”

Have you ever tried to bake cookies with grandma, but they never make it to the oven? Yeah! Then this place is definitely for you! The Cleveland Cookie Dough Company is deeeeelicious! Or as they say “Doughlicious”! Serving no-bake cookie dough you can eat by the spoonful without getting yelled at. Offering a variety of homemade memories with flavors like chocolate chip, brownie batter, reese peanut butter, and my favorite; a creamy, classic birthday cake sprinkle edible cookie dough you can safely eat.

Everything you love about birthday cake in cookie form without the boxed mix—soft and chewy funfetti cake flavor, sprinkles, whipped frosting, and more sprinkles; the ultimate crowd-pleaser. There’s nothing like grabbing a jar of edible cookie dough batter stuffed with sprinkles. So much better tasting than a birthday cake in my opinion! It is quite possibly my favorite flavor EVER! On the menu, you’ll find specialties like campfire s’mores, cinnamon bun, and red velvet. If you want to experience all the mouth watering flavors they have to offer, browse their full menu and calendar on https://www.clecookiedough.com or head over to https://www.instagram.com/clecookiedough/ to find the truck near you since they are a mobile service.

Food

Pie-O-Mine & Greens

When I say “pizza” to you, I know what you’re thinking; Chicago, New York, the pizza capitals of the world. I bet Ohio doesn’t cross your mind. Well, it should according to me. If you’re searching for the best pizza Ohio has to offer, look no further than Pie-O-Mine & Greens in Woodmere. Their pizza is fresh and delicious; a new favorite spot of mine. Serving personalized brick oven pizza, with an infinite amount of fresh toppings, you can customize your own pie with the ‘create your own’ option. Start with fresh pizza dough, top it with your choice of sauce, cheese, veggies, meats, and more unlimited clean ingredients, giving you that farm to table freshness. Or visit their menu to select from around 15+ classic favorite specialties, an assortment of pizzas with hand-chopped toppings and thin crust dough that they can modify to fit your dietary needs (gluten free option). Their menu includes specialty pizzas like the Classic Pepperoni, Meat Lovers and Booming Buffalo to name a few of my personal favorites. What’s your favorite kind of pizza? For me, nothing beats their BBQ Chicken creation. Sweet BBQ sauce, chopped chicken, red onions, bacon and cheese. I think many of you out there would agree with me.

Are you looking for a few less carbs? Or trying to meet your vegetable quota? Check out their custom blended salads. High quality food made with the freshest of ingredients, build your own salad with their customizable make station. Fresh to order, start your salad with a foundation of kale, romaine, or mixed greens. Then choose from over twenty plus toppings, such as dried cranberries, mandarin oranges, quinoa, green pepper, walnuts, sunflower seeds just to name a few (fruits/veggies unlimited). They also serve a plethora of specialty salads starting at $5.99 for a small caesar ranging to $12.49 for a large cobb. The freshest, healthiest, and best lunch/dinner salads I’ve seen.

Pie-O-Mine & Greens has introduced a new item to their menu! Wraps, which my tastebuds are craving. So, whether you want to dine on their delicious pizza, nutritious salads, and/or wraps, they have something tasty for everyone to enjoy.


Food

Balance Pan-Asian Grille

When you’re looking for a quick and easy meal to grab on the go, fast food is the popular choice. With a wide range of options, this food is convenient, inexpensive, and tastes good. But fast also means high sodium, trans fat, and cholesterol. Sure, you can customize your order to be healthier; order grilled chicken, skip the bun, and avoid creamy sauces. But all the added sugar and empty calories won’t fill you up. With so many fast food chains around the city, it becomes tough to maintain healthy eating habits. Not to worry! Healthy fast food does exist. Next time you need to eat on the run, find yourself a dish at Balance Grille where they serve real food, fast loaded with simple, colorful fresh cut, whole ingredients that are prepared daily. Taste the creative flavors of their mongo tacos, or their Asian-fusion build-a-bowls. Add vegetables, swap sauces, or go for the classic teriyaki like I did. This takeout isn’t fried or processed. The food is always fresh, so dig in without a forkful of guilt. If you haven’t been to Balance Grille, you’re missing out! Whether you work in the city, or just passing by, pop in and give it a try, and let me know what you think.

Food

Town Hall

With hundreds of choices at your fingertips when it comes to dining out, choosing a restaurant can be challenging. I consider myself restaurant savvy, so don’t fret my friend, I’m here to guide you to the best local grub in the city. If you haven’t familiarized yourself with the food Cleveland has to offer, now is the time! As a self proclaimed food tourist, I’ve tasted a variety of meals from 5 star menus, farmers markets, food-trucks, and other local spots you’ll want to experience. 
My favorite, Town Hall has a menu full of endless options, always serving delicious organic quality food. If you are looking for vegan friendly, paleo, gluten-free, or just healthier alternatives to comfort food, this is the place to eat. If there is one thing you need to try off this menu, it’s the unfried chicken sandwich. In my opinion, it is the #1 entree on their menu. It’s a healthier spin on a classic favorite, with spicy cashew crusted chicken topped with kim chi-carrot-brussel slaw, togarashi aiolil and miso glazed bacon. This delicious sandwich is served with a side of fresh cut truffle fries (french-fry heaven as far as I’m concerned). Honestly you can’t go wrong with anything on their menu.
I also tasted the smashed avocado, grass-fed cheeseburger, and food truck tacos. No complaints here! Everything was beyond tasty. The smashed avocado (guacamole) was a great small plate to start with; the freshest I’ve ever had. I even scraped the bowl clean! The cheeseburger was impressively tender, juicy, and full of flavor. Topped with organic white cheddar, onion, oregano vin, shredded romaine, rosemary aioli, and a pickle; simple yet satisfying. I was pleasantly surprised with Town Hall’s food truck tacos in their most basic form (tortilla shell, protein, and cheese). They are yummy, but these upscale tacos put other tacos to shame. Best I’ve ever had; overflowing with corn, chicken, shredded greens, every bite better than the last! Try to imagine the most perfect meal. Actually, you don’t have to. Just head to Town Hall!
Food

Forage Public House

Dear locals,

If you are indecisive when it comes to deciding where to eat, and what to order, let me choose for you. Trust me when I say you’ll want to fill your belly with the mouthwatering options from Forage Public House. You’ve gotta eat here! Forage is committed to serving sustainable American fare with vegan friendly courses. A menu so tantalizing even I struggled making my selection. With an abundance of appetizing starters, delicious entrees, and decadent deserts to choose from, how would I settle on one dish? I owe it to my taste buds to experience each and every flavorful bite Forage has to offer. Let the drooling commence!

Bavarian pretzels, blue mussels, and crisp vegan cauliflower. I took delight in sampling all the tasty finger foods. In my opinion, what takes the cake is the crisp cauliflower; tender on the inside, crispy on the outside, and packed full of flavor. These vegan nuggets are essential when dining here. A crunchy guilt-free treat!

For my plant-based foodies, the vegetarian options don’t stop there! Try the mushroom pappardelle, an authentic italian dish that is simple, flavorful, and cooked with lots of fresh vegetables and herbs. Made with foraged and cultivated mushrooms, locatelli, mushroom nage, and scallions, mixed in beautiful ribbony pasta covered in a sauce so good, you’ll want to slurp it up. This vegetarian plate is exquisite and deserves 5 stars!

If you really want to wow your taste buds, do yourself a favor and order the tacos. Coming in at just $3.00 each, these gourmet grilled amish chicken tacos topped with chili crema, pico de gallo, cotija cheese, and cilantro, are a crowd-pleasing combination. You might be thinking about ordering seconds but I encourage you to save some room for dessert.

To top off your awesome experience, if you have a major sweet tooth, you’ll want to check out their next-level sweets. Impress your palette with their melt-in-your-mouth creme brûlée, or indulge in my personal favorite, the creamy s’mores dessert! Layers of graham crumbs and belgian chocolate, beautifully topped with torched golden brown marshmallows. It is sure to be the highlight of your meal! Next time you are in Lakewood, swing by Forage and be sure to let me know how good your experience was!

Photo Credit: S’mores Photograph Courtesy of Nicole Steffen @eatlocalohio https://www.instagram.com/eatlocalohio/?hl=en

http://foragepublichouse.com

https://www.instagram.com/foragepublichouse/?hl=en

Food

Brewnuts

As I continue eating my way through Cleveland, the latest stop on my food tour leads me to a sugary heaven called Brewnuts. I had the opportunity to sink my teeth into the oh-so-fluffy dough of the tastiest gourmet donut I’ve ever had the pleasure of eating. They are so flavorful you’ll feel closer to paradise with the first bite of these succulent, well-made donuts. Each doughy goodness is infused with beer (a key ingredient) that really adds depth to the pastry and perfectly complements the dough making this a sinfully delicious treat. These sizable donuts prove that beer is not just for washing down wings on Super Bowl Sunday, but that cooking with it adds a richness to the batter which causes the donuts to puff up superbly.

I recommend you head there early before the popular flavors sell out and when the donuts are at their freshest. Brewnuts offers the traditional old-fashioned fry cakes and delicious glazed options to the wildest and wackiest modern donuts with an exciting twist. I favored the Toothsome Golden Graham donut (worth the calories if I do say so myself). With every bite better than the first, the fluffy ring of chewiness slathered in cereal milk icing and topped with cereal, marshmallow, and chocolate is a treat too good to pass up. Brewnuts inventive creations are by far the best donuts around. Once you bite into one your taste buds are sure to agree. When you stop by be sure to try a fry cake!

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Sarah Alessi @caffeine_and_carbs

Food

Thai Thai

In the heavy heat of June, Alexis and I walked the streets of Lakewood after lunch with the blazing sunlight from the cloudless sky beating down on our exposed shoulders. With perspiration surfacing on our foreheads and sweat running down our faces in rivulets, the humid afternoon stroll was becoming unbearable. We stopped under each tree that cast a patch of shade on the sidewalk and sought out a comfortable place to escape the heat. Thanks to social media and smart phones, we stumbled upon Thai Thai, a place that had numerous positive reviews and was a few streets over from where we dined. After a little discussion we decided to give Thai Thai a try.

Instead of reaching for pop, sparkling water, or sangria to help quench our thirst, we considered trying the latest trend sweeping the nation. Bubble tea is a sugary iced drink, often fruit flavored with chewy tapioca pearls floating inside. If you’re a fan of tropical refreshments like we are, then you’ve got to try Thai Thai’s sweet, frothy tea-based drink. It should be your go-to summer beverage. This afternoon refresher is definitely my new warm weather companion as temperatures rise and barbecues beckon. Nothing tastes more like summertime than sipping on a refreshing cup of bubble tea.

While I had never previously tried bubble tea, I was pleasantly surprised by the delicious fruity blend. I sipped on the mango and Alexis tried banana. We want to let our readers know you won’t be disappointed. If you don’t believe me, just ask the locals who line up outside the doors of Thai Thai to grab one of Kiwi’s bubble tea creations that only come around once a month. I was 1 of 200 customers lucky enough to try one of these creative concoctions. The Unicorn Blend tea is made of layers of several flavors (mango, honeydew, taro and strawberry) topped with a Brewnuts donut, sour gummies, and lollypops. Not only is the bubble tea as beautiful as it is refreshing, it’s sure to hit the spot and cool you off. Overall we really enjoyed our experience at Thai Thai. The cozy atmosphere along with the personable, friendly, and passionate owner Kiwi provided enjoyable conversation and made us feel at home.

Food

3 Palms Pizzeria

As a self-labeled pizza connoisseur, someone that’s toured many cities exploring the different pizza styles and varieties of toppings each neighborhood offers, I’ve sampled and tasted some of the finest savory pies. I’ve found myself indulging in Chicago’s deep-dish pizza, devouring Detroit’s caramelized crunchy edges, and gobbling down New York’s oversized thin crust… a pizza you fold in half to enjoy. This brings me to not the last destination on this food tour, but a favorite, 3 Palms, a local pizzeria located in Ohio where the traditional Neapolitan pizza topped with fresh ingredients meets a wood fired oven. I could practically taste the smell wafting through the restaurant as my eyes scanned the well-designed menu. The Diavola, where the simplicity of the mozzarella is paired with the crisp spicy salami and chili oil is my choice pie. The blend is bellissimo! This mouth watering scrumptious combination is sure to excite your taste buds. This authentic Italian styled pizza is by far the tastiest cuisine on the menu, especially if you like your pizza with a little heat. Be sure to give this zesty selection a try! With no shortage of choices, 3 Palms has other signature dishes to choose from like their traditional meatball starters with meat so tender it falls apart in your mouth and a variety of dipping sauces to choose from. So delectable, incredible, succulent, and tender your spoon cuts right through. A dish so palatable I found myself scraping it clean not to waste a flavorful bite. You will be oohing and ahhing over the texture and taste of this gourmet meatball. Be sure to leave room though, you’re not going to want to skip dessert! It’s the main attraction in this restaurant. No meal is complete unless you’ve ended it with something from their bakery. A bakery so irresistible, with an assortment of upscale pastries, freshly baked bread, and gelato. The lightly fried and flakey shell, and sweet aroma of the cannoli dipped in chocolate chips caught my attention. If you’ve never experienced this spice-infused specialty sweet you’re in for a treat so satisfying you might order seconds. Or you could try a few scoops of gelato. I recommend the mint chip! A flavor to salivate over. This after dinner staple dessert is worth all the calories. Next time you and your friends are ravenous for some authentic Italian pizza and specialty sweets, 3 Palms in Hudson Ohio has your cravings covered.  My stomach rumbles with excitement just talking about it. Mangia! Mangia! Mangia!

Food

Peace, Love and Little Donuts

Whether you are an enthusiast of classics like chocolate chip or prefer the subtle sweetness of cheesecake; Peace, Love and Little Donuts has a mouth watering option to curb your sweet tooth. With over 60 over-the-top and extravagant flavors you are sure to find the right combination for you. Toppings include everything from bakery mixes, fruit spreads, and delicious glazes to Oreo crumbles. If that youthful feeling strikes, you can top your doughnut with your FAVORITE childhood cereal. It’s like the Chipotle of bakeries…A paradise for dessert lovers. If you are looking for a twist on the classic cake doughnut this is the place to visit! The miniature doughnuts are both visually appealing and abundantly tasty.