Not Martha

seeking some travel advice

We’re taking a trip to Cleveland soonish and I have some questions.

General travel advice:

I’m taking my first red eye flight. What is the best travel pillow for sleep? The inflatable u-shaped pillow? The strange triangular cartoon bone shaped pillow? Or the compressible pillow shaped pillow (which a clerk at the travel store pointed out could also be used for lumbar support, thereby throwing me into a state of not-buying-anything confusion)? Any advice for snagging one of those blankets as we get on the plane?

Cleveland travel advice:

I have a list of things I definitely want to do: West Side Market, drink as much 50/50 soda as I possibly can, eat a Mr. Hero cheeseburger, see the ruins of my middle school, have dinner at Stino da Napoli, stalk Ruhlman, have a latte at the Caribou Coffee where I not-once-but-twice locked my keys into my car in an early morning precaffeinated state, scowl towards my high school, eat at the Polish restaurant from the Anthony Bourdain episode, buy a jar of Stadium Mustard, gawk at how big Lola’s has gotten, visit the Arabica where Scott and I first met.

Anything else? Has anything new appeared in Cleveland that I absolutely must see? New grocery stores or libraries or malls or special cocktails to seek out? Keep in mind, I grew up here so the touristy stuff (Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame never again) doesn’t interest me as much as the everyday stuff that’s different than it was.

Thanks!

· comments [74] · 05-9-2008 · categories:mumbling ·

74 responses so far ↓

  • 1 erika // May 9, 2008 at 9:32 am

    I like the u-shaped buckwheat hull pillow for the red eyes pesonally.

    Also, in Cleveland, go to Lola Bistro for dinner!

  • 2 erika // May 9, 2008 at 9:33 am

    Sigh. *personally.

  • 3 leanne // May 9, 2008 at 9:34 am

    I have no Cleveland experience, but I do have a travel pillow recommendation:
    http://www.amazon.com/Bucky-Inflatable-Travel-Pillow-Carbon/dp/B000SKUTQC/ref=pd_bbs_8?ie=UTF8&s=apparel&qid=1210354055&sr=8-8

    The Bucky Gusto pillow is my favorite. When I fall asleep sitting up, my head inevitably falls to one side. The Gusto pillow is lopsided to provide your head with extra side support. Plus, it’s really soft and fuzzy and comfortable (no annoying seams against your skin). It folds down nice and small, too. They also make an eyemask with a pocket for earplugs. The Gusto pillow is way better than the regular u-shaped inflatable ones.

    We bought ours at REI, but I’ve also seen them at The Container Store.

    I don’t understand how the bone pillow would be comfy for sleeping. I’ve actually heard great things about the large, triangular, inflatable pillow that you prop on the tray table and sleep against (in the SkyMall catalog!), but I’d be too self-conscious to use it on a crowded plane.

  • 4 megan // May 9, 2008 at 9:36 am

    Erika – Scott and I wandered into Lola when it new and located in Ohio City (?) — I cannot remember because we were actually trying to find a different restaurant altogether. Anyhow, we sat in the back yard and on the other side of the fence was a fat man in a wife beater shouting at this dogs while we were sipping wine and eating asparagus ravioli. I’ll never forget it. We didn’t find out until later that we scored a very rare reservation-less table.

  • 5 Creature of Habit // May 9, 2008 at 9:38 am

    My favorite thing about Cleveland is The Flats and to get inside a building as high as possible, hope for a clear day and a 360 degree view, and then take in the amazing form of the Cuyahoga and all the bridges.

    Have fun, red-eyes are a trial in patience for me.

  • 6 mia // May 9, 2008 at 9:43 am

    re: pillows

    My personal favorite is an inflatable one that I got at Target for under $5 that has a fleece cover on it. I like it because the bean pillows are too squishy. And since this one is self-inflated, you can adjust the pressure any time. Plus, it folds flat and stores easy.

    If you’re flying red eye, they will most likely have a blanket on every seat already. That’s pretty standard for any late night flight. If not, just ask the flight attendant when you board and peek in the overhead bins (that’s where they store them) for extras.

    As soon as the cabin door is closed, take a peek for empty seats (if you’re in coach). My last flight back from Boston was so empty that every person (no children on this flight) had his/her own row. Everyone was sitting sideways or sleeping like it was a couch. Even the flight attendants. It was pretty awesome.

  • 7 megan // May 9, 2008 at 9:43 am

    Creature – Is the Flats still there? I heard it was all but abandoned.

  • 8 gaile // May 9, 2008 at 9:48 am

    if you have any anxiety about flying, find an acupuncturist that does ear tacks. seriously – they have changed my life. bring socks if you don’t usually wear them. my feet always freeze on planes. Sit as close to the front as possible. It’s much quieter. get to the gate early and ask if there are any seats closer to the front (if you’re in a row above 15) – they will move you if they can. I think the pillows with the hulls or millet inside are way more comfy than the foam ones. have a great trip!

  • 9 kelly // May 9, 2008 at 9:51 am

    I am also from the Cleveland area and I enjoyed reading your “Cleveland favs,” as I share many of them.

    One thing you don’t have on your list that I always have on mine is a stop at Corbo’s Bakery in Little Italy. The lemon ice is to die for and their cannoli has absolutely ruined me for all others! It. Is. Fantastic.

    Check it out: http://www.corbos.com/

    My mouth is watering just thinking about it!

  • 10 girlrobot // May 9, 2008 at 9:53 am

    I love my ushaped pillow when i fly…and usually on redeyes they hand out those blankets pretty freely. when you first board ask the flight attendant immediately for one if your seat doesnt have one already…if you wait they will run out! sorry no experience with cleveland but tell me when you visit LA :)

  • 11 Robin // May 9, 2008 at 9:55 am

    So if you’re in Cleveland, you might want to stumble over to Oberlin, a liyyle college town wher eI went to school. Eat a local breakfast at Black River Cafe, lunch at the Feve, and check out the Allen Memorial Art Museum. There isn’t much in Oberlin, but it’s a nice little place to walk around and there some nice organic farms nearby that you can visit.

  • 12 amy c // May 9, 2008 at 10:13 am

    OH Liz, we’d all like to flee to the Cleve…

    sorry that’s just a line from 30 rock, no help at all

  • 13 Megan // May 9, 2008 at 10:27 am

    First, I can’t believe you’re not stopping for ice cream at one of my three favorite ice cream places in Cleveland. Malley’s, Mitchell’s and/or Honey Hut. All three are Cleveland only and I love them all equally.

    If I remember correctly, you’re from Fairview. You might be interested in the new Crocker Park (http://www.crockerpark.com/) in Westlake.

    I hope you have a great time in Cleveland. I miss it so much!

  • 14 Sara // May 9, 2008 at 10:33 am

    If you like beer, I definitely recommend Great Lakes Brewery (in Ohio City, I think). And I second the recommendation above for Oberlin! I went to college there and there’s lots of great food plus it’s a beautiful campus and there’s likely to be some sort of free music. My fav spots were Black River Cafe (for the chocolate chip pancakes) and Oberlin Market (a little organic foods market with attached cafe–sandwiches that will rock your socks off!)

  • 15 kelly // May 9, 2008 at 10:42 am

    Oh! Megan’s comment above has now also made me hungry for Mitchell’s ice cream and Malley’s chocolates. This post is getting to be dangerous for me.

    I’m going back in July and I’ll definitely keep referring back to this to find other Cleveland treats!

  • 16 Rachel // May 9, 2008 at 11:07 am

    this is going to sounds so silly…. but i loved how easy their public transit is… i was able to go straight from the airport to a museum to hang out for a few hours between flights!
    On my return through Cleveland I went to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame was pricy and I didn’t love it, but maybe the exhibits are better than they were when I went…

  • 17 gt0163c // May 9, 2008 at 11:16 am

    I like the u-shaped inflatable pillows but with reservations. They’re great, unless you fall asleep before you’re at cruising altitude or sleep through descent. The problem is that changes in cabin pressure will result in either a more squishy or overfilled inflatable pillow. I’ve popped the seams on a couple of inflatable pillows sleeping through the descent. So, I would suggest a u-shaped fluzzy pillow cover that you can stuff full of something (inflatible bladder until you pop it, then socks or a fleece or something.).

    I also like to take my water proof shell with me when I fly. If it’s cold, I can use it as an extra blanket. Otherwise, it folds into it’s own pouch and can be used as an extra pillow/insulation from the side of the plane (I like window seats) or whatever.

    Another idea for helping to get a blanket (and ensuring that you get overhead bin space) is to board before your group/row number is called. I usually get a seat fairly near the front, that means I’m often in the last or second to last group called. But I rarely board then. I usually slip in at least one group, if not two ahead of mine. I rationalize this because I’m a frequent flyer (although not frequent enough to get extra-special-frequent-flyer-club-status), know what I’m doing, move quickly and have a window seat. I figure I’m actually saving time because I won’t hold up the line climbing over aisle and/or middle seat people on my row. But, really, it’s just because I want to make sure I get overhead space near me and, if it’s cold, I get a blanket.

  • 18 J Strizzy // May 9, 2008 at 11:18 am

    I like the U-shaped inflatable kind. I like a nice firm pillow for sleeping upright, and if you inflate the pillow when you’re on the ground or shortly after takeoff, it’ll firm up as the plane ascends and pressure decreases. Plus of course you can fold it up to fit in your carry-on nicely.

  • 19 lelah // May 9, 2008 at 11:41 am

    Great Lakes Brewing Company!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • 20 kirida // May 9, 2008 at 11:59 am

    I love using the Boppy pillow on the plane.

  • 21 Kate // May 9, 2008 at 12:06 pm

    I have this one: http://www.ebags.com/belle_hop/comfort_neck_pillow/product_detail/index.cfm?modelid=70789

    I really like it!

  • 22 swankette // May 9, 2008 at 12:15 pm

    I’ve got the buckwheat-filled u-shaped variety and find it wonderful. Especially once I discovered that most American Airlines flights (and perhaps other planes, but we predominantly fly American because I have a tall husband with very long legs) has little wings on the headrest that will fold forward and help lock your head into one place as well. That plus the u-shaped pillow = as comfortable an airplane sleep as you can muster.

  • 23 Nicole // May 9, 2008 at 12:34 pm

    We recently took a trip home to visit, too. I loaded up on Stadium Mustard and Great Lakes Beer. Ohio City and the Tremont area have really developed and are worth exploring. I don’t have access to a DWR, H&M or Trader Joes where I live, so I hit all of those places, too. Love love love the West Side Market. The smell of the place always hits me like a multi-layer dejavu.

    Why are so many of the places in Coventry (Euclid Hts Blvd.)closed now?? It looked like there was basically only a Chipotle.

  • 24 Heidi // May 9, 2008 at 12:38 pm

    I have tried both the inflatable u-shaped pillow and the bucky (u-shaped buckwheat hull pillow), but i find a regular down pillow the most comfortable and actually more convenient to carry/pack than the bucky because i can squish it into my carry-on.
    also, i usually bring a pashmina type scarf/shawl thingy to use as an extra blanket (and sometimes just use the airline blanket as a back pillow).

  • 25 megan // May 9, 2008 at 1:18 pm

    Nicole – There is an H&M in Cleveland?! And a DWR? Craziness has happened since I was there last, obviously. I fear seeing what has happened to Coventry.

    Thanks to everybody else, I’ve added ice cream places (there are barely any soft serve stand in Seattle, I hope they’re open in the burbs by now), Great Lakes beers and the new/improved Tremont to my list. Malley’s though I’ll have to consider. Does the main shop still have the seating on the rotating carousel?

  • 26 Awtumn // May 9, 2008 at 2:06 pm

    Have you been to Suite Lorain’s before? It is a great vintage store filled with lots of goodies. It’s located on Lorain Ave.

  • 27 Nan // May 9, 2008 at 2:15 pm

    Everyone’s advice on pillows are great so I have nothing to add. I do want to say about the blankets…bring your own if you can,unless they are handing out still-in-plastic-bags-brand-new blankets. I guess I’m just a real germaphobe when it comes to airlines.

  • 28 Kris // May 9, 2008 at 2:25 pm

    Is Farkas still there by the west side market… I would kill for one of his napoleons! or Dobos!

  • 29 jen t. // May 9, 2008 at 3:20 pm

    megan: yes, the main malley’s shop still has the seating on the rotating carousel. (at least, it did when i was there last july; i grew up within walking distance of the place and a few of my friends’ younger siblings still work there.) in fact, i just had my mom send me a jar of the fudge.

    p.s. i have been refreshing this page all day to see what folks say about good ol’ c-town

  • 30 amy // May 9, 2008 at 3:46 pm

    oh shit, i found a great little vintage store in lakewood, which is what? a scant 15 min west of the city. flower something, power?
    we love the cleveland art museum, good stuff.

  • 31 jen t. // May 9, 2008 at 4:13 pm

    yes, i think it is called flower power. in lakewood. my sister got some awesome vintage sunglasses there.

  • 32 Nicole // May 9, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    Megan,
    The DWR is on Chagrin Blvd, in the same shopping center as Trader Joe’s. I couldn’t believe how upscale the shopping center was. There is a Lebanese restaurant as well as a Nuevo Latino eatery there as well.
    http://www.etonchagrinblvd.com/index.php

    There is actually more than one H&M in the metro area now. I’ve only been the one in Beechwood Place (which is smaller) and the large store in Strongsville (Is that South Park Mall?)

    Oh, one last thing… if you go as far south as Akron, Chrissy Hynde opened a Vegan restaurant downtown called The VegiTerranean. It’s a very cool spot.

  • 33 knittinglizzie // May 9, 2008 at 5:32 pm

    Sushi Rock is really great. I second the stadium mustard! I’m also a fan of the burgers at Winking Lizard. I also recommend La Gelateria at Legacy village.

  • 34 Angela // May 9, 2008 at 6:52 pm

    I took a red eye flight recently and found that my regular-sized down pillow could be squeezed and rolled very tiny. When I shook it out to sleep on both the plane and in the airport waiting for another flight I was sooooo happy. The comfort of all that loft made me delirious. I felt like the luckiest person ever.

  • 35 Jenn // May 9, 2008 at 6:54 pm

    Definitely go to Sokolowski’s, West Side Market, Great Lakes and Honey Hut.If you like pierogies, go check out some of the Ukrainian/Russian churches in Parma…they sell pierogies by the dozen, usually on Fridays. Also, try Slyman’s on St. Clair, they have awesome corned beef sandwiches.

  • 36 mixette // May 9, 2008 at 6:59 pm

    Don’t even *touch* one of those airplane blankets! NPR did a segment this week about the sad sorry state of plane and the filthiest places were the seat-back pockets and the blankets. People sneeze in them, use them to wipe up spills, and then they are just folded back up – not cleaned – for the next flight.

    I always roll up a polarfleece into a nice tight roll. Either wear it or use as lumbar support.

    Have a nice trip!

  • 37 Bean // May 9, 2008 at 7:53 pm

    I take many red-eye flights. Try to get on the plan before others when the overhead bins are open. They usually store extra blankets up in those bins. You can always ask the flight attendant upon entering the plane as well. I have a blow up U shaped pillow that works well if I don’t inflate it all of the way. I also have an Eddie Bauer Pillow that stores a blanket INSIDE of it too. Take the blanket out, and stuff your coat in the pillow. Voila! I’m sure they have some online or on their online outlet store. Good luck.

  • 38 Kate // May 9, 2008 at 9:18 pm

    I haven’t been here (although this place sounds great), but some website somewhere recommended this place, and I trusted them enough to bookmark it! http://www.bier-markt.com/index.html

    And definitely get some Presti’s sour cream doughnuts (http://www.yelp.com/biz/prestis-bakery-cleveland). These were some of the best doughnuts I’ve ever had – this WAS before moving to Seattle, though, so I’m not quite sure how they’d compare to my beloved Top Pot…

    AND I think this place was supposed to be very good (http://tommyscoventry.com/), but I was SO hungover when we went there, so I wasn’t in the best state to judge the food.

  • 39 Me // May 9, 2008 at 10:03 pm

    Small world, notmartha is one of my Friday nite reads. Didn’t realize you were from Cleveland… spent many an hour at Arabica waiting for my son who was attending CIM. We stayed at the Gliddon House a couple times which I love and recommend. A favorite Cleveland stop is NiteTown for food and music.

  • 40 Karen // May 10, 2008 at 5:39 am

    If you have a pashmina shawl, or can borrow one, use that instead of a airplane blanket. Much warmer, softer and CLEANER! They fold up really small and hardly wrinkle at all. Plus you can use it on your trip if it’s chilly.

  • 41 Karan // May 10, 2008 at 10:10 am

    I hate hauling around stuff when I travel so I try to adapt what’s available. I usually wrap my sweater around the airplane pillows so I don’t get too skeeved out by the thought that other’s may have already used it.

  • 42 LJ // May 10, 2008 at 12:17 pm

    I like a hoodie, iPod, eye pillow (bucky), and a pashmina (or cheaper knock off). You can put the hood up over your head to keep you warm, the eye pillow blocks the light, and you can play soothing nature sounds on the iPod. The pashmina can be a blanket, wrap, or roll it up and use it as a very comfortable neck pillow. Have fun!

  • 43 Colleen // May 10, 2008 at 4:33 pm

    Wave hello to Cleveland for us fellow transplants!
    I’ll vouch for Kate’s comment on Tommy’s in Coventry. Their milkshakes are awesome! But, if you’re a regular of Arabica, you’ve probably already been there. (The last time I was there, I did see they replaced the Arabica in Lakewood with a mexican chain. *sigh*)

  • 44 Susan // May 10, 2008 at 5:15 pm

    I have a regular sized buckwheat hull pillow I’ve carried everywhere with me. It’s wonderful on airplanes. Those u-shaped ones really make me claustrophobic.

  • 45 christy // May 10, 2008 at 5:55 pm

    Love your blog, delighted to find that you’re from the Cleveland. Depending on when you are traveling, there are some great art events happening the weekend of May 16 – 18. check out http://www.cityartistsatwork.org/ for City Artists at Work Open Studio event. I am in a show, Textile tArts: Flavors of Fiber, at Lorain Community College (www.lorainccc.edu/stocker) opening on May 17.

    Cleveland Foodie http://clevelandfoodie.blogspot.com/ has great reviews and insight into independent eats in town. Bar Cento (next door to Bier Market mentioned earlier) is one of my new favs!

    If you hit Stino da Napoli, there are great little shops to check out along Old River Road – Paper Trails, Planet Green, River Gallery, Amy’s Shoes, and Devout Home.

    Look forward to hearing where you end up hanging when you are in Cleveland.

  • 46 Megera // May 11, 2008 at 6:52 am

    My vote is for the contour twist pillow – http://www.amazon.com/Contour-Twist-Pillow-with-Cover/dp/B000GKEV2C
    It looks uncomfortable on the commercials but it was a lifesaver on my flight to Australia. I like how you can fold the side of it up so you can lean on the window or against the side of your seat (like this: http://www.shoppingtva.ca/TVAShoppingPublic/CommerceContent/ProductImages/medium-100-944.jpg )

    :-)

  • 47 ruhlman // May 11, 2008 at 7:12 am

    yes,you definitely have to Sokolowski’s University Inn, that’s the Full Cleveland. I had a great meal the other day at Bar Cento and it’s Bier Markt, with great Belgian beers. And you must must stop in at the Velvet Tango Room for a proper Gin Fizz (http://blog.ruhlman.com/ruhlmancom/2007/08/the-best-bar-in.html)

  • 48 Kevin // May 11, 2008 at 8:13 am

    If I recall correctly, you left Cleveland sometime around 2000. Let’s see, what landmarks have changed since then? The Arcade was restored and partially converted into a hotel in 2001. They did a really nice job of cleaning it up. The nearby East 4th Street was full of second-hand jewelers and wig shops, but is now one of the hipper areas in town (and Lola’s new home). It has lots of new restaurants, a House of Blues (in the old Woolworth’s store), and lots of apartments upstairs. The area is still a bit of a mess because of the massive Euclid Avenue construction project, though. The art museum has been mostly closed for the past few years for construction, but the first galleries in the 1916 building are scheduled to reopen in June. Whiskey Island is now a public park. Case now has a Frank Gehry building, and the botanical garden was greatly expanded a few years ago.

    By the way, you and Scott (along with Katie of Jejune.net) had the first Cleveland weblogs that I was aware of. Then you all moved away. *sniff*

  • 49 Malea // May 11, 2008 at 11:49 am

    I’m jealous! I too am a fan of the Cleve.

    I second the recommendation for the Botanical Gardens– I was there this month for a friend’s wedding and they glasshouse was amazing — it’s a rain forest theme with great birds and butterflies as well as plants. There’s a Madagascar room, as well, and of course the outdoor gardens are lovely.

    If you eat meat, I love Sokolowski’s (bordain’s pick?) and Balaton for Hungarian food. Great Lake’s Brew Pub is great, too, and a stone’s throw from the market.

    Enjoy!

  • 50 Go Amie // May 11, 2008 at 2:49 pm

    I want to put a word in for earplugs, or noise-canceling earphones. The constant noise form the engines is terrible, and blocking out significant quantities of it will help you relax *so* much. Have fun!

  • 51 Kerry // May 11, 2008 at 4:55 pm

    Since you mention libraries, if you’re in Lakewood check out the new, pretty, but useless library on Detroit.

  • 52 Jen // May 12, 2008 at 1:13 am

    No Cleveland suggestions but the blow up pillows are useless, I toured all over the Caribbean and was so glad I took a cush pillow for all those red eye flights and naps on buses. Here are some that are similar. Woochie pillows are similar too.

    cush pillows:
    http://www.abackrubco.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWPROD&ProdID=146

    cush-like u shaped pillow:
    http://www.brookstone.com/store/product.asp?product_code=529503&wid=19&cid=1905&sid=190502&search_type=subcategory&prodtemp=t1

    Of course, it’s only a suggestion. Try them out before you decide, choose one that’s comfiest for you! Have fun in OH!

  • 53 KarWar // May 12, 2008 at 4:48 am

    Well, I am begging my friend to take me to Mitchell’s next week when I visit her in Westlake (and the lucky luckster got to have her wedding rehearsal dinner at Stino’s!) but I see it is already on your list, so I will just second that

  • 54 Carrie // May 12, 2008 at 7:52 am

    It sounds like you have a lot of restaurants to hit, but my favorite place to eat when I head to Cleveland is http://home.digitalcity.com/cleveland/restaurants/lozadas/v-118129768, a Puerto Rican restaurant. We stumbled across it when we couldn’t get into Great Lakes Brewing Company to eat. The mofongo is really good.

    Enjoy your trip!!

  • 55 Elendae // May 12, 2008 at 8:03 am

    Tom’s Seafood. They have wonderful dim sum. Make sure you get there early. :)
    http://www.tom-seafood-restaurant.com/

  • 56 Lisa // May 12, 2008 at 8:53 am

    I second (third?) the Bier Markt/Bar Cento nomination. We went there again this weekend and as usual, the food was creative, tasty + well priced. Other yummy Cleveland places to add to your list of choices: Lopez @ http://www.lopezonlee.com/ and Sarava @ http://www.sergioscleveland.com/about_ss.html

  • 57 Nicole // May 12, 2008 at 9:44 am

    Well, yes Euclid is a mess (was just up for this past weekend). They renamed the Jake and the Cavs arena. Night paving on I-77 (if you are headed south at all, look out). I agree with the cannoli comment – you MUST go and do – I would even go so far as to recommend lunch at any of the restaurants in Little Italy.

    For travel pillow – get an inflatable one – much less of a pain to pack.

  • 58 Rebecca // May 12, 2008 at 2:31 pm

    FWIW, the last red-eye I took (Jet Blue) did not have blankets or pillows to hand out. The flight attendent told us, seriously, they are considering charging a rental on them. True or not, I’d take my own pillow and blanket/long jacket/shawl – love the shawl suggestions.

    If you think you might want to read instead of sleep, bring one of those book lights.

    I wore my slippers through security and onto the plane so my feet stayed nice and warm. It does it cold.

    PS just went back and took out the double spaces after my periods. hee!

  • 59 kc // May 12, 2008 at 4:11 pm

    Add one more hearty recommendation for Bar Cento. It’s right near the West Side Market, and you _must_ go.

  • 60 juliann // May 12, 2008 at 7:58 pm

    Now, I didn’t read through all 58 comments so far so I don’t know if anyone and everyone else mentioned it, but be sure to watch the Cleveland episode of 30 Rock before you go. It’s a classic.

  • 61 Shannon // May 12, 2008 at 10:29 pm

    Awwwh! I just got homesick! Best eats in Cleveland – other than some of those already mentioned – Chophouse Brewery in the Warehouse district. Love it! Sunday brunch ROCKS! Sushi Rock, Winking Lizard, Nitetown, Mama’s in Little Italy. I’ve got to go for a visit!

  • 62 megan // May 13, 2008 at 7:39 am

    Thanks so very much to everybody who left a suggestion! I had no idea so many people were familiar with Cleveland. I’m looking forward to having a trip packed with good food and drinks.

  • 63 Celeste // May 13, 2008 at 8:49 am

    Wow, you made me homesick! No one’s mentioned East Coast Custard yet–I don’t know what it is about it, but I’ve never had such good frozen custard (and I live in Boston, which is full of fantastic ice cream). No trip to Cleveland is complete for me without East Coast.

  • 64 Shannon // May 13, 2008 at 8:41 pm

    East Coast Custard! Yep that’s great. Also a second for Lopez. If you’re a fan,;they have THE best flan.

  • 65 Shannon // May 13, 2008 at 8:42 pm

    East Coast Custard! Yep that’s great. Also a second for Lopez. If you’re a fan, they have THE best flan.

  • 66 Heather // May 14, 2008 at 12:02 am

    I’m an ex-’East-sider’(Euclid), now in Philly for many years. Musts: At the West Side market: Guiness Stout chocolate cake.
    In Little Italy: Mama Santa’s (closed on Mondays, I think) for amazing pizza, Corbo’s for pignola cookies and macaroons. Lake View Cemetary (on a clear day) for a beautiful lake view from the top of the totally cool Garfield memorial. Foster’s Homemade Ice Cream (30551 Chardon Rd. in Willoughyby)…yes…worth the ride, even from the West Side!!!
    We stayed at the Glidden House last summer…so nice. Right across the street from the Botanical Gardens & Gehry building, near the Art Museum, and so much better than staying with relatives!! Have fun!! Heather

  • 67 Jill // May 14, 2008 at 1:24 pm

    Ok, so you won’t be too disappointed with your weekend – skip the westside market and go to the North Union Farmer’s Market in Shaker Square – if you’re gonna be on the westside then go to the farmer’s market at Crocker Park (in Westlake I90& Crocker/Basset). Lola moved and is now on E.4th street -no longer Tremont. I say skip Lola and go to Lolita (still by Symon) in the former Lola spot – then head across to 806 for wine or if its nice weather walk down the street to the Treehouse or Edison’s and drink on the patio. Oh, the Polish restaurant is Sokolowski’s and is down in Tremont as well.
    You can skip Stino di Napoli – totally mediocre, splurge and go to Johnny’s on Fulton – eat at the bar if you want it more casual. Or better yet, go to Bar Cento, Jonathon Sawyer’s place in Ohio City (he worked under Symon and then off to NYC before comig home to do his own thing).
    Otherwise Cleveland might be a bust, nothing too new except “lifestyle centers” Legacy Village (across from Beachwood PLace Mall) Eton Collection, crocker Park. I say head 1/2 south to Akron and check out the gardens at Stan Hewitt and then go to West Point Market – it never disappoints. Have fun.

  • 68 kp // May 14, 2008 at 4:58 pm

    You will not recognize the old Westgate Mall ~ it was torn down & replaced with an all-out-door shopping plaza.
    If you like Mexican food, be sure to visit Lucita’s on 117th, just south of Lorain Ave.

    I was shocked to stumble onto your website; it was listed as a favorite of a featured seller on Etsy.com in her front-page interview.
    http://www.MAJESTYINC.etsy.com/

    Small world!

  • 69 phillygirl64 // May 16, 2008 at 1:43 pm

    How timely…I will be going there in a few wks!

  • 70 Meredith // May 16, 2008 at 2:11 pm

    I’d definitely have to recommend stopping by Melt Bar and Grilled (yes, grilled) in Lakewood. Right on Detroit, by the intersection with Warren. Designer grilled cheese sandwiches. LOVELY stuff. You can try the Parmageddon . . (which is a grilled cheese with perogies inside) ;)

    Oh and for the person that said the Flats . . sorry to be a bummer . . but aside from Shooters (and the strip joints) the Flats is gone. They’ve bulldozed it over and are building . . something. We’re not quite sure what yet.

    But definitely go to Melt!!!

  • 71 Nicole B. // May 17, 2008 at 9:53 am

    I second Melt, love Sokolowski’s and I would try Lola for lunch (great food at less $$$). I like Momocho’s too. I would skip Great Lakes Brewing company for food – very mixed experiences but excellent beer. The asian plaza next to the west side market has a bakery that has great steamed buns. Cleveland Rocks! Have a good trip home!!!!!

  • 72 Redbeard // May 27, 2008 at 5:45 pm

    I’d definitely agree with Sokolowski’s and Melt in Lakewood … but there’s some other interesting places to go … Slyman’s for killer corned beef, probably the best in town. Superior Pho at East 30th and Superior (in the back of a commercial building on Superior) has great Vietnamese Pho. Gust Gallucci’s on Euclid Avenue for some Italian goodies. There’s a couple of great little Polish delis on Fleet Avenue that have good sandwiches and of course, great kielbasa. Marta’s on East 222nd in Euclid has some good Czech delicacies, and of course, the Balaton on Shaker Square for some good old-school Hungarian. Cleveland has always been a wonderful mosaic of ethnicity, so try to find something from each of the big groups, and you shouldn’t be disappointed. If you’ve never toured Lakeview Cemetary, it’s gorgeous this time of year … perhaps it sounds macabre, but it’s a wonderful park filled with stunning statuary. I used to live there at Cedar-Fairmount and I miss being able to walk over there with my camera and spend hours walking around, and communing with some great Clevelanders of the past (now I’ve crossed to the Dark Side … aka, The West Side, so I don’t get there much anymore). If you swing by Coventry, go shop at City Buddha, which is a very cool store, with very cool prices (and we’re lucky that their stuff is so affordable … every time I see a shop selling similar stuff on Cape Cod, Northampton, or some other place, the exact same stuff is priced so much higher!) If you get in town in June, you’ll be able to see a portion of the renovated Cleveland Museum of Art open up. But even if it’s not, University Circle in the summer is a wonderful place to walk around, even with the construction on Euclid!

    Take in the view from Edgewater Park … take a cruise up the Cuyahoga on the Goodtime … explore the USS Cod on the lakefront, go to the Rockefeller Park Greenhouse, explore the Metroparks and the Cuyahoga Valley National Park … then again, these are things that lifelong Clevelanders don’t often do, as many of them never stray farther than their nearest shopping mall (or “lifestyle center”), but adventure can be had for the Cleveland explorer. Get a city map and get going!

    Cleveland’s just such a good place … a real city, filled with real and down-to-earth folks. You can take the boy or girl out of Cleveland, but you’ll never take Cleveland out of the boy or girl!

  • 73 megan // May 27, 2008 at 6:51 pm

    Redbeard – Thanks for the food and shopping suggestions. As for the rest, I’ve done it all when I lived there but it’s a good list.

  • 74 Stacey // Aug 2, 2008 at 7:39 pm

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