Seemingly out of nowhere sprung a bustling little breakfast/lunch cafe and bakery that is sure to blow your mind. The Blue Door in Cuyahoga Falls, our new fave weekend destination restaurant, is now so familiar that I can barely remember life before it opened. Since it is slightly out of the way for us, we end up stopping in late on a Sunday morning, after developing a laundry list of (mostly imaginary) things we MUST accomplish in Akron. And of course, they are PACKED. Fortunately with only two of us (we opt to roll kid-free on this excursion) there is rarely a wait. This level of culinary intensity is so unique for this area, it’s a miracle we can even get a table. Since I’ve waited so inexcusably long to share with you, I have accumulated far too many food fotos. But before getting to the eye candy, might I share a few reasons why Blue Door is a real success here in Northeast Ohio.
I’ve always tried to take extra good care of my parents – after all, I owe them. There is nothing they wouldn’t give (or give up) for me; they’ve lovingly supported me in every possible way over the years. After losing my dad to cancer last September, suddenly I feel compelled to spoil my mom. Holidays are still particularly difficult for us both; I find it helps to completely distract myself with new experiences. So when I saw (in an email blast) that DBA (Dante Boccuzzi Akron) was hosting a Mothers Day Celebration, I jumped at the opportunity and made a reservation. My mom hadn’t been to the spot since Vegeteranian had closed. DZ and I had enjoyed one phenomenal meal there soon after DBA debuted. It was an experience that just had to be shared with my mom.
If you thought my recent lack of blog activity is because the list of notable Canton restaurants is dwindling, you are mistaken. Fortunately, the list continues to grow, even when my blog doesn’t. In North Canton, our *local* options are limited. But we are incredibly lucky to have an amazing french bakery, that only true foodies and locals are privy to. Hazel Artisan Bakery is tucked into a plaza on South Main Street, near the intersection of Everhard in North Canton. It is a true diamond in the rough. The selection of breads, pastries, cookies, canoli, biscotti, scones, macaroons, baklava…….(I could go on)…..is unmatched in this area. Continue reading
We decided to ring in the new year in a new city. DC is a short 45-minute flight from CAK, making it a perfect weekend getaway. Several weeks prior, after finding a centrally located hotel called Sofitel, (one block from White House, highly recommend) I was off to finding the perfect restaurant for new year’s eve. After some quick research and blog-perusal, I made reservations at Jaleo, a recently remodeled Spanish tapas bar, owned by Chef Jose Andres.
Italian food options are abundant in our little city. So when I first heard the news last year that another Italian restaurant was opening in the former location of Iris (previously one of our favorite spots, but sadly another downtown Canton culinary casualty), I’ll admit I was skeptical. But then I started noticing a certain buzz about Lucca, specifically that they are focusing on sustainability by using local meats and ingredients, a definite first for Canton. After hearing of a slew of positive experiences, reading a fantastic review by Tom Noe of Exploring Food My Way, and later, learning that Lucca had been featured on a special “farm-to-table” Canton Food Tour, it was obvious I had been missing out. Then, a few months ago, while celebrating a friend’s birthday downtown , I found myself in Lucca’s bar, sipping on the most delicious cocktail: the Dirty Mary martini, when who should strike up a conversation with me but Josh Schory, Lucca’s owner and executive chef. While chatting, I learned (among other things) that he was a bit….miffed, shall we say, (jokingly of course) that I hadn’t been in for meal yet. I agreed I was overdue for a visit. So, a couple weeks ago, as promised, I finally discovered what all the hype was about.
In the blink of an eye, the building that once held Brown Bag Burgers was magically transformed into Baja Pizzafish. Mind you, this restaurant is on my route to work – it’s right next to Danny Boys and Quaker Steak – so I pass it 2-4 times per day…but I hardly noticed the transition. Literally, the switch happened that fast. Opened by the same owners as Old Carolina BBQ, the apparent concept was to bring some West Coast style and healthy cuisine to the midwest. Continue reading
On our second day of honeymooning in San Juan, we decided to walk from Old San Juan to the beach, which turned out to be quite a journey. Midway there, we stopped to rest along the road under some palm trees. We saw a couple approaching us, wearing bathing suits, so as they got closer, we inquired how much farther to the beach. They told us we were close and asked where we were from. Turns out the guy was from Wisconsin and his wife was from Youngstown, Ohio! They had retired five years ago, and now live six months of the year in Puerto Rico; the other six months are spent touring the states in an RV. They went on to tell us their favorite restaurants, one of them having “the best mofongo in San Juan.” At this point, we still didn’t know what mofongo was, but they explained it, and that evening we were heading to the recommended spot: Punto De Vista.