Monday, August 12, 2019

Ready, Set, Hike! It's time for the 21st annual Taste of the Browns

Now that the Browns have won their first pre-season game, everyone is ready for some real football to get started. Whet your appetite for the upcoming season while you help support the Greater Cleveland Food Bank at the 21st annual Taste of the Browns.
Join past and present Browns players and some of Cleveland's very best chefs on September 9, 2019 from 6pm – 9pm at FirstEnergy Stadium.
You will mix and mingle while eating tons of delicious food - more than 25 restaurants and beverage purveyors - I dare you to try to sample it all! You can view a list of all the participating restaurants so you can get your dining playbook ready for the event.
Plus you'll get to see everyone's favorite dawg, Chomps. Woof woof!
Join the party and get your tickets onlineLast year, more than $309,000 was raised to fight hunger at this event - that's enough to help provide more than 1.2 million meals! 

Each VIP event ticket is $297 and includes a souvenir wine glass, all food and beverages, complimentary valet parking, and access to the VIP Lounge featuring exclusive tastings and access to celebrities.

General admission is $202 and includes everything above except the VIP Lounge access.

This is a great way to tackle hunger while helping one of our City's great organizations. See you on the gridiron!

*** Disclaimer: I was provided two tickets to this event in exchange for helping to promote it.
As always, all opinions expressed are my own. ***

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Ohio State Fair Giveaway!

The Ohio State Fair kicked off yesterday and I'm giving away 4 adult tickets so you can experience it yourself and celebrate all the things that make Ohio great.
With almost 200 food vendors with a huge focus on eating and drinking local, it's worth the trip just to try unique offerings like chicken + waffles on a stick, deep-fried Buckeyes, pickle-on-a-stick, poutine tots and Flaming Hot Cheetos Corndogs. There's even an Ohio shaped Buckeye Funnel Cake! There are lots of gluten-free options too.

Whether you're a foodie, music lover, farmer, kid or thrill seeker there's something at the fair for you! There are cooking competitions, parades at 4pm, the Budweiser Clydesdales, camel rides, pig races, fishing, a butterfly house, entertainers and even special Apollo 11 and cow sculptures made entirely out of butter. Check out the list of attractions and plan accordingly.

All of this fun ends on Aug. 4th so you'll want to act fast!

Get your tickets online or head over to this Instagram post to enter. Contest ends Friday July 26th.

Monday, July 15, 2019

Amazon Prime Day Deal - Patio, Garden and Pool

Summer is here and I want to be outside as much as possible!

Here are some Amazon Prime Day Deals for upgrading your patio life as well as things for my fellow gardeners.

My friend LOVES her AeroGarden - it makes starting plants from seeds so easy! At almost half off, now is the time to grab one! This one comes with 6 herb seed pods too. You can try this knock-off for only $49 or a single plant adjustable grow light for only $18.99.
Prime Day Deal, aerogarden, portable garden, grow light
Use this adorable and sturdy farmhouse style serving tray to get those cocktails to your guests.
Amazon Prime Day deal, serving tray, farmhouse chic
Keep the bugs away and give your patio some style at the same time with these mosaic tiki torches. They also come in a style for the deck with a clamp and a table top style too. Don't forget the oil too - Bitefighter is my favorite.
tiki torches, pretty tiki torches, mosquito repellant, Amazon Prime Day Deal
This Cordoba patio torch is not an Amazon Prime deal, but it's absolutely gorgeous! It's even nicer in person and is super easy to assemble. We have this exact one and it was well worth the $50.
free standing tiki torch, Cordobo, mosquito repellant, patio style
I absolutely love this gas fire pit - and it's only $169.99!
Amazon Prime Day deal, gas fire pit, fire pit, patio style

And for the end of summer and fall, this patio heater is perfect for extending the season - and it's only $139.86!

Amazon Prime Day deal, patio heater, outdoor heater
We use these metal storage shelves for starting plants. You can attach grow light easily and there's tons of room. We also have them in the basement piled full of my kitchen stuff and in the garage for holding all of our gardening supplies. They are functional and only $39.98.
wire storage shelves, rolling metal storage shelves

This extra large midcentury modern flower pot with stand instantly upgrades your home or patio.
flower pot, flower pot with metal stand, midcentury modern, indoor flower pot

We have a suction cup bird feeder on our front window and we love it...and so do the birds. This two pack for only $10.94 is a great deal!
suction cup bird feeder, feed the birds, bird feeding, Amazon Prime Day deal
How cute is this picnic basket?? Love love love this! It's perfect for taking to Blossom or Opera in the Garden too. Don't forget to click the Coupon box for an additional $2.50 off.
picnic basket, picnic supplies, Little Red Riding Hood, basket, country style
If you need to keep things really cold on your picnic, you're going to need a cooler. Yeti makes some of the best and they are 50% off!
cooler, Yeti, portable ice chest

Even if you don't have a ton of space, you can still have lots of plants. This self-watering vertical wall and pots lets you maximize your space with very little effort.
planter, vertical planter, self watering flower pot

Whether you are making a bon fire, or cooking marshmallows over your gas stove, these extendable roasting forks keep your fingers burn free.
roasting fork, marshmallow stick, hot dog stick, Smores maker, fire pit accessories, camping, camp fire, fire pit
If you are lucky enough to have a pool, this deal is for you! It would be so nice to spend an afternoon floating around on this giant floating lounge with a canopy. It even has cup holders.
pool float, pool float with canopy, floating pool lounge, pool accessories, pool float. XL pool float
As soon as I saw this round beach throw, it went right into my cart. There is a version with tassels available too. $10.58
beach throw, pool accessories, round beach throw, mandala
This raised bed kit makes starting a garden super easy! It's galvanized metal so you won't need to worry about it rotting. It comes in a smaller silver version too.
galvanized raised bed, raised bed, gardening, garden kit, easy garden
At under $20, these 8" pruning shears are a steal! Click the coupon box for an extra 20% of too.
pruning shears, gardening, garden tools, 8" garden shears, garden snips
I wish I would have had this bird netting BEFORE they ate all of my black raspberries.

Love these bamboo plant markers with permanent marker. Click the Coupon box to save an additional 5%. They come in a skinny stick style too.
bamboo plant markers, biodegradable plant markers, gardening, plant marker
Don't forget - Amazon has an Outlet too for even bigger savings!

Are you taking advantage of Prime Day? What are the best deals that you found?

By clicking these links and making a purchase, I earn a very small commission. All of the pennies really do add up eventually so thank you for helping me support Eat*Drink*Cleveland.

Amazon Prime Day Deals - Kitchen

I'm not an obsessive shopper, but I do like a good deal on something that I really want or actually need.

Here are some of my top Amazon Prime Day picks.

If you've been wanting an Insta Pot, now may be the time to take the plunge. this 6 Qt model is only $55.99.
Vitamix has some great deals too. The refurbished Explorian Low-Profile model is only $179.95! (normally $269.95) The A2500 Ascent is also on sale for $279.95.
Lodge Cast Iron cookware is always a great deal, but this 6 Qt Enameled pot is a fantastic buy at only $47.99. If you don't love orange as much as I do, it comes in a bunch of different colors too.
And check out this Lodge 4 piece set. It has all of the essential cast iron pieces for only $69.99. This definitely is a great gift. These pieces are made in the USA and are going to last a lifetime.

After all the Thai cooking I've been doing, this stainless steel wok is very tempting.
If you have a tilt-head KitchenAid mixer, this Flex Edge Beater is fantastic - and only $10.19! (almost sold out)

An electric tea kettle is an absolute necessity in our house. It's obviously perfect for tea, and it boils water quicker than our stove.

This Cuisinart Food Processor is an absolute steal! I use mine all the time for making shredded brussels sprouts salads - the cost savings instead of buying the pre-shredded packages will practically pay for this. It makes a great wedding shower gift too!
I discovered the joys of an egg cooker while staying at a B&B in Ptown and have been obsessed ever since. And you can also use it as a steamer, poach eggs and warm tortillas too. This one is under $20 and comes in multiple colors. 

And we can't forget the kiddos! This Melissa & Doug Wooden kitchen is super high quality and completely adorable.
Are you shopping the Amazon Prime Sale today? What are you getting?

You can shop my other favorite things by heading to my Amazon Store.

By clicking these links and making a purchase, I earn a very small commission. All of the pennies really do add up eventually so thank you for helping me support Eat*Drink*Cleveland.

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Chutney B Restaurant

Doug Katz's fast casual eatery at the Van Aken District is a winner.

The menu is small but delicious. Everything is pre-made so it's served up super fast. I
t's the perfect spot for a fast and tasty lunch. 

There are vats of the three hot dishes (Yellow Curry, Indian Masala and Moroccan Harira (a vegan lentil and squash stew) that can be topped with various proteins (masala beef meatballs, miso glazed tofu or curry chicken).
The food is flavorful and everything gluten-free. Vegans, vegetarians and meat lovers alike will all find something delicious on the menu.
I had the Yellow Curry with Meatballs over rice and it was delicious. The Zhug (green spicy sauce) gives it just the right kick. My co-worker had a Cold Thai Rice Noodle Salad with Peanut Sauce. The peanut sauce is excellent.
They also offer an assortment of gluten-free sweets such at cookies and cakes.

It's located in the Van Aken District Market Hall, so once you order and receive your food, you can sit anywhere in the building or outside on picnic tables.

My only complaint is the cost. Bowls without protein are $10 and the protein elevates the cost to $14 (yikes!) for considerably less food than you get at other fast-casual places. For this reason, it will be an occasional treat instead of a weekly routine.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Cheers to Eight Years of Eat*Drink*Cleveland!

Today is Eat*Drink*Cleveland's 8th anniversary! 

I could try to make a list of all the fun I've had since launching, but I'd rather today be about you - my fabulous readers. 

First of all THANK YOU for joining me on this journey. I truly could not have done it without you. The relationships that have been made are truly the very best part of blogging. I never dreamed that I could meet and be friends with so many wonderful people because of this little corner of the Internet.

I don't often make a big deal about how long I've been blogging, but this year seems extra special. The number 8 in numerology is about balance, and that is definitely something that I've been working on. Initially I thought I had to be everywhere and do everything, and while that was certainly fun, it wasn't sustainable. And I'm in this for the long haul! I've become pickier so I can have more time for home life, family, our amazing 17 1/2 year old Buffy, and our garden. If you aren't already, you can follow along on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.

In honor of this special occasion, I'm refreshing Eat*Drink*Cleveland. First up is my first official logo! 

I think the new logo captures a bit of my personality: fun, colorful, a bit too busy, and a little silly. I'm not elegant and perfect and I always want you to feel welcome. Come as you are and let's have fun!

You'll see the update on social media first, and then on the blog itself. And soon the website will see some changes as well.

Moving forward, if you have any favorite features or special requests, let me know. I want to provide content that you love, because I love all of you so much!

Here are some blasts from the pasts:

The very first post
The time we did a cleanse
2013 the year of the wedding
When we discovered Thai Thai
Some things about me
Boozy float recipe
My favorite stuffed squash recipe
One of my Favorite Places

So thanks again for always being here for me. I hope to keep sharing a little taste of my life with you for a long time. Cheers!

Friday, June 21, 2019

A Birthday to Remember

I love my birthday. If you are going to get older, you might as well have fun doing it, right? That's why you'll normally find me celebrating for about a month.

Well this one was definitely one to remember. 

The festivities started on the Friday before Memorial Day at the Flats East Bank. The Taste of Summer was unseasonably cool but we walked around and spent some time on the patios at Alley Cat, Dante's Inferno and Margaritaville.

We started out with the amazing calamari and platter of pickled veggies at Alley Cat. Put this combo on your Must Do list immediately!
We went to Dante's Inferno next and loved every single bite. The Nonna's meatballs are smack yo mama good.
The rooftop at Margaritaville is one of my favorite spots. The views are great and the vibe is chill. And the wine is cheap - grab a bottle for a real deal.
By the end of the night it had gotten quite chilly so we wrapped up the evening indoors at Beerhead with one of their ginormous pretzels.
Saturday we were in Cleveland again but this time it was Downtown. Dinner at Pura Vida was delicious but the restaurant was oddly almost empty and all the lovely ceiling drapery was gone. I'm hoping it was just the construction keeping folks away because this place is a real gem.
Afterwards we headed to the chic Azure for some rooftop patio action (notice a theme here?) After two pricey rounds of drinks we headed to our own patio and enjoyed a bottle of our VML Chardonnay from one of our trips to California.
Sunday we were super productive around the house and met my Mom and Step Dad for dinner at London Pickle Works - our favorite right around the corner hangout.

Monday my Dad's side of the family gathered for a Memorial Day cookout and birthday party combo. Lots of fun and great food!
If patios were the theme of the first part of the celebrations, wine was the theme of the second.

We celebrated my Mother-in-Laws birthday on the 28th at Michael Angelo's Winery
Little did she know that we were checking it out prior to my actual birthday on Friday. It was our first time there and we thought that is was a bit chaotic and the service was pretty bad. The wine is surprisingly good and the food is delicious. 
Plus they have lots of their famous bakery available for purchase. The cupcake was ok but the cannoli were even better.

The following day, I met my Auntie and one of her best friends at Coopers Hawk Winery. This place is one of my favorites! 
Pro Tip: Happy Hour is throughout the whole restaurant, not just the bar. Definitely get the brussels sprouts.
I was so excited when I woke up on the 31st and the weather was GORGOUS. After the cold, wet spring we have had, my one wish was for dry sunny weather.  And I definitely got it...along with a few surprises. 

My day started with Buffy giving me a present that I definitely didn't want - she pooped in the kitchen and walked in it. So not only did we need to clean the kitchen we had to give her a bath. What a way to start the day!

Second surprise of the day --- license plate renewal fiasco. Every year I say I'm going to mail it in. Every year I forget. So as usual I was scrambling on my birthday to get that taken care of. Because of a speeding ticket that I recently received (my first in 20 years!!!) and an expired insurance card, I wasn't able to get them until they FAXED my valid insurance card to Columbus.

Some of my co-workers must have known I needed some birthday cheer because a couple of us went to Condado's Tacos at Pinecrest.
Lunch courtesy of Hannah - thanks lady!
Things were starting to look up when I received my third birthday surprise - a flat tire. By this time my perky birthday attitude was almost lost for good. But thankfully, I made it to the garage just in the nick of time and got that fixed. After that, the rest of the day (thankfully!!) was fabulous.

We went back to Michael Angelo's Winery. And it was PACKED. I mean, park on the grass because there's no parking packed. Wow. What a difference a few days make. Luckily you can make reservations for groups of 10 or more. While they didn't seat us on the patio at promised, we had a great time and lots of delicious food and wine. The best part - they just released their Sparkling Rosé! It was as amazing as it sounds and perfect for the occasion.
We were treated to a tour and FINALLY snagged some seats on the patio to wrap up the evening.
It was definitely a birthday to remember! Thank you to everyone who helped me celebrate and made it extra special.
Some of the awesome ladies who celebrated with me:
Nicole of Eat Local Ohio, Michelle of Cleveland Foodie Girl and Heena of Kush Food

Next year is a biggie so I'm going to make the most out of this whole year trying to get ready for that one.