Why? Music Box Tiki Tuesdays!

It’s summertime and there’s no better place to be than on a patio enjoying a cool beverage. Music Box Supper Club wants you to do just that, at a great deal!

Today and every Tuesday this summer, head to Music Box from 4-8pm for Riverfront Tiki Tuesdays. First, you’ll get amazing waterfront views of the bustling Cuyahoga River…

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…and the Cleveland skyline.

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You’ll also enjoy awesome deals on food and beverage. Tiki Tuesdays offers $6 drinks, including piña coladas, margaritas, mai tais, and select Great Lakes Brewing Co. beers.

When we went last week, I enjoyed a refreshing Zombie, with light and dark rum, fruit juice, cinnamon-infused simple syrup, and bitters. My mom had the piña colada, which was light and delicious, without that think, milkshake texture.

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It’s easy to remember how much things cost on Tiki Tuesday, because all the food is also $6. You can choose from a cheeseburger, veggie burger, or kielbasa, all served with fries, or the Pu Pu platter, with meatballs, wings, and ribs.

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The burgers were juicy and the toasted brioche buns were a win in my book. And the Pu Pu platter offered a nice variety of sauces and flavors.

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To add to the fun, you can relax to the steel drum sounds of a Caribbean playlist. And Tiki Tuesdays are pup-friendly too, so you can make it a “yappy hour” deal.

Fun drinks, tasty food, great views, and awesome prices…don’t miss Tiki Tuesdays happening today and every Tuesday this summer at Music Box Supper Club!

***Disclosure: I was asked by Music Box Supper Club to help promote Tiki Tuesdays. In exchange, I received complimentary food and drinks. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Weekends!

Hope you found fun ways to stay cool on this toasty weekend! Here’s what we did:

Camp Curiosity

On Friday, Jeffrey wrapped up a week of Camp Curiosity at the Great Lakes Science Center. We chose the Race to Space camp, which centered around celebrating the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11.

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The kids made astronaut helmets and patches, moon models, and more. They heard from speakers from NASA Glenn and learned so much.

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Jeffrey had a wonderful time and grew in his knowledge of and love for all things space-related.

Indians Game

On Friday night, Alicia, Amanda, and I went to the Indians game.

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I had already been to a few games this season, but this was the first of the season without Jeffrey. And while I love his excitement for the game, it was also fun to spend time outside of the Family Deck!

We got the District tickets, which include standing room space in The Corner, as well as a beer. What a great deal! And it was Dollar Dog night, which meant cheap eats, too.

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We supplemented our dollar dogs with some pizza from Dante’s Inferno and quesadilla from Momocho. There are great local eats at Progressive Field!

Despite the heat, we had a great time and the Indians brought home a win, so that makes for a pretty great Friday night!

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Michael Angelo’s Winery

On Sunday, I met up with some Playhouse Square Partners friends for a Sunday Funday at Michael Angelo’s Winery.

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I love everything about Michael Angelo’s Winery! The setting is beautiful, the wines are delicious (the sparking rosé is my new favorite), and the food is so tasty!

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I had the crab cakes, with apple garden slaw and lemon aioli. I also snagged nibbles of the crispy Brussel sprouts, calamari, and truffle fries, all of which are perfect for sharing with a group of friends.

This is the perfect spot for your next girls’ night out or a romantic date!

So, that was our weekend! How was yours?

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Why? Think Pink at Opal on Pearl Giveaway!

‘Tis the season for rosé! I don’t know about you, but I’ve gone all in on this refreshing summer wine.

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Which is why I’m so excited about Think Pink! at Opal on Pearl. On Thursday, July 25, this event brings together two great Old Brooklyn businesses at the lovely Opal on Pearl for an evening of rosé and chocolate.

Lilly Chocolates and Confections will provide both sweet and savory bites created by Chef Amanda Montague.

 

Tony Mellon of Opal on Pearl will expertly pair these bites with rosé wines from all over the world, expanding your rosé palate beyond the usual California or Provence choices.

There will be six tasting stations that you can enjoy at your own pace, while you take in the ambiance of Opal on Pearl.

Tickets are $45 each and space is limited to 50 people. You can purchase tickets online. Or you can enter to win two tickets to Think Pink! right here!

Here’s how to enter (you can do one, two, three, four, or all five entries, just leave a separate comment here for each):

1. Leave a comment here telling me whether you like rosé or chocolate better (tough choice, I know!)

2. Visit Opal on Pearl and Why CLE? on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know you visited both pages.

3. Visit @whycle on Instagram and follow the directions with the Think Pink! image to complete an additional entry.

4. Follow @opalonpearl1 and @WhyCLE on Twitter and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following both.

5. Tweet the following phrase and leave a comment here letting me know you tweeted:

I want to win tickets to Think Pink! at @opalonpearl1 with @LillyChoc thanks to @WhyCLE #giveaway https://whycle.com/2019/07/18/why-think-pink-at-opal-on-pearl-giveaway 

You can tweet once per day for additional entries, just leave a separate comment here each time you tweet.

The giveaway will close on Sunday, July 21 at 11:59pm and the winner will be notified the following day. Good luck!

***Disclosure: I was asked by Opal on Pearl to help promote Think Pink! In exchange, I will receive two complimentary tickets for myself and two tickets to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Playhouse Square Partners at Bin 216!

Last night, Playhouse Square Partners celebrated the end of our (fiscal) year with our fifth annual wine tasting night at Bin 216.

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This event has become both a staple and a favorite for the organization. This year’s theme was South American wines and we enjoyed five courses of small bites and wines that were perfectly paired.

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Our first course paired Leyda Sauvignon Blanc with Asparagus & Egg Salad with Tarragon Vinaigrette.

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You really can’t go wrong in my book with either asparagus or Sauvignon Blanc!

Our second course paired Tilia Chardonnay with a Seared Scallop over Sweet Corn Purée and Herb Oil.

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This particularly chardonnay was very oaky and on its own was not my favorite, but when paired with the food, it was quite good.

Our third course paired Root 1 Carmenere with Devils on Horseback.

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This peppery, delicious red wine was perfect by itself, but became even more delicious when paired with the chorizo-stuffed dates of happiness. (This was my favorite course, can you tell?)

Our fourth course paired Catena Malbec with Grilled Chicken Kabobs with Chimichurri.

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Much like the first course, this course paired two can’t miss items for me: Malbec and chimichurri.

Our fifth course paired El Enemigo Bonarda with Marinated, Smoked, and Grilled Portobello Mushroom Risotto.

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The risotto had a delicious, smoky taste to it which matched the wine nicely and added a depth of flavor you don’t always get with this kind of dish.

All in all, it was a delicious evening trying some new-to-me wines. Bin 216 is a great pre- or post-theater stop, with ambiance (check out that view of the beautiful Ohio Theatre lobby), delicious food, and great wines.

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And if you’re interested in getting involved with Playhouse Square Partners, we’re starting our Jump Back Ball 29 planning on Thursday, July 11 at Market Garden Brewery. You don’t have to be a member to attend. Click here to learn more and RSVP.

***Disclosure: I am the Communications Co-Chair for Playhouse Square Partners. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Weekends!

Oh my gosh, you guys. It’s JULY! When did that happen?! Here’s how we closed out the last weekend in June…

John Carroll Alumni Volunteer Summit

I spent a good part of my weekend up at John Carroll University attending the inaugural Alumni Volunteer Summit, which was truly energizing and inspiring.

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Image Source: @jcualumni 

The Summit brought together alumni volunteers from various university departments and areas of the country to share ideas, learn about the university’s vision for the future, and eat ice cream overlooking our beautiful alma mater’s campus.

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We kicked off the Summit with a cookout outside of Murphy Hall, spent Saturday hearing from various departments within the university, and ended with a party on the Quad with a band and food trucks.

Matthew and I stuffed ourselves with pizza, mozzarella sticks, and truffle fries from Sauced Wood Fired Pizza (the firecracker chicken pizza is so good).

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As one of the incoming members of the Alumni Association Board, the Summit was a great chance for me to connect with other Board members and get ready to once again give back to a place that has given me so much.

Dear Evan Hansen

On Saturday night, Matthew and I attended one of the final Cleveland performances of “Dear Evan Hansen.”

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This deeply moving, funny, true, heavy, beautiful story made me laugh, cry, and think about loneliness, human connection, parenting, and so much more. I was so glad we had a chance to see it!

Cedar Point

On Sunday, we met up with our dear friends (and some of Jeffrey’s godparents) Amanda and Scott for a toasty, fun summer day at Cedar Point.

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Jeffrey is enjoying his new height and was able to ride Thunder Canyon for the first (and second and third) time this season.

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From rides to lunch at Famous Dave’s to ice cream at Toft’s to fun with some of our favorite people, it was a perfect summer Sunday!

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How was your weekend? Do you have big plans for the holiday week?

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Why? Punch Bowl Social Summer Specials!

By now, my love for Punch Bowl Social is well-documented. From delicious food that utilizes lots of local ingredients and providers to a fun environment with tons of games and entertainment options to those cocktails and punches…

Last night, we got a chance to sample some of Punch Bowl Social’s latest seasonal menu additions. Matthew tried the featured punch: The Watermelon Polo Bowl, with Sauza Blue Reposado Tequila, Teakoe’s Watermelon Spearmint Tea, McClary Bro’s Watermelon Shrub, house-made strawberry syrup, and fresh lime juice.

I had the It’s a Mer-Man’s World, with Old Forester Bourbon, Teakoe’s Pineapple Papaya Tea, house-made cardamom syrup, Bacardi 8, and fresh lime juice. What light, refreshing summer drinks!

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And there’s no better place to enjoy them than Punch Bowl Social’s rooftop bar, offering great views of the city, Lake Erie, and the rest of the Flats East Bank.

We started our meal with a new appetizer: Umami Bomb Chips and Dip, with charred onion, sour cream, garlic, shiitake mushrooms, and anchovy, served with celery sticks and sea salt kettle chips.

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This dip was creamy, salty, savory deliciousness! It’s a great spin on the classic chip and dip combo.

For Matthew’s entrée, he had the Mediterranean Salad, with crispy falafel, marinated feta, marinated cabbage, romesco, hummus, tzatziki, mixed lettuce, and sumac lemon vinaigrette.

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This salad is a trip around the Mediterranean, with lots of different styles and flavors incorporated. And what a bright, colorful presentation too! It’s not often that just a salad fills Matthew up, but he was completely satisfied after this one.

I had the Shrimp Burger, with butter lettuce, roma tomatoes, pickled red onions, Old Bay mayonnaise, on a sesame seed bun with rosemary fries on the side.

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Much like a crab cake sandwich, the Shrimp Burger was hearty, packed with shrimp, and a great summer sandwich option.

Jeffrey devoured the Lil Knock, the kids menu cheeseburger, in between rounds of Candy Land at the table.

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For summer fun, summer sippers, and summer seasonal menu items, you can’t go wrong with a trip (or two) to Punch Bowl Social!

***Disclosure: I received complimentary food items at my visit to Punch Bowl Social. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Weekends!

Was this weekend not the most glorious kickoff to summer?! Oh my goodness, we soaked up every moment of it!

JCC Camp

Friday wrapped up Jeffrey’s week at the Mandel Jewish Community Center‘s Anisfield Day Camp.

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The kids got to swim, play dodgeball and Simon Says, do crafts, run a ninja course, and generally burn a lot of energy and get really dirty, as kids should in the summer.

Jeffrey had so much fun and I managed not having my buddy with me all day better than I thought I would, so it was a win all the way around!

Brim Kitchen and Brewery 

On Friday night, I met up with my friend Elizabeth for dinner at Brim Kitchen and Brewery.

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Brim has a great rooftop deck, as well as a second floor that soaks up lots of wonderful sunlight. Brim brews their own beers, as well as having a tasty cocktail menu. I enjoyed the Pom Delight, a Belgian light ale brewed with pomegranate.

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For dinner, I had the Buttermilk Fried Chicken Sandwich, with yum-yum sauce, pickles, and house coleslaw.

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In an effort to be healthy, I swapped the truffle fries for grilled asparagus and was totally happy with that choice.

It was a fun and yummy kick-off to the weekend!

Cuyahoga50

On Saturday, the entire family celebrated Cuyahoga50, the 50th anniversary of the Cuyahoga River fire that sparked a national wave of environmentalism.

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For the third summer, Matthew rows crew on the Cuyahoga River with Western Reserve Rowing. He had a regatta on Saturday morning, so Jeffrey and I went down to cheer him on and take in the Cuyahoga50 events too.

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We got to check out the Blazing Paddles event, see the Never, Ever Give Up installation, and just generally enjoy the amazing transformation the Cuyahoga River has undergone.

It made my heart so happy to see how many people of all ages were out and about on the River!

Indians Game

Saturday afternoon, we celebrated another big Cleveland anniversary: 25 years of Progressive (cough, still Jacob’s, cough) Field.

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The giveaway for the game was a replica ballpark, which is currently in Jeffrey’s room, but I might be stealing it back soon!

The weather was perfect to take in an Indians win, enjoy a beer and some Momocho nachos, and generally feel like summer.

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Heck’s Cafe

Between activities on Sunday, I met up with my mom for lunch at Heck’s Cafe in Avon. The weather was perfect for sitting outside and enjoying a champagne mule.

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I had the Asparagus Salad, with mixed greens, avocado, tomato, black sesame, and a lemon ginger vinaigrette. I added seared tuna for a delicious, light lunch.

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I love dining al fresco this time of year!

Engage Cleveland YP Week

Stay tuned tomorrow for my recap of my Sunday spent doing activities with Engage Cleveland’s YP Week, which is happening now!

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Why? Moon Cleveland!

You’ve probably read Douglas Trattner‘s writing over the years, from Cleveland Scene Magazine to co-authoring four of Michael Symon’s cookbooks to Eater to Food Network Magazine.

This prolific local author has just written a new Cleveland guidebook: “Moon Cleveland.” The guidebook is easily broken down into sections that will help both locals and visitors find their perfect Cleveland experiences.

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Start with the “5 Top Experiences,” for the must-do, top-level Cleveland things, like food, sports, and beer.

Visiting (or entertaining visitors) for a weekend? The “Three-Day Best of Cleveland” will have you hopping all over town hitting some impressive highlights that will certainly leave your guests wanting to come back again and again.

Just moved to Cleveland or to a new location in your hometown? The Neighborhood Guide can help you find the best spots in your new locale.

From Sights to Restaurants, Nightlife to Recreation, “Moon Cleveland” covers it all, with digestible, but still informative descriptions, prices, hours, websites, and maps.

Love Cleveland, but want a quick trip away? The “Day Trips” section shares Trattner’s favorites from Amish Country to the Lake Erie Islands.

I like to say that Cleveland has so much to see, do, eat, and explore that it can be impossible to keep up with it all. But Douglas Trattner certainly does an impressive job in “Moon Cleveland.” The book can help you ease into learning about Cleveland or give even a seasoned local some great suggestions of new places to try.

“Moon Cleveland” is on sale now at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple Books, Google Play, Kobo, and Ebooks.com. Click here to order your copy and start (re)-exploring Cleveland!

***Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of “Moon Cleveland” from the author. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

 

Why? Fitness Events at Legacy Village!

There’s so much going on at Legacy Village this summer, including some great fitness events!

barre3 and Brio to Beat Cancer

On Monday, June 24, barre3 Legacy Village and Brio Tuscan Grille are teaming up to give you multiple ways to donate to American Cancer Society ReasearcHERS.

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The 6:30pm barre3 class will be taught by studio owner Liz and will be entirely donation-based, which means you can register for the class for free right here and make a donation at the studio when you attend.

Then head over to Brio Tuscan Grille for dinner, where 10% of your bill total will be donated to American Cancer Society ResearcHERS when you present the flyer attached in this invite.

If pasta is more your thing than planks, you can just come to dinner at Brio any time between 4pm and 10pm and present the flyer for your donation to be taken.

As you know, I’m an ambassador for American Cancer Society ResearcHERS and I’m so grateful to my friends at Legacy Village, barre3, and Brio for working with me to make this great event happen!

Yoga in the Village

Then, get your flow on with my girl Alicia on the Lawn at Legacy Village with the monthly Yoga in the Village series, which kicks off on Tuesday, June 25.

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Alicia will lead a sixty minute, all-levels yoga class from 6:30-7:30pm on the Legacy Village Lawn. Attendees will also receive a gift bag with a $5 Legacy Village gift card, as well as coupons and goodies from other Legacy Village retailers. Cost to attend is $15 and proceeds benefit the Arthritis Foundation of Northeast Ohio.

Stay after class and enjoy a special Yoga in the Village drink menu at Bar Louie, where 20% of your bill total will be donated to the Arthritis Foundation, as well as complimentary mini spa services from Ladies & Gentlemen Salon & Spa.

Other Yoga in the Village dates are July 16, August 20, and September 17. Stay tuned for more information on the upcoming classes.

No matter whether it’s barre3 or yoga, Brio or Bar Louie, there are plenty of opportunities to detox, retox, and do good all at once at Legacy Village!

***Disclosure: I have an ongoing relationship with Legacy Village to promote their events. In exchange, I receive compensation in the form of Legacy Village gift cards. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? James Beard Foundation Celebrity Chef Tour Dinner!

When the James Beard Celebrity Chef Tour Dinner was announced, it was one of those events I immediately knew I wanted to attend. And while the ticket price might seem like a splurge, when you get 10 courses of phenomenal food prepared by celebrated chefs, plus wine pairings, you realize it’s a total steal!

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We started the evening by getting a glimpse at the entire group of chefs, who clearly all get along so well!

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Then we headed into Urban Farmer for the big event. We started with a cocktail hour with signature cocktails, as well as local beer and wine. Matthew tried the interesting Salt-Acid-Fat-Heat, with Tito’s Vodka infused with house-grown chili, Ardberg 10 year scotch, lemon, rosemary, and prosciutto and I had the light and fruity Spring to Summer, with Tito’s Vodka, aperol, grapefruit, lime, and Prosecco.

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We also nibbled on passed appetizers. There was Duck & Pancetta Polpetta from Chef Brian Okin of Dinner in the Dark; “Hillbilly Crudite” from Chef Adam Bostwick of Polpetta; Curied Foie Gras on Toast from Chef John Selick of Sodexo, University Hospitals; Yukon Gold and Sartori Mini Pierogi from Chef Chris Quinn of US Foods; and Braunschweiger Mousse from Chefs Penny Barend and Melissa Khoury of Saucisson.

Our first course from Chef Karen Small of Flying Fig was a Crisped Spring Onion Crepe, with asparagus and wild shrimp, tarragon, red chili butter, lemon confit, and Heritage Lake Farm watercress.

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This dish was springtime on a plate: delicate, light, and yet filled with distinct flavors.

Next was Roasted Summer Vegetables, with basil, smoked parmesan, and quinoa from Chef Justin Lucas of Urban Farmer.

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The vegetables had a rich, smoky flavor and the quinoa added nice texture.

The third course was A Walk through the Chef’s Garden, with squash blossom, egg, nasturtium, asparagus, green tomato, oyster leaf, and turnip.

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This dish was visually stunning, from the drop of “water” on each leaf to the perfectly runny egg nestled inside the squash blossom.

Next up was a play on a classic favorite from a hometown favorite: Chef Michael Symon of Lola, Mabel’s BBQ, and B Spot Burgers.

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The Chicken Liver Matzo Balls, with summer truffles, were a gourmet and luscious spin on the classic comfort food.

Next up was what I found to be the most interesting dish of the night: Koji Cured Crispy Maitake, with wild greens and walleye bottarga from Chef Jeremy Umansky of Larder Delicatessen & Bakery.

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Tangy, crispy, fresh, and delicious, this dish really showcased Chef Umansky’s unique ides.

The eating kept right on going with Ohio Wagyu Beef, with fritter, tomato chutney, carpaccio, beef fat tonnato, horseradish, rocket, quinoa, and maldon from Chef Vishwatej Nath of Urban Farmer.

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What a tasty way to enjoy wagyu two ways!

Our final savory course  was Lamb Loin, with napa cabbage, cannellini beans, tomato glace de viande, and celery root espuma.

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From Chef John M. D’Amico of Chez Francois, this dish was so delicious, I was tempted to lick the plate. This celebrated chef rarely leaves his kitchen, so it was truly a treat to enjoy his food at this event.

We had two dessert courses, which is how I plan to end all my meals now. First was Raspberry Tea Mousse, with lemon poppy sponge, fig, lemon verbena, and rye crumble from Pastry Chef Kara Swortchek of Urban Farmer.

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So many different flavors and textures at play in this bright, fruity dish!

Our final course was decadence defined and deconstructed: Dark Chocolate Toasted Rice Ice Cream, with black sesame almond chocolate cake, black sesame streusel, candied almonds, fennel caramel, coconut ginger cream, and pickled ginger chip, from Pastry Chef Annabella Andricks of The Dinerbar on Clifton.

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Each course was expertly paired with wine, some local, some not. But I loved seeing some of my local favorites from M Cellars and Ferrante Winery make appearances!

It was a fun, delicious, long evening of incredible food, wine, and camaraderie.

We have an incredible food community here in Cleveland, certainly worthy of such an amazing Celebrity Chef Tour experience.

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