Author Topic: Ohio  (Read 5898 times)

Offline Foodgeek

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Ohio
« on: January 06, 2010, 03:48:42 PM »
Reposting this, so that the information will be available for those who are likely to be looking for it:

For those of you that are from Ohio (I'm from Akron), there's a foodblog that I follow and I enjoy it pretty much, so you might like taking a look at it too. The blogger is male, slightly younger than me and living in the Akron/Canton area. His work takes him around the state a little bit, so there are some posts about Columbus and Cleveland too. I like it because I can be updated about restaurants in the areas where I used to live. Barberton chicken, Swenson's, Panini's, Vaccaro's and such all show up pretty frequently. He's a pretty good eater, apparently, so he posts very regularly. I've even sent him suggestions of things to eat - I met him on eGullet - and he often checks out my advice.

His blog is at www.exploringfoodmyway.blogspot.com
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Offline Mike GadgetGeek Stock

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Re: Ohio
« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2010, 08:15:42 PM »

We didn't try them this time when we were in Ohio, but are Swenson's burgers really good?  

We will be back in May, and we'll test 'em then.  I remember them from way back when, but I moved out of Ohio in 1974-5, so things probably changed in Ohio too?


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Offline Foodgeek

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Re: Ohio
« Reply #2 on: January 18, 2010, 08:22:37 AM »

We didn't try them this time when we were in Ohio, but are Swenson's burgers really good?  

We will be back in May, and we'll test 'em then.  I remember them from way back when, but I moved out of Ohio in 1974-5, so things probably changed in Ohio too?

I'm not that big of a fan. They're dressed with some sort of sauce that's kind of like Thousand Island, but with barbecue sauce. The best thing about Swenson's is the cute male carhops.
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Offline Mike GadgetGeek Stock

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Re: Ohio
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2010, 10:59:30 AM »


Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr   Be glad you are in Georgia...


48 degrees and a 65mph wind off of the lake...

we had to go buy sweatshirts...    :P

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Finding offense where none is intended is a form of selfishness.

When facts change, I change my mind.  What do you do?

It's a poor craftsman that blames his tools.

Offline Barnum

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Re: Ohio
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2010, 01:23:34 PM »


Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr   Be glad you are in Georgia...


48 degrees and a 65mph wind off of the lake...

we had to go buy sweatshirts...    :P

.

Pretty close to the forecast for Atlanta Sunday... low in the 40's, high in the mid 60's, probably no lake breezes...

Offline Mike GadgetGeek Stock

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Re: Ohio
« Reply #5 on: May 09, 2010, 12:38:30 AM »


Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr   Be glad you are in Georgia...


48 degrees and a 65mph wind off of the lake...

we had to go buy sweatshirts...    :P

.

Pretty close to the forecast for Atlanta Sunday... low in the 40's, high in the mid 60's, probably no lake breezes...

Wet snow predicted for tonight or tomorrow...    Wonderful...

We still loved being here for our kids and grandkids,  
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Finding offense where none is intended is a form of selfishness.

When facts change, I change my mind.  What do you do?

It's a poor craftsman that blames his tools.

Offline The_Scientist

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Re: Ohio
« Reply #6 on: June 06, 2010, 05:36:34 PM »
Last weekend FG and I were back in home territory (funeral, sadly), and we took a day trip to Akron to see her family.  As part of the family ritual I was obliged to experience Barberton chicken at Belgrade Gardens.  It's one of several restaurants in the area that serve fried chicken cut in a unique style, but Belgrade is the benchmark, even making USA Today's list of best fried chicken places in the country.  It is Hungarian in ownership and style.

What makes it unique is that the breasts are cut short of the back, leaving some meat on the back, which is the most prized piece since it has the oysters.  I chose a regular size dark meat combo which included two thighs, a wing and a back.  Everyone else did some combo as well.  Three side items came with, and my choices were pretty standard: fries, cole slaw and "hot sauce," really just rice in tomato sauce seasoned with paprika.  The chicken was crispy breaded and pretty moist, but underseasoned.  A good hit of that paprika would have made it much better.  Fries and slaw were mediocre and left half-eaten.  Hot sauce was better, a much-needed contrast to the rest of the meal.

I ate all of the chicken, so it couldn't have been too bad, but it's not an experience I need to repeat.  Its legendary status among Akronites must have more to do with childhood memories than the food.  How many decades-old meat-and-threes around here would fall into that category?
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Offline Mike GadgetGeek Stock

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Re: Ohio
« Reply #7 on: June 06, 2010, 05:59:52 PM »
Last weekend FG and I were back in home territory (funeral, sadly), and we took a day trip to Akron to see her family.  As part of the family ritual I was obliged to experience Barberton chicken at Belgrade Gardens.  It's one of several restaurants in the area that serve fried chicken cut in a unique style, but Belgrade is the benchmark, even making USA Today's list of best fried chicken places in the country.  It is Hungarian in ownership and style.

What makes it unique is that the breasts are cut short of the back, leaving some meat on the back, which is the most prized piece since it has the oysters.  I chose a regular size dark meat combo which included two thighs, a wing and a back.  Everyone else did some combo as well.  Three side items came with, and my choices were pretty standard: fries, cole slaw and "hot sauce," really just rice in tomato sauce seasoned with paprika.  The chicken was crispy breaded and pretty moist, but underseasoned.  A good hit of that paprika would have made it much better.  Fries and slaw were mediocre and left half-eaten.  Hot sauce was better, a much-needed contrast to the rest of the meal.

I ate all of the chicken, so it couldn't have been too bad, but it's not an experience I need to repeat.  Its legendary status among Akronites must have more to do with childhood memories than the food.  How many decades-old meat-and-threes around here would fall into that category?  


Our family (since they owned bars and restaurants), were always given the in-the-back kitchen table.   My grandparents loved the food there, we had cousins that raised chickens that supplied Belgrade Gardens way, back in the day..  So our food was possibly not what was served to the folks out front..  But I remember it being delicious..   and the tomato sauce (spicy) side was a hit way before Chiles and smoked paprika came to this country.  That is old-school Hungarian chef cooked chicken served family style..  

I do envy you because in the last 10 years of jetting to Akron to see our kids and grandkids we have not set foot in either Belgrade Gardens nor Hopocan Gardens.   We will have to make a point of sliding in there and doing the old style stuff once again.

I am sure your regard for the place is well intentioned.. and I'd probably agree with you on most of the things.   But it is overlaid with the memories of huge dishes of chicken paprikash, of rich red gravy with rice and some of the not-mentioned icons on the menu..

Now if you want to talk about modern day Akron/Barbeton/Canton/Cleveland, I am ready to go for it...  

Those old-style chicken places will fade into memory and we will suddenly love Briko, still love Luigi's, and still want to find a good fish place in Portage Lakes..   I'm glad you tried them out, and wrestled with their menu..   I will do it LATER..    LOL
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« Last Edit: June 06, 2010, 06:01:25 PM by Mike GadgetGeek Stock »
Finding offense where none is intended is a form of selfishness.

When facts change, I change my mind.  What do you do?

It's a poor craftsman that blames his tools.

Offline Foodgeek

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Re: Ohio
« Reply #8 on: June 07, 2010, 02:15:45 PM »
I have had the Paprikash at Belgrade's and I agree that it's very good. Scientist forgot to mention that we had one order of dumplings for the table, and they came in a gravy that was exactly like the sauce for the Paprikash. I thought they were quite tasty and they had a texture that was very homey.

Service was terrific, and our waitress was a real cut-up. I think she was flirting with my dad.   ::) We had a pitcher of beer with the meal and overall I thought it was one of the better meals I've had at Belgrades. My white meat chicken was really moist and fresh.

Still, we'll try different places next time we go back.
Food is my favorite.

Offline Mike GadgetGeek Stock

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Re: Ohio
« Reply #9 on: August 06, 2010, 11:56:55 PM »
Finding offense where none is intended is a form of selfishness.

When facts change, I change my mind.  What do you do?

It's a poor craftsman that blames his tools.

Offline Mike GadgetGeek Stock

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Re: Ohio
« Reply #10 on: December 29, 2010, 11:33:32 PM »


Papa Joe's  &  Belgrade Gardens in one day.

more on this later.


Also

Burgers
Sushi
and more.


Finding offense where none is intended is a form of selfishness.

When facts change, I change my mind.  What do you do?

It's a poor craftsman that blames his tools.

Offline Mike GadgetGeek Stock

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Re: Ohio
« Reply #11 on: January 01, 2011, 09:52:06 AM »
We had a terrific "adults night out" on Thursday with my son and his lovely wife Sharon, they directed us to a not-new, but new to us place just West of Kent.  We dined at the "Bistro on Main" and were more than pleasantly surprised.  I don't remember the name of what this restaurant building used to be, but it was an Italian icon in Kent for years.  Now it has moved up more than a couple of notches to be a real destination restaurant in a college town over-run with chain locations and bars.

<edited to add>  Bistro on Main is in the building that was Missimi's for years and years.

I'll fill in what we had completely later but suffice it to say though we only had apps and small plates we all were delighted with out food and our choices, we shared tastes back and forth some, it was all really good.  They had some sort-of $2.00 off of martini's when we were there so all but me tried a couple of the different Holiday style martini's with glowing results.  I had a Bell's Two Hearted Ale and was very happy with it.

Here is what an Ohio Food Blogger that Foodgeek introduced me to had to say about Bistro on Main...

http://exploringfoodmyway.blogspot.com/2010/08/bistro-on-main.html

Here is their website:

http://www.bistrokent.com/

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« Last Edit: January 06, 2011, 01:11:32 PM by Mike GadgetGeek Stock »
Finding offense where none is intended is a form of selfishness.

When facts change, I change my mind.  What do you do?

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Offline Mike GadgetGeek Stock

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Re: Ohio
« Reply #12 on: January 06, 2011, 12:49:18 PM »


Reports not in order of consumption:

Belgrade Gardens..   Well they do still do it the same way.  And it was dinner...

I think Belgrade garden is NOT a foodies stop except to remember what your family used to think was good eats?  Deanne put it well when she quietly said, "Well it is chicken but let's not call it Southern Fried Chicken".  The Onion rings were pretty good, and as usual the place was busy, but not packed.   We checked it off of our list.   ;)

I liked the rice/sauce too and it brought back memories of my grandparents taking us all there. 
Finding offense where none is intended is a form of selfishness.

When facts change, I change my mind.  What do you do?

It's a poor craftsman that blames his tools.

Offline Foodgeek

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Re: Ohio
« Reply #13 on: January 06, 2011, 01:12:43 PM »
Keep in mind that sometimes Belgrade's can be better than at other times. However, those fries are nasty. It is mostly a nostalgic thing for me, and most of my family likes the "hot sauce" better than I do. I did enjoy Michael Simon's rundown of the differences between White House and Belgrade's. Good show, and he's hit a couple of other Ohio staples as well.

Last visit my parents came to visit us in Pittsburgh, so we didn't have to discuss whether to go get Barberton chicken or not.  ;)
Food is my favorite.

Offline Mike GadgetGeek Stock

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Re: Ohio
« Reply #14 on: January 06, 2011, 01:21:10 PM »
Keep in mind that sometimes Belgrade's can be better than at other times. However, those fries are nasty. It is mostly a nostalgic thing for me, and most of my family likes the "hot sauce" better than I do. I did enjoy Michael Simon's rundown of the differences between White House and Belgrade's. Good show, and he's hit a couple of other Ohio staples as well.

Last visit my parents came to visit us in Pittsburgh, so we didn't have to discuss whether to go get Barberton chicken or not.  ;)

We repeated the Swenson's vs. Skyway face off..     Just getting the premium burger that is their signature burger all of us but one grand child likes the Swenson's best.  But most would not get all that goop on their burger if they went, they would get a double cheeseburger, no sauce with condiments of choice.

I cannot speak highly enough for the "Bistro on Main" in Kent..  I have been busy but will do a write-up about it and put it here and elsewhere. 

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Finding offense where none is intended is a form of selfishness.

When facts change, I change my mind.  What do you do?

It's a poor craftsman that blames his tools.

 

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