my Cleveland favorites! - The Dainty Squid

my Cleveland favorites!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Mural located on the corner of W.25th Street + Chatham Avenue

I think I've made it very apparent how much I love my city. Ever since I moved here I've been wanting to make a list of places to visit in Cleveland but felt some sort of weird pressure to include certain spots. Obviously there is the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame but I wanted to make a list of my favorite spots. These are places I visit often, places I love to bike to, and spots I just generally cannot get enough of.  This list is kind of all over Cleveland but I've always found this to be a very easy city to travel across so even if you're staying in downtown it shouldn't take very long at all to get to any of these places.

My favorites...


Edisons Pizza - 2365 Professor Avenue
Edisons is one of my favorite spots in Cleveland. It's not gourmet pizza by any means it's just darn good greasy pizza by the slice. It's also a dog friendly bar so if you're lucky you can scope out some pups while you chow down. The first time I went was actually on my first bike ride in the city so it holds a very special place in my heart.


Mitchell's Ice Cream - 1867 West 25th Street
Mitchell's is a local ice cream chain and I can without a doubt say it's the best ice cream I've ever had! (They have vegan flavors too!) The West 25th location is my favorite for two reasons - it's close to home and it's in what used to be an old theater. The space is big, clean, and you can even watch the ice cream being made. I recommend coffee chocolate chunk but I honestly don't think you could go wrong with any flavor there! Plus - free samples if you're having a hard time choosing based on the name alone.


La Petit Triangle - 1881 Fulton Road
Do you want to eat the tastiest breakfast of your life in a cozy little cafe? Me too! That's why this spot ranks so highly for me. Every single time Jeff and I go we get the lemon curd crepe, and the smoked salmon omelet and split the two (...ya know with me mostly devouring the lemon curd crepe before he can even take two bites because it's just that good) I could literally eat here every day and never get tired of their food.


Big Fun - 1814 Coventry Road
Taking a break from food related suggestions here, Big Fun is a toy store that people of all ages can enjoy. It's an experience. There is so much to look at. You cannot turn anywhere in this store without being smacked in the face with nostalgia.  Okay, toys are really cool but lets be real here - I'm visiting for the photobooth. A real photobooth, not a digital one!!!


Rockefeller Park Greenhouse - 750 E 88th Street
Easily one of the most relaxing places in the whole city. This place is AMAZING. It was built in 1905, used originally to grow plants for the city. It's stunning inside and out. There are multiple rooms with different themes, and tons and tons of plants. It's fairly small, but parking and admission are free, it is absolutely worth a visit! You can find the post from my very first visit here.


Happy Dog - 5801 Detroit Avenue
One hot dog (or vegan sausage), one price, unlimited toppings. Same thing with the tater tots; one price, as many dipping sauces as you'd like. Make sure to get the roasted garlic aioli! It was a little bit overwhelming to me at first since I was so picky about foods but now that I'm becoming an adventurous eater I'm loving Happy Dog a little more every time. If you're feeling particularly crazy you can even get fruit loops on your dog ...which I hear is actually pretty tasty. There's live music most evenings and if you're lucky enough, you might be there on a night the Cleveland Orchestra is playing. There's a schedule for music, as well as a list of everything you can get on your dog, on their website.


Dittrick Medical History Center - 11000 Euclid Avenue
The permanent exhibits at this wonderfully strange little museum feature medical instrument collections to document the development of medicine. I shared a handful of photos from one of my visits a little while back, you can find them here. Oh! Did I mention it's free? Because it is!


Picadilly - 1767 Coventry Road
Frozen yogurt (with vegan flavors available!) that is locally made without additives, preservatives, coloring, pesticides or any other chemicals! It's delicious, it's super cute inside, and possibly the best part? They have dividers so your wild creations don't touch!


Townhall - 1909 W 25th Street
Here's where you should be getting dinner before heading to Mitchell's for ice cream (they're within walking distance of each other!) So many delicious options, fresh juices, smoothies, milkshakes, and more in a really cozy environment. While you're there get yourself an order of the prosciutto wrapped dates, you won't regret it. I actually think those might be my favorite food in the whole world.


Coquette Patisserie - 11607 Euclid Avenue
Of course there are macarons on this list, what did you expect? At Coquette you will find the best macarons in Cleveland. You might luck out at one of the other locations macarons are found in the city but Coquette is the only place I have found to be consistently delicious.


Even more recommendations...
Sweet Moses - 6800 Detroit Avenue
More amazing ice cream! Get the bananas foster!

Angelo's Pizza - 13715 Madison Avenue
Okay, not technically Cleveland but super close. If Edison's has the best greasy pizza, Angelo's has the best "fancy" pizza. It's insanely delicious.

Koko Bakery - 3710 Payne Avenue
The cutest little Asian bakery but I wouldn't know anything about it because I'm just here to chug all the bubble tea. 

Bonbon Pastry & Cafe - 2549 Lorain Avenue
Another awesome brunch spot. Their blueberry pancakes are the only pancakes I will eat. They. are. amazing.

Terminal Tower Observation Deck - 50 Public Square
My favorite building in our cute little skyline has a observation deck that I so rarely see get mentioned it almost seems like a secret? It's worth visiting, for sure! It has kind of funny hours though so be sure to check online before going.

The Westside Market - 1979 W 25th Street
Cleveland's oldest public market. You can grocery shop, find something delicious for lunch or just sit up top and people watch.

The Treehouse - 820 College Avenue
Their pulled pork sandwich is out of this world! Eat one for me?

The World's Largest Outdoor Chandelier - intersection of Euclid Avenue and East 14th Street
A little bit random but Cleveland actually has the world's largest outdoor chandelier, and it is just gorgeous at night. I recommend at least driving under it when you visit!

Wendy Park / Whiskey Island - 2800 Whiskey Island
The only public park in the county that provides access to both Lake Erie and the Cuyahoga River. There's a beach, a park you can bring your pups to, a nice little pier that leads out to the abandoned coast guard station, and some beautiful views of the city. This is one of my favorite beaches because it's rarely crowded.



I love this city and I hope after a visit you do too!
xoxo

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33 thoughts

  1. I've been dying to visit Cleveland for ages!!! I LOVE BIG FUN!!!

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    1. I mean, how could you not?! It's such a fun store!

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  2. Love that mural! So neat looking. And your photo booth pictures. I adore photo booths!

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    1. It's brand new! They just finished it up last week. I had this post ready to go and then I saw they were working on that and had to postpone because it's too perfect.

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  3. I love this post. I booked marked it just in case I'm ever in Cleveland. Maybe next time I scoot over to visit Grand Rapids I'll rent a car and take a little road trip.

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    1. You definitely should! Cleveland is a blast. It's a really great city.
      :)

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  4. Man, I miss that Big Fun photobooth!

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    1. Sounds like you need to come back (+ get in it with me!)

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  5. love this list. The museum sounds awesome, one day I'll get there!

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  6. You make me want to go to Cleveland, like right now. I've never been, but I'm on board for (2!) ice cream shops with vegan flavors and a place with vegan sausage. Townhall looks delicious, too.

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    1. We have SO many places here with vegan options. Townhall actually has a vegan menu on Mondays. That photo is from when my BFF from Canada came down to visit, she's vegan so we took her there. All that stuff on the table is vegan and it was all amazing.

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  7. I'm from Toledo, but my whole family relocated to Cleveland. I living in Brooklyn now, but I know someday when I settle down it will be in Cleveland! I'd love to hear some of your favorite nightlife/bars as well! :)

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    1. Sorry, I'm not a bar go-er so I would be of no help on that front. My nightlife usually involves laying in bed eating pizza, riding my bike with friends, or snooping around the city with my camera.

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  8. Maaaan, why does America have such amazing ice-cream stores??!! Not fair ;) When I went to Petoskey, MI, they had a Kilwin's there and their peanut-butter chocolate swirl was just somethin' else :3 <3

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  9. Have you been to Sweet Lorain?

    http://sweetlorain.com/Welcome.html

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    1. Yeah, I've been going there since before I even lived within walking distance of it. :P

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  10. Gahh this post makes me so homesick. Good work.

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    1. Aw, I'm sorry! I hate that you left right after we met. Feel free to come back and ride with us anytime ;)

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  11. My boyfriend's cousin is the owner of Happy Dog, and we went to both locations on our trip this past Christmas. Loved that place, the options were extensive and delicious -- and so inventive!

    Our new favorite coming out of there: bacon-wrapped dog with peanut butter, Sriracha, and relish! Weirdest combo, but it tastes amazing together! We make them at home all the time now. =)

    Great list, thanks for sharing!

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    1. Hah! What a small world. That's really awesome!

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  12. OMG My beloved Tommy's on Coventry didn't make the list?!!

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    1. Nah. I used to LOVE Tommy's and the last four or five I've gone it just wasn't that great.

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  13. Hooray for Cleveland!

    I live outside the city, but I love every aspect of this place. I'm not from here, but I've lived here for 12 years and it is the only place that has ever felt like home to me.

    Thank you for being a public voice for the little big city that could!

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  14. I'm really going to try and come up with Steve this month to hang out with you and Klaus! I'm in the middle of moving, but once I'm settled, I'd love to get that ice cream and check out any of these awesome places or whatever you want to do :) When's good for you?

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  15. As a Clevelander, I wholeheartedly approve this list! Also I interned at the Dittrick Museum this summer and I was so tickled to see it included. You should check out the new exhibit this fall!

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    1. That's so awesome! I definitely will.

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  16. I'm going to Cleveland for a couple of days in April (going to see Belinda Carlisle in concert...die hard fan of 30 years...and have to go to a whole other country to finally see her...i live about two hours west of Toronto). Convinced my husband to go by saying we can go to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. I'm pretty sure after reading this list his excitement will somewhat match my own. 😁

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