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Lolita, Cleveland OH

How did I find myself in Cleveland again (in January, no less) for the 3rd time?

I was a big fan of Michael Symon’s flagship restaurant Lola when I when in 2011 and 2012. Rather than return a third time, I suggested his more casual neighborhood restaurant, Lolita,
for their late night happy hour menu.

It was 10:30pm and we were able to grab two stools at the bar. Unfortunately, the seats were close to the door, so we had a frigid wind blow through every time it opened. The late-night menu had 5 items, all for $5. We opted for the Cuban sandwich (which was actually $6), fried Brussels sprouts, and the charred eggplant dip. The guy sitting on my left raved about how outstanding the eggplant dip was - the best he's ever had.

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The Cuban was served open faced. It was delicious - easily the highlight of our meal.

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The Brussels sprouts were far too oily, and the charred eggplant dip was good but no better than the excellent baba ghanouj I get at Sevan in Watertown. The accompanying homemade flatbread was terrific.

The drinks specials were also cheap: $5 for two different cocktails and $4 for wines, $3 for beer. We had fun talking to our neighbors, and the bartender was sweet and tolerant as we got louder and rowdier as the night went on.

Sorry the pictures are so dark; Lolita follows the trend of needing a flashlight to read the menu

http://lolitarestaurant.com/

Since I don’t re-blog I won't go in to detail about my lunch at Melt, except to show you the pictures of the sandwich I had. “The Dude Abides” is a grilled cheese sandwich stuffed with homemade meatballs, fried mozzarella wedges, basil marinara, roasted garlic, provolone & romano. It was awesome.

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http://meltbarandgrilled.com/

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