Saturday, February 11, 2012

Grilled Sandwiches & Shakes

Get "Grilled" in Avon Lake 
Click for larger image
The old adage “seek and ye shall find” couldn’t be more accurate in discovering Grilled.  This quaint 40 seat restaurant tucked away in The Landings of Avon Lake opened in 2010.  They offer quality food at a quality price with high-end sandwiches made with real meat and real cheese.  These are sandwiches you wouldn’t necessarily make at home, but certainly make you feel at home.  Upon walking in your eyes are immediately drawn to a large mural that was painted by the owner, John Maly’s mother-in law. 

Mac N' Cheese
Speaking of 40-- that’s the number of milk shake flavors they serve.  There are 4 sizes so trust me and treat yourself.   Begin your dining experience by sharing the Signature Mac N’ Cheese ($4.99), it’s a creamy blend of three different cheeses served in a crock with more cheese melted on top (you may not want to share).  The Soup N’ Grilled Cheese Combo ($4.99) is a classic dish enhanced with Texas Toast grilled cheese, accompanied with a creamy crock of homemade tomato soup.  Vegetarian or not, you have to try the Tuscan Garden ($5.99).  Served on grilled flat bread, this wonderful blend of Mozzarella, tomato, portabella mushroom and baby spinach is finished with a wonderful pesto sauce. 
Tuscan Garden
Let’s get to the meat of the menu.  The Cuban ($7.99) has sliced ham, slow roasted pork, dill pickles, Swiss cheese and Dijon mustard served on a large ciabatta roll.  The Monte Cristo ($7.99) has ham, turkey and Swiss on sourdough bread that’s dipped in egg and grilled.  It’s finished with powdered sugar and served with jelly on the side.  Completing this gastric experience was the California Chicken ($6.99) made with grilled chicken, tomato, bacon, onion, mozzarella, and avocado spread.  This sandwich is served on grilled sourdough bread with a Dijon mayo.  All sandwiches are served with tangy slaw, spicy beans, applesauce or chips. 
The Cuban
With a selection of over 50 different sandwiches to choose from, you’ll want to come back to experience all their culinary achievements.  Call to reserve their back room to accommodate up to 15 people for your next business meeting, family event or other group function.  You can even book the whole restaurant on Sundays for the ultimate private party.  

Service is friendly and very attentive, making it a dining experience worth seeking out.  All things considered, Grilled is an up and coming restaurant that you truly need to take the time to find.

Grilled Sandwiches & Shakes
32730 Walker Rd., Avon Lake, Ohio.

Phone: (440) 930-5535

Hours: Mon – Sat 11:00am – 8:00pm
Closed Sunday (Available for Private Parties)

Saturday, February 4, 2012

El Tolteca Mexican Restaurant

Authentic Mexican Cuisine

Before the advent of the Aztecs, lived an Indian people in Central Mexico known as the Toltec.  Their tradition in food is well represented today by El Tolteca Mexican Grill located in Brooklyn Ohio.  A family-owned business managed by co-owner Hector Hernandez and his wife MaryLu, assures your visit will lavish you with authentic Mexican cuisine.  The d├ęcor is open, warm and inviting.  They have a separate party area that can accommodate around 50 guests perfect for birthday parties, corporate gatherings or just a bunch of friends and family wanting to experience authentic Mexican cuisine.  With the warmer weather in tow, you can take advantage of their spacious outdoor patio. The first thing I noticed was how clean the entire facility was, not always the case in some of the dining establishments I’ve encountered.  Perhaps the 15 years of experience the owners have in the restaurant industry helps them create an environment that makes you feel at home.

As a “Curious Diner” I have to admit my ventures didn’t go south of the border too often, except for one of my favorite Mexican libations-- the Margarita.  I have certainly had my share of good and bad margaritas, but let me tell you, El Tolteca makes one of the best I’ve had.  Made from a secret recipe only two people in the restaurant make the margaritas, this exceptional cocktail alone will entice you to come back and visit.  If margaritas aren’t your thing, they have a full bar available to satisfy anyone’s taste.

An expressive orange-ware clay
vessel in the Toltec style.
As a Mexican fare novice, I personally appreciated the section of the menu that describes Mexican cuisine.  If you don’t know the difference between an enchilada and a quesadilla, the menu spells it out.  I began my meal with a bowl of soup that caught me by surprise.  Sopa Azteca is made with shredded chicken, crispy tortilla chips, Pico de Gallo, rice and chicken broth.  This delicious homemade soup was fresh and certainly prepared me for what was to come.  You wouldn’t think you’d sit up and take notice over just a taco, which is exactly what I did.  I should’ve ordered more than one of them because it left me wanting more of this delightful meal in your hand.  In fact I can say the same for the enchilada, another delightful experience of a corn tortilla rolled with delectable fillings and topped with sauce and cheese. The menu is substantial in size promising you’ll find a hearty meal for the most discerning palates, including a vegetarian section to go along with your Margarita.  The best way to entice you is to simply show you their menu, check it out here to plan your visit.  Their biggest sellers include steak and fajitas but you’ll find seafood and other “Gringo” specials like cheese burgers and chicken sandwiches.  They also have a lunch only section served from 11:00 AM to 2:30 PM Monday through Saturday.  Come out and try authentic Mexican cuisine -- you’ll want to experience again.

El Tolteca menu items include:
Soups and salads
Lunch only
Combination platters
Special combinations
Quesadillas rellenas
Antojitos mexicanos
El tolteca dinners – chicken, seafood, and steaks
Other dinners
Gringos specials
Side orders and a la carte
From the bar
Child’s plate
Other beverages

El Tolteca Mexican Grill
7106 Biddulph Road
Brooklyn, OH 44144

Click here to view our menu. *Prices subject to change.

Hours of Business:
Monday to Thursday – 11:00 am to 10:00 pm
Friday – 11:00 am to 10:30 pm
Saturday – 12:00 pm to 10:30 pm
Sunday – 12:00 pm to 9:00 pm