Sip, Savor, Social: Where to Feast Like a Queen in Tremont

Monday, April 16, 2018

One of the things I love most about my neighborhood is all its great restaurants & bars. Thrillist even named it one of the best neighborhoods in Cleveland for food - second only to nearby Ohio City, which, in my humble opinion, has actually been eclipsed by Tremont in the last year or so.

Just about a mile & a half from downtown Cleveland, Tremont offers a more laid-back vibe with the same level of upscale & creative dining options as you'll find in the heart of the city. In fact, just last month, I had the opportunity to interview Chef Rocco Whalen, owner of Tremont's Fahrenheit. He raved about his fellow Tremont chefs & what a great neighborhood this is for food & drinks - & I couldn't agree more.

Just a few days after that interview, I attended "Sip, Savor, Social," a ladies'-night-out event hosted by Tricia of Edible Cleveland. Tricia's friend Natasha Pogrebinsky is the chef at two Tremont joints: The South Side, a trendy restaurant/bar with one of the best patios in the area, & Hi & Dry, a bar & duckpin bowling spot that also has a great patio. With patio season fast-approaching (God, I hope), Natasha & Tricia hosted a special event to show off the restaurants' evolving food & drink menus.

I don't blog much about food, but I do Instagram it a lot, & I was thrilled to attend this event alongside some of the city's best foodstagrammers, like @eatlocalohio, @clevelandfoodiegirl, & @clefoodies. I had no idea how much food we'd be served, so unfortunately I did eat before attending - which was a terrible idea, because we were served so. much. food. 

Cue up "These are a few of my favorite things..."

My Big Fat Greek Salad

This isn't your standard olive-heavy Greek salad. It's watermelon-based! A big slab of watermelon is topped with a big slab of feta, plus cucumber, tomatoes, onions, & basil. If you're not familiar with this combo, get familiar, because it's ideal for summer.

Kielbasa Kebabs

I always think I'm not a fan of kielbasa, which is ridiculous because who doesn't like kielbasa? (Except you, vegetarians, pipe down.) I think I confuse it with bratwurst (ew), but I won't now that I've experienced the delicious joy of these kebabs, skewered with tiny potato pancakes.

Steak Tacos

These tacos are to die for: big lettuce leaves filled with thin-sliced sirloin with slivered carrots & red onions, & drizzled in a sticky-sweet soy sauce. I like to take them out of the shell & eat them as lettuce wraps instead.

Tuna & Avocado Salad

Mike's hates the smell of tuna, so I don't make or order it often, but I'd make an exception for this dish. The tuna is mixed with the avocado, giving it a creamy, smooth, not-mayonaissey taste & consistency. It's served in scooped-out avocado shells & served with tiny toasts.

St. Louis Pork Ribs

Uhhh, these are coated in South Side's special Bloody Mary BBQ glaze. Do I need to say anything else about them? They're sweet & spicy & tender & tasty. Done.

And that doesn't even begin to cover half of what we ate - or drank! After we gorged ourselves at The South Side, we headed over to Hi & Dry, which is only a couple blocks away - an easy walk for bar-hopping around Tremont, especially in nice weather.

There, the general manager served us all of the cocktails from their drink menu - & there wasn't a bad one in the bunch (though I didn't try the one made with pickle juice). Amusingly, they all have hashtagged names; the one below, for example, is either the #Blessed or #AboutLastNight, I can't remember which. Like I said: all delicious, all boozy,

Hi & Dry serves food, too, though their menu has a much for "something to supplement my drinking" vibe. We didn't eat there - too full! - but Chef Natasha still whipped up a Spam & pineapple sandwich to show us. I've never had Spam, so I'm pretty interested in trying this one sometime - though I'd definitely have to split it with someone because damn, just look at it.

Hi & Dry has been one of my go-to spots since it opened (though I've yet to bowl), but after this experience I'm definitely bumping both it & South Side to the top of my neighborhood dining list!

If you live in the CLE, have you tried these two spots? And if you're not local, what's your favorite place to chow down in your neck of the woods? 

Disclosure: I was invited to attend this event, including complimentary food & drink, hosted by Edible Cleveland, The South Side, & Hi & Dry without any expectation or agreement to share online unless I so desired (which I did, as you can tell). All opinions are my own.

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