It is not uncommon to catch yourself looking at the post-meal offerings before deciding what the entrée may be. Cleveland is certainly home to many culinary delights, but it is the sweeter side of the dining experience that wraps the evening up perfectly. As the weather cools down and summer becomes autumn, lighter fruity dessert menus shift to more hearty and equally delicious options, and these are the ones to try.
2058 E. 4th St.
Cleveland, OH 44115
Chef Michael Symon has become a Cleveland icon and his flagship restaurant Lola Bistro remains one of the premier eateries this fine city offers. When it comes to desserts, its offerings are as good as everything else on the menu. An autumn favorite at Lola is actually the creation of recently departed pastry chef Cory Barrett called “The 6 a.m. Special.” At $9 you receive brioche French toast, maple-bacon ice cream and caramelized apple. The flavor combination created by the trio of ingredients will have you returning simply for this dish alone.
The Greenhouse Tavern
2038 E. 4th St.
Cleveland, OH 44115
Chef Jonathon Sawyer may have worked under chef Michael Symon in the past, but he has since become his equal with his award-winning flagship restaurant Greenhouse Tavern, featuring French-inspired gastropub fare. His entrees highlight only the best local ingredients with a dessert menu that does not disappoint. At $9, don’t miss out on award-winning pastry chef Matt Danko’s s’more torte. This creation, featuring a campfire smoked chocolate cake with chocolate caramel, graham cracker and chilled marshmallow, goes above and beyond the classic autumn bonfire favorite.
Deagan’s Kitchen & Bar
12810 Detroit Ave.
Lakewood, OH 44107
Located in the suburb of Lakewood adjacent to Cleveland, Deagan’s Kitchen & Bar offers downtown quality food at a very suburban price. Winners of awards including a 2011 Silver Spoon Award for Best New Restaurant, a memorable meal including a phenomenal dessert is a given here. At $7, nothing says cool-weather delicious like Fuji apple cranberry bread pudding with Maker’s Mark ice cream. The warm bread pudding, with apple and tart cranberries, pairs amazingly well with the unique flavor of the infused ice cream.
Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream
67 North Main St.
Chagrin Falls, OH 44022
Unless it is a blizzard, there is no reason to not eat ice cream. Even then it remains questionable. Once you have taken a bite and experienced the pure bliss that comes from only natural ingredients, you will understand why Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream is a special treat well into autumn. Flavors such as brumbleberry crisp, brown butter almond brittle and sweet corn & black raspberries give a taste of the season delivered in a medium nearly everyone loves. In addition to the scoop shop located in the Chagrin Falls suburb, Jeni’s ice cream is served in many upscale restaurants and grocery stores around town.
668 Euclid Ave.
Cleveland, OH 44114
At such a young age, chef Chris Hodgson paved the way for the food truck revolution in Cleveland with the city’s first mobile food truck, Dim and Den Sum. This restaurant on wheels gave patrons a chance to taste his unique creations wherever he decided to park. Hodgson then received national attention with his second truck, Hodgepodge Truck with which he finished in second place on Food Network’s “The Great Food Truck Race.” He recently opened a brick and mortar restaurant that not only offers some of the city’s finest food but also a desert fit for autumn consumption. At just $7.50 try Hodge’s fried apple pie with cinnamon sugar and bourbon caramel for a nearly perfect end to a great meal.
Paul Rados began writing professionally in 2010. Before formally picking up the pen he worked in some of Cleveland’s premier restaurants as a Chef. His extensive knowledge of the Culinary Arts and Dietary Management can be found in other published works across the web. His work can be found on Examiner.com.