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Healthy Restaurants in Cleveland with @bethandfood

If you follow along with Beth Opfer you know that she is a local MS, RDN, LDN, and a certified QT (get it?) But seriously, what I love most about Beth (apart from her sweet personality) is her laid-back philosophy that encourages everyone to find the balance between eating healthy and giving yourself the grace to indulge in the foods you love! Her goal is to inspire others to feel their best – not just physically but mentally and emotionally as well.  You can find Beth on Instagram at @bethandfood or follow along with her blog, www.bethandfood.com! I hope you get as much value from this list of her favorite healthy eats in Cleveland as I did. 

Salt : There’s a reason Chef Jill Vedaa was named a semi-finalist for the 2018 James Beard Foundation Best Chef: Great Lakes. The small plates. The crafted cocktails. The attention to detail and every flavor. It’s what sets this restaurant apart from others. I’d recommend ordering a few small plates and share with your loved ones. Their menu also changes seasonally to reflect the best local ingredients and flavor of foods. Order a cocktail you’ve never had and you’ll love it. You can’t go wrong here. And chances are, you’ll likely see Chef Jill socializing with her customers so be sure to say hi! My favorite dishes to date: White Bean Puree (Vegetables), Polenta Fries (Vegetables), Caramelized Baby Carrots (Vegetables), and Halibut (Fish).

Spice Kitchen & Bar: Truly a farm to fork eatery. So true that they even provide the map of their farm to show where their food is grown. I mean, how cool. Also meaning their menu changes seasonally to provide the most nutrient-dense, local ingredients full of flavor. Their patio is also a place to be in the summer. Not only is Spice a kitchen and bar in Cleveland, they also offer events at their farm in Brecksville. I had the opportunity to attend a Spice Acres event in 2017 where my husband and I toured the farm, walked over to the beautiful barn (definitely would have had my wedding here had I known about this place!) and enjoyed a multi-course meal of plant-based foods with wine pairings. My favorite dishes to date: Killbuck Valley Mushroom Flatbread (Shareables), Polenta Chickpea Fries (Shareables), Pan Roasted Atlantic Sea Scallops (Substantials), Local Greens Salad (Bar Menu) and Fried Lake Erie Creamery Cheese Curds (Bar Menu).

Toast: One of my favorite happy hour/bar spots in Cleveland. Toast has one of the best vibes, in my opinion. Very relaxing. Great service. In the Gordon Square Arts District, Toast is a great place to grab an always house-made bite to eat. My hands down favorite place to eat buffalo cauliflower bites! They also have a trio of toast daily (hence the name!) that is always a good choice. Always. The menu also changes seasonally so you can never get bored. In the summertime, grab a spot on the patio because it is definitely a crowd favorite. My favorite dishes here to date: Buffalo Cauliflower (Small Plates), Trio of Toast (Snacks), and Chef’s Whim Greens (Small Plates).

The Plum: This place is definitely bar and restaurant goals. The coolest ambiance. If there is one restaurant in Cleveland that I could dream of picking it up and making it fit into my house, it would be The Plum. The all-white backsplash bar and the exposed brick walls – so dreamy. The food and the service are even better. I love this place because you can tell that each dish is well thought out. It serves a purpose on their menu. They offer a variety of plates from small to large on all their menus, giving customers a chance to order a few dishes to share. The menu changes so it doesn’t stay stagnant. There is a reason The Plum was voted best new restaurant in 2017 by Cleveland Magazine. They offer a bar only menu with small bites, dinner menu with a variety of sized plates and brunch on Saturdays. Also, The Plum has one of my favorite patios with live music and conveniently located next to the Platform Brewery (my favorite brewery in Cleveland!). My favorite dishes here to date: Beet Taco (Small Plate, Dinner Menu), House Salad (Medium Plate, Dinner Menu), Brussels Sprouts (Medium Plate, Dinner Menu) and the Spicy Grain Bowl (Brunch Menu; with a mimosa of course!).

Le Petit Triangle Café: This place gives me all the Paris vibes and I love it! Le Petit is a Parisian café offering the best coffee and pastries, as well as midday and evening meals. But let’s talk about what they are really known for: brunch. Seriously, best.brunch.ever. Located in Ohio City, this restaurant’s goal for the past 10 years has been to make sure customers feel right at home with their friends and family, eating good food and drinking a beverage of choice, whether that be a coffee, cocktail, wine or beer (or all the above). They have it all. Expect a wait on a Saturday morning but believe me when I say it is worth the wait. My favorite dishes to date: French Toast (Brunch Menu; it’s a must try!), Ratatouille (Brunch; Savory Crepes), and their Pumpkin Latte.

Flying Fig: The Flying Fig is a small eatery and bar that is one of my favorite places to grab brunch or a small bite to eat. It is also one of my favorite places to grab a spot at the bar and enjoy happy hour. One of the many reasons I love this place so much is their effort to offer locally sourced foods with a true farm to fork environment. The Flying Fig prides itself on supporting local, small family farms. Karen Small, owner and head chef, is also a semi-finalist for the 2018 James Beard Foundation Best Chef: Great Lakes. Definitely well deserved. If you go when it isn’t too busy (which is rare) and the weather is nice, grab one of the few tables outside on their patio. My favorite dishes to date: Taleggio Polenta (Brunch Menu), Grilled Eggplant (Brunch Menu), Avocado Toast (Brunch Menu), Tofu Banh Mi Bowl (Lunch + Dinner Menu) and the Trio of Toast (Of the Day).

Townhall: I can’t name my favorite places to eat and not mention this place. Townhall is a non-GMO restaurant located in the heart of Ohio City on W. 25th Street. They offer a wide selection of healthy, feel-good meals, from sustainably sourced meats to high-quality vegan options. They understand that nutrition is not a ‘one size fits all’ approach so they go above and beyond to cater to all dietary preferences, from Paleo/Keto to Vegan options. To make it even better, their beverage choices are just like the food: top notch, offering zero-toxin, 100% organic coffee, organic cold-pressed juices and a great selection of beers showcasing local whenever possible. Definitely one of my favorites to go for a date night, vegan night, to watch a Cleveland sports game or for a holiday. They always do it right. My favorite dishes here to date: Acai+Grainless Granola Bowl (Brunch Menu), Caramelized Brussel Sprouts/Harissa Roasted Cauliflower (Organic Earth Bites), Townhall Veggie Burger (Pickups), Root Organic and Cold Pressed Juice and Pureed Acai (Smoothies).

The Grocery: Every time I walk into The Grocery, I smile. That’s how happy this place makes me. They probably know my name by now because I am a regular. No shame whatsoever. They also know Kip (my fur baby) because he comes along for the ride, and the peanut butter. The Grocery is a grab-and-go café from hot breakfast sandwiches, lunch sandwiches and wraps, cold pressed juices, bowls and salads and smoothies. They also sell local edibles such as locally sourced produce, pasta and pasta sauces as well as dairy products. They proudly display the local farms where they are sourcing their ingredients from on the walls which is super cool. My favorite dishes to date: Vegan Fare wrap (all the local/seasonal vegetables with a house cashew dressing wrapped in a tortilla shell; sandwiches) and the PB&J smoothie (almond milk, peanut butter, banana, strawberry and I add hemp protein; smoothies). Not sure who loves this place more: me or Kip.
Beet Jar: If I had to vote for a place that has hands down the coolest vibes, it would probably be Beet Jar. A small storefront with so much character. Beet Jar is a juice bar and grab-and-go vegan takeaway. Outstanding services and even better food. All their choices are made in-house, from their cold-pressed juices to the vegan sandwiches and chia pudding (so good!). My all-time favorite sandwich is from here: the Bravocado, which contains smoked coconut flakes, avocado, greens, red onion, house-made cashew mayo on whole grain bread (other options also available). Get it and thank me later. They definitely do it right here. I actually want to take one of their walls (yes an entire wall) and place it in my home. Some of my other favorites to date: Flavored Raw Cashew Mylk (Drinks in the Cooler), Strawberry Alarm Clock (Raw Smoothies), and Mr. Presley (Raw Smoothies).

There you have it! Nine amazing places to add to your list of places to try in Cleveland. Where do you go for a healthy bite?

Health and Wellness, Lifestyle, Misc, Reviews, Tips, Top Picks

The truth about Cleveland’s own Clean Remedies CBD products

by Kaitie Nickel

We recently had the pleasure of working with Clean Remedies to review their CBD oil tincture and roller ball to test its effects. In case you have been hiding under a rock, CBD is essentially a way of obtaining all the health benefits of marijuana without any of the psychoactive properties. Sound too good to be true? Well, don’t you worry – we tried it out and are here to tell you all about our experience.

I’m a pretty relaxed person, to be honest. I don’t get stressed out too easily. One of my many skills is that I can fall asleep on at the drop of a dime ANYWHERE. I am the queen of sleeping on airplanes. My husband Kyle, on the other hand will admit to stressing out over pretty inconsequential things… pretty much all the time. Sound like anyone you know? So when we started using CBD oil, honestly I didn’t feel the effects right away, but my husband displayed properties of “zen” almost immediately. I noticed it most in his lack of road rage, he notices it most in his ability to relax in situations where he’d normally feel anxiety.

Update: During my postpartum period I’ve experienced more anxiety than I’m used to, so I’ve tried Clean Remedies tincture again when it’s starting and found it to be very helpful in keeping me a bit more tranquil during this season of life.

Where I personally noticed the most significant difference while taking CBD oil tincture is the quality of my sleep. I fell slept heavier and woke up every morning feeling much more rested. Since I am SO good at sleeping, getting out of bed in the morning is a bit of a struggle but I generally feel more refreshed after an evening where I’ve used the tincture. I’ll be honest, I try to only use it when I’m feeling restless so that I don’t build a tolerance to it.

Kyle + I both took the oil by placing it under our tongues for 30 seconds – it’s practically tasteless but I still washed it down with a sip of water because….its oily. I’ve also heard of people adding into their smoothies!

CBD oil helps not only the anxious and sleep deprived but also helps with pain relief and inflammation and the Clean Remedies roller ball is incredible for this. You roll it onto anywhere you’re feeling achy and it immediately brings relief. It makes the area a little tingly, a bit like icy-hot which I absolutely love. If I could recommend trying one thing from the Clean Remedies line up, it would be this.

Clean Remedies’ mission is to enhance the quality of life through natural hemp products and promote more natural well-being. BEST OF ALL – it’s made right here in Cleveland. We love to support local + help make Cleveland even more chill. Check out their Instagram and get some CBD oil + be sure to comment slide into the @clevelandvibes DM’s to let us know what you think!

Food, Health and Wellness, Lifestyle, Misc, Tips, Top Picks, Travel

What To Do in Cleveland

We get a few DM’s a week asking for recommendations on what to do while in town. One of our FAVORITE things to do is to play tour guide when friends are in town – it is SO fun to surprise them with a side of the city they may not have been expecting. We’ve been exploring Cleveland for a few years so I can only tell you about the places we’ve experienced firsthand, but it’ll at least get you headed in the right direction. That being said, here is our Unofficial Guide to a Fun Weekend in The Land. I obviously don’t expect you to make it to every place on the list, I only expect you to try 😉

PIZZA

Il Rione

Saucy Brew Works

Mikey’s Pizza

Edison’s Pub

Citizen Pie

For more pizza details, check out our post dedicated to delicious local pizza.

 

COFFEE/TEA

Cleveland Tea Revival

COFFEE COFFEE COFFEE

Rising Star

Phoenix

Brewellas

 

BRUNCH

Townhall 

The Plum 

Soho Chicken + Whiskey 

The Black Pig

Cleveland Vegan

XYZ The Tavern

Luxe

Spice

Not exactly brunch, but we can’t leave out Brewnuts

 

SUSHI

Ginko

Mizu

Shuhei

Pacific East

Parallax

 

ICE CREAM

Mitchell’s Ice Cream

Mason’s Creamery   (switches seasonally between ice cream and ramen)

Piccadilly Creamery

Jeni’s

 

NIGHT OUT

The Flats – Punchbowl Social, Coastal Taco, Collision Bend, Magnolia, FWD (seasonal)

Ohio City – Townhall, Nano Brew, Market Garden Brewery, Bar Cento

East 4th St – Butcher and the Brewer, Zocalo Tequileria, The Corner Alley, The Greenhouse Tavern

West 6th – Barley House, The Velvet Dog, Dive Bar

Hofbraushaus

 

BREWERIES

Platform  *

Great Lakes Brewery

Masthead Brewing Co.

Southern Tier

Market Garden

Forest City

 

SIGHTS/MUSEUMS/ENTERTAINMENT

The Arcade

Terminal Tower Mall

The West Side Market

Edgewater Beach

Emerald Necklace

Destination Cleveland Signs

Christmas Story House

Cleveland Cultural Gardens

Check out the view from Bar 32

Cleveland Zoo

Cleveland Museum of Art *

Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA)

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Museum of Natural History

Botanical Gardens

Catch a show at Playhouse Square

Test your thinking skills at Escape Room at Perplexity Games

Bowling/see live music at Mahall’s

House of Blues

Dueling Pianos at Big Bang

Indoor Mini-Golf, Bowling, karaoke, and games at Punchbowl Social

 

SHOPPING

Food – West Side Market, Heinen’s Downtown

Crocker Park

Pinecrest

ETON

Gordon Square – Oceanne, Fount Leather, Land of Plenty

Wild Cactus Boutique

AWARE Marketplace

Cleveland Heights shops and eats listed here

Health and Wellness, Lifestyle

Resources for Mental Health in Cleveland

To close out Mental Health Month, Cleveland Vibes has partnered with Rita Abdallah to bring you a list of mental health resources you can access here in Cleveland. We believe wholeheartedly that in order to thrive in Cleveland, we must prioritize our mental health and not be afraid to take action – reaching out for help when necessary. To those struggling: we support you and hope to help make Cleveland a place where you never have to be ashamed for the hidden weight you carry each day. We see you and we are with you.

Does hope reign supreme in Cleveland? Absolutely.

Cleveland has a great range of mental health resources to help you and your loved ones. Whether you’re experiencing mental health challenges, caring for someone with mental illness or want to stay mentally fit, here are 10 great resources to explore in our hope-forward city.

ADAMHS Board of Cuyahoga County. If you’re unsure about your mental health status, the ADAMHS Board can walk you through a brief online screening process that is anonymous and confidential. Aside from this handy tool, the ADAMHS Board’s website has a ton of resources on addiction, the Opioid Epidemic, gambling and the Cuyahoga County Prescription Drug Drop-off Program. By the way, here’s a link to find a drop-off site near you,  www.rxdrugdropbox.org.

Center for Evidence-Based Treatment. A group of mental health professionals focused on research to create therapeutic successes. They specialize in treating stress management, body Image and self-esteem, eating disorders, depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, personality disorders and combination disorders.

Cornerstone of Hope. From preschool-aged children to adults, Cornerstone of Hope assists grieving families by guiding them through the bereavement process.

Courage to Caregivers. In its second year, Courage to Caregivers has made a big impact on the Cleveland community. Solely focused on mental health caregivers, this organization loves to empower people through One-to-One Support, Breathing and Meditation classes and Support Groups co-facilitated by both a counselor or social worker as well as a trained peer specialists.

FrontLine Service. No one wants to find themselves in the middle of a mental health crisis. When that unfortunate moment happens, turn to FrontLine Service for help. Their 24/7 Crisis Hotline 216.623.6888 and live chat with emotional support for anyone who is depressed, despairing, thinking about suicide or in need of shelter.

LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland. A safe and caring place for LGBT, this organization has specific health and wellness programs for youth, adults, seniors and veterans.

NAMI Greater Cleveland. NAMI stands for National Alliance on Mental Illness. They offer a variety of resources like support groups, wellness courses and multicultural outreach program for individuals with mental illness and their families members.

Neighborhood Family Practice. For existing patients, NFP’s behavioral health team offers talk therapy services for existing pediatric, adolescent and adult patients. Psychiatry services (which use medication to help treat people) are available as well. NFP provides discounts to eligible patients.

The Gathering Place. Managing a chronic illness like cancer can take a big emotional toll. The Gathering Place, a Cleveland landmark for over 20 years, has been great resource that addresses the emotional, physical and spiritual needs of individuals and families currently coping with the impact of cancer in their lives.  

The Nord Center. For Lorain County residents, Nord provides much needed mental health and behavioral services including outpatient counseling; sexual assault / rape crisis services; drug and alcohol addiction; dual diagnosis (substance abuse and mental illness); psychiatry and medication management; employment and vocational services; supportive housing as well as homelessness prevention. They also offer culturally-specific services to bilingual and African-American consumers.

Okay, so these next two resources are not Cleveland-specific… they are useful if you want to find a professional for private appointments and/or learn more about mental health:

Psychology Today. This website contains a wealth of information on mental health including a really sophisticated search engine to find a therapist based on your preferences. You can scroll through profiles of professionals to see if they accept your insurance type. It’s important you find someone who is the right fit for you. Don’t hesitate to ask a potential therapist for a free consult before scheduling an appointment.

TedTalks. For those of you getting started on your mental wellness journey or want to learn more on how to help someone challenged by mental issues, there is a series of TEDTalks (or educational videos) devoted to these topics.

 

Are you a mental health professional?

Are you a NEO Social Worker or Counselor? Join my private Facebook page where nearly 350 licensed therapists members exchange resources, make referrals and post professional opportunities such as workshops and job openings.


Rita Abdallah, LISW-S, LCSW-C, ACSW is a national speaker, intuitive, blogger, and award-winning wellness coach. She is an authority on the topics of happiness, cancer survivorship, work-life balance, self-care, and conquering stress. Say hello to Rita on Instagram or visit her website www.ritaabdallah.com.

Food, Health and Wellness, Lifestyle, Reviews, Tips, Top Picks, Travel

15 Things to do Indoors in Cleveland

 

by Megan Breehl-Pitorak

Summer is the season to live outdoors, especially for local Clevelanders who need quality vitamin D time to recover from long, brutal winters. But even in the summer rainy days happen and we don’t think you should let a little rain drain the fun out of summer! We’re sharing 15 indoor places in and around Cleveland to explore when you need to escape the weather.  

We know there’s plenty more too, so after you’ve read through, leave a comment with your favorite indoor activity or place to help our readers get even more ideas!

 

Photo via @oh_sograceful

1. Cleveland History Center

It’s important to understand the history of your city, so why not start with a trip to the Cleveland History Center? It covers everything from WWI and women in politics, to the automotive industry and the city’s historic mansions, to the Euclid Beach Park Grand Carousel, which may look familiar as you can see it from the sidewalk outside (And yes, you can ride it!).  

Photo via FreshWater Cleveland

2. Grog Shop

The Grog Shop has a show lined up 365 days of the year, so whether you’re looking to enjoy music with friends on the weekend, or you’re in need of an impromptu date night to liven up a mundane Monday, be sure to check out the Grog Shop’s calendar. We love the variety of entertainment they offer – from comedy acts and hip-hop artists, to ‘80s dance nights. 

Photo via BRICK Ceramic + Design Studio

3. BRICK Ceramic + Design Studio

Get your hands dirty during an art class at BRICK Ceramic + Design Studio in the Waterloo Arts District. The studio, tucked behind Six Shooter Coffee, offers two-hour wheel classes for $60. You’ll get to learn how to make a cup, bowl, and plate. The price includes not only the experience, but you’ll also get to take home the pieces you make, so you can feel proud as you sip your morning coffee from your handmade mug.  Click here to see the studio’s upcoming class dates.

Photo via Sacred Hour

4. Sacred Hour Spa 

#Selfcare is not a trend; it’s a lifestyle. Why not turn a rainy day in CLE into an opportunity to zen-out at the beautiful Sacred Hour Spa, located in nearby Lakewood. The Korean Scrub sounds like pure bliss, or you could go for the glow with a facial treatment. See all the spa services here.

 

Photo by Dean Kaufman via MoCa

5. MoCA

If you haven’t been yet to MoCA in Uptown Cleveland, now is the time to go, as it’s celebrated its 50th anniversary with FREE admission. What we love about MoCA: it’s a smaller museum so you can get your art fix even if you only have a half hour or so to spare. Also, the MoCA gift shop is a hidden gem of unique gifts and treasures you’ll want to snag for yourself and others. 

Photo via Cleveland Scene

6. Cleveland Museum of Art

You didn’t think we’d recommend MoCA and not mention the Cleveland Museum of Art, did you? Cleveland is lucky to have accessible art at our fingertips, and the Cleveland Museum of Art — which is also free — is at the epicenter of that community. 

Photo via Skyzone

7. Skyzone

Remember the days when nothing could be more fun than going to your friend-with-the-trampoline’s house? (If you were that house, we’re jealous.) Skyzone is the ultimate playground for adults — kids welcome too — where you can jump around a giant building filled with trampolines, foam pits, and…need we say more? We know you were sold at “trampoline.” Learn more here.

Photo via Tabletop Cafe

8. Tabletop Cafe

Tabletop Cafe, Cleveland’s first and largest board game cafe, has over 1,000 games to choose from. WHAT?! Grab a friend and go play a game that will bring on major childhood nostalgia. They have a yummy menu of sandwiches, flatbreads, and other snack foods to keep you fueled to win, as well as a brunch menu for a Sunday Funday tradition waiting to happen. 

Photo via Playhouse Square

9. Playhouse Square

We don’t mean to be predictable, but there’s a reason Playhouse Square is on every Cleveland to-do list. We’re fortunate to have such a strong performing arts hub (second largest in the country to NYC, guys!) with a stacked calendar of shows and events nearly every day of the week. 

Photo via Van Aken District

10. Van Aken District

While new to town, the Van Aken District is quickly becoming the East Side’s coolest gathering spot. The new food + shopping hub offers a small street with trendy boutiques, but we recommend heading to the food hall on the days you’re looking to hide from the weather. From On The Rise pastries, to the best veggie sandwich and bowls in town at Brassica, your taste buds will forever thank you. 

Photo via Rockefeller Park Greenhouse

11. Botanical Gardens

Sometimes we just need to be around nature, and rain or shine, there are two great indoor gardens to explore in the city of Cleveland. The impressive Cleveland Botanical Garden in University Circle is set up on one side as a Costa Rican rainforest and on the other as the desert of Madagascar. If you’re on a budget, head to the Rockefeller Park Greenhouse in the Cultural Gardens, which offers free admission, but is just as beautiful and calming to stroll through. 

Photo via Limelight

12. Limelight

Having one of those weekends where you need to get some work done? Mix it up and get a day pass to one of Cleveland’s co-working spaces.  Limelight offers a $20 day pass to its vibrant space, which includes access to computers, printers, scanners, coffee and tea, and meeting rooms.  

Photo via West Side Market

13. West Side Market

The West Side Market is a point of pride for the city of Cleveland. The rich history of the building and the community of vendors and shoppers that have come through its doors since 1912 is remarkable and a city tradition we hope lives on forever. Support the great businesses that make up the market by grabbing a bite to eat and fresh ingredients for your next authentic Cleveland home-cooked meal. PS: The market is now open on Sundays, too!

Photo via AffoGATO Cat Cafe

14. AffoGATO Cat Café 

Cleveland’s first cat café opened earlier this year, and we are here for it. Not just because it’s a place to go to snuggle the little furballs when you need a mood lift, but because it houses adoptable cats and creates a safe space for them to interact with people and other cats. The café is in a separate area than the cat lounge, so if you immediately thought, “Ew, cat hair and food,” don’t worry; you can have your cake — and cats too. 

Photo via Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad

15. Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad 

Hop aboard the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad for a change of scenery. This is a great option for parents who want to get the kids out of the house, but also don’t have the energy to chase them around.  The train goes through the CVNP and has a few different boarding stations. Learn more here.

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