Monday, January 26, 2015

Winking Lizard Tavern, January 23, 2015

I presented at a youth leaders' event in downtown Cleveland over the weekend. It's an annual event, a wonderful one, and the tradition for Friday night after the closing of official programming is that we go to the Winking Lizard Tavern, just a few doors down from the hotel. When we lived in Cleveland, we really liked to go to the Avon location (which, sadly, has since moved to a different location---we always loved the layout there), so Jeannene was especially excited to get to eat there. They have terrific wings, so she had those, 5 traditional with garlic sauce and 5 boneless with a spicy mustard sauce called Goldfinger (if I'm remembering correctly). She oohed and aaahed all the way through her dinner and lamented not living in the area any longer.

I have a hard time going to the Winking Lizard without trying their seasonal offerings. Friday night, they had a New Orleans-inspired menu, including a variety of po'boys. I wrestled with whether I should get their truly yummy Buffalo chicken sandwich or a po'boy. In the end, I had a roast beef po'boy with an order of hand-cut Cajun chips. The sandwich was good, if a little cool around the edges. The gravy was nothing as good as the great version I had at Remoulade in the French Quarter, but it was flavorful and the beef was nice and tender. I was disappointed in the chips, which could have used a heavier hand with the Cajun seasoning, but I made up for them yesterday by sharing a bag of Zapp's Voodoo chips with Jeannene on our drive home. If you can get your hands on a bag of those, your tastebuds will thank you.

Another thing I really like about the Winking Lizard is their wonderfully extensive bar menu. They have just about any beer you could imagine and some creative and tasty cocktails, as well. Jeannene likes to get their featured beers that come with a take-home glass, this month, North Coast Wintertime Ale, to which she awarded a big thumbs up. I tend toward their cocktail of the month, if it sounds good. This month, it sounded great---the Svoboda, a mix of Fireball Cinnamon Whiskey, Amaretto, orange juice, and sour mix---so I ordered it. It was delicious! We also had a glass of the only beer I will drink, Lindeman's Framboise lambic ale, which tastes like raspberry soda from heaven.

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