Getting Lucky in OhioPosted by Helen Fernandes on Tuesday, May 17th, 2011
Tags for this Article: apple, bake, biscuits, Breakfast, butt, Cleveland, compote, cream, farm, fresh, garden, ginger, gravy, Heather Haviland, honey, Lucky's Cafe, Midwest, Ohio, organic, pork, sausage, scallions, Tremont, waffles
When it comes to farm-to-table food in Ohio, no one does it better than Heather Haviland at Lucky’s Café in Cleveland. In 2003 Chef Haviland started a small baking business inside a then coffee shop. In 2006 she bought in and expanded the kitchen and the space into what is now Lucky’s Café in Tremont, a small neighborhood in Cleveland. Living in the Midwest and loving fresh food one could not go without trying the dishes at Lucky’s Cafe. Having long been on my list of places to eat, I recently had to go to Cleveland for work and was excited by the opportunity to finally eat at Lucky’s. I was not disappointed.
The coffee shop restaurant is quaint, with some of the friendliest, knowledgeable wait staff I have met. When you walk in you instantly come upon some wonderfully aromatic fresh baked muffins, scones, cookies and cupcakes. You just want to stick your head in the case and start eating!
Along the side of the building you notice the garden plots that are used to plant all the produce that is used in each of the dishes. Being that is was early spring, they were somewhat barren, but once summer comes they are lush with everything from fresh romaine and cilantro to cayenne peppers, sage and rosemary. In the summer approximately 95% of what comes out of Lucky’s kitchen is locally sourced. The number is closer to 60% in the winter.
From a menu that I could have had one of everything, I chose the cheddar scallion biscuits topped with soft scrambled eggs and sausage gravy. I had never had sausage gravy before (honestly, white gravy never seemed appealing), but I figured this would definitely be the place to be christened! It was fantastic and of course huge! Served with hash browned potatoes and sweet grapes, this dish was so flavorful I could not stop eating! The sausage is made from scratch using locally raised organic pork butt, heavy cream, the pork meat fat, sweated onions and spices. The biscuits are made with local cheddar and scallions from the garden and all put together and made with love that you can definitely taste!
My friend had the waffles, which changes seasonally. This time they were ginger waffles with apple compote and honeyed whip cream, striped with caramel sauce – decadent! It tasted like a warm, sweet doughnut. The apple compote was warm and the apples were soft and firm but not mushy while the honeyed whip cream was very light and fluffy with just a subtle hint of honey.
If you ever find yourself in Cleveland, don’t leave without having a meal at Lucky’s Café. You’ll be so glad you did.