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Sep 15, 2006 08:39 PM

Metropolitan Cafe Cleveland like Chez Panisse?

I was trying to describe Chez Panisse to a Cleveland native and the closest Cleveland restaurant I could come up with from my one day stay there a couple of years ago was the Metropolitan Cafe. Was that a valid comparision? What about Waterhouse (name?)?

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  1. Parker's New American Bistro is the only restaurant that I can think of. Lots of restaurants feature local ingredients now but Parker's was far ahead of any other restaurant in the region in terms of featuring local and regional products. It also had a very focused style. The ingredients were the stars. The food was closely tied to the seasons. The restuarant had an elegant, simple atmosphere, too. And the food was fantastic.

    The Cleveland Plain Dealer just announced that Parker's will be closing at the end of this year. If your Clevelander hasn't sampled Parker's yet, he should hurry while he still has the chance.

    South Market Bistro is about an hour South of Cleveland. I understand that it has many of the same qualities as Parker's but I haven't been there yet. The chef at the Bistro worked at Parker's.

    Now that Parker's will soon be a thing of the past, I may have a lot of trips to Wooster in my future. Parker's was one of my favorite restaurants. Parker Bosley is still involved in the restaurant but for the last several yearsthe main responsibility for the food has been Chef Andy Strizak. He's definitely worth following to wherever he lands. Hopefully, it will be in Cleveland.