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Toledo, OH restaurants

I have been to tons of restaurants in Toledo, OH and now Im looking for some place that is really good I may not have come across before. Ideas anyone????

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  1. Have you tried Poco Piatti on Monroe? Just went there once but was really impressed, and it's also cheap compared to a lot of small-plates-type places.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Jim M

      Yeah, Poco Piatti is pretty good and their white sangria is tasty. There's also one that opened in Levis Commons but Ive only been to the monroe st one.

    2. Can you be more specific? What have you liked/not liked? Budget? Cuisine? I would start with 2 we really enjoy: Saigon Bistro on Airport Hwy., and Indian Jewel of Toledo, also on Airport but further west. Also, Koto Buki, a very nice Japanese place on Monroe St.

      4 Replies
      1. re: sammy o

        I love every cuisine. I do like Saigon Bistro and I believe they are moving to Sylvania. The location on Airport is pretty bad for them I think. Koto Buki is great too but I think Fujiyama is better. Ever been?? I havent been to Indian Jewel ever though. Suggestions on what to order there?

        1. re: Stephan Fury

          I'll second Fujiyama being better then Koto Buki -- and with Fujiyama there's the added perk of occasional really good Korean food as the specials -- it used to be a really great Korean restaurant, and is still owned by the same folks.

          The New Empire on Airport is good for dim sum, and for un-americanized chinese dishes. Or they were... it's been a coupla years since I've been there.

          1. re: Stephan Fury

            We like Fujiyama too, but I guess I like the sushi better at Koto Buki - it seems fresher. I agree Fujiyama has some more unusual dishes and is excellent. Great if Saigon Bistro moves. Indian Jewel is all good. Just order what appeals and you will be happy. Giorgio's is excellent downtown, and the Mancy places are good also. I especially like Bluewater Grill, their seafood place. Lots of small ethnic and family owned spots I could think of also.

            1. re: sammy o

              I went to Indian Jewel last night off the suggestion you gave and I was really happy with the meal. I went with my girlfriend who is a vegetarian and we usually split a few things which left me ordering off of a limited amount of choices, but, with Indian cuisine, that never seems to mean you're missing out. We split garlic naan, a dish with califlower, peas, and simmered with tomatoes and a roasted eggplant dish, both of which were very good (Id say the califlower dish was better though). I wish I knew the actual names of the dishes we had. I was very satisfied but i wouldnt suggest going if you're in a bit of a hurry. I think the whole meal took about an hour and 45 minutes from sitting down to paying the check but I believe the 6th they are having a belly dancer perform so Im sure the time would fly as you wait for your food. Thanks again for the suggestion. Im sure to go back.

        2. Last month I ate at Diva, in downtown Toledo, and I thought it was very good indeed, the best place I've been to in Toledo in quite a while. Contemporary American food in a hip (but casual) atmosphere. www.divatoledo.com

          You can read my complete report in this topic:

          I've found the listings in the online restaurant guide in the Toledo Blade to be helpful in finding out more about restaurants:

          1 Reply
          1. re: nsxtasy

            Im a fan of Diva and the last time I was there I ordered prosciutto wrapped monkfish with gnocchi. Fucking great! Also they had a hummus plate with grilled vegetables and pita that was really good.

          2. May I ask you if you've been to two other places, and what you think? (These were my "runners up", places I was also considering when I ended up at Diva.)

            Georgio's Cafe International - www.georgiostoledo.com
            Real Seafood - www.realseafoodcorestaurant.com

            6 Replies
            1. re: nsxtasy

              I have never been to Georgio's but would really like to go, but I have been to real seafood many times. Its pretty good and they have some of the best crabcakes you're likely to find around here. Also, if you like oysters, they usually have a few different ones from different areas and its nice to compare and contrast. There is also a sampler platter Ive split before that has crab, lobster, oysters, and shrimp. Get a few side salads and you and someone else have a meal.
              In addition to good food, they are a great place to go for your birthday. You eat free and get a piece of cheesecake for dessert. Not a bad deal.
              Ill def have to check out Georgio's soon though.

              1. re: Stephan Fury

                I ate at Georgio's International a couple of weeks ago. I thought it was pretty good. The food is American with overtones of Mediterranean (for example, the salad is a Greek style salad). The seafood was fresh and well prepared. I had the sole stuffed with Alaskan king crab, and it was very good. The lobster bisque and the chocolate and white chocolate bombe dessert were good, too. The preparations are VERY conventional, though, which presents a stark contrast with say Diva - the sauces at Georgio's are mild (e.g. white sauce). All in all, it was good, definitely worth trying. www.georgiostoledo.com

                1. re: Stephan Fury

                  Last night I had dinner at Real Seafood. I was really disappointed.

                  Real Seafood is one of four adjoining restaurants in the International Park development on the east bank of the Maumee river. The setting is beautiful. They have indoor seating as well as an outdoor patio facing the riverwalk and looking out on the river and the skyline of downtown Toledo.

                  Even though most of the outdoor patio was shaded by an awning, I was seated at a table in the sun. (This was at approximately 4:45 pm on a sunny, somewhat warm day.) I asked and was permitted to move to a different table in the shade. I noticed that two more parties after mine were seated at the same table and also decided to move. I don't understand why the hostess wouldn't know that and seat people in the shade. But that was just a minor inconvenience.

                  The service was generally efficient, although when the (quite good) bread and butter was finished, the server did not ask if I wanted more.

                  The menu has a lot more selections available than the ones shown on their website, including a wide variety of appetizers, salads, dessert, etc. The appetizers included two different calamari dishes, "fried calamari" and "calamari, flash fried with chili peppers and aoli" ($9.95), which I ordered (and which the server who brought it oddly referred to as "sauteed"). This was a very disappointing dish. Calamari requires a delicate touch when cooking; you don't want to undercook it, but if you overcook it for 30 seconds too long, it becomes rubbery. This was slightly overcooked, not the worst I've had, but slightly chewy and not at all tender the way properly cooked calamari is. There was much too much breading for the calamari. As a result, there was not much calamari taste. Also, there was no taste of the chili peppers on the calamari; it was as though the chopped pieces underneath the calamari were a garnish, rather than an integral part of the taste of the dish. And the aoli was simply an unpleasant puddle of oil on the plate in which the calamari was sitting. This dish was just not very good.

                  The entree was much better, but the accompaniments were not. I ordered the panko deep-fried sea scallops, and I requested that they be "cooked all the way through" (I do not like the current trend towards cooking many foods so that they are still raw in the middle). They came out exactly as requested, and the scallops were excellent, quite tasty. Because I was already ordering two fried dishes (and I generally avoid fried food) I avoided the French fries when choosing a side dish. Instead, I chose the stewed tomatoes, with the expectation that they would be not at all greasy. Unfortunately, I was wrong; they were surrounded by a puddle of oil. The entree also came with horseradish bleu cheese cole slaw, which sounded delicious but which was bland as could be, with no horseradish taste and no bleu cheese taste.

                  To sum up - I had a terrible appetizer and an excellent entree with two terrible side dishes. That's not a very good batting average, and doesn't make up for the lovely setting.

                  1. re: nsxtasy

                    I paid a return visit to Real Seafood last week. It was again just okay, nothing great.

                    I started with the crab cake with mustard sauce. It was okay - tasty, with nice lumps of crabmeat, but it was just room temperature in the middle. I had the lemon sole served Shanghai style ("Sesame steamed, with sticky rice, scallions, spinach, and ginger soy sauce"). It was okay; the fish didn't pick up the shanghai flavor all that much, and (typical of this restaurant) the sauce was rather bland. Those who are familiar with Mitchell's Fish Market (in Columbus and other Midwestern locations) can find a much better version of shanghai style fish. Oh, and I think they changed the "horseradish blue cheese cole slaw" to "cole slaw bleu cheese vinaigrette"; it doesn't matter what they call it, it's still rather bland.

                    To sum up the dinner - nothing was really dreadful (nothing sitting in oil, for example), but nothing was particularly good, either.

                    1. re: nsxtasy

                      I'm with you onn Real Seafood...blah! Georgio's is nice, but seems to be stuck in the 80s. Guess I am just looking for more flare? Excitement? Poco Piatti is disgusting, but The Beirut, who is (I think) owned by the same family is a favorite.

                      1. re: thtart

                        I always loved the Beirut, but I haven't been there in many years. Wonderful stuffed grape leaves (not vegetarian, but with meat!). If you like Arabic/Middle Eastern/Greek food, the Beirut should make you happy. I think Byblos is owned by the same people, but I never made it there.

              2. what are you really looking for? overpriced exotic chow or something out there? youve been to real seafood, have you tried chios (sp?) in sylvania, same owner same high price for decent grub. you want a truly unique experience try central hot dog at front and main in east toledo -bar none the best chili mac, but the freak clientel makes it a true experience.

                7 Replies
                1. re: uzi

                  I'm looking for a nice dinner at a nice place. Not a hot dog place or chili mac.

                  1. re: nsxtasy

                    Ciao in Sylvania is top notch.
                    Diva is also quite good.

                    1. re: uhockey

                      Unfortunately, Diva is closed. While we like Ciao more than Real Seafood, they are both part of the Ann Arbor mini-chain Main Street Ventures. I would suggest one of the new Japanese spots which have popped up recently. I really enjoined Nagoya in Levis Commons/

                      1. re: sam o

                        NAgoya too is a chain, there is another in Port Clinton.

                        1. re: uhockey

                          Actually Nagoya is not a chain and both locations are privately owned by a couple in Port Clinton.

                          1. re: buckeyenutt

                            And therefore more of a chain than Ciao. :-)

                            1. re: buckeyenutt

                              Just an interesting tidbit Crystal Bowersox sang at Nagoya before making it big on American Idol


                  2. Ko's Golden Gate in Perrysburg has some of the best Chinese I've had in Ohio.

                    1. Mancy's Bluewater Grille came up in another discussion topic. I would love to hear opinions about it from those who have been there!

                      Although I have been to the original Mancy's Steakhouse (and liked it a lot!), I haven't been to Mancy's Bluewater Grille on Dussel, in... southwest Toledo? (I'm not sure what that Toledo neighborhood is called; I'm from out of town.) I looked at the menu on their website at www.mancys.com and it sounds absolutely terrific. Since I pass through Toledo several times a year, I like to try the better restaurants in town (and I can feel a sense of loss from Diva's closing).

                      (I should add that I love seafood, but I found Real Seafood disappointing on both occasions I went there, as noted in my reports above.)

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: nsxtasy

                        I went to Shorty's on Monroe last night, which is another Mancy's property, and found it in every way a solid inexpensive barbecue place. Bluewater Grille is next, but I have high hopes.

                        1. re: Jim M

                          Nsxtasy, Mancy's Bluewater Grille is in Maumee :) It simply blows Real Seafood out of the water. For good seafood, go to Bluewater. For scenery (and only scenery!), go to "Real" Seafood.

                          Jim, I'll have to check out Shorty's sometime -- thanks for the heads-up!

                      2. Last night I ate at Bangkok Kitchen in Maumee. I liked it a lot - not just by Toledo standards, but compared with Thai restaurants in Chicago and elsewhere, too. I'll warn you about one thing, though. For the spicy dishes, they ask you if you want your food mild, medium, or spicy. Now, I like food that's pretty darn hot, and their "medium" is perfect for me. On a scale of 1 as not spicy at all, and 10 as the hottest you can imagine, the dish I ordered "medium" was a 7, and the dish I ordered "spicy" was an 11.

                        I ordered a Thai iced tea, which was excellent. I started with the tom kha gai, a chicken-coconut soup, and I ordered it spicy. What arrived was an okay version of the soup (I've had better, I've had worse; it was nicely creamy but not much lemongrass or galanga taste) to which they had a few small but easily identifiable red peppers. I took one bite of one of these peppers and it was so hot I gagged. Literally. Fortunately, they were large enough pieces that I was able to fish them out of the soup and eat the rest of it. But unless you have an extremely high tolerance for hot/spicy, I recommend not going beyond their "medium". I then had the chicken satay, which was very good. I had the "Bangkok Kitchen Mussels" (ordered "medium") and these were excellent, nice and big and fresh with a zesty sauce. My favorite dish of the meal was a dessert that I have never previously seen on the menu at a Thai restaurant; it was called "Bouy Loi 'Floating Lotus'" and consisted of lumps of tapioca flour in a sweet warm coconut milk, and it was superb.

                        Bangkok Kitchen is in a strip mall on the south side of Dussel, just east of a Wendy's.

                        Bangkok Kitchen
                        582 W. Dussel Drive
                        Maumee OH 43537
                        no website AFAIK

                        Incidentally, since my posts above, I have twice visited Mancy's Bluewater Grille, the seafood restaurant just up Dussel from Bangkok Kitchen, once for lunch and once for Sunday brunch. I liked it a lot, both times! The seafood was fresh and the preparations were very nice. CityGal is right - it was SOOOO much better than Real Seafood Company!

                        4 Replies
                          1. re: nsxtasy

                            Thanks for the review and the menu -- nice to see a Thai place that has the larb gai (laab goi as they write it) salad on the menu. For whatever reason all the thai places I used to eat at in DC had that, but the places here in the midwest don't. Have you (or has anyone) tried the Larb yet? Opinions?

                            1. re: proclusian

                              I didn't have the lahb gai - maybe someone else here has - but it's pretty common in the Midwest. I know they have it at my favorite Thai restaurant in the Chicago area, Thai Sookdee in Evanston. And it's very good there, in case you ever have the chance to come here to Chicago. (So is their tom kha gai!)

                            2. re: nsxtasy

                              Totally agree....I ate there tonight. Googled Thai restaurants and found this one was pretty highly rated. Great menu. Great service. Strip mall setting and the place is packed at 6:30 on a Tuesday night. I also love really spicy food, and the HOT version of my drunken noodles was making me sweat! I can't wait to go back and try some of my other favorite thai classic dishes.

                            3. el tipico on south street , south end, the oldest mexican restaurant in toledo, i should know i lived across the street 4 15 years its in the 1400 hundred block west of spencer street on the right, tell frankie, rik burkett said hi