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Toledo Restaurant Recommendations

I'll be relocating to Toledo and I'm already on the lookout for places to check out.

Recommendations/suggestions?

Spew them out. I'm open to all types of cuisines :)

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  1. Toledo imo is better for ethnic places than high end. That said, I think the best restaurant in town (meaning it can hold its own with places anywhere} is The Beirut on Monroe Street a mile or so east of Secor. Great Lebanese food. Two others we like are Saigon Bistro on Airport Highway - I like the Pho and the noodle dishes - and Indian Jewel of Toledo also on Airport. Others prefer Tandoor on Reynolds Road. For pizza I vote for the original Gino's at Central and Monroe. There are several Japanese places around town which are also nice. Toledo is also home to every imaginable chain including P.F. Changs which I admit to liking. You will hear about Tony Packos, so try the original on Front Street which is on the east side of the river. You should also explore Ann Arbor which is 45 miles away. Lots of threads on this board. Higher end in Toledo I suggest Ciaos for Italian in Sylvania and Mancy's steakhouse and their Bluewater Grill for seafood. Lots more if you have any specific questions.

    4 Replies
    1. re: sam o

      Thanks for the recs! I had planned on sampling Saigon Bistro and Mancy's, so it's good to know that you vouch for the restaurants. I'll definitely be adding Beirut and the two Indian restaurants to my list as well.

      Yelp is usually my source for new restaurants, but the Toledo Yelp scene hasn't been too active :)

      1. re: fensterz

        I hope you enjoy and I would be interested in seeing your report on these and any others you try. There are some really nice places a little farther afield if you are amenable to driving an hour or so each way - that puts the Detroit area in play as well as one of our favorites, Evans Street Station in Tecumseh.

        1. re: fensterz

          byblos - the sister restaurant to beirut is good too.

      2. Toledo is awful.....I lived there for 22 years. The closing of Diva was one setback, the opening of about 20+ IHOPs another. When the best breakfast is considered to be Cafe Marie and dinner at Mancys? Ugh. Gino's pizza is garbage compared to almost everything in Cbus, as well. You want chains and cheap? Toledo it is! Don't even start me on Sushi. Go to Kotobuki and skip the rest.

        That said,
        Tony Packos is definitely original and worth the trip.
        Ciao is BY FAR the best Italian in town, and actually better than almost anything in Cbus in that Genre.
        The Budapest downtown is dumpy in appearance, but the Hungarian food is spot on.
        Poco Piati is interesting small plates and actually pretty good.
        Grapeleaf serves up some interesting Lebanese if you dig that.
        Smuckers for pie, and only pie.....and be up to date on your vaccinations before entering.
        Don's Donuts on the East Side for the Blueberry or Cherry Cake Donut.
        Hoggy's on Monroe for stellar cornbread and damned good pulled pork.
        Barry's for okay bagels, but a well stocked salad bar.
        The brunch at Old Navy Bistro on Sundays is excellent and Real Seafood is nice on the summer patio, though the food is vastly overpriced.
        If you need something catered, Michael's it is.

        Overall, the city is in pretty bad shape and people are poor.....the restaurant scene reflects that.

        7 Replies
        1. re: uhockey

          it's not a terrible place to raise a family (lived there 5 years) but the scene is lacking. unfortunately the good restaurants scene seems even smaller than it was (matthew's was nice but i know is gone). i always thought grumpy's was an interesting deli place but i haven't been there since 2001 so that comes with that caveat. the market was worth exploring back then - i mean it was something! there was some decent chinese. and there are some cool people there who are also afraid they are stuck in the same boat. don't make yourself miserable before you start.

          1. re: AMFM

            I grew up in Toledo (ages 3 to 18). It has many charming qualities (best parks and best museum for a city its size just about anywhere in the U.S.), but it's just not a restaurant town. People have each other over. I don't remember going out to eat more than half a dozen times during that entire period. Probably why I enjoy eating out so much now. I do second Poco Piatti, the Beirut, Byblos, and Tony Packo's, and I'm glad to know the Budapest is still there! Good BBQ from the guy with the trailer on the north side of Bancroft a couple blocks west of Detroit when he's open. I think he calls himself Big Poppa's.

            1. re: Jim M

              I'll definitely be checking out Poco Piatti. Added Tony Packo's to my bookmarks.

          2. re: uhockey

            A trusted reviewer! I'll be referring to your list (although I'm a bit surprised to see Hoggy's on it :D)

            I got into town yesterday and already got food poisoning after my first meal; nothing beats apartment hunting and puking, I tell ya.

            1. re: uhockey

              I have to disagree about Smucker's! It is a classic, diner style place. This sort of restaurant is getting hard to find, and Smucker's does what it does well. Nothing fancy..just basic home cooking, short order breakfasts, and pies, pies, pies...If you need hip atmosphere and experimental cuisine, pass it by. If you get an occasional yen for pot pie, meatloaf, or an over-easy egg done right - then give them a try.

              It is clean, professionally run, and has servers who make the job look easy. Yeah, it doesn't sparkle and look new, but there is a reason it has been there so long!

              1. re: meatn3

                The pies are the reason it is there.
                Not so sure on the "clean"......at all.

              2. re: uhockey

                WOW uhockey. I am hoping that your negativity was directed completely at the restaurant scene (which I concur is fairly horrible). While I am beyond happy to not live in Toledo anymore I thought that was a little rough. (For the record I was born there, lived there until I was 23 and visit 3-5 times a year)
                That being said I echo Poco Piati (the Sangria is great). Not sure how you feel about Mexican but I love El Salto and I hear that you either love it or hate it. But everytime I am in town I head there for a Chile Relleno.
                I also like Stella's in Perrysburg, it has a cool vibe and the small plates are great for conversation.
                Toledo is a testing ground for chain restaurants so that is where the majority of folks eat out at.
                I hope you are enjoying some of the good things Toledo has to offer (museum, zoo, parks, etc...)

              3. I was at Fifi's 15 years ago. Fantastic classic stuff like steak diane and caesar salad made tableside. Cosy benches set up with cushions along the edge of the restaurant.

                3 Replies
                1. re: kuan

                  Add Uncle Johns Pancake house for the Chocolate Pancakes

                  and Fifis, now that it has reopened, is excellent, albeit overpriced for the quality/size.

                  As for Hoggy's.....I love cornbread and theirs is second to few. You should be more suprised to see Smuckers on there.

                  1. re: uhockey

                    Oh, wow, I ate at Uncle John's in 1965! Yes, a real slice of Toledo, with some bizarre survivals of recipes from that era.

                    1. re: uhockey

                      Um yeah, I drove by Smucker's and kept on driving. Now I know what you mean about being up-to-date with vaccinations, haha.

                      The chocolate pancakes at UJ were too good to be true.

                  2. had good dinners at fifi's and mancys..tony packos is a must try. there is some steak place downtown (maybe someone can help w the name) in a brick bldg.... OMG!!! avoid like the plague!!!

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: rtv

                      I had Sunday brunch at Mancy's and I must say it was a good dining experience overall. I highly recommend their crab cake eggs benedict! I'll have to go back and sample their actual menu.

                      1. re: fensterz

                        Thanks for checking out our Bluewater Grill!

                        Gus Mancy

                    2. In Toledo itself, The Beirut is best. Truly excellent. I second the Indian Jewel nomination for Indian food. For special occasions, we make the drive to Revolver in Findlay. It's VERY small, so make a reservation before you make the drive. They just opened up a candle-lit patio, which is stunning and very romantic with a big-city feel to it. Hurry before you lose your last few minutes of nice weather before winter hits.

                      5 Replies
                      1. re: thtart

                        Revolver is a real gem! Every detail of the menu is thought out, with stellar results. Very worth the drive from Toledo. Heck, I drove there from Detroit and it was well worth it!

                        1. re: meatn3

                          I ate at Revolver last year and was quite disappointed. The food was just okay. I was expecting a place where one dish after another would just knock me over, and I thought it was really nothing special at all. It's fine if you happen to be in Findlay anyway, but I wouldn't bother traveling a long distance to go there.

                          I posted at the time in the Revolver topic at http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/428464

                          1. re: nsxtasy

                            Wow...my experience was the complete opposite. Each bite was better than the last.
                            I had one of the best duck dishes I've ever had.

                            1. re: meatn3

                              Since you're in Detroit, you're willing to travel for great food, and you enjoy duck, you should be aware that the very best duck dish I've ever had was in Michigan. It was the "Cocoa Spiced Encrusted Duck" at Everyday People Cafe, in Douglas, the other side of the lower peninsula from Detroit. You can read a detailed report of my fabulous meal there in the discussion at http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/413534

                              1. re: nsxtasy

                                P.S. They don't always have that duck at Everyday People Cafe, so if you're going for that one particular dish, it's best to call ahead and ask.

                      2. I've posted detailed reports on my meals in the following discussions of Toledo-area restaurants:
                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/397505
                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/377366