Need some Toledo help
I am currently based out of Montreal and I will be working in Toledo for Jan/Feb 2014 and would love any help on the following:
1) good quality grocery stores, chains or otherwise, any tips on places with good prepared foods would be a bonus
2) solid sports bars with good wings (this time of year will be particularly interested in viewing college basketball if anyone can help with this)
3) anything that is not to be missed in the area, I will have a car so would be ok to drive, if the weather is reasonable
One weekend last summer, it was windy and rainy & we couldn't go boating on the lake so we took our college age kids to Pho Viet Nam on Upton for pho before an afternoon at the Toledo Museum of Art. We've eaten pho all over the country in large cities and we have to say that Pho Viet Nam in Toledo had some of the best pho we've ever had and we were totally in AWE. This place is a hole in the wall dive in a seedy area but the pho is soooo worth it! We had excellent middle eastern food at Ferdo's on West Bancroft after a college tour of University of Toledo another time. Have a nice time in Toledo!
The cant be missed in the original Tony Packo's to see all the signed Buns on the wall. Must try the Chicken Paprikash and the MOAD sausage.
Sports bar is called Sidelines with 3 locations, great beers and FOWL Balls a must try with the Cattlemen's Gold BBQ sauce off the dam chart.
Meat Market Chain called House of Meats a must try for there Smoked meats, Jerky and Landjaeger
Each of these places have both web sites and Facebook pages for further info.
OH Yea another place I so LOVE is called Smoky Bones that has Amazing Smoked to perfection Ribs,,,get a Slab and the Skillet Cornbread topped with maple Pecan Butter YUM
Thanks Jim and Sammyo! I am excited for the Fresh Market, I love that store! Not sure where I'll be staying yet but I will definitely check out Swig and Frickers. Weather permitting, would love to make the drive up to Ann Arbor to check out the UM sights and hopefully Zingerman's. Will definitely check out the other places you mentioned, Sammyo, thanks!
I don't know how long you're going to be in the area but if it's a limited time (or really even if not) I wouldn't go out of your way for frickers. They are a somewhat local sports bar chain with nothing to write home about food...a lot like hooters but without the eye candy. It's mostly frozen, everything deep fried bar food.
Swig, otoh, is a gem. An absolute gem. Best bar food in Toledo bar none. Home made charcuterie and the best fries around. Nearly everything is made in house, and all excellent. Although if watching a bunch of TVs is your thing for hoops swig only has a handful of TVs and is small so can be crowded on weekends.
Village idiot in maumee has excellent bar style pizza (lots of toppings, goofy cheese, crisp crust). Get the hand cut pepperoni. Again only a handful of TVs.
If you want a true sports bar, sadly the best we have to offer are the Jed's restaurants. I think they have much better wings and chicken chunks than frickers. The rest of the menu is typical bar fare. Other than Jed's and frickers Toledo has a hooters and a bunch of bw3 as well...typical chains. I will hang at any of these places to catch some games with the guys but none are special for food.
If the sports are secondary and you want food first I'd check out swig, village idiot, fifth street pub (excellent Neapolitan pizza), burger bar 419 (gourmet burgers), or bar 145 (more burgers). The food at these places is pretty good and will still offer several TVs. If you don't mind venturing south of town bowling green is about 25 mins south of Toledo and has some great offerings as well. Reverends bar and grill offers better burgers and cocktails than anywhere in Toledo, IMO, and has lots of hd tvs. Myles is another good bar style pizza place that always has the games on too (not big hd screens though).
Of the aforementioned both reverends and swig also offer excellent wings. Much better than any of the dedicated sports bars, IMO.
Any more questions just ask. I'm a food geek who has spent my entire life in the area and I love seeking out the bars with good food
Even though the greater Toledo area is small enough to get around fairly easily with a car (and a GPS) it would be helpful if we knew where you will be living, if you know. That said :
1) I suggest Fresh Market in Westgate (west Toledo/University area), Walt Churchill's 2 locations, Perrysburg and Maumee, and Andersons Market in Sylvania. These are more specialty markets. For large scale shopping, many chains, e.g., Meijers, Krogers.
2) I am not in the sports bar/wings demograohic but I consulted with my 25 year old son who mentioned Swig in Perrysburg as the best beer selection and Frickers (several locations) and Buffalo Wild Wings for wings.
3) Coming from Montreal there won't be much in the "can't miss" area. However, we do have excellent middle eastern food here which may be something you don't have at home. I recommend the Beirut on Monroe Street in west Toledo and a new place called Bourdain in Sylvania, among others. There are also middle eastern markets. You should probably try Tony Packo's - the original in east Toledo - for Hungarian hot dogs, stuffed cabbage and the like. You may recall the TV show MASH where it was often mentioned. We do have a lot of other ethnic choices if you are interested; I especially recommend Bangkok Kitchen, and Indian Jewel of Toledo. As far as fine dining, probably nothing that would knock your socks off coming from Montreal, but we have some nice choices including Real Seafood on the riverfront, and some newer places if you are interested, including downtown.
Feel free to zero in on more specific questions.