Sunday, February 26, 2012

An Ode to Mothers, Take A Sip!

The Love of a Child is the Greatest Gift to a Mother.
(Gustav Klimt's: The Three Ages of Woman, 1905,

When I had a chance to watch Sex and the City 2 a long time ago I never thought it would be that great but I really enjoyed more that the S&C 1.  I have to say it was much more enjoyable and more funny than the first.  What I loved most is that it really addressed real life issues in different aspects of relationships, in woman and mothers.

One of the impact moments is the moment when Charlotte (who play the perfect wife and mother) and Miranda (the hardworking, making everything work and takes on so much to be successful in family and career) talk about Motherhood.  Charlotte becomes vulnerable and imperfect and Miranda becomes the sweet, loving be there friend to help her friend to open up and admit what every mother at one point in time in her life has thought or has brave enough to say.  This clip shows the moment in the film when "Motherhood and it's complexities are outed!"  Please take a moment after you read this and if you are blessed to have your mother with you or out there above, send her a kiss or give her a big kiss and a big hug!  I hope this gives you appreciate and understanding for a mother.  No matter how old our children become, it is always hard to be a mother because we love our children no matter what and in our eyes we always remember their perfection no matter how hard sometimes it may be.  Sometimes it's okay too, to say it's okay to want more and still have a piece of ourselves.

Sorry for the quality but it was the only one I could find to embed for blogs.
I can totally relate in both aspects of Charlotte and Miranda!

As I've heard from many medical professionals and therapists, being a mother is the hardest job in the world, I can't argue with that, but a job I am truly blessed to have and wouldn't change for anything!

To All the Mothers Out There, TAKE A SIP!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Always Fresh at Jack Frost Donuts

Making Delicious Fresh Donuts since 1937!

I don't know how many of you have heard or have tried of Jack Frost donuts but they are a great little spin on the typical donuts if you haven't guessed by the photo above.

Jack Frost has been around for a very long time here in Cleveland and it's too bad not many have tried it (shame on you!).  The donuts are always fresh, flavors are different on some days and they are quite little fresh beauties

 Fox 8 Hot List Winners for Best Donuts in Cleveland, 4 years in a row!  Also a winner 2010 Cleveland Magazine for their wonderful Candy Bar Donuts!.

These are Maple Frosted with Vanilla Cream on top.

My daughter and I thought we would pick up a box (a dozen) at about 10:30am on a Sunday after church and her communion class.  It was packed!  It was hard to move.  Now they're open until 8pm most nights but I don't know how they keep up with demand.  I was afraid about time I got to the front of the line that the donuts would be gone.  We consider Jack Frost a treat.  They are decadent donuts well deserved to be shared with coffee, tea or a tall glass of milk!  I couldn't believe we didn't have them more often!

Raspberry Cream, Vanilla Cream, Chocolate Cake Donuts with and without Cream, also available with Chocolate Cream.

These are probably the freshest donuts I've ever had next to Krispy Kreme's hot off the conveyor belt glazed donuts.  The demand for them have to keep them coming and they were so fresh most of the donuts glazes haven't set yet.  The chewy yeast donuts are my favorite.  Not all of them are over the top, you have your typical glaze and on the weekends you can find cruller donuts, sometimes in various flavors too.  What really caught my eye is their jump of the band wagon of modern flavors like Maple Bacon, Snickers, Smores and Red Velvet.  Taking the typical donuts flavors to the next level.  The Banana Pudding and the Peanut Butter ones are my favorites!  Unfortunately I didn't get my hands on the Banana Pudding one because the Donut Monsters in my house ate it before I did.  I did manage to get a Peanut Butter one and it was so good!  Yes the donuts monsters is Scott who could despite his size could eat a whole dozen and my children....  My Johnny who almost 3 ate the Maple Bacon among others!

Good Ol' Fashioned Fresh Glazed Donuts

My daughter loves to take photos so most of them are taken from her and she's only 8.  She loves to help me with my blogs!  My great assistant!

It had been awhile like I said before since I have had Jack Frost, I promise though it will not stay like that.  I have seen though some crazy creations and since I am a baker/confectioner myself I can appreciate the crazy flavors like M&Ms, Fruit Loops, etc....  I wonder if they ever made a Cocoa Puffs, Scott would freak!  LOL!

Sofia is a glaze yeast donut girl and Johnny well if it's good he'll eat it and the sweeter the better.  He could down a donut or 2 with milk a must!

Now on Jack Frost's Facebook Page they asked for donut flavor suggestions.  Now if you know me you know I am going to suggest a Nutella Donut!  I did!  Hee Hee!  Of all the same suggestions no one thought of Nutella!  I hope to see it made in the future!  So here's my thoughts on the creation: Yeast Donut filled with Nutella, Powdered, topped with either a Peanut Butter or Nutella Cream Frosting, Drizzled with Chocolate Glaze and then topped with finely ground Hazelnuts (of course I also suggested skipping the ground nuts in case people don't want it, which I know my daughter wouldn't, she'll just take everything except the nuts, she likes the flavor like in Nutella but not the texture of a nut).

I've also suggested Banana Pudding Pie (yeast donut, powdered, banana pudding filled, top with a Whip Cream piping and finely ground vanilla wafer crumbs and one cookie to top it off)  French Silk Pie (yeast donut, powdered, filled with chocolate pudding, topped with a whip cream piping and topped with mini semi sweet chocolate chips and a Coconut Pie (yeast, powdered, coconut pudding, whip cream piping and sprinkled with toasted coconut.  Also with Carrot Cake and Pumpkin Spice Cake and top of those two donuts with a cream cheese filling/cream piping and a Lemon Meringue Donut....

I can't suggest enough that you have to get Jack Frost Donuts.  I am glad that I was reminded of what a good donut was when I bit into one.  It's no wonder that they are still in business.  I hope you don't think that Dunkin Donuts are real donuts, they may look like it but they are deceiving and stale all the time!  Jack Frost is the place that let's you experience a fresh donut the way it's supposed to taste!  Freshness is Key!

Next time you are looking for dessert after dinner or anytime, save yourself and get some Jack Frost!

If you have any questions about flavors of the day, call ahead orders give them a call, they are a great friendly staff.  The have hot coffee and beverages available as well.  You may have to wait in line or not.  On Fat Tuesday, you better preorder!  They also make Paczki (poonch kee) which will run out if you don't preorder for sure!

They take Checks with ID and Cash, no credit/debit cards.

Visit their Facebook page:

Monday-Saturday: 6am-8pm
Sunday: 7am-8pm

Phone: (216) 351-3638

Jack Frost Donut Shop on Urbanspoon

Have a Sweet Week & A FAT TUESDAY!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

I've Melted over Melt Bar & Grilled

Front Entrance of Indepence, Ohio location
Rockside Road

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Well where do I start here?  I think one day a boy named Matt Fish wanted to open his own place where people can eat some amazing concoctions and built up the infamous grilled cheese sandwich.  It wouldn't be just any place.  It would be a part of him, who he was.  Featuring some of what Cleveland has to offer and the Cleveland Scene.  That meant music, tattoos, Art!, good food and brews and he would entice people to come in with this concept to become part of his family.  A crew, where you can brand yourself to be part of a forever family with it's infamous logo tattooed somewhere on your body, big or small and you'll get 25% off for life on your orders!  That's a commitment both from owner and customer!

Now these aren't your typical grilled cheese sandwiches and there is certainly more to offer.  Sandwiches of amazing precise concoctions thought in the mind of Matt Fish and I am sure his friends.  You can't even imagine what he'll come up with next, but I can be certain it will be good. 

Every month a new sandwich appears as the sandwich of the month.  Customers salivate waiting to hear for the next creation.  It's like you know you're going to try it unless it's ingredients aren't your cup of tea.

Like this month, Melt got creative and really sucked us in with not just 1 fabulous sandwich, but 4 different sandwiches.  1 changing every week.  Whaaaat?, you may say, at least that's what I said.  How can I, when can I, what is it, should I, how can I not.  Well I didn't, that would be crazy for me but I know others have attempted the weekly concoctions and the month isn't over yet!  This was all introduced with the Chinese New Year with it being the Year of the Dragon, how can you not play on that and uh cultural icon Bruce Lee to boot!  Here is the promotional poster from Melt: (I LOVE IT, I'M A BRUCE & BRANDON LEE FAN, Not mention I love ASIAN DRAGONS!)  I am after all, I am "The Girl With A Dragon Tattoo"!

I didn't try it but I am sure it was awesome!

Melt opened up as a humble yet intricately decorated small place in Lakewood, Ohio.  There was a wait!  He then introduced Brunch which is fabulous!  It got so many raves and reviews all great mind you that Matt Fish had no choice but to expand.  Not only the first location but added additional locations in different parts of Greater Cleveland.  One may I add very close to home!  I knew it was going to be hard to keep Scott away.  I think he could of fainted when he found out.

We tried the Cleveland Heights location, but I didn't get the same feel as Lakewood.  Sometimes you lose atmosphere/originality, it's a risk you take.  It's huge and beautiful but doesn't capture the true essence of Melt.  Nonetheless, business is booming!  We couldn't wait for our location, then finally it did!  YAY!

I love our location that is close to home.  I love the workers there and everyone is so great.  It felt like home, well the original Lakewood location.  It has much of the same style and the blue patina metal squares on the ceiling, the huge bar, intricate art and details even down to the amazing sconces and lamps.  But one thing Matt has me hooked on that we share in common, is the obsession of holiday blow molds.  I have many although Melt has me surpassed.  Melt has some of the hardest to find blow molds that aren't even being made, that haven't been made for decades.  We have some of the same ones that are unique.  I guess that's why I appreciate this place so much.  I love the look and feel and I can totally relate to what he was going for.  Melt is Matt Fish's Playground!

Now to the personal experiences!  We've tried many sandwiches.  We've tried the specials and on the menu concoctions.  Family members and friends also telling me their feedback on their experiences.  All amazing I must add.  I haven't had a bad experience.  Well, one very funny one that was easily and quickly resolved.

One time when the Mama's Meatloaf sandwich first appeared I had to try it.  It was only the Lakewood location, we wanted Melt and surprisingly Scott drove to go and get it.  When he came back with our order, I began to check out this new sandwich.  Funny thing was, everything was on it except the meatloaf!  LOL!  Now I could of reacted very insanely, I mean it was the main part of the sandwich, how could they of missed it?  I called and they were very apologetic and sent me a gift certificate for $25 to redeem themselves.  I forgave them instantly.  I did however eventually get the sandwich when it appeared and featured again.  This is the photo of it below.  I enjoyed it but the one thing I would change is the fact of the flavor of sausage I taste in it.  It wasn't overpowering but I could of done without it.  Nonetheless though, I would eat it again.  The special ketchup on it is awesome and sweet, with yummy mashed potatoes and cheesy goodness!  Feast your eyes on this one....

Here is Scott's Favorite, the Monte Cristo.  He usually always get double meat and double cheese.  As big as this sandwich is, it boggles my mind how they do manage to batter it!

Here you will see the yummy Wake and Bacon.  You're ultimate breakfast sandwich!  Nothing beats eggs, bacon and cheese!  You can also have your eggs cooked to order.

If you wonder what other sandwiches besides the ones above that we have tried, I've had The Corny Beast, which is a feature sandwich and not on the menu.  It's the concept of the Corn Dog in sandwich form.  If you do see it, it's definitely a beast to be reckoned with!  It's huge and tasty.  Took me 2 days to eat it and yes it's battered just like a corn dog!  You have your hot dog, cheese, bread and then battered in a corn meal batter.  So very yummy!

Here is the Beastly Corny Beast!

Another Feature Sandwich
Emperor Ming's Merciless Mongo Melt
(Don't you just love the Artwork!)

The above concoction I think is a clever rendition of an the Pulled Pork Sandwich, interpreted in Asian Flair!

I have also had the pleasure of eating their Paprikash Soup, it is my fave and I hope they continue to serve it and make it a staple!  The flavor is great and those dumplings are so good!

I have also had the Dude Abides, it's a gluttonous version of the meatball sandwich.  A huge monster meatball with cheese, tomato sauce and fried mozzarella sticks!!!!  It was a lot and put me in a cheese coma.  Felt a little uncomfortable on that one.  So I think I won't be doing it again.  I think it's a man's sandwich with a huge appetite.  It however was tasty!  Try it, I dare you!
*Photo of Dude Abides via
(can you believe I didn't take a picture of my own sandwich?)

March 2012 Sandwich of the Month:
Reuben Melt

The Fletch Sandwich~March 2-3, 2012
Underhill's Chicken Fried Steak Sandwich & Steak Sandwich Melt!
(chicken fried steak with garlic mashed potatoes, pan gravy and provolone, I also added American) Wow was it good!  A meal in a form of a sandwich!

The Promotional Poster:

The Cheesesteak and the burgers are great as well.  We've had the pierogis as starters and the cheesecake, specifically the peanut butter kiss one.  All delish!  So if the photos don't convince you enough to try it out then you must need glasses!  Take my word for it and check it out and try it.  You will not leave hungry.  If you don't take my word for it then perhaps you will take it from Guy Fieri who visited it on Diners, Drive Ins and Dives or Adam from Man vs Food!  I've posted the videos below.  If you're feeling very daring you can take the Melt Challenge, with a monsterous amount of cheeses, huge amount of fries and slaw.  You eat it all and it's free and you get noticed!  Good luck!  I would like to have a bite of it, but I could never even think about doing the challenge.  It's crazy!

Here's the Melt Challenge Sandwich featuring 14 different cheeses.  Looks good doesn't it?  Crazy Good!
*Photo from

Challenge: The Melt Challenge consists of 14 different cheeses all held in place by 3 pieces of grilled bread, a pile of hand-cut fries & slaw. It weighs in at over 5 pounds of food!
People: 1
Time Limit: None
Prize: If completed you’ll walk away with a Melt t-shirt or Melt pint glass, $10 gift card and your picture immortalized on the hall of fame website.
Rules: No help from anyone and no trips to the bathroom. Sounds simple enough.

Enjoy these videos!

Diners, Drive Ins and Dives
My city gets a shout out in this!  Woot Woot!  PARMA!

Man vs Food (This also features some of Cleveland's Greatness!)
Part 1

Part 2

This is the review mostly for the Independence Location however all locations are awesome!
Melt Bar & Grilled on Urbanspoon Melt Bar & Grilled on Urbanspoon

*The only thing I would change, is the fries....sorry I hate to say it but it's true for me at least.

PS:  Matt Fish you are one very clever, clever boy!  ;)

Melt Bar & Grilled:

Melt Bar & Grilled:

Have an awesome weekend!  Come to Cleveland if you haven't been here and check us out!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Cold Stone Creamery

Last night we went to Cold Stone in Brooklyn, Ohio at RidgePark Square.  It had been awhile and since we got some coupons in Sunday's Cleveland Plain Dealer's Coupons.  They came out with new warm and yummy creations called Hot Stone Desserts!

One was this awesome No Fair Funnel Cake.  It was so good with a warm Funnel Cake, French Vanilla Ice Cream, Strawberries and Whip Cream.  The Funnel Cake was so tasty and it was perfect all together.  Here is the promotional photo of the dessert and it tastes and looks as good as the photo.  Also we got the Brownie Sundae which is so awesome as well.  Cold Stone has some great brownie's.  Chewy and Fudgey!  What's great too is you can pick any ice cream flavor you want to go with these desserts.  My daughter got the Blue Cotton Candy ice cream that I must say is pretty good and her mix in was gummi bears, yeah, I know...but hey she's a kid, (It's the Beary Beary Blue).  My son got his banana ice cream with hot fudge.  After all he is my monkey and banana ice cream is perfect, lol!  I love their banana ice cream is one of my favorites!

Cold Stone has so many mix ins and flavors and seasonal flavors that it's just hard to choose but not hard to walk in and get ice cream.  You can make your own personal favorite concoction.  They suggest on the wall some but you can be the creative one.  They've come out with so many since they first opened.  This is probably the best thing they have brought out for ice cream in my hometown since the long gone TCBY!  Which I miss so much.  I highly recommend checking out Cold Stone with or without your family.  It's nice to sit out on the tables in the Spring and Summer.

I could tell you some of my favorite flavors which include the Banana, Peanut Butter and the Peppermint Dark Chocolate.  The seasonal flavors are so awesome as well of course Pumpkin being one of them.

Here in the photo is some Strawberry, Cotton Candy, Sugar Free Vanilla, Sherbert, Chocolate and Cheesecake.

Back in the day when my father was still alive I would always get him an Ice Cream Cake since I knew it was his favorite.  It would be either from Dairy Queen or Cold Stone.  Their cakes are just as cool.  Here is a list of some of their yummy cakes.  I am not a huge fan of Ice Cream Cake but I insist that I always get what the person wants for their birthday.  Click on the photo for more details on their cakes.

Of course you can always visit their website for any details or questions you may have.  I encourage you if you're lucky enough to visit your local Cold Stone Creamery!

The One side note I have to make is I love how they lay out the ice cream.  It reminds me of the way in Italy when you go to get some Gelato and all the yummy Italian Ice Cream is laid out, of course unless you have had Gelato in Italy you would know that nothing comes close to it unless you have an authentic Gelateria in your area and even then I haven't even tasted what comes close to what I've had in Italy.  Maybe it's just where I am from in Italy that has the best Gelato!  LOL!  But I give props to Cold Stone for taking that concept!

Cold Stone Creamery on Urbanspoon

I have to try this!  Yum!

Cold Stone on Facebook:

Sweet Dreams!