We don't venture over to the east side too often with so many great dining options at our fingertips on the west side and downtown, but "R" and I were headed to Orchid Mania at the Cleveland Botanical Garden on Sunday, and we were in the mood for a good brunch. I've heard a lot about fire food & drink's "nationally recognized" brunch, so we decided to head there.
First, valet parking is complimentary- wonderful! It was such a nice perk, and if you hide the cost in the price of my meal- I'm okay with that. Bump it up a couple of bucks and make parking easy for me, and I'm a happy girl.
We didn't have a reservation, but were quickly seated in the bar area. I would have liked to have a little bit longer peak at the main dining room, but it was nice to have no wait. Coffee and juice came out quickly, and our server was very pleasant. He described a few of the dishes that we were deciding between, and helpfully made suggestions.
We started with the housemade sticky buns ($3), which were warm, gooey, and delicious. The frosting was not overpowering, and we thoroughly enjoyed the bun. Although they shouldn't call the dish "buns" because it is only one bun. The meal began on a high note... "R" ordered the bbq beef tacos- housemade tortillas, local gouda, pepper relish, mole, cilantro crema, local egg and black beans stew ($13) after our server suggested this dish over another. Three small tacos arrived on fresh corn tortillas. The meat and toppings had nice flavor, but the egg and black beans stew served with the tacos was a little strange. The poached egg was perched on top of the beans, and when "R" began to dig into the egg he saw the pool of oil that the dish was swimming in. It was a little unsettling to look at. I ordered the breakfast pizza ($10)- pictured above. The pizza was topped with cheddar cheese, home fries, bacon, and fried eggs. Overall, I thought that the pizza tasted "starchy" and bland. The bites that included bacon had the most flavor, but ones that didn't just tasted like crust, dry! fried egg yolk, and potato. Very heavy. The benedict dish that kept going by our table looked great, so maybe we just made the wrong selections. However, I take server's suggestions to heart and he did recommend both dishes.
The two main dishes left us a little disappointed, but overall I liked the modern feel of the restaurant and I'll probably be back at some point to give it a second try. Maybe for dinner next time!
fire food & drink
13220 Shaker Square
Cleveland, OH 44120-2315