Thursday, May 27, 2010

I Must Be On A Lobster Kick

Every time I drove by The Harp on Detroit Avenue, I wanted to stop in. As one of the few Cleveland-area restaurants that is close to the lake (still my biggest bone to pick with Cleveland since moving here!), their large brick and stone patio facing the water has been calling to me. Well two years have passed without a visit, but an impromptu dinner last week led "R" and I there. Of course, it started to drizzle the minute we stepped onto the patio to be seated- so we were quickly escorted inside. Darn you, rain!

My first impression of The Harp was exactly what they claim to be on their website: "a locally-owned, friendly, neighborhood pub". The real highlight of the restaurant is the patio. The inside just felt like your typical neighborhood Irish pub with dark, weathered wood and plenty of Irish accents and decorations. A bar for friends to gather at, but family-friendly as well.

I wasn't sure what to order, and I could tell that "R" was struggling with his decision as well since he jumped at the suggestion of getting two entrees to share. We had been running around all day doing errands, and even helped a friend move for a few hours, so we were ravenous by the time we arrived at The Harp. We decided to start with the Spicy Artichoke Dip ($8.59). It was a blend of artichoke hearts, garlic, red peppers, and parmesan cheese and was served with grilled pita wedges. When it arrived- it was not what I was expecting. Almost all artichoke dips that I've had in the past have been heavy cheese and very creamy. This dip was chunky and mostly contained just artichoke hearts. The garlic and red peppers were there to give it flavor, and flavor they gave! The dip had an unexpected heat to it, and we found ourselves enjoying it more than anticipated.

We decided to share the BBQ Pulled Pork Panini with BBQ pork, sweet and sour bacon slaw, cheddar cheese, and served on a pretzel roll ($8.95). The menu indicated that it was a new dish. The pork was nothing special, but the pretzel roll was fresh and chewy. The real disappointment of the dish was the slaw. It was waaay below average. When it arrived at our table it was slightly warmer than room-temperature, which did not feel right, and the flavor/consistency was terrible. We left almost all of it behind. Our second entree option was the Lobster Pierogies ($16.99). They are cheese and potato stuffed pierogie topped with fresh lobster, summer squash, zucchini, carrots, spinach, and served in a white wine cream sauce. The menu indicated that this was a new dish as well. The dish included five large home-made pierogie swimming in a tasty cream sauce and piled high with large pieces of lobster meat and shaved vegetables (pictured above). As mentioned in previous posts, I LOVE LOBSTER. So this dish was probably a winner in my book before I even tasted my first bite. While the dish was not fantastic by any means, it was an updated twist on a classic comfort food and was executed relatively well. It didn't blow me away, but I would order them again.

I would classify The Harp's menu as good bar food, with a few upscale twists. I think it is a great summer spot to grab a bite to eat, a cold beer, and a view of Lake Erie. Being close to the water is enough to draw me back!

The Harp
4408 Detroit Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44113
(216) 939-0200

Harp on Urbanspoon


Dine O Mite! said...

One of my top 5 Cleveland dishes is the Lobster Roll at Pier W.

Bite Buff said...

Good to know!!

Allison M. said...

i hear great things about that place but haven't actually stopped in there.