West Side Market

Back in October, I decided that I was going to study abroad in Argentina over winter break; 24 hours after I submitted my security deposit, the trip was cancelled because not enough people had signed up. I found out that I had the option to take part in a different journalism study abroad program– a week-long digital storytelling journey to Cuba– but shortly after I submitted that security deposit, you guessed it! The trip was cancelled.

Evidently I’m destined to remain confined to Ohio’s borders for the better part of an eternity.

Now that spring break has arrived, I’ve strapped on my camera, pulled up a list of “Top 10 Things to Do in Northeast Ohio” and embarked on a quest to combat the fear of missing out, staycation-style.

Haha! Nice try, fellow students who’ve embarked on exotic cruises and beach vacations! I’m not the least bit jealous! I like being deprived of vitamin D and the opportunity to see new places!!

My first stop? The West Side Market in Cleveland, Ohio.

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The West Side Market has been open to the public since 1912, and I have lived in the Cleveland area since I was born. Yet somehow in the almost 20 years of our mutual existence I had never set foot in the historic marketplace. (I know! How did I even call myself a Northeast Ohioan?!)

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The market is home to more than 100 different vendors, but Tia and I knew exactly what kind of food we were in the mood for: Dessert. Not surprisingly, we had a seemingly infinite number of choices when it came to colorful, sugary confections, including cannolis, cheesecake and cream puffs.

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I’ve decided that the moment Tia looks at a man the same way she looks at chocolatey desserts is the moment I will deem him worthy of her hand in marriage. (Yes, as her future maid of honor, I have the authority to make these kinds of ultimatums.)

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After wandering around the market and scoping out our options, we decided to pay a visit to the Crêpes De Luxe vendor, a made-to-order crêpe stand that features dozens of fillings from Nutella to salami (though hopefully not on the same crêpe). We had a 20 minute wait to decide on the perfect combination…

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…and in the end, we both settled for “The King”– peanut butter, dark chocolate and bananas.

Ugh. The memory of that melty goodness is going to haunt me until the next time I return to the West Side Market (at which time I will buy their entire supply of crêpes).

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Yes, it tasted even better than it looked.

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We decided to beat the crowds (and take advantage of the classic photo op) by sitting up on the balcony that overlooks the market.

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Before we left, I had to pay a visit to the Euro Sweets vendor– their dozens of colorful macaroons had caught my eye too many times to pass it up. I decided on the birthday cake, cookies & cream, red velvet and chocolate-covered strawberry macaroons, though they were almost too pretty to eat.

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These colorful meringues didn’t make it home with me, but they were too glittery to not take a picture of.

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Ohio City isn’t quite comparable to Buenos Aires or Havana, but all in all, it was a pretty great day for a staycation adventure.

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4 Replies to “West Side Market”

  1. I love this! Crepes and macaroons are both french treats I enjoy myself. It’s always fun to travel to new places (even in your hometown) and try unique desserts 🙂

  2. One of my fav places on earth! I may be a little biased,(I’m an Ohioan who now lives in the south). However, that place is a foodie heaven.

  3. Loved it but now I’m slightly hungry and in need of sweets !!!

  4. […] This summer, thanks to the Cleveland Leadership Center’s (i)Cleveland program, I got to peer beyond the walls of my cubicle and spend time exploring the neighborhoods of Ohio City—an adventure that introduced me to new greenspaces and artwork and helped expand my perception of this area of Cleveland beyond Mitchell’s Ice Cream and the West Side Market. […]

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