Cleveland, OH

The posts we've done in the "Adventures" category are usually recaps of quick trips we've taken. Typically, the trips span about 24-48 hours exploring a city. Well, here is our shortest adventure yet, 12 hours in Cleveland, OH!

Now I realize that Cleveland is a pretty big place, and there is literally no way to boil it down into a 12 hour visit. If someone came to Pittsburgh and did 3 or 4 things and wrote a post about an entire city, I'd possibly be offended. But you know what? Everything we did while visiting our rust-belt-frenemy-neighbor-city was pretty awesome, and if these few things are even just a jumping off point for someone to plan a day trip to the city, then we've done our jobs!

Our first stop in Cleveland was Grumpy's Cafe for a late brunch. Sorry folks, there are no pictures of our Grumpy's meals, but you can bet it was pretty good. The menu was impressive, ranging from cream cheese and strawberry stuffed french toast (my choice) to huevos rancheros (Sarah's pick). The place was packed, though Sarah did mention once or twice something about it being voted best brunch in Cleveland..

Next up, Great Lakes Brewing Co. brewery tour! Sarah and I have been to Cleveland a bunch of times for different concerts and almost every trip involves a stop at the brew pub for some delicious food and some amazing beers. This visit, we knew it was high time to finally tour the place.

A five dollar tour (booked in advance) got us access to a tour-only bar area, a very detailed one hour history and process tour of the facility, and four very generous samples of any of their beers, including some pub exclusives. If you like beer and history, do the tour. It's well worth it.

When exploring a city, Sarah wastes no time hunting down a good mural for a quick photo op. Luckily for us, this one was just a few blocks from the brewery.

At this point, with a few beers in my belly, and seeing as a couple HOURS had already passed since we ate our brunch, we were well past due for a late lunch. Off to Melt we go!

If the decor alone didn't seal the deal for me at the restaurant, the insane list of grilled cheese sandwiches, unreal vegan and vegetarian options, and the expansive, well-curated craft beer list definitely pushed me over the edge. Just a quick tip though: if the waitress describes your sandwich to you and it involves words like, "and then the entire sandwich is battered and deep fried," and you had already eaten an appetizer and only ate your brunch like three hours prior, maybe pick a different sandwich.

Now for the grand finale. The reason for the trip in the first place, LUCIUS! If you're not already in love with this band, then you need to get on that. Driving to Cleveland to see them for the third time was the least we could do. We would have driven much further if it meant spending an evening dancing, singing, laughing, (and crying) with this incredible group of musicians. The venue we saw them in, the Beachland Ballroom, was no slouch either. It's not too big or loud, but rather super intimate. Turns out, this is the same venue where I first saw Say Anything (who knew?) Lucius' new album, Good Grief, just came out a few weeks ago and it's so fantastic - give it a listen.

And for us, that wraps up a whirlwind 12 hours in Cleveland. Some people may think we spend too much time in our cars for quick little trips, but just remember: it's all in what you value. If exploring somewhere you've never been (or somewhere you have been, but never paid attention to), and trying something new is of value to you, then you can make it happen. For us, the hours spent in the car getting there and back is half of the fun. 

Sarah & Nick


  1. ive never heard of this band but i gave it a listen since i have amazon prime free for a month.
    i am not even one entire song in and im IN love!!!
    this is the kinda stuff i love to listen too!
    so good, im actually getting my work done at work.
    good looking out!

    1. Yay, I'm glad you're liking them! We saw them as an opening band two years ago and we've been hooked ever since!