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Gandalf’s: Northeast Ohio’s best weekend brunches, breakfasts

September 22, 2018

Gandalf’s: Northeast Ohio’s best weekend brunches, breakfasts

VALLEY CITY, Ohio – Our brunch and breakfast series continues as we check out Gandalf’s Pub & Restaurant. Here’s a look at what to expect:

Location + hours: 6757 Center Road, Valley City, 330-483-1190. It’s about seven miles west of Interstate 71. Parking on street and in nearby lot. Hours: 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Tuesday-Wednesday; 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Thursday; 11:30 a.m. to midnight Friday-Saturday; 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Sunday.

Menu or buffet? Menu.

About the place: It almost feels as if you are in a house, with comfortable nooks and rooms. Cool décor hangs on the walls, including a trumpet and violin and, of course, obligatory sheet music for “Danny Boy” as well as a Guinness mirror.

About the menu: It’s kind of eclectic. Tots are a common side. The breakfast burrito was filling with cheddar cheese, eggs, potato, peppers, onions, chicken, sour cream and salsa. (I prefer diced onions rather than sautéed strips, but that’s just personal taste.) Pancakes come in plain, chocolate chip, blueberry, or – wait for it - fruity pebble. There’s 10 omelettes or benedicts. You can even get a bagel with lox and capers. Most everything is under $10.

Don’t miss: Omelettes are amazing. They are not just a few diced fixings tossed in with eggs. A BLT omelette is more of a sandwich with thin egg acting as a wrap holding thick strips of bacon, slices of tomato and a tasty aioli.

Nice touch: On rare occasions you get an amuse-bouche at fine-dining restaurants. But at a pub? And at brunch? So it was a pleasant surprise to have cups of fresh-cut fruit placed before us prior to our dishes arriving.

About the sounds: Lots of rockabilly and tunes from the 1950s and ’60s played on our visit, from Elvis Presley to Johnny Cash.

Couldn’t help but noticing: You expect a good beer list at an Irish pub, but the wine list – while small – has some very good offerings at reasonable prices.

Have a brunch spot you’ve wondered about and want us to visit? Email me.

Previous eats: Northeast Ohio breakfast-brunch spots we’ve tried:

111 Bistro - Medina

35 Brix - Green

Akron Family Restaurant - Akron

Alley Cat - Cleveland

Bay Diner - Bay Village

Beau’s on the River - Cuyahoga Falls

Big Al’s Diner - Cleveland

Blue Canyon Kitchen & Tavern - Twinsburg

Blue Door Cafe - Cuyahoga Falls

Bomba Tacos & Rum - Akron

Bonefish Grill - Independence

Brim Kitchen + Brewery - Willoughby

Burntwood Tavern - Brecksville

Check Please Cafe – Grafton

The Cheesecake Factory - Lyndhurst

The City Diner - Cleveland

City Works - Orange Village

Creekside Restaurant & Bar - Brecksville

The Eye Opener - Akron

Fat Cats - Cleveland

First Watch - Fairlawn

Flour - Moreland Hills

Flury’s Cafe - Cuyahoga Falls

Flying Fig - Cleveland

Fred’s Diner - Akron

Fresh Start Diner - Twinsburg

Gabe’s Family Restaurant - Cleveland

The Girves Brown Derby - Medina

Hofbrauhaus - Cleveland

Jennifer’s - Strongsville

Kelly’s cafe - Brunswick

Lamp Post - Akron

Luxe Kitchen & Lounge - Cleveland

Michael’s A.M. - Akron

Mom’s Deli & Grille - North Royalton

Mustard Seed Market & Cafe - Fairlawn

Noble Beast Brewing Co. - Cleveland

Perk Cup Cafe & Grill - Berea

Rosewood Grill - Hudson

Tartine Bistro - Rocky River

Tony’s Family Restaurant - Parma

Urban Farmer - Cleveland

Valley Cafe - Akron

Village Diner - Orange

Wally Waffle - Akron

Yours Truly - Mentor

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