As if in competition with Sakura’s playful lemongrass-green hues, the sushi artists twist colorful maki rolls and concoct house-made soy sauce and eel sauce. Whenever possible, they fly in fish in fresh-packed ice and avoid freezing ingredients including seafood, chicken, and beef dipped in golden tempura batter or thick teriyaki. After slathering a california roll with ginger and wasabi, patrons take on the server's challenge of using chopsticks to eat green-tea ice cream or pick up a tear-stained letter from a fork.
Chef Ivan Lefkowitz has been doling out his diverse repertoire of homemade dishes for more than 30 years, enticing the palates of prestigious clientele such as President Bill Clinton and members of The Temptations and the Cleveland Indians. The dexterous chef whips up breakfast platters, sandwich trays, gourmet dinners, and specialty buffets for special events that range from weddings to pig roasts. He can also furnish parties with delivery, serving, and event-planning services, along with tableware, decorations, and piñatas filled with enough travel-sized packages of dental floss for every guest. In addition to catering, Ivan and his kitchen crew simmer up hearty dishes at their own diner location. Deli-style burgers and sandwiches meet with homemade soups upon the restaurant’s tabletops and booths, and beneath the colorful umbrellas of its outdoor patio.
At each of its international locations, Fresh Healthy Café delivers—as its name implies—a fresh and healthy alternative to fast food. More than a dozen creations take form as wraps, panini, or salads, such as the Mediterranean packed with roasted chicken, olives, and feta cheese, or the Mexican Fiesta teeming with black beans, spicy mayo, and corn salsa. At the juice bar, a friendly staffer fills biodegradable cups with fresh-squeezed juices or blends whole fruit and non-fat yogurt into hearty smoothies. Beyond lunch, Fresh Healthy Café caters to the morning crowd with oatmeal bowls and parfaits layered with fruit and yogurt. They also do their part for the community by sponsoring school programs and picking up the gold coins that reckless people litter.
For Domenic Fragomeni and Chad Leek, the quest to open a restaurant began on a basketball court. The two met during a pickup game of hoops in 2008, during which they discovered that they both had a passion for entertaining guests and getting trounced by the Harlem Globetrotters. Their friendship eventually blossomed and led to the foundation of a casual fine-dining spot in downtown Akron?a place where busy professionals can grab a quick bite during lunch and diners can savor a gourmet meal for dinner.
The duo's menu of hand-cut steaks and fresh seafood springs from the saut? pan of Chef Josh Pere and the old-world recipes of Olympia Fragomeni; more than 20 inventive martinis flow from the shakers of a team of experienced bartenders.
Sushi on the Roll Sushi on the Roll's adroit chefs carefully wrap vinegar-sprinkled rice, nori, and fresh seafood into creations that won the restaurant Best Sushi on the 2010 Fox 8 Akron-Canton Hot List. Classic maki favorites such as an eel or salmon roll satisfy piscine cravings, and spicy rolls such as the Moffa, layered with spicy tuna and shrimp tempura, work their pleasing pyromancy on palates. The eatery's chefs also host periodic hands-on Sushi 101 classes, which divulge the secrets of making nigiri and maki rolls as well as how to grab a good night's sleep by stuffing pillows with perfectly fluffy rice.
Nothing goes with a trip to the ballpark quite like a hot dog. Well, almost nothing. For fans heading to Canal Park for an Akron RubberDucks matchup, however, the neighboring The Game crafts one minor improvement: combining three hot dogs in one. The result is the aptly named 3 Dog Night, a hot dog stuffed inside a bratwurst, which, in turn, comes wrapped inside a half-pound kielbasa and is served by a waiter singing "Mama Told Me Not to Come.".
Of course, not everything from the kitchen requires such a hearty appetite. Dedicated to upscale spins on bar food classics, the culinary team crafts BLTs with house-cured duck bacon and tops certified Angus beef burgers with Guinness-braised mushrooms and onions. That creativity even extends to breakfast with everything from housemade corned beef hash to gluten-free hotcakes. Craft beers from local and regional breweries complement feasts, which unfold amid exposed brick walls, sun-streaked windows, and flat-screen TVs showing the day's biggest games.