We arrived back in Cleveland in the late afternoon, after a busy past few days of travel. We were starving. I usually have no idea where to get a quick and delicious meal when I step off the plane knowing that my refrigerator is empty. However, I had been wanting to try the new Flour restaurant that just opened, not far from Chagrin Falls. Flour offers rustic Italian food, creating their own house-cured meats, and wood fired pizzas. They source seasonally and locally. While Flour is not anywhere near the airport, and nowhere near my home, the enticement of great food, far outweighed the few more minutes of travel that I had to endure.
Truthfully, I am really quite picky when it comes to restaurants, as I feel that it is fairly easy to make good food at home. That said, Flour was fantastic. The service was quick and knowledgeable. The atmosphere was modern and relaxed, and most importantly, the food was top notch. Growing up Italian, in San Francisco, this is exactly the food that makes me feel at home.
We started with the calamari They were light, crispy and not oily or overly salted. They were garnished with a fried basil leaf and a few tiny slices of fried lemon.
Then we had the panzanella, which was grilled bread with black olives, roasted red peppers, garlic, olive oil, white balsamic and a bit of fresh basil. Fresh, light and not the least bit soggy or heavy.
For the main course I ordered the fungi pizza with Taleggio cheese and truffle oil. The crust, the most difficult part of making pizza, was perfect. It is actually the best I have tried in Cleveland so far.
Brian had the Lamb Conserva, a perfect nugget of moist tender lamb with a few added vegetable for garnish.
Brian finished that one off pretty easily.
If you haven't made the trek yet, (or maybe you are lucky enough to live close by) Flour is becoming a favorite for me, and is definitely worth a trip. With a full bar and a full menu of interesting, local, rustic Italian specialties, I will be back very soon. Maybe they could think about moving downtown- closer to me?