***A bit of blogkeeping: While I’m off in Cabo having some fun in the sun, I’ve arranged guest posts from some fabulous bloggers to keep you entertained. Today’s post comes from Crystal at Eat*Drink*Cleveland. Thanks, Crystal!***
Hi! I’m Crystal from Eat*Drink*Cleveland. My lucky friend Jen is off enjoying a fabulous vacation and asked me to guest post for her. For those of you who don’t know me, I’m a hungry girl who writes about all kinds of great local food and fun in Cleveland and beyond. Because it’s March, I’m going to share one of my favorite traditions with you that is not only tasty, but is the perfect way to spend a leisurely Sunday.
March in Northeast Ohio is a very special time of year. It’s always a busy month. Ohio Wrestling State Championships, the Cleveland International Film Fest, St. Patrick’s Day, college basketball’s March Madness, fish fries, the Auto Show, the IX Indoor Amusement Park and sometimes even Easter are all fun things that take place. This year there is even the Cleveland Magazine Nothing But Net Blogger Brackets competition going on. For me it’s even more busy and special because it’s the month of my Mom and Step-Dads’ birthdays.
Every year we get together for a much anticipated special treat to celebrate their birthdays – pancake breakfast. This is not your typical morning meal. We head out to Geauga County for a traditional feast that includes not only all-you-can-eat pancakes, but also the locally produced delicacy real maple syrup. This is not the fake stuff but 100% pure nectar from the sugar maple trees. There is nothing quite like it.
|The Krzys Brothers – Mom’s neighbors make syrup|
|This is what they use to turn sap into syrup|
Chardon is known as the Maple Syrup Capital of Ohio but many other towns and organizations join in on the fun. All the breakfasts have one thing in common: maple syrup topped pancakes. So just pick one and get some friends or family together for a Must Do meal in March.
Many other communities all throughout NE Ohio offer their versions of the pancake breakfast as well. In the south there’s one that comes highly recommended by Debbi Snook in Chatham (Medina County.)
6. The Sugar Bush pancake breakfast is from noon to 6 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday at the Chatham VFW Post 6892 at 6299 Avon Lake Road. It’s $6.50 for adults and $3.50 for children and $6 for seniors over 60. Breakfast consists of all-you-can-eat pancakes, two sausage links and all you can drink coffee, tea and milk. Additional items for sale include 100 percent maple syrup, homemade candy, Amish cheeses and other homemade goods.
7. In Lake County you can head to Willoughby Hills. They host their annual all-you-can-eat pancake breakfasts 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. each Sunday in March at the Willoughby Hills Community Center, 35400 Chardon Road, Willoughby Hills. Ticket prices are $7 for adults and $3.50 for children ages 6 through 12.
8. Goodell Family Farm in Portage County is another great place for pancakes. The long time Shalersville residents host their annual breakfasts at the Town Hall located on Route 44 at Route 303 just off the Ohio Turnpike. Pancakes and sausage will cost you $7.50 and they serve from 8:30 to 2:00.
9. In nearby Hiram, you can eat yourself silly on pancakes while benefiting the local Fire Department. Served from 8:00 – 1:00, the adult meal is $7.00. They feature buckwheat and blueberry pancakes in addition to the traditional buttermilk.
10. If you can’t make it in March or you just can’t get enough of the pancakes, Chardon also hosts the Geauga County Maple Festival every year in April at their historic town square.
With all these tasty options, it’s easy to start a family tradition or just take a ride out to the country to enjoy one of our area’s most delicious local specialties. Take a jug of syrup home with you so you can enjoy the sweet taste all year long. It’s an obvious choice for breakfast but can be used to sweeten nuts, meats, granola and more. Try some of these recipes from Maple Valley Sugarbush & Farm.