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Published: Saturday, 5/13/2006

Specialty shops and markets pave the way for tasty travels

BY KATHIE SMITH
BLADE FOOD EDITOR
Todd Sheets weighs out fudge at Beeker s General Store at 226 East Front St. in Pemberville. Among the store s offerings are penny candies, homemade noodles, apple butter, and jams.
Todd Sheets weighs out fudge at Beeker s General Store at 226 East Front St. in Pemberville. Among the store s offerings are penny candies, homemade noodles, apple butter, and jams.
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Got a taste for something different?

Within 100 miles of Toledo you ll find food getaways that are perfect for a day trip or a weekend adventure.

These include specialty food shops, cooking schools, farmers markets, orchards, and wineries, as well as dining spots that offer regional foods, ethnic menus, and even formal afternoon tea.

In some cases, reservations are recommended; some events are held on limited days. Be sure to pack your cooler and ice packs to bring home perishable foods.


Janet Reid, left, hands a purchase to Nancy Pratt of London, Ohio, at Cheese Haven near Port Clinton. The shop sells 125 kinds of all-natural cheeses as well as 50 kinds of smoked meats.

Janet Reid, left, hands a purchase to Nancy Pratt of London, Ohio, at Cheese Haven near Port Clinton. The shop sells 125 kinds of all-natural cheeses as well as 50 kinds of smoked meats.
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Wind your way east following State Rt. 2 to Port Clinton.

At the end of June for a couple of weeks, pick black raspberries at Ackerman Berry Farm at 4112 Corduroy Rd. in Oregon (419-691-5100).

If fishing is your sport, Port Clinton Fisheries at 2 Madison St. in Port Clinton (419-732-3101) will clean your fish for a small charge. There is also a retail fish store.

Late in June, sign up for cooking classes at Loretta Paganini School of Cooking at Mon Ami Restaurant and Historic Winery at 3845 East Wine Cellar Rd. east of Port Clinton (419-797-4445). Before the evening class, plan on dinner, then tour through the winery. There s also wine tastings in the gift shop.

At the intersection of State Rt. 53 and State Rt. 163, Cheese Haven (419-734-2611) at 2920 East Harbor Rd. sells 125 kinds of all-natural cheeses as well as 50 kinds of smoked ready-to-eat meats.

Nearby is Bergman Orchards at 4562 East Bayshore Rd. (419-734-4272), which includes markets on State Rt. 53 and State Rt. 269 in Marblehead with fruit crops.

In Findlay, visit Brinkman s Country Store at 1800 East Sandusky (419-422-3936) where you ll find the best frozen pot pies, a bakery, meat market, and ready-to-go items.

Have tea at the Swan House Tea Room & Shoppe at 225 West Sandusky St. (419-429-7926). Reservations required for proper tea at $16.50.

Then travel east on State Rt. 18 to Tiffin where you ll find Ralph s Joy of Living at 33 North Washington St. (419-447-1051 or 800-447-1057), an appliance store that has kitchen designing, a gourmet cookware shop, evening cooking classes, and a wine shop.

Follow State Rt. 53 to Fremont and the Dillon House at Spiegel Grove on Buckland Avenue (419-332-2081) where Victorian Teas for adults are held the first Wednesday of each month until November priced at $20 per person. In June, July, and August, there are children s teas the second Wednesday of each month priced at $12. Reservations are required.

West of Fremont is Roots Poultry on Route 20 at 3721 West State St. in Fremont (419-332-0041) where the shredded chicken and barbecued shredded chicken sandwiches and chicken noodle soup sandwiches (to go) are legendary.

Heading back toward Toledo, visit Beeker s General Store at 226 East Front St. in Pemberville (419-287-3274). The general store has bolts of fabric, penny candies, homemade noodles, apple butter and jams, and Amish items.

About 35 miles north of the Ohio state line, Ann Arbor is a haven for foodies.

Zingerman s Delicatessen (734-663-3354) at 422 Detroit St. is famous for its artisanal cheeses from Europe and the United States, delicacies such as Spanish ham, olive oils, and pesto. You can buy the hard-crusted Zingerman s bread at the deli or at Zingerman s Bakehouse (734-761-2095) at 3711 Plaza Drive where occasional classes are held.

Zingerman s Creamery (734-929-0500) at 3723 Plaza Drive sells Michigan goat s milk and cow s milk cheeses and Sicilian style gelato.

Zingerman s Roadhouse (734-663-FOOD) at 2501 Jackson Ave. is a full service restaurant with American cuisine and occasional special food events.

Off I-94 at exit 179 Zeeb Road is Kitchen Port at 283 South Zeeb (734-665-9188), a cookware store with cookbooks, seasonal gifts, and cooking classes.

Whole Foods, a natural and organic supermarket at 3135 Washtenaw Ave. (734-975-4500) near Huron Parkway, also has gourmet choices, cooking classes, and kitchen accessories.

Trader Joe s at 2398 East Stadium Blvd. (734-975-2455) specializes in unique one of a kind items such as private label olive oil.

If Toledo-area food shops are more convenient, there are delightful day-trip getaways to be had enjoying the farmers markets, ethnic food stores, orchards, and culinary stores with cooking classes.

Toledo s Farmers Market (419-255-6725) at 237 South Market St. (at Market and Superior streets) is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. every Saturday through the end of October. Once the local produce comes in, the market is open every day except Monday.

Perrysburg Farmers Market (419-874-9147) on Louisiana Avenue is open from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursdays from May 11 to Oct. 19.

Ethnic stores include Asian Grocery (419-866-2102) at 1801 North McCord; Greek specialties at Petro s Foods (419-474-7766) at 5086 Douglas; Deepam India Food and Deli (419-843-1552) at 7406 West Central; Italian specialties at Sofo Foods (419-882-8555) at 5400 Monroe; Tiger Lebanese Bakery (419-473-8942) at 4215 Monroe, and Mexican food products at La Perla Tortilla Factory (419-534-2074) at 2742 Hill Ave.

As the growing season progresses, remember MacQueen Orchards (419-865-2916) at 7605 Garden Rd. in Holland with fresh peaches and apples; Schweizer Fruit Farm & Greenhouse (419-691-0694) at 4114 Seaman Rd. in Oregon, and Tom Strain & Sons (419-531-8183) with fresh fruits and vegetables at 5041 Hill Ave.

Cookware stores with cooking classes include Kitchen Tools and Skills (419-872-9090) at 26597 North Dixie Hwy. in Perrysburg and Essential Gourmet (419-885-7600) at 5650 Mayberry Square in Sylvania.

Within blocks of Ford Field is Detroit s Greektown, now often associated with Greektown Casino. It is a haven of Greek restaurants and shops including Astoria Pastry Shop (313-963-9603) at 541 Monroe St., offering European pastries, honey pastries, and gourmet tortes. Monroe Street is filled with Greek music and American and Greek flags.

Among the authentic cuisine is the flaming kasseri cheese appetizer at New Hellas Cafe at 583 Monroe St.

Not far from Greektown is the Eastern Market on Russell Street, which is bustling on market days on Saturdays.

But around the market square, there are shops worth visiting any day of the week. There s a wine shop and meat and seafood market with an assortment of sausages (kielbasa, Hungarian, bratwurst, knockwurst, etc.). Rafal s Spice Co. (313-259-6373) at 2521 Russell St. has assorted spices, barrels of coffee beans, and assorted food specialties. One block away is Rocky s nut and candy shop (313-567-6871) at 2489 Russell St. with fresh macadamia nuts, peanuts, and pecans.

These may offer food in addition to the wine experiences. Call the Ohio Wine Producers Association at 800-227-6972 for a list of wineries, locations, and visiting days and hours.

In southeast Michigan, a group of wineries has banded together for the Pioneer Wine Trail. Call Pentamere Winery in Tecumseh at 517-423-9000.

Kathie Smith is The Blade s food editor.

Contact her at: food@theblade.com or 419-724-6155.



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