restaurant review: The Stone Oven

My best friend Mary is moving back to Western Ohio this weekend. While I am incredibly excited for her to be closer to her family, I’m incredibly depressed for myself! We decided to sneak in one more lunch before she departed the CLE at The Stone Oven:

c/o stone-oven.com

From their website: The Stone Oven StoryIn 1993, Tatyana Rehn had a craving for the luscious, crusty breads of her European homeland and could not find them in her new home in Cleveland, Ohio. She began making her own bread and before long found herself working at all hours of the night to shape loaves for friends and family. What started as a passionate hobby later turned into a business, providing many Clevelanders their first experience of hearth-baked European bread. Today, the stores continue to serve European breads and pastries, along with a full menu of soups, salads, and sandwiches.

c/o stone-oven.com

To sneak in a non-working work day lunch, we met on a busy afternoon at the Lee Road location in Cleveland Heights. I’ve eaten at all three of Stone Oven’s locations previously – the other two being downtown at the Galleria and on the East side at Eton Collection. I’ve always had solid meals, including their Mediterranean and Garden Variety salads, their home made soups and the excellent baked goods. If available on your next visit, I highly suggest the katamala olive bread.

First, I have to give the staff of the restaurant a lot of credit. They were moving lunch orders like it was NOBODY’s business that afternoon. We met in the middle of the lunch rush and hardly waiting a few minutes for our orders.

As great minds think alike, we both ordered the Smoked Turkey w/ provolone cheese and honey mustard dressing. I ordered mine with the Miller Multigrain nine grain bread and the dressing on the side. Mary chose chips. I chose the tabouli.

Let’s break down that lunch basket, shall we?

the tabouli: If you know me, you know I’m picky about over-saucing food. When this tabouli came out, I first noticed how dry it looked. It tasted the same way. I was grateful at first that it wasn’t soggy, but the lack of moisture was noticeable. I wished for a bit more lemon juice or olive oil just to dampen it a bit. Otherwise, I appreciated the flavors of this side. I, unfortunately, only had a few bites and left the rest.

the smoked turkey: I was seriously craving some turkey that day and this did not disappoint. I’d love to know where The Stone Oven gets their turkey breast. This was incredibly tasty, with a nice smokey flavor and cut at the perfect size to give a nice hearty bite as you worked your way thru the sandwich. I could easily eat a pound of this lunch meat for my meal and be perfectly content.

the provolone cheese: Another fine deli choice, I thought the cafe used another great selection in this pairing when it came to the cheese. I also liked that they gave you two slices of cheese on the sandwich, which would help balance that hearty turkey flavor.

the honey mustard dressing: I didn’t hate this “dressing”, but I’m glad I ordered it on the side. It was definitely more “dressing” than “mustard”, it was on the heavy side, even for a dressing.  While there was nothing wrong with the actual taste of the dressing – pretty much what you expect from a honey mustard dressing – I enjoyed smearing on just the amount I wanted along the way.

the Miller Multigrain nine grain bread: So fresh, you can tell it was baked only hours before. It was incredibly soft with seeds running throughout. I’m kicking myself for not purchasing a loaf to take home with me that day.

LONG STORY SHORT: If you are looking for a solid lunch from a bakery/cafe style menu, don’t look any further than The Stone Oven. As I mentioned, they have three locations around Cleveland with very helpful staff at each.  Grab a sandwich, grab a seat and enjoy!

Stone Oven Bakery Cafe on Urbanspoon

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