"We're not closing, we're relocating," stresses Bruce Ferris, third-generation owner of Ferris Steak House (8700 Detroit Ave., 216.281.1437, ferrissteak.com). At 69 years old, Ferris is easily one of Cleveland's oldest restaurants, established in 1940 by Bruce's grandparents, Adele and Ellis Ferris. For decades, the saloon-style eatery dished up quality steaks and chops in a relaxed family atmosphere. But come summer, the operation will relocate to the old Swingos on the Lake location on Lakewood's Gold Coast, which closed earlier this year. "When we shut down lunches for the first time in history, I knew it was time to start looking for a new location," explains Ferris. "When Swingos came up for grabs, it just felt like a good fit." Sitting just three miles from the original spot, the new restaurant will attract both new and old customers, some of whom have been coming for 50 years. Ferris promises that the new digs, while bigger and spiffier, will not change the restaurant's approach. "We're not going high-end," he says. "I know what our clientele likes. We're going to keep doing the things we've been doing for 70 years."
When Sam McNulty opens his Ohio City brewpub this spring, he can certainly count on great suds. Thanks to equal parts of luck and timing, McNulty has snagged one of the nation's premier craft brewers, Andy Tveekrem. For the last five-and-a-half years, Tveekrem has served as brewmaster for Dogfish Head Brewery in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, home of the award-winning 60 Minute, 90 Minute and 120 Minute IPAs. "It was bromance at first sight," jokes McNulty. "We met up over beers, and by the end of the week, he had his house [in Delaware] on the market and rented a place in Tremont." Situated next to the West Side Market, Market Garden Brewery will feature separate buildings for the restaurant and brewhouse. Between them will sit a 3,000-square-foot beer garden with trees, climbing vines and community tables. There, diners will enjoy American-style picnic foods made from quality local ingredients. Interestingly enough, Tveekrem launched his brewing career 18 years ago at a little place called Great Lakes Brewing, where he served as brewmaster until 2000. Dogfish is beloved for its interesting — even extreme — beers. So, what's going to be on tap here? "I'm a real hophead," says Tveekrem. "I definitely like hoppy pale ales, porters and stouts. But we'll also brew German lagers, Belgian wheats, the whole range." The restaurant also will be the area's first micro-distillery.