On Friday, May 10, enjoy a leisurely ride through the beautiful Cuyahoga Valley aboard the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad as it hosts the Grape Escape Wine Tasting Excursion. Departing at 7 p.m., the moving adventure will feature five different wines, each paired with chef-prepared hors d'oeuvres. You will explore each wine's characteristics, such as the body, aroma, bouquet and finish. Vegetarian selections can be prepared upon prior request. Cost ranges from $57 to $92 (depending on seating) and includes a commemorative glass. The train departs from the Boston Mill Station. Guests 21 and older should register and purchase tickets ahead of time.
2325 Stine Rd., Peninsula, 800-468-4070, CVSR.com
On Saturday, May 11, take part in the popular Wine N Bloom trail event. With the onset of warmer weather comes the annual pilgrimage to Northeast Ohio's wine country. "Spring is a perfect time to explore Ohio wineries, and the Wine N Bloom trail provides the framework for exploration," explains Ohio Wine Producers executive director Donniella Winchell. The Wine N Bloom trail event is a self-driving tour of the Vines and Wines Trails, with hours running from noon to 6 p.m. For $50 per couple ($40 for a single), wine enthusiasts will enjoy wine samples and appetizers at each of the participating wineries. Plus, attendees will receive a free flowering annual plant at each stop. In total there are 15 participating wineries, including Biscotti Winery, Deer's Leap Winery, Old Firehouse Winery, Ferrante Winery & Ristorante, Emerine Estates, Old Mill Winery and Maple Ridge Vineyard. For tickets and info to this event call 800-227-6972 or visit ohiowines.org.
On Sunday, May 12, let's not forget about Mom. If you really want to treat her well, head to Blue Canyon Kitchen and Tavern in Twinsburg. This lodge-inspired, award-winning restaurant is comfortable enough for the entire family. From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Blue Canyon will offer a brunch buffet spread for $36.95 per person. The menu will feature carved prime rib, a chilled seafood bar with shrimp, oysters, smoked salmon and trout, house-made breakfast pastries and desserts. An omelet and pancake station will be humming, and diners can get eggs to order and Eggs Benedict. Chef-owner Brandt Evans knows it will be busy, but realizes how important each guest is. "We will probably serve well over 1,000 guests, but I am very humbled and honored that people want to take someone who is so special, like their mom, to my place to celebrate her day," he says. Reservations are recommended.
8960 Wilcox Dr., Twinsburg, 330-486-2583, bluecanyonestaurant.com
Also on Sunday, May 12, the trendy One Red Door in Hudson will host their Mother's Day Brunch & Dinner. Bring Mom to either brunch (served from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.) or dinner (served from 3:30 to 8:30 p.m.) to celebrate with great food and atmosphere. The Mother's Day brunch will feature the normal brunch menu plus a few one-time additions. Cast-iron frittata, Eggs Benedict with chicken turkey sausage, traditional Maine lobster roll, and a crispy Point Judith calamari salad are just some of the popular highlights of the regular brunch menu. "We will also be offering a few surprise items special for all the mothers on their special day," says owner/GM Tiffany Monday. Those who choose to bring Mom to dinner won't be disappointed either. The ahi tuna tacos, wild mushroom pizza, pan-roasted Gulf black grouper and the slow-cooked Ohio pork shoulder will satisfy Mom and the entire family. Reservations are required.
49 Village Way, Hudson, 330-342-DOOR, onereddoorhudson.com
On Tuesday, May 14, Gallucci's Italian Market will close to host a special Panapesca Seafood Dinner. "This is a great way for people to come together as friends and enjoy great food," explains catering chef Chuck Materpaul. "We have an excellent following for our dinners." The five-course dinner will kick off with frutti di mare (grilled calamari, shrimps, scallops, mussels...). It also will include Italian seafood delicacies such as housemade linguine with clam sauce, stuffed calamari, scallops and mussels, sea bass livornese, and berries with vanilla cream for dessert. Because the store will be closed, Gallucci's will feature private shopping opportunities along with wine pairing suggestions for your dinner. The cost is $50 per person, and you can book a reservation by contacting Chuck at 216-881-0045 ext. 10 or firstname.lastname@example.org. 6610 Euclid Ave., tasteitaly.com
On Tuesday, May 14, Touch Supper Club in Ohio City is throwing a bash – a Burger Bash to be precise. Starting at 5 p.m. and running until close, Touch will offer $6 burgers or two for $10. "Just like our Taco Thursday's, we rotate our burger menu weekly," explains owner Robert Ivanov. In play will be roughly five to seven varieties, including a vegetarian option. A $12 package includes a burger, Belgium frites, and choice of a Stella Artois or domestic draft. If you're particularly adventurous you can attempt Touch's Tuesday Burger Challenge. If you can polish off a meal that includes a monster burger comprised of three buns, three pounds of meat, and a variety of toppings – plus fries and beer – it's free! Fail and the tab is $30. "Only one has attempted and none have finished," says Ivanov.
2710 Lorain Ave., 216-631-5200, touchohiocity.com