Celebrating Cleveland's Culinary Underbelly

Clevelanders had a mixed reaction when chef, author, and adventurer Anthony Bourdain filmed and broadcast an episode of No Reservations from their rebounding metropolis. Some said Bourdain's self-proclaimed "rust-filled odyssey" highlighted the city's struggles to an international audience and stoked an inferiority complex. Like piling more wood on the 'Mistake by the Lake' fire.

But Bourdain, a New Yorker, said flat out "Cleveland does not suck," as he suspected. And ultimately he dedicated the show to what is too often overlooked as a strength in the greater Great Lakes region: a rich heritage of craftsmanship, diversity, and creativity expressed through food. And where there is good food, there are signs of intelligent and industrious life.

"Cleveland's a beacon of hope in the great blank area between the coasts," Bourdain said in a recent interview. "There's an original German butcher doing things old school and new chefs doing things that are hopeful, like new Great Lakes fish dishes."

If nothing else, Bourdain reveals a couple days of flavorful good eating next time you're in Cleveland. Check it out.......