Save up your cheat days for Cleveland Restaurant Week Nov. 5-16, when 40 Cleveland Independents restaurants offer three-course prix fixe menus perfect for exploring. “It’s fun to give people a full taste of what we have to offer,” says Michael Herschman, executive chef and owner of Lopez on Lee. Here’s a taste of what Herschman is dishing out.
First course: Lopez’s traditional guacamole is delicious, but venture outside the avocado zone for Hershman’s vegetable escabeche: pickled cauliflower, corn, green beans, carrots, red bell peppers, celery and jalapeno with fresh chips. “We do our own version of the brine,” says Herschman. “It’s just real fresh and crunchy.”
Second course: Lopez’ grilled Jardin Quesadilla combines roasted wild mushrooms, white bean jalapeno suave, smoked Gouda and wild arugula with pico de gallo and a drizzle of balsamic. The secret is the suave, like a Latin hummus, made with toasted jalapenos and garlic. “It has a nice little kick,” Herschman says.
Third course: Top off your night with a twist on a Latin classic. Lopez’ flan is topped with Patron Citronge Orange liqueur, Grandma Mimi’s marcona almond biscotti and berries. “Our flan is very, very intense and rich,” says Herschman. “The caramel has cinnamon and vanilla beans that melts over it.”