CLEVELAND, Ohio – Andre Knott usually is seen in Major League ballparks, hunched near camera bays, bantering with Cleveland Indians announcers Matt Underwood and Rick Manning, offering insight, or taking the occasional pie in the face or Gatorade bath in a postgame interview. But off the diamond he likes to eat.
Each week we survey a notable Clevelander about where they like to eat in Greater Cleveland. Here are Knott’s choices:
1. What’s your favorite restaurant and why?
“I’m gonna cheat and because I’ve lived in the Cleveland area and now back in the Akron area I have to go with Kingfish. I have to start with the lobster bisque that’s maybe the best I’ve ever had, followed by scallops and surf and turf. The food is phenomenal, and I’d never say anything bad about Akron, but it’s awesome to have a place with quality seafood nearby. One big thing I miss about living in Cleveland was the huge variety of different types of restaurants we had to choose from, and Kingfish was a nice addition to the Akron-Montrose area. Also, Butcher and the Brewer – love the atmosphere and concept. The barbecue pork shank along with the Carolina shrimp and grits is perfection. I’d say – and this is difficult in the times we are in to say this – but I’d have to say I loved the small plates and bringing old friends, parents/in-laws and such because you can order all these different dishes and share them and not rush through the meal and have conversations about each dish. Same with the brewery selection. So it’s become a place I can stop in after a game and bring a friend for a quick beer or have an intimate fun dinner that takes hours. (For the record, Knott is right on the money about Kingfish; here’s our review from awhile back.)
2. Favorite dish you have ordered from anywhere?
The Joshua burger from Tremont Taphouse (bacon, smoked cheddar, house barbecue and Tartar sauce). Perfection. The restaurant has always had great food, and I can dang near suggest the entire menu. But I’ll never forget the first bite I had of the burger – everything just was perfectly placed, a tad messy but perfection with some of the best fries in town.
3. Favorite dish to make at home?
Barbecued chicken on the grill. Grilling chicken is just pleasurable for me because it’s time on the grill, which usually means listening to music or hanging out with family and friends on sunny afternoons in my back yard. It reminds me of great times growing up with my folks. It always was a big deal then, and I hope my kids get that at some point with me. And it’s not fancy, but I love making eggs at home with cheese, onions and green peppers.
4. What is your favorite brunch or breakfast spot?
That’s easy. Lucky’s Cafe and the Shipwreck (baked hash browns, eggs, veggies, bacon and cheddar cheese served with housemade toast and fresh fruit.) Lucky’s is that place that I could remember when it was “our” little secret. But every time I go I run into five people I know. There is no secret about how cool that place is now, and that’s great with how they have the garden out back.
5. Favorite drink or dessert in Northeast Ohio?
Crafted Cocktail Co.‘s The Capricorn (scotch, mezcal, aperol, cider syrup; strawberry mango and habanero shrub). CC is a small intimate cocktail spot in Wadsworth that has all these outrageous drinks where the bartenders are artists.
BONUS: Since you travel so much, what is your favorite city to eat out?
Majordomo in Los Angeles, a David Chang restaurant that has me counting the days until I can get back out there. Majordomo is the place you see in the movies and shout ‘I wanna be there.’ Had a close friend take me there, and as we watched others’ food come to their table, I believe I said ‘I’d wash dishes here to eat that!’ We had the best meal I’d ever had in my life. Cool, hip, with an eclectic menu. (Hey Andre, mark your calendar: The Indians have a three-game stand against the Los Angeles Angels Monday-Wednesday, May 17-19, 2021.)
Previous Five for Fridays
Parma comic-book store owner Adam Barsa
Fox 8 news reporter Maia Belay
Film producer Tyler Davidson
NASA Glenn Research Center Director Marla E. Perez-Davies
LGBT Center director Phyllis ‘Seven’ Harris
Cleveland musician Chayla Hope
Cleveland Gaming Classic founder Tom Jenkins
Great Lakes Science Center’s Robyn Kaltenbach
3News anchor Maureen Kyle
Singer Lauren Lanzaretta
Former Tribe pitcher Jensen Lewis
Akron Zoo events and marketing coordinator Caroline Lutz
WMJI radio host Jimmy Malone
Cleveland 19 News anchor-reporter Sia Nyorkor
SportsTime Ohio host Al Pawlowski
Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse director of event and media marketing (and concert-industry professional) Carrie Samek
Karamu House President and CEO Tony F. Sias
3News anchor-reporter Tiffany Tarpley
Former Cleveland Browns player Joe Thomas
Fashion designer Dru Thompson
Indians play-by-play announcer Matt Underwood
What do notable Clevelanders eat when they want some good chow? Welcome to Five for Friday – a weekly look at Northeast Ohioans and their favorite eats.
I am on cleveland.com’s life and culture team and cover food, beer, wine and sports-related topics. If you want to see my stories, here’s a directory on cleveland.com. Bill Wills of WTAM-1100 and I talk food and drink usually at 8:20 a.m. Thursday morning. And tune in at 8:05 a.m. Fridays for “Beer with Bona and Much, Much More” with Munch Bishop on 1350-AM The Gambler.