Every so often we find a friend who has a way with words. Maybe they've got a blog of their own, or perhaps they're a closeted comedian. Who would we be if we didn't give them a shot to stretch their wings and write? So, in that supportive way we know so well, please give a warm welcome to our guest blogger, Cleveland's own Tony Winn!
All photos by Julianna Arendash Photography.
Sometimes I like to imagine that when the Earth was created, the heavens smiled down knowing that one day The Cleveland Flea would throw the premier, kick ass brunch in the Forest City.
I mean come on people– it’s the Food Flea we’re talking about – it’s the marriage of breakfast and lunch - only this time the Cleveland Flea is throwing the party.
So here I am at the effortlessly cool Food Flea – writing your guide on how to properly brunch – oh woe is me I cynically think to myself in between sips of my Moscow mule as I take in the sun and fade away.
Some guys have all the luck right?
The wait is over; read on to learn how to properly brunch, oh uninitiated person you.
Step 1 – Invite Your Friends
It all begins with the squad; yah-know the tribe, the homies, the family - whatever you want to call it. Step 1 is all about inviting people to go with you to the Food Flea. Listen, you need to be smart with this decision – you’re getting ready to spend hours with these people (hint – don’t go with people who drive you crazy) choose wisely my friends. Different squads typically include family units, brothers from another mother, soul- sisters, frenemies etc and so forth. This is your day – spend it with people who make you most happy; the more the merrier or some adage like that.
Step 2 - Grab a Drink.
As they say: different strokes for different folks. I’ll piggy back off that and say this: different beverages for different blokes. (Doesn’t have quite the same ring, does it?) The Food Flea has it all – coffee for the uncaffeinated. Beer for the boys (and girls). Mixed drinks for the fire hearted and every sweet, bubbly beverage in between. Yes, relax – water is there too. I recommend hitting up the Happy Camper Bar Car; they’re wizards behind the bar and they’ll put a spell on you. Go for the moscow mule or try one of their seasonal drinks - you won't be disappointed. Grab a drink my friend -– your parched throat urges you.
Step 3 - Grab Food
Well this is the Food Flea after all and with a branded name like that, food is definitely on the agenda. The beauty about the Flea is wherever you go, you’ll notice that you are quite literally engulfed by the circle of pop up food stands and food trucks – so pick your proverbial poison. Do you have a taste for lobster rolls? Well Manna Food truck has you covered. Or maybe you’re a vegan? Great – Mobite Café is here for you with open arms. Are you a true perogies pounding Clevelander? Head on down to the Pierogi Lady … you get the idea. Doughnuts, dinners and desserts oh my! Eat my friends, eat! I recommend making a stop at Mobite Cafe - you’ll be hard-pressed to find better tasting vegan food - in fact you probably won’t believe it is vegan! Be sure to peep the website as the food vendors change much like the seasons.
Step 4 - Play a Game
There are far few things more satisfying in life than beating your best friend in a game they challenged you to play – that’s the spirit of the underdog manifesting itself. One of the reasons the Food Flea separates itself from other brunches in town is they have a heavy focus on games – and I mean a HEAVY focus. Feel like showing the family what it’s like to spike a volleyball off your neighbor’s face? The Food Flea has you covered. Want to brush up on those ping pong skills to win over your secret lover? Why not, Food Flea has you covered. Do you want to become a Jenga warrior that will go down in the annals of history? Then you can challenge me to a game. It’s games people! Who doesn’t love kindling the competitive spirit from time to time? I know – boring people.
Step 5 - Listen to Music and Relax
What’s better in life than hearing a live band, with warm food, cold drinks, under the sun with your best friends? Not much right? (Well maybe winning the lottery could be better) The Food Flea has a knack for booking stellar bands that are wildly smooth & soulful. During my time at this Flea I was overwhelmingly impressed with The Ohio Weather Band & Jul Big Green. Sincerely, the show they put on was worth more than the price of admission – (which is $1) you’re getting a deal every time you walk into the Flea – trust. The music will take you away and you just may find yourself standing and applauding. Yay.
Step 6 - Repeat Steps 2 Thru 5
Folks – the Food Flea takes place Sunday late morning through late afternoon once a month – what else can you possibly have going on? Bed? A true brunch fanatic will repeat steps 2 thru 5 in an attempt to maximize their experience. The Flea is held at an outdoor venue that possesses a new school charm. Enjoy yourself, have fun and make memories. Hell, makes some new friends too while you’re at it – life’s too short to stay in your bubble.
Step 7 - Leave with a Smile on Your Face
The day is done, and you’ll probably be tired from having much, much fun.
You just completed brunch – you rock! Go you. Now, for a nap... and then more Food Flea!
Brunch is better when we're together. Join us for the next Food Flea.