Alesci'sIn the 1950s, the Italian residents of Little Italy began moving eastward, to South Euclid and Mayfield Heights, among other suburbs. Alesci's, in South Euclid, opened in 1957, a reflection of these new eastside residents. The huge, 7,000-square foot store is still going strong and offers a wide selection of prepared foods as well as cured meats, cheeses, house-made breads and pastries, and a myriad of Italian canned and jarred goods. They also make and sell their own pasta sauces. If it's Italian, and it's food, you'll find it at Alesci's.
4333 Mayfield Rd.
South Euclid, OH
This Middle Eastern market on Lorain Avenue is spacious, aromatic, and friendly. They stock all things Middle Eastern, from pomegranate juice to olives to freshly-baked pastries. There are grains, breads, meats (slaughtered according to Islamic guidelines), and a large variety of spices and nuts.
11550 Lorain Ave.
Athens Pastries and Imported FoodsThough they've moved from the shadow of the West Side Market, Athens Pastries and Imported Foods is still the wonderful food emporium you remember. Just walking in the store is a treat, as you are met with exotic and heady aromas. The market carries everything from freshly-baked pastries to meats and cheese -- including five different kinds of feta. There are aisles of Greek canned and jarred goods as well as wine, tea, grains, and spices. You'll even find Greek music and serving vessels--everything you'll need for a Mediterranean feast.
Athens Pastries & Imported Foods
5120 Pearl Road
Cleveland, OH 44129
La Borincana FoodsThis is one of the first ethnic markets that I discovered in Cleveland and it's still one of my favorites. The music, aromas, and friendly atmosphere that greets you at this family-run shop at the edge of Ohio City is like a quick trip south-of-the-border. They stock foodstuffs from all over the Caribbean, Central America, and South America. You'll find different kinds of chorizo sausage, masa harina to make your own tortillas, dried corn husks for making tamales as well as a diverse selection of produce.
2127 Fulton Rd.
Charles Peters Bake ShopLocated along Turney Road, just south of the Mills Creek development, Charles Peters Bake Shop has been serving Eastern European pastries, breads, and pies since 1929. Their party trays of cookies and brownies are one of the best--and tastiest--values in town. During the weeks preceding Lent, they offer Paczki (Polish filled donuts). Other highlights include strudel, kuchen, and Polish sweet bread.
Charles Peters Bake Shop
4608 Turney Rd.
Garfield Heights, OH
The family-owned bakery is known for its traditional cassata cakes, a yellow cake with strawberry filling between the layers). Also available are cookies, pies, pepperoni bread, and other goodies.
12210 Mayfield Rd.
The last survivor of over twenty bakeries that once thrived in the neighborhood, Gertrude Bakery is the quintessential corner bakery. Immaculate display cases surround you, packed with cookies, breads, doughnuts, cakes, and rolls. All offerings are tasty and affordable, so feel free to indulge.
6506 Gertrude Ave.
Cleveland, OH 44105
6610 Euclid Ave.
Cleveland, OH 44103
Hansa Import HausAnother Ohio City market located in the shadow of the West Side Market, Hansa Import Haus offers all things German, with a smattering of Swiss and Austrian goods. Here you'll find cold cuts, sausages, rows and rows of jams and jellies, baked goods, chocolate, and non-food items, such as beer steins, German language magazines, nutcrackers, and German music.
Hansa Import Haus
2717 Lorain Ave.
18828 Sloane Ave.
Lakewood, OH 44107