Food. That always becomes the source of concern when we travel. We don’t like fast food, deep fried food or just plain unhealthy food, so we have to search, and search we do. Before I left I had spent time on the web trying to find some really good places for us. We don’t normally like chain restaurants because they lack good quality taste and they lack nutrition. The first day we were having such a good time in the park we decided to try something just outside the gates and hopefully not too heavy. Heavy never works when you are riding rides all day long. We ended up at Famous Daves, which we didn’t know at the time was a chain restaurant. I ordered a salad, which wasn’t bad, it was all ice berg lettuce (see I’m even a salad snob) and it had a BBQ dressing on it that I was not real fond of. But since it was a BBQ restaurant that is what they had. Everyone else got hamburgers and fries. The Hamburgers were greasy and the BBQ sauce was real thick. I don’t think anyone finished their meals. The kids each got pops and we had water. The meal cost us $48.00. It was a huge disappointment.
We decided for dinner that we would try a restaurant that I had found online. It’s called Red Gables and it’s just a few short miles from the park entrance. It was not a chain and the food was amazing. They have a 2 pork chop special, which my husband and I got and split. My daughter got the crab cake dinner. (We are from Oregon and I try those everywhere we go, and those are by far the best crab cakes I have ever had. Lots a crab and just a little breading.) My son got the 4 cheese pasta. Each meal came with salad and 2 sides. Which means we ended up with 3 salads and 6 side dishes. We had so much food. We even ordered scallops (amazing) as an appetizer and the kids had drinks and we had beers with our meal. I know, it’s definitely a wine meal, but I was craving a beer. My daughter said it was the best restaurant that she had ever been too. The whole meal cost us $90. We got amazing quality food and we got superb service on which we chose to leave a great tip.
Ok, I know what you are thinking. That was by no means a bargain meal. I agree 100%. But we chose to cut corners in other ways. We had a fridge in our room. We started by bringing cereal that would last us the whole time. So when we got there we bought milk, I had packed spoons and we ate out of the cups in the room. So breakfast was cheap and it’s what we all enjoy eating for breakfast. For lunch (because we didn’t want more bad expensive food from and around the park) we chose to go to the grocery store and we bought cheese, crackers, fruits, plus we already had nuts, bars and dessert that we had brought along. So everyday we would leave the park go to our room and eat a snack that would hold us until we left for a great dinner.
The second night that we ventured out we went to Lymans Harbor and ate a very good meal there too. It too was not a chain, they pride themselves in their perch, which was great. It is across the harbor from Cedar Point. So again just minutes from the entrance and plenty of places to sit, quick service, good service and out the door feeling great.
The funny thing was both nights we would go back and pass the TGIFridays and there would be a line out the door, people would be grumpy and they would end up paying just about what we paid. Only our experience was pleasant.
The last night we were there we decided to go easy on the budget and we ordered Pizza. The Red Gables has a pizza place next door so we thought we would give it a try. That meal cost us $15. HINT: You can go into the nice side of Red Gables and order a great meal and they will let the kids order a pizza from the other side if nothing on the menu is to their liking. LOVE THIS PLACE!!