New Restaurant in Solon – Again

Salt Fork Kitchen
Salt Fork Kitchen

SOLON— While stopping in town to pick up a gallon of milk, I spotted something in the door of the restaurant previously known as Reggie’s Weenies. Salt Fork Kitchen, hoping to be open Sept. 1.

I checked with the Secretary of State, and Eric Menzel of Sutliff Road near here registered Salt Fork Kitchen, LLC. on July 8. It’s hard to read the sign, but it looks like they intend to compete in the breakfast business, cater and make other food related offerings.

A quick Internet search revealed the following by Pascale Brevet in The Atlantic:

I met Eric Menzel, a doctor of anthropology in his thirties who turned to farming because he couldn’t find the high quality of food he was looking for. Eric helps Bill (Ellison) on the farm and gets to use part of Lois’s (Pavelka) historic farmland in exchange. He organically raises chickens for eggs and meat, and in season he cultivates a vegetable garden. He sells at the nearby farmers’ markets and supplies restaurants. Eric worked as a chef for many years to help pay for his studies. He loves food and experiments with Bill and Lois’s cows’ milk. I tried one of his fresh cheeses. Similar to a ricotta, it had a slight tanginess nicely offsetting the richness of whole milk. The creamy yet pungent Camembert-like cheese I tried on my second visit was delicious too, and it made me nostalgic for France.

Whether the town of Solon, population 2,037, can support three new restaurants is an open question. The Dock recently took over existing space in a strip mall on Windflower Lane and turned it into a white tablecloth place with resident mixologist, Mick Malloy. The Dock is open now. Big Grove Brewery started brewing their first beer this week and brought executive chef, Ben Smart from The Herbfarm outside of Seattle, Wash. The Herbfarm was one of the first restaurants in America to focus on regional foods from local sources, and is widely considered one of the top 50 restaurants in the U.S. They also brought Doug Goettsch from the Culinary Institute of America in Napa Valley, Calif. With all of this talent, the food in town is expected to be good.

Here’s to the prospect of excellent dining during the coming months. I hope they aren’t relying on our family’s once per month eating out habits to survive.