Toledo Talk

TT Foodies and/or Restaurant Aficionados Group?

I have been following TT for quite some time, and I am always interested in the groups’ positive reviews of Locally Owned and Operated restaurants.

I always wondered if there was anyone else like me on here, that for whatever reasons, would like to go out and eat and experience these fine establishments, financially able to, but just unable to (realistically “tired of”) doing it alone.

I am 46, single male, I work 3rd shift (which really hinders maintaining a “normal” social group.) I don’t consider myself a foodie, because anything not cooked by myself, Taco Bell, McDonald's and Burger King will always be absolutely delicious (ok, there are some exceptions). I would PREFER to spend the dollars I spend on fast food establishments on our locally owned restaurants.

I’m not interested in dating or finding a best friend. In my perfect world, it would be great to do this as a group of 4-6 people; a simple introduction with no reason to share or ask personal information. With permission, I would take some pictures of the food (NOT of the group) when it’s served; for posting to my Facebook page. Might as well try and help promote these businesses while we’re at it and keep them in business!

Conversations I am interested in discussing during these meet-ups will be related to Greater Toledo or just about anything business related. I am interested in gaining positive perspectives about the area from others. I have concluded that my personal opinions are truly tainted by my own personal experiences, and the glimmer of hope/optimism I am yearning for may in fact be obscured by the smoke left over from the fire I was burnt by.

I’m not exactly sure if this request is a great forum for couples, but if a couple can maintain an interest in the topic, why not? Not looking for “experts” per se looking for combative conversations, but normal people with honest opinions and can maintain something that resembles an open mind when others with a different viewpoint speak their minds. . I will not tolerate rude, crude and obnoxious behavior, and if you dish it out, I will respond in kind. Polite and civilized conversations only!

Depending on the interest of this idea, I will consider multiple groups, meeting at different times and places. Those that wish to continue meeting on a continuous basis (bi-weekly or monthly) let your thoughts be known.

Fair warning, I don’t make a good 1st impression, however, once conversation starts I am easy to get along with, passionate about intelligent conversation concerning Greater Toledo and Business and Economic Development, and have always been complimented on my unique dry sense of humor.

Well, I threw it out there, your thoughts?

created by GTVT on Feb 14, 2013 at 04:01:20 am     Food     Comments: 28

source      versions      1 person liked this

Comments ... #

"Hungry in Seattle."

Just kidding.
Love food. Good luck.

posted by justread on Feb 14, 2013 at 06:49:57 am     #  

I'd be interested... My schedule is fairly flexible and there are a lot of places people have mentioned that I'd like to try.

When hubby travels, my idea of dinner is popcorn and maybe a piece of fruit. Cooking for 1 isn't much fun for me, so I'd enjoy trying some of the recommended places as an excuse for a meal out with good conversation.

Let me know!

posted by MaggieThurber on Feb 14, 2013 at 09:33:23 am     #  

I'd be interested too. I would want to join the group with both my husband and a girlfriend who wants to launch a new career as a cook / caterer. As Maggie said, there are several places discussed here that I am interested in trying. This would give me the prefect reason to explore places outside of my neighborhood. I'll be looking for your updates. Thanks for asking.

posted by JnJ on Feb 14, 2013 at 09:43:00 am     #  

definitely interested! please let us know the next time this happens!

posted by upso on Feb 14, 2013 at 10:26:41 am     #  

Awesome! It looks as though there is some interest. Looks like we may have our 1st group of 4, and thank you for responding!

The inaugural meeting is tentatively scheduled for the week of March 17th. Is that too much or not enough lead time for everyone posted above this? I am interested in thoughts about preferences to weeknights or Fridays & Saturdays, and best times.

For the record, I have NOT done anything like this before. I have contemplated this idea for over a year (I have seen it mentioned here as a larger group event), but thought for my purposes (not really comfortable with just meeting 1 other person), a smaller venue may be the answer.

I think before the list gets out of hand, I would like to offer my e-mail address: skfsteveskf@bexDOTnet (please remove the DOT and put a period in its place) and in the e-mail header put “TT ‘s Restaurant Aficionados Group”. You don’t have to use it if you don’t want to, but it’s there if you need it.

I will come up with a bucket list of recently mentioned restaurants, and will figure out a way to either post their menus or provide a link to them. Restaurant suggestions are always welcome!

I think that in order to be as inclusive as possible, I am asking those willing to participate to consider either posting or e-mailing a price per plate average & price never to exceed point that you are comfortable with. Something to consider if enough people are interested and multiple groups are organized, I can tailor groups to price points. I know I may be over thinking this, I just don’t want to leave anyone out that would be interested.

Thanks Again TT’ers!

posted by GTVT on Feb 14, 2013 at 11:25:25 am     #  

GTVT - I think you've got a good start on a plan. I'm wondering if you want to exclude any places due to price point. Thinking that there are enough choices to fit every price point and preference.

I will send you an email - looking forward to the group!

posted by MaggieThurber on Feb 14, 2013 at 10:03:47 pm     #  

If price is not a major concern, then consider the next Registry Bistro Wine Dinner that is scheduled for Monday evening, March 4.

posted by jr on Feb 14, 2013 at 10:22:10 pm     #  

With the e-mail response I have received, I am asking all the responders above to check there calendars for Wednesday March 20th, with a possible start time of 6:30pm.

Mrs. Thurber: I myself have been eyeing Element 112 ($125 per plate private dinner for up to 12 people) I have NEVER spent this much on dinner, but at 46, would like to splurge once in my life to see what the food tastes like at this level. So I am working on a incentive (Virtual Tour Package) to offer them, in exchange for a modest reduction in the price per plate. If this incentive works, it could be a gateway into other "Fine Restaurants" for the group at a reduced rate. I have some other idea's to sweeten the pot, but I have to go to work.

You are correct about the choices, but I may need a hand selecting them. After going though TT's own JR's restaurant thread, I have only been to 8 restaurants. :-( Pathetic I know!

Here is my short list:
Element 112 -
Registry Bistro -
Gradkowski’s -
Bar 145 -
Forresters on the river - No website yet, but if we choose this one, I will stop in and get a menu to post.
Mac & Tong's -
Swig -
LaScola's Italian Grille -
Inky's -

This is the list of restaurants I have been to and the frequency I visit them, just to give you an idea of how limited my knowledge is:
Kim's Oriental Market - Usually bi-weekly. Served 2 tours in Korea and addicted to Korean food!
City Q BBQ - Monthly
Koreana Restaurant - once, and will return
Deets BBQ - once, and will return
Burger Bar 419 - 3 times
Table Forty 4 - once
QQ's Kitchen - once, and will return
San Marcos - once, and will return

posted by GTVT on Feb 14, 2013 at 11:02:48 pm     #  

This is plan is coming together nicely. I like the approx. 1 month advanced notice. From your list I already see a bonus. You are a Korean food expert and I've never been to a Korean restaurant before. Maybe because my first Vietnamese experience didn't turn out so well. I went to the Vietnamese place on Airport Hwy and wound up ordering 2 bowls of soup for myself. I will email you soon. Great job!

posted by JnJ on Feb 15, 2013 at 10:04:28 am     #  

Very interesting and great idea!

posted by cmb on Feb 15, 2013 at 11:30:03 am     #  

Our 1st event is Wednesday, March 20th @ 7:00pm. The time was changed to accommodate more people because of work and travel times.

The Restaurant Selected IS...

1440 Secor Rd Ste R,
Toledo, OH.
(419) 725-2836

Menu Links Posted Below

Please Note: on groups of 8 or more, there is a mandatory gratuity of 20% added to each ticket.

posted by GTVT on Feb 18, 2013 at 01:46:46 pm     #  


Please let me know if you are interested in attending. I have a table for 8 reserved, and they will accommodate larger groups as needed.

Please let me know by Mar 16th if you are willing to join us.

Thank You

posted by GTVT on Feb 18, 2013 at 01:49:55 pm     #  

I'm in!

posted by upso on Feb 18, 2013 at 03:00:17 pm     #  

I will be in Florida then but would love to be included in future gatherings!

posted by shamrock44 on Feb 19, 2013 at 01:39:31 am     #  

1 week away and I am looking for a final headcount so I can reserve enough spaces. For those interested, please let me know if you are still interested, and if you are, how many people will be coming with you. Thank You!


Our 1st event is Wednesday, March 20th @ 7:00pm. The time was changed to accommodate more people because of work and travel times.

The Restaurant Selected IS...

1440 Secor Rd Ste R,
Toledo, OH.
(419) 725-2836

Menu Links Posted Below

Please Note: on groups of 8 or more, there is a mandatory gratuity of 20% added to each ticket.

posted by GTVT on Mar 13, 2013 at 01:43:02 am     #  

We are looking forward to Wednesday's get together. Please count us in for 2.

posted by JnJ on Mar 13, 2013 at 08:43:40 am     #  

I'm looking forward to this dinner. We checked out Gradkowskis a couple of weeks ago and enjoyed ourselves. Do we have an official list of attendees at this point?

posted by upso on Mar 13, 2013 at 09:25:13 pm     #  

As of now, the headcount is 8 (3 couples, 2 singles), and waiting for a response from Chris that E-Mailed his interest in attending. 2 couples interested in the concept are out of town for this one.

Noticing that most of the respondents replied via e-mail and not on here, I am going to respect their decision to remain anonymous, just in case there is a reason they chose NOT to post their intentions on here.

In my opinion, absolutely none of them have ever engaged in combative conversation or been rude on here, so I am sure it will be a good time!

posted by GTVT on Mar 14, 2013 at 07:41:12 am     #  

We had our inaugural event at Gradkowski's last night. All 8 people that said they were going to be there showed up, and what a fine group for an inaugural event. I had a great time as the evening was packed with interesting conversation. For me, I have to say it really felt good talking to people that work outside my career field.

I did suffer from what I feared most (what I call a blue collar moment) when I ordered Parmesan Crusted Salmon, but pronounced Parmesan in a manner never spoke before! The only thing that made it worse was the young lady to the left of me did try to correct me, but I didn’t listen. Please forgive me! (I think I am still blushing) Reminds me of the time in grade school when I said Ark-Kansas instead of Arkansas.

I truly enjoyed my dinner, and will definitely return, and would place it in my HIGHLY RECOMMENDED column. I do not consider myself to be a foodie, so I really don’t know how to better describe the meal.

I am in the process of creating a Facebook Page and hope to have it done this weekend.

We decided to get together more often, and planned out next event.

Next Gathering: Wednesday April 3rd 2013 @ 7pm

San Marcos Taquería & Grocery
235 Broadway St,
Toledo, OH 43604
(419) 244-2373

Menu (Please Note: this menu was posted April 5th 2011 and may NOT be up to date)

Facebook Page (Fan Page and it does not appear to be maintained recently):

Photo Gallery:

Thank YOU to all that showed up, and I had a great time!

posted by GTVT on Mar 21, 2013 at 06:18:01 pm     #   2 people liked this

We had a great time too! GTVT, thanks for coordinating the inaugural event. We look forward to the next one.

posted by JnJ on Mar 21, 2013 at 06:59:17 pm     #  

We had a blast! Thanks for the invite.

posted by upso on Mar 21, 2013 at 08:41:46 pm     #  

GTVT - my "blue collar moment" occurred in grade school, when I was reading the names of countries on a globe. When I perused the Canadian landmass, I screamed out " Look! It's a NEW
FOUND LAND!!!!!" I was so excited ... then so embarrassed. I hope to make it to your next gathering.

posted by viola on Mar 22, 2013 at 09:39:57 am     #   1 person liked this

I started a Facebook page for the group which you will find it here:

Next Gathering: Wednesday April 3rd 2013 @ 7pm

San Marcos Taquería & Grocery
235 Broadway St,
Toledo, OH 43604
(419) 244-2373

Please e-mail me at if you are interested in joining us for this event for the reservation headcount.

Thank You,

posted by GTVT on Mar 28, 2013 at 10:12:28 am     #  


posted by upso on Apr 03, 2013 at 04:51:16 pm     #  

Thank you to everyone that joined us at San Marcos Taqueria this evening. I had a great time enjoying both awesome food and conversation this evening!

Our next event is tentatively scheduled for: (I need to double check seating arrangements)

Ya Halla Restaurant (Mediterranean & American Cuisine)
2124 W. Alexis Rd
Toledo Ohio
(Between Douglas & Jackman)

The Back Up Restaurant if Ya Halla doesn’t work out:
The Beirut Lebanese & Italian Food
4082 Monroe Street
Toledo, OH 43606

Please e-mail me at or join our Facebook page at: if you are interested in joining us for this event for the reservation headcount.

Thank You,

posted by GTVT on Apr 03, 2013 at 09:24:16 pm     #   1 person liked this

If this group is interested, we are opening a fine dining restaurant nearby downtown in a historic mansion. The idea of the place is to recreate the good-life circa 1905 being served by tuxedoed butlers serving a menu of Victorian inspired dishes using all local ingredients and period ingredients and preparation techniques...hand made breads, scones, cookies, etc. And by hand-made, I mean made by hand using no electric appliances. Our menus will be daily and reflect what is seasonal, just like the menus in the great-houses of the turn-of-the-century

We are still a year out from being open daily, but we are having private events on a monthly basis and we would love it if your group came and visted us during one of those events and gave us some feedback as to how we can make the place a hit before we even open. We would like to tailor our place to local foodies and including you in our build-out phase is a part of our business plan. Come and try our food and formal service and give your input as to what things you think we could do. Ideas on menu themes, themed events, heck you can even give us some decorating advice for what types of antiques you would like to see decorating the place. If you share a recipe with us, it will be named after you on our menu.

Generally our events are either a daytime Afternoon Tea, which is a 5 course luncheon with savory sandwiches, a soup, and a tea-plate of scones and cookies and toast. Or we also have numerous 8-course dinners planned throughout the year. Our prices will be comparable to Mancy's and our 8-course dinners are around $85/person $100/with wine paired to the meal. You will have the option of opting out of individual courses for a less expensive, smaller meal if you just can't stuff 8 courses down your gullet that evening.

You can learn more about what we are doing as well as check our events schedule at

Again, we are not open yet, but weould really like local foodies input as we build-up during our events. The Afternoon tea prices generally range about $18-25/person depending on the menu. Our events are private events and we can serve no more than 115/per week at the moment until we are open. We are currently only having one event per month for up to 32 people.

I would recommend our Strawberry Social on June 22nd as a first event. Our Chef du Cuisine, Brian Miller, who is moving here from Providence, RI in August will be here preparing the menu which will be based entirely on Strawberries. Everything on that day's menu will be inspired by the delicious local fresh strawberries which will be in abundance at that time.

Hope to see you here!

posted by ONEVillageIsAwesome on May 22, 2013 at 09:17:02 am     #   4 people liked this

ONEVillageIsAwesome: Thank you for the invitation, and I will put you on the schedule. I will contact you through our Facebook page. Thanks again and can't wait!

posted by GTVT on May 22, 2013 at 09:48:21 am     #  

Sounds great! A real "Downton Abbey" type of experience. Can't wait to visit! Good luck on your venture!

posted by golddustwoman on May 25, 2013 at 10:41:04 am     #