Cleveland Eats will be back in 2019, organizers say

October 1, 2018 GMT

Cleveland Eats will be back in 2019, organizers say

CLEVELAND, Ohio – The second installment of Cleveland Eats proved a success, prompting organizers to say it will return in 2019.

The one-day festival, which aims to promote the work of Cuyahoga Community College’s Hospitality Management Center, approached 7,000 attendees, organizers said. The 2017 fest drew 8,000, but that included those who attended a separate Friday-night kickoff event.

“We had a push that came in earlier,” said Michael Huff, the center’s dean. “There was activity by 12:30, 1. The place already had a vibe going.”

In particular, the 10-hour fest packed in attendees for the chef-demo tent, with foodies watching the likes of Brandon Chrostowski (Edwin’s), Douglas Katz (fire food and drink) and others cook and chat in a kitchen constructed at the north end of the grounds. Bands played at the south end, a kids tent remained busy, and chefs from all over Greater Cleveland served nibbles in food stations throughout the grassy space.


Huff said it is too early to discuss specific changes or tweaks to the 2019 event, but said the late-summer food fest will return. No date is set, though it was held in mid-September both years on Mall B downtown.

“We will continue to have a focus on the culinary demonstrations,” said Huff, adding the singular small plates probably also will remain intact.

He said faculty and the culinary council will meet to consider resetting the festival’s direction “with refinements for next year.” That council is composed of 19 area chefs who came together to guide the festival. Their support is critical; the center’s mission is aligned with area restaurants, who must rely on trained students and individuals entering the workplace.

Ironically, the NPD Group, a market-research shopping firm, said last month Americans are eating out less frequently. The decrease is the biggest drop in almost 30 years, and is due in part to mailed prepared-meal kits and grocery-delivery services making culinary inroads.

You wouldn’t know it from Greater Cleveland’s restaurant scene, with local chains like Melt Bar and Grilled refurbishing locations and new ones popping up all over. The Pinecrest development in Orange Village has several restaurants that opened this year, and more are on the way.

Previous coverage of Cleveland Eats

2018 Cleveland Eats sights, sounds – Sept. 15, 2018

Cooking demos scheduled - Sept. 13, 2018

Restaurant list released - Aug. 3, 2018

Bands schedule announced for fest - July 10, 2018

19 chefs named to culinary council - April 27, 2018

Cleveland Eats to return - March 9, 2018

Fest goes for world pierogi record - Sept. 7, 2017

2017 fest held - Sept. 26, 2017