Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Special Request: At Cleveland-Heath 'You Have to Try These' Brussels Sprouts

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Special Request: At Cleveland-Heath 'You Have to Try These' Brussels Sprouts

Article excerpt

Q * I'm no fan of Brussels sprouts, but our server at Cleveland- Heath in Edwardsville was right; they are so good! Even devoted haters will turn into Brussels sprouts lovers. Shelley Hutchinson, Alton

A * Cleveland-Heath feels like a chic but unpretentious neighborhood spot. Even at lunch, especially on Fridays and during the holidays, light and festivity fill the restaurant. "People have a good time here. It's warm, it's homey, it's fun," says co-owner Jenny Cleveland.

Back in 2011, Cleveland and partner Eric "Ed" Heath left successful careers in the California restaurant scene to open their restaurant not far from Cleveland's hometown of Bethalto. Ever since, it's gathered awards, acclaim and the reputation as a destination restaurant. Cleveland says that four historic districts make Edwardsville its own special destination. "The historic homes are decorated so pretty for Christmas. This time of year, especially, people come from all over." The restaurant doesn't take reservations, so regulars, she says, know to arrive during the week, during the day.

Even Cleveland-Heath's Brussels sprouts have become a destination. In December, orders go through the roof, one table exhorting the next, "You have to try these." Cleveland says, "It's our third year, so now people come back just for the Brussels sprouts."

Heath says that the top-seller happened half by accident. "We wanted a staple Brussels sprouts dish. Once we paired them with our lemon vinaigrette, that was it." For a while, the kitchen blanched the sprouts but then nixed that extra step. The texture you want, he says, is an "almost underdone core with a crispy, caramel-y outside."

Special Request is written by Town and Country resident Alanna Kellogg, author of the online recipe column KitchenParade.com and "veggie evangelist" at the food blog about vegetables, A Veggie Venture.

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CLEVELAND-HEATH

106 North Main Street, Edwardsville

618-307-4830; clevelandheath. …

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