Pre arrival of baby #2, I was trying just about everything to go into labor towards the end. Including old wives tale #24: Mexican food. This attempt took us to Lopez in Cleveland Heights, where the kitchen is now under the leadership of chef Michael Herschman.
Herschman is certainly no stranger to the area, or to Cleveland kitchens. He’s worked at his share through the years. And to this day, my favorite Herschman stint is when he owned Mojo (now Lago in Tremont). Oh how I still miss that restaurant. In my opinion, Herschman is one of our most talented chefs and worth the effort to keep tabs on his whereabouts. Which is the very reason why we went back to Lopez after a somewhat lengthy delay between visits.
And apparently we weren’t alone. The place was fairly packed for a Wednesday night. The highly coveted patio was filled, as was most of the bar and several tables inside. And shortly after being seated, we overheard nearby diners confirming our assumption as they talked about being excited that this chef was at Lopez.
Since it’s been awhile since I ate at Lopez, I’m not sure how much influence he’s had on the menu. But I do know there are at least a dozen-ish new items and we ordered a few of those. Including the watermelon and bacon salad with mint, brioche and pickled jalepeno vinaigrette and the smoked cigar app, crispy spring rolls stuffed with gooey gouda, charred corn and black beans. We also ordered the lobster tacos with house bacon and braised brisket enchiladas. And to top off our meal, a spicy beet chocolate truffle with strawberry preserve that the chef sent out.
Well, this dinner did not cause me to go into labor as originally intended. But it did leave quite the impression. Aside from the lobster tacos, which I found to be rather bland, we greatly enjoyed our meal. In fact, now that I’ve had the baby, I’m itching to go back for another helping of that salad and truffle dessert (seriously – bacon and watermelon might just be my new favorite pairing), but this time add a few mojitos. What a perfect summer night that would be!