time well spent on e 4th

After hearing about Corner Alley for a year or so, we finally made it there tonight for a work outing (bowled two games, neither score worth mentioning). As far as bowling alleys go, this one is up there – granted my knowledge of alleys now includes two, Freeway Lanes in Solon and now this one.

This upscale alley is a mix of lanes, obviously, pool tables and a full-service martini bar and restaurant. There is plenty of seating, flat screens, great music (Feist, Kings of Leon, The Killers), contemporary decor and a fairly high-energy crowd. It’s a perfect addition to downtown and something I wish was around when I lived there. Who doesn’t like to bowl? Apparently many Clevelanders do because I’m told there is a month waiting list to reserve lanes and up to three months for millionaires’ row, the plush VIP section that fits 100.

After I lost two bets to my overly giddy husband and two games, we made a quick stop into The Greenhouse Tavern for their social media and industry bash, the last preview in a series of three before the Sawyers open to the public on the 14th.

Unfortunately, we could only stay for a half hour before we had to get home and relieve the babysitter (grandma). But it was a packed 30 minutes. We chatted with chef Eric Williams over at Momocho who shared a cute story about his son, Jackson (apparently his son thinks his dad owns every restaurant), our friends Heidi Robb (check out her new site), Martin with Erie Island Coffee, Kyle Roth and his wife, Erika, of course Jonathon, Amelia and Everest, and finally, Michael Ruhlman, whom I finally had the pleasure of meeting as we waited for the car.

On our way out, we picked up take out from Saigon. Nothing crazy just the pho tai nam (beef and brisket) and spring rolls. The pho was wonderfully seasoned and aromatic. The rolls were typical – good, but nothing overly memorable. And although I was only in for a quick minute, the space appears to be a good balance of sophistication and warmth with dramatic lights, bamboo dividers and tables in the window for good people watching.

As we walked down the street, the majority of restaurants and bars had the patio furniture front and center and ready for warm Cleveland nights. Too bad the beautiful weather from today can’t carry over for the home opener tomorrow and the large mass of people that will surely line the street throughout the day.


  1. Bite Buff
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 11:05 am | Permalink

    Good to hear that the Sawyers are doing such a great job of promoting the restaurant before the grand opening- they are really causing quite a buzz! Glad the food sounds like it will live up to his reputation and the hype. Can’t wait to try it for myself!

  2. erika
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

    So happy to finally meet you last night. Looking forward to seeing you again!

  3. michelle v
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

    Same here, Erika! Wish we could have stayed and chatted longer. Looking forward to dinner!

  4. Katie
    Posted April 13, 2009 at 11:12 am | Permalink

    I can’t wait for GHT to open. We will be there soon to celebrate my hubby’s birthday.

    I was at the Corner Alley a few weeks ago (when the Mac bball tourny was in town – I met an old coworker who was in town for the games) and was underwhelmed. I have no doubt that as a bar and bolwing alley it’s fantastic but the restaurant side was lacking. We arrived around 8 on a Saturday and were told it was an hour wait for a table for 2 and gave our name. We got drinks at the bar and walked around forever before a bar-table opened up for us to sit and chat. We were in sight and earshot of the door and watched THREE seperate couples walk in and get seated immediately without reservations! We were both very angry and the hostess seemed totally clueless. Then, we ordered a few apps instead of a entrees and were later told we had to leave the restaurant area unless we were ordering a meal. I was not impressed and doubt I’d go back unless it was to roll the ball.