Fizzy Lifting Drinks

A day exploring the Lake Erie communities landed us in Vermilion at lunchtime.  In all my years in Northeast Ohio, I had only been to the city once, years before.  Needless to say I didn’t know much about the area.

Driving Lake Road took us into the heart of town.  Our curiosity raised as we saw little antique stores and mom and pop shops.  We pulled off and walked along some restaurants for a closer look.  Then we saw it.  Big Ed’s Main Street Soda Grill.

IMG_0331Antique bottles decorated the long, tall wood shelves that must have once served in a pharmacy.  On the other wall, past the cooler filled with ice cream, stood the soda counter where the servers made up the magical elixirs.  By look, we knew we had the right place, perfect for a Lake Erie beach town.

Being a soda shop, I had my heart set on a tall chocolate malt.  That changed when I saw it…the egg cream.  Something I’ve picked up from trips to Brooklyn, I’ve had to settle with making my own at home.  I didn’t think they were well-known enough that I’d find a place serving them around Cleveland.

IMG_0327Tasting the egg cream, I realized my version had never been too far off.  Chocolate milk with a mix of metallic tang, and a fizz at the end.  Lucky for me, my wife got the malt and let me have a sip.  Win-win.

Staying in a Brooklyn state of mind, I ordered the Coney burger, a hamburger covered in chili sauce, onions, and shredded cheddar.  The burger had good flavor, although it overpowered the chili sauce.  A little more chili flavor would have been good.  A sip of egg cream blended well, savory and sweet all together.

IMG_0330Why soda shops fizzed out in the first place, I don’t know.  Malts, egg creams, floats, all of them done right, all some of the best parts of summer.  Especially in a beach town like Vermilion.


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