This week we spent Thursday afternoon hanging out and exploring Cleveland’s Little Italy. We had been there just twice before but, honestly it is not somewhere we go very often. We had a delightful and relaxing afternoon celebrating our wedding anniversary.
We started with lunch at Trattoria Roman Garden. Trattoria is one of the many great Italian restaurants in Cleveland’s Little Italy. When we first moved here, we ate at Angelos Nido Italia, which we loved! And later we went with some friends to Mama Santa’s. At Trattoria we had a Calamari appetizer and then split a Caprese salad and Eggplant Parmigiano. It was a delightful meal with friendly service.
Dessert & Coffee
We then visited Presti’s Bakery! In the past we had always gone to Corbo’s Bakery and loved it. But this afternoon was all about doing things we had never done before, so we went to Presti’s, plus I have always heard such great things about them. We were not disappointed! My husband and I both love sweets. We got three desserts and split them: a Napolean, a chocolate covered Cannoli and a Lemon bar, along with some coffee. WOW! All three were awesome.
Presti’s was very busy. So busy you have to take a number. We had a problem finding the number dispenser, as we passed it when we first walked in, drawn in by all the amazing sights and smells. It is on the left, on a pole, when you walk in the front door.
Holy Rosary Church
We wanted to check out the inside of the Holy Rosary Church as we love seeing historic churches. When we tried the front doors they were locked. But later we learned that if you go to the Administration building on the left of the church, ring the buzzer and ask nicely, if they are available, they will let you inside for a look and to take pictures. In fact, it was Father Joseph Previte who showed us around.
The church was the second Italian parish in Cleveland, established in 1892 to serve the Italian immigrants who made Little Italy their home. The building itself was dedicated in 1909. We were very grateful to get a look inside.
Italian American Museum of Cleveland
Our final stop was the Italian American Museum of Cleveland. This is one of Cleveland’s newest museums and I have been wanting to check it our for some time. The museum is free and their hours vary. At the time of this post, they are open Wednesdays – Fridays from 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm. Other times can be made by appointment.
The museum is small but there was a lot to explore. It looks at the rich history of Cleveland’s Little Italy, its people, the businesses and faith. Many of the Italians that settled here were stone carvers and worked in Lake View Cemetery and on Guardian statues on the (now) Hope Memorial Bridge.
What We Do
Tours of Cleveland, LLC offers year round, exciting and educational walking tours of beautiful and historic downtown Cleveland. Currently (summer of 2023) we have our Downtown Highlights, Cleveland From the Inside and the Downtown Public Art walking tours. Learn more, see our schedule and book your tour at www.toursofcleveland.com.