The Patio
 Lakeside, Ohio         Date of Visit  06/24-25/12  
         No Known Website

Again, in a partial effort at transparency, you should know that any place associated with Lakeside or the Sandusky area will be mired in nostalgia. Every trip to the lake stirs rumblings of dozens of summer childhood trips to a place that will forever remain stained in my mind in a way that defies reality. I am still surprised every time I see familiar sights, as I remember them larger, freer and more magical. The sense of magic has not been extinguished in the area but some of it has been diminished in me. Some things remain, some are different, some are gone, some are new…time marches on, even at Lakeside. I will do my best to be aware of and control my emotional and irrational connection to the past.



The Actual Patio. Inside Lunch/Dinner. Outside Doughnuts and Ice Cream

The Patio is a fixture that I remember being inside the gates of Lakeside as long as I have been coming here. The only places preceding it are Abagail’s Tea Room which I was disappointed to learn was gone and the restaurant at the hotel which has so far survived periodically bumpy years. The Patio still stands. Our first visit was for breakfast as suggested by my brother who won’t be able to get to the lake until we are gone. It was a good suggestion.

On the patio at the Patio they have been trading in specific morning pastries since before I can remember. They make fresh cake doughnuts which have resulted in a brisk morning trade. While folks inside were breaking fast with more traditional fare we ordered four fried nuggets, vanilla, chocolate, peanut and cinnamon sugar.

The glazes and toppings are all fine and dandy. What makes the doughnut here is the doughnut.




I Didn't Try The Cinnamon. I Almost Didn't Get A Picture Of It

Fresh out of the vat, hot, greasy (in a strangely good way) and since they are cake instead of yeast raised versions the sweet pastries, the glazes sink deftly through the crispy exterior and into the warm spongy interior of the treats. All three that I tried were easily worth the walk down to the lake and the additional walking that would be required to work them off…I didn’t get a chance to try the cinnamon sugar…I barely managed to get a picture of it…yeah, they’re that good.

We returned to the Patio late the next night to sample some of their other quick turnaround product that is a specialty of the window at the patio more than the regular sit down restaurant. Morning = doughnuts : evening = ice cream. They feature the local Toft’s flavors and we took a couple of cones to a table on the patio close to where the doughnuts had disappeared. Mom had the java chip with coffee ice cream and espresso flavored chocolate chunks. I had the caveman chocolate with chocolate fudge and fudge filled chocolate bits in dark chocolate ice cream. My taste buds were singing Memories from Cats, recalling decades of summers of ice cream at The Patio.


Toft's Java Chunk...

...And Caveman Chocolate

Our last trip was for dinner following the infinite disappointment of chickenless Berry’s for lunch. Our first trip into the actual restaurant was just after the evening program started at Hoover auditorium and the diners were sparse. I went with a perfectly standard perch sandwich and fries. Mom wasn’t looking for much and had settled on the soup only to find they were out. Big day of disappointment for Mother Dear. Hopefully her actual birthday will go better. I have great respect for her method of solace. Some choose alcohol, some heroin, some just become bitter angry customers that berate those in hospitality for not exceeding their every unspoken whim…Mom went with pie. For dinner she had a healthy slice of blackberry pie with a small iceberg of Toft’s Vanilla cresting the crust. While it had a mealy crust (I prefer flaky on fruit pies) it was tasty, and comforting for both of us. It reminded me of the many slices devoured at the now absent Abagail’s Tea Room. It was nice over a few days that many things came to an end to enjoy some new ones with loved ones.

My Dinner

Mom's Dinner

What follows doughnuts at the Lake? Just the Lake and a little espresso.





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