Ohio City, the neighborhood surrounding Cleveland’s famed West Side Market, boasts its fair share of fabulous food options, and working in the area presents ample opportunity to sample the variety of foods available to food lovers unafraid of exploring this side of town.
So when a friend called mid-morning to suggest a lunch excursion to The Souper Market, on Lorain Avenue, across from the West Side Market, I jumped at the chance!
The Fabulous Souper Market is a tiny place with only a small counter to eat at – no tables. But their soup selection more than makes up for the lack of space inside!
First of all, every day they have two or three seasonal soups, in addition to about ten homemade soup selections, with about half vegetarian options. Soups like butternut squash and apple, corn chowder, pulled chicken noodle, jambalaya, and the famed mulligatawny.
Their salad menu is just as creative and fabulous as their soup! My favorite so far is the season’s greens salad, with nice fresh romane, tiny sweet cherry tomatoes and fantastic goat cheese, topped off with the most fantastic homemade lemon vinaigrette I’ve ever had. The asparagus salad is similarly fantastic, with fantastic slivers of parmesan and another yummy salad dressing to top it off.
I had never even heard of mulligatawny before, and I have been craving it since I tasted it a few weeks ago. This savory yellowy-green soup is an enchanting mix of ginger, coconut milk, curry, cumin, and tamarind, with potato, green lentils, and a little magic besides. A google search revealed that mulligatawny was made famous by Seinfeld, when Kramer mentioned that it was his favorite of the Soup Nazi’s soups.
Serendipitously, a visit to The Souper Market also yields another benefit. Aside from being right next door to a cool urban park at Lorain and West 25th Street, it is a few doors down from a fantastic old barber shop. When I go past, you can peek into the windows and glimpse the barbers busily at work tending to the men seated in two long rows of barber chairs, reading the newspaper and trading banter with one another, white towels draped around their necks, their faces reflected in the mirrors that I’m sure have lined the walls for generations.