Wednesday, June 25, 2014
A Cleveland Classic
Sitting alone in Prosperity Social Club waiting for a friend to arrive, I had time to pose myself a question: What do I love about this place? Quite simply — everything. But for those who'd prefer a more detailed catalog of particulars that make this Tremont bar and restaurant appealing, here's the list I jotted down until my companion showed up:
- The genuine, scuffed-up, been-here-a-long-time authenticity that no interior designer can create.
- The vintage beer signs and the recreation room-style paneled walls they hang on.
- The worn and well-used wooden chairs.
- The long bar rubbed to a sheen by countless elbows and even more swipes with a damp cloth.
- The funky arcade games.
- The unpretentious mix of people that tend to congregate here — though there are always those who work hard at appearing hip, there are more that just work hard.
- The good things to eat and drink, with options that can be healthy or not, comfort or creative, heavy or light.
- Its house-made potato chips, build-your-own mac 'n' cheese, stuffed cabbage and pierogies.
- The friendly greetings that don't include the servers name. (Establishments that train their people to come to the table and interrupt your conversation with a, "Hi, my name is Ashley and I'll be your server tonight," should rethink this silly practice. It always makes me want to say, "Hi, I'm Laura and I'll be your customer.")
- Its great happy hour deals.
Once there were two of us, I gave up musing on the assets and focused on enjoying them. We had a really outstanding summer cocktail — a combination of Pimms and ginger beer — a Greek salad, roasted vegetable empanadas, and a pound of mussels in a buttery, garlicky white wine broth so good that it was necessary to get a second order. There were no leftovers.
In a perfect world, Prosperity would be on the East Side, closer to where I live. Otherwise I wouldn't change a thing about this spot, where drafts have been pulled and shots have been tossed back since 1938.