Alison Matas writes for The Repository, covering Canton City Hall. She grew up in Kent and has worked for newspapers in New York, Missouri, West Virginia and Maryland—and she’s happy to call Stark County her new home. When she’s not writing, she’s usually rehearsing for an upcoming musical or choir concert, going for a run or attempting to cook.
One of my great joys during the pandemic has been ordering takeout food. In addition to the fact that it gets me out of the house for a minute, I think I enjoy it so much because restaurant food wasn’t something I brought home often (or really ever) before the world shut down. The whole experience feels like a big luxury for me.
North Canton has a delicious new restaurant in its premium downtown spot, and I am crossing all my fingers that it is wildly successful so I can enjoy it for years to come. The Howlin Bird opened in December at 123 S Main Street, where Main Street Grille used to be.
I love to cook, but I don’t do it consistently—especially not when I’m busy. For as many times as I’ve whipped up a quick chili and cornbread dinner, I’ve also thrown a bag of animal crackers in my purse and called it a meal.
Downtown Louisville is not a place I go frequently, but the food at Scratch Steakhouse and Lounge is so good that might change. What the interior of the steakhouse lacks in ambiance, it makes up for in big flavors.
The holidays are over, and if your refrigerator looks anything like mine, you probably have at least one extra block of cream cheese, too many eggs and a few mismatched bottles of craft beer. Great news—I found a recipe for you and your leftovers. This month’s Test Kitchen adventure is pumpkin beer pretzels with chipotle queso, courtesy of Instagram sensation Half Baked Harvest.
During last year’s lockdown, I walked a lot of miles—like, a lot—on the Ohio and Erie Canal Towpath Trail. And on days when I would get really hungry during my hike, I would gaze longingly at Bocca Grande Italian Steakhouse as I re-entered Jackson Township and I would remember all the times I had heard how delicious the food was.
Anyone who’s read About Magazine during my tenure as Test Kitchen writer knows I love a good Christmas cookie. Every year, I make several batches of my favorite recipes and put together trays to take to my family gatherings.
For years, I’ve heard friends talk about how they love going to Jasmine Asian Bistro for date night, and I’m glad I finally tried it myself. The restaurant, located in a strip plaza on 30th Street in Canton, has a cozy ambiance and top-notch food.
For last year’s About Thanksgiving Pie Showdown, I made a sweet potato pie that earned lukewarm reviews from the team. (I would like to blame the recipe, but there’s a large chance the issue was user error.) So when Editor Kelsey Davis asked me if I’d like to make another pie for this month’s issue of the magazine, I saw a chance to redeem myself. And I am proud to say I did.
This is a year that calls for comfort food, so I suggest having a meal at Tozzi’s on 12th as soon as possible. Tozzi’s on 12th is known for its steaks, seafood and Italian dishes. The family business got its start in Magnolia in 1914, and now the fourth generation of the Tozzi family has the restaurant in Canton.