Traveling as a native Clevelander involves a fair bit of culture shock: People will ask about your accent, and topics of conversation are limited to our sports teams, chronically bad weather, and the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. The worst part, though, is that there are still parts of this country where pierogies do not exist.
Outside the region lovingly referred to as the “Pierogi Pocket,” I’ve had to explain these beauties to people ad nauseam -- they’re essentially dumplings made with unleavened dough and stuffed with all sorts of fillings, the most common being potato, sauerkraut, cheese, or meat. Whether you boil or sauté them (there is a correct answer), get them fresh or frozen, prefer them sweet or savory, eating a pierogi is like taking a bite of home for anyone of Eastern European descent, however far removed.
Celebrate on National Pierogi Day (October 8), at the Pierogi Dash, a 5K race through the streets of Slavic Village, or enjoy them any day of the week -- here’s where to find the most perfect pierogies Cleveland has to offer.