• Did Someone Say Mac 'N Cheese?

    Time to warm up and as Cleveland's top twenty restaurants throw down for the ultimate title in comfort food. Three local celebrity judges and YOU will decide who ultimately gets the title of Cleveland’s “Best Mac & Cheese” at The Great Lakes Mac 'N Cheese Throwdown going down on Saturday, February 25 at Red Space, the ultimate comfort food festival, presented by Working Animals Giving Service for Kids (W.A.G.S. 4 Kids) in conjunction with CMG Management Group & Cleveland Scene Magazine.


    The Great Lakes Mac & Cheese Throwdown celebrates the rise of the Cleveland food scene, highlighting numerous Cleveland restaurants. The Great Lakes Mac & Cheese Throwdown also is a fundraiser for W.A.G.S. 4 Kids, 501(c)(3) Non-Profit.

  • Meet Your Competitors

    Featured Restaurants


    Camino Taco & Tequila Bar - Camino Mac 'n' Cheese

    Deagan's Kitchen & Bar - Smokey & Spicy Mac n' Cheese (Veg)

    Greenhouse Tavern - Quack 'n' Cheese

    Harry Buffalo - Buffalo Mac 'n' Cheese (Veg)

    Hodges - Chorizo Mac 'n' Cheese

    Melt - The Mighty Macaroni Melt (Veg)

    Pier W - Classic Mac 'n' Cheese (Veg)

    Punch Bowl Social Club - Macalicious Mac 'n' Cheese

    River Dog Café - Zombie Mac 'n' Cheese

    Rocky River Brewing Co. - Johnny's Mac 'n' Cheese

    Rocky River Wine Bar - Chicken Bacon & Jalapeno Mac 'n' Cheese

    The Metropolitan at the 9 - Lobster Grilled Cheese Mac 'n' Cheese

    The Southside - Chorizo Mac 'n' Cheese

    Tom + Chee - T+C Mac 'n' Cheese

    Tremont Tap House - Peppered Panchetta Mac 'n' Cheese

    Trentina - Black 'n' Cheese (Pescatarian)

    Two Bucks - The Rancher Mac 'n' Cheese

    Willoughby Brewing Co. - Smoked Gouda Mac 'n' Cheese (Veg)

    Wild Eagle Saloon - Deep Fried Mac 'n' Cheese Balls (Veg)

    Yuzu Lakewood - Umami Mac 'n' Cheesegasm (Veg)

    Booze Vendors


    Captain Morgan

    Jack Daniels

    Jim Beam

    Tito's Vodka

    Rhinegeist - House of LaRose





    Distillata Bottled Water

    Coke Products

  • Judges

    Rachel Hunt

    Contributing Dining Editor,

    Cleveland Scene Magazine

    Arts opportunist with exceptional community outreach and grassroots marketing skills. Committed to local arts and music promotion through original and innovative reporting via various media outlets including college radio, blogging, & printed media. Skilled in gallery management, arts journalism, social media, stage management, & DIY event coordination.

    I am currently a freelance blogger and event coordinator; I have lent my services to Cleveland cultural events like Night Market Cleveland, Brite Winter Fest, Heights Music Hop, Weapons of Mass Creation Fest, WRUW-FM supported remote broadcasts, and as a facilitator for Cleveland DIY music community events and promotions at local and national venues. My published work can be found in Cleveland Scene Magazine, CellarDoor CLE Arts & Entertainment Blog, & on Arthopper.org.

    Chef Dante Boccuzzi

    Dante Dining Group

    The opening of his signature DANTE in the popular Tremont section of Cleveland in January 2010 won instantaneous rave reviews.


    All of this from someone who at the age of 14, while going to high school, began his culinary training working in local Cleveland restaurants. In 1991, he graduated from the Culinary Institute of America and began his career at Charlie Palmer’s New York acclaimed restaurant, Aureole. Boccuzzi spent three years in Europe working in Italy, France, and England, learning techniques in award-winning restaurants such as London’s L’Escargot, the famed Les Muscadin in Mougins France and the Michelin three-star Gualtiero Marchesi in Brescia, Italy. Boccuzzi also spent time in Hong Kong, Japan and Taiwan in his pursuit to explore influential culinary traditions from around the world.


    In 1997, Boccuzzi returned to the states to head Silks at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in San Francisco. His three year tenure at Silks resulted in two James Beard nominations for Rising Star Chef of the Year in 1998 and 1999. Following this endeavor, Boccuzzi moved to Milan, Italy to become the executive chef at Nobu/Milan, working directly with Nobu Matsuhisa and Giorgio Armani at the Armani flagship establishment.


    In 2002, Boccuzzi returned to Aureole as executive chef, where he was selected by Star Chefs as one of their Rising Stars. Under his leadership, Aureole earned its first Michelin star in 2006.


    Boccuzzi’s culinary career has come full circle, returning him to his home state of Ohio where he opened DANTE in 2007, moving the location to the hot restaurant row in Cleveland’s Tremont section in 2010. His dreams continue to become a reality with the opening of Ginko in 2011, a New York Times acclaimed sushi restaurant located in Tremont, featuring a traditional style sushi and a modern Japanese cuisine. The following year, Boccuzzi collaborated with chef Carmela Del Busso to open DC Pasta Company in Strongsville, Ohio. Later in 2012,Dante opened his Akron restaurant DBA—Dante Boccuzzi Akron—melding his musical and culinary talents to add a flare of rock n’ roll to his coveted modern American style cuisine.


    In November of 2012, Chef Dante was nominated by Robb Report magazine for The Next Generation Culinary Master Competition. The competition was made up of five individuals chosen by Culinary Masters from around the Country.


    In April of 2014, Dante Next Door opened. The restaurant features traditional Italian cuisine based on Dante’s travels throughout Italy.

    Dante had the fun opportunity to be a contestant on Guys Grocery Games. The show featured fellow James Beard nominees and aired in season 4.


    Boccuzzi’s last endeavor came to fruition earlier this year with the opening of Coda, a live music venue, featuring small plates, local beer and local, national, and international musical acts.

    Anna Harouvis

    Anna In The Raw

    The first thing you can’t help but notice when you meet Chef Anna, is the unbridled joy and passion she has for what she does. And what she does is create amazing food with an emphasis on raw ingredients, coupled with an organic, healthy and balanced style of cooking. Anna’s love of food started as a young girl, born of watching her Greek immigrant Grandmother prepare meals for her family. Everything Anna does comes from that warm place, where food isn’t just food; it’s history, love and family.
    Anna’s father, who owned and operated the former London Bar & Grill in downtown Cleveland, taught the impassioned Anna about the restaurant and food industry and how to run a business. She followed in her father’s storied footsteps, and opened Good to Go Cafe almost 20 years ago. Located in the heart of downtown Cleveland, the cafe serves breakfast and lunch made from local, organic and cleanly sourced food.
    As Anna’s expertise in raw food nutrition and experience grew, she realized that there was a void to fill. People were becoming aware of how closely tied health and nutrition really are, and that what they were putting into their bodies every day was having a direct impact on their health. With so much noise and misinformation out there about what “healthy” means, people were confused. It was time for her to do something about it. Anna created Anna in the Raw, the first raw, Chef designed, cold-pressed juice line in Cleveland. Each juice in the line is specifically designed to support a variety of functions, such as cardiovascular health, inflammation or other specific client needs. Each can be consumed individually, or as part of a cleanse to restart and refresh your entire system from the inside out.
    Anna isn’t just passionate about what she does. She’s also extremely educated, knowledgable and accomplished in her field. She held the first RAW vegan and gluten free gourmet dinner at the esteemed Culinary Vegetable Institute. She, along with Dr. Mark Hyman of the Cleveland Clinic Center for Functional Medicine, spoke on a panel as a food expert for National Food Day, sponsored by First Lady Michelle Obama. She served twice as a guest chef at the USMC base at Quantico, VA, where she prepared raw, vegan and gluten free menus for our troops, providing a discussion on clean eating and nutrition as well. She has appeared on The Food Network as a guest on Cutthroat Kitchen and Guy’s Grocery Games, as well as regularly being asked to speak as a food expert on Cleveland television and radio. Cleveland Magazine also named Anna in the Raw “Best Juice Cleanse,” and Scene magazine named her juice line a “best local product.”
    In addition to the bringing juice love to the masses, professional athletes have taken notice. For the past three years, Anna has been the juicer for the 2016 NBA National Champion Cleveland Cavaliers, the Cleveland Indians and other professional sports teams. By word of mouth, she’s also gotten the attention of several major headlining musical acts, who now request her line as part of their touring riders.





    Tickets Available


    Taste 10 for $25 // Taste ALL 20 for $40

    Includes all day entry to event with cheesy DJ & 1 vote.

    Drink Tickets will be available at the event (We Check ID's)

    Vote for your favorite and we will declare the People's Choice Mac and Cheese!

    Snow? No problem! We are indoors! Ready to keep you warm and toasty...


    *This event will be held rain or shine.
    *All tickets purchased should be considered as "rain-or-shine" final purchases. (No Refunds. As in No. None. Zilch. Nada. Niente.)
    * Tickets are single entry. Each attendee must have their own ticket & tasting card, including Kids 12+. Kids 11 & under are free.


    Sponsor levels are available and include tickets as well as other program benefits indicated by level of participation.

    Thank you!