News Local news Bal­a­ton Restau­rant, beloved Hun­gar­i­an food des­ti­na­tion, announces last date of oper­a­tion at Shak­er Square

Bal­a­ton Restau­rant, beloved Hun­gar­i­an food des­ti­na­tion, announces last date of oper­a­tion at Shak­er Square

The own­ers of Bal­a­ton Restau­rant, the long­stand­ing Hun­gar­i­an restau­rant locat­ed at Shak­er Square, announced it will close in-per­son din­ing on Dec. 31.


Pho­to by: Kay­lyn Hlavaty | News 5 Cleveland.Balaton Restau­rant at Shak­er Square.

Estab­lished in the ear­ly 1960s, Bal­a­ton has been a guar­an­teed spot for North­east Ohioans to enjoy mouth­wa­ter­ing com­fort food made from gen­er­a­tions-old recipes. From stuffed cab­bages and veal and chick­en paprikash to beef goulash and cab­bage and noo­dles, these Old World recipes brought cus­tomers from near and far.

After clos­ing its din­ing room on Dec. 31, Bal­a­ton will keep the kitchen open for car­ry­out through Jan­u­ary 2022.

Bal­a­ton Restau­rant has been a fix­ture in Shak­er Square for 25 years. Before mov­ing to its cor­ner loca­tion on the square, it oper­at­ed on Buck­eye Road for 30 years. Over the years, it’s become an icon­ic cul­tur­al tapes­try of Cleve­land, get­ting atten­tion from food and trav­el pub­li­ca­tions and TV appearances.

“Although we are los­ing our Shak­er Square res­i­dence, we felt with such a strong fol­low­er-ship we have cause and rea­son to rebuild,” the restau­rant said.

In an update to loy­al cus­tomers, the restau­rant said it’s already look­ing for new loca­tions along I‑271.

“We are scout­ing for new location(s) up and down Inter­state-271 area, from Solon to North and from Wil­son Mills to the South. Our tar­get is to stay close enough to the high­way as 60 – 70% of our clien­tele is near that tar­get area, but the oth­er 30 – 40% come from else­where, and 50 states (no kidding).”

The restau­rant said it had planned to stay in its Shak­er Square loca­tion, orig­i­nal­ly belong­ing to the Bunts Broth­ers, but then COVID-19 hit. Since March 2020, the restau­rant said the com­mu­ni­ty has ral­lied around them and patrons “whom did not let Balaton’s kitchen stove go cold.”

“We humbly thank the sup­port of the com­mu­ni­ty, pulling us through a huge try of our times, gen­er­al­ly called COVID. We see no bet­ter time to be grate­ful for the past friend­ship, and the care we had received in 2021. Hands down, when the sound­ing of the alarm bell went loud, the help via gofundme was pour­ing in, and it did save us from clos­ing right at the start of 2021. But now, we are look­ing at 2022 with new hope, and desire to con­tin­ue our culi­nary traditions.”

After the restau­rant clos­es, the own­er or “lead­ing lady” as the restau­rant refers, is head­ing to a culi­nary con­fer­ence and trade gath­er­ing in Hungary.

The restau­rant raised its gofundme goal to help with the relo­ca­tion costs. The restau­rant said it will update the pub­lic on plans as they become more concrete.

Source: news5​cleve​land​.com