Sunday, March 19, 2006

Glendale Garden Cafe and Reynolds Road Garden Cafes

The Glendale Garden Cafe and Reynolds Garden are owned by Mustafa and Candi Ilgin, and both focus on good, hearty meals. The Ilgins - Mustafa is an immigrant from Turkey, and wife Candi was born and raised in Walbridge - have been married 16 years. The Ilgins, who have operated the cafe's for eight years, said many of their customers are like family members. Mastafa and Cindi are the proud parents of quadruplets Mustafa, III, Sera, Deniz, and Derya. Their pictures proudly adorn the walls of both the Glendale Avenue and Reynolds Road restaurants. Quoted from a Blade article in 2003, Mrs. Ilgin said "A lot of times, I find myself counting heads to keep up with them,". "Our employees and customers have been great. If something wasn't perfect, they've understood and came back because they knew our attention was diverted." The children were born nearly three months early. Mustafa III came home from Toledo Hospital three days later and Sera after the first week. A little over a week later Deniz was released. Derya, who faced the most complications, stayed in the hospital for five months.

The Glendale Garden Cafe
2521 Glendale Ave, Toledo, OH
(419) 382-1011

which I visit on a regular basis (almost every Saturday morning) is always busy and for good reason. Even though the parking lot is full and a line sometimes form in the front queuing area, I have never had to wait longer than 15 minutes to be seated. The food is excellent and abundant for reasonable prices. You see many of patrons leaving with doggie bag in hand knowing that they have their lunch or breakfast already prepared for the following day. For a party of two an average tab will run about $12.00 for breakfast and $18.00 - $20.00 for dinner menu items . The Serving staff is always friendly and after becoming regular patrons I feel like they are almost like family. Don't be surprise if you are approached by Mastafa himself, a cup of coffee in his hand, willing to sit down with you during breakfast and discuss the latest sport fortunes (or misfortunes) of the Ohio State Buckeyes. Even with the hustle and bustle that his restaurant endures he always finds time to chat with his patrons bringing with him beaming smile and an order for coffee refills if your cup is running empty.

Even though the building is small, the atmosphere is always pleasant (although sometimes a little noisy) and I have always found it to be clean. Their hand printed whiteboards of daily specials give the restaurant a homey feeling and the food quality reminds you of something your own mother may have fixed instead of the overly priced, canned portions that are often to common in the major franchises.

On a scale of 1-5 stars for "Casual Dining"... 4 stars

Reynolds Garden Cafe
1220 S Reynolds Rd, Toledo, OH
(419) 381-9000

sits on the North side of Reynolds Road just north of Airport Highway in the former location of the once infamous Johnny's Steak House. The facility has undergone a complete remodel and little if any of the former Johnny's can be recognized in the new building. One feature I found very complimentary to the building renovation is a hugh skylight which fills the main dining area with natural light. Decorating the walls are murals of Mediterranean scenes which hint at what it must be like in Mustafa's Turkish homeland.

The wide variety of menu choices offer everything from a simple eggs and bacon breakfast (and I am not talking about a few limp pieces of bacon scraps but rather a full feast of either a 1/4 lb to 1/2 lb. of thick sliced bacon strips fried in the heart stopping bacon grease we all love but hate to admit) to full course dinner entrees. If omelets are your preferred breakfast fare you will not be disappointed in the wide selection from a basic egg and cheese to an overstuffed omelet I can only describe as a super supreme. If the omelet you like is not listed, they will always special order one to your liking.

For dinner or lunch I prefer the Lake Perch sandwich. Available at both locations, you get a 3 piece fish sandwich stuffed on an oversized bun which I found always hot and flaky and never dry. Accompanied by a generous portion of large cut French Fries and a side order of slaw, you will walk away filling like your are ready for a nap as you give your system time to digest.

A fully stocked bar at Reynolds location seemed a bit unusual for a family restaurant, but if a cold brew to go with that fish sandwich is your cup of tea then you are in luck. I understand that that the restaurant caters events after normal business hours to the public. I can understand the need for a bar.

And finally don't miss out on their Sunday Breakfast Buffet. What more can I say other than "Primo"!

On a scale of 1-5 stars for "Casual Dining"... 5 stars

Date: March 24, 2003

Date: February 18, 2005
Section: Peach Weekend
Page: D10

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Blogger Lisa Renee said...

Excellent job KK, and I love this format too. As well as thinking this is an awesome feature.


March 21, 2006 6:58 PM  
Anonymous Sara said...

Thank you so much for all of your postive feedback. As the manager @R.G.C. I am tickled pink that our customers are spreading the word about our locations. IF there is anything we can do to improve your dining experience,please let one of our friendly staff members know!Our website is currently under construction, you can visit us soon @ Thanks again for your kindness..Sara Adams

March 24, 2006 11:47 AM  
Blogger Nadz said...

Nadz says...
What a wonderful dining experience we have when we eat here. You are given a large amount of food, you will not go away hungry. Love the Sunday Buffet. The sky light adds to the wonderful atmosphere. Keep up the great job you are all ready doing Mo, Candi, and Sara.
Nadine Paul

March 31, 2006 6:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you want great food for a great price.. Reynolds Garden is the place to go.. great service, great atmosphere.. what more can you ask for! Salads are wonderful.. even for breakfast! Staff there are always smiling and helping each other! Congratulations on a fine restaurant! And best of luck when the dinner hours are in place!

May 26, 2006 3:33 PM  

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