Here’s a little secret chefs don’t want to admit: French fries and pommes frites are the same thing. Both are sliced potatoes fried until crispy in oil. But there’s something about calling them by their popular European moniker that makes ordering a little more fun — and has inspired chefs to surpass the ho-hum salt seasoning on the average fried potatoes.
I Love Moule Frites: Tremont Tap House, $12
PEI mussels and fries, blue cheese, bacon, garlic, shallots, Belgian-style beer
Mixing mussels and french fries is a twist you may initially question, but don’t miss this version. Once you’ve soaked your final fries in the tasty broth at the bottom of the bowl, you’ll wish you could drink what’s left. 2572 Scranton Road, Cleveland 216-298-4451, tremonttaphouse.com
Tarragon Pommes Frites: Ken Stewart’s Grille, $5.95
Plan on sharing these shoestring-thin taters that come spilling out of an upright cone. Lightly salted and doused in olive oil, they also have a cutting tarragon seasoning you’ll like. It’s a refreshing break from the typical garlic, rosemary and sea salt. 1970 W. Market St., Akron, 330-867-2555, kenstewartsonline.com