4984 N. Holland Sylvania Rd.
Mon. to Thurs. 3PM-12AM | Fri. & Sat. 11:30AM-1AM | Sun. 11:30AM-12AM
The Short CourseOutdoor dining: Yes.
Online ordering: Yes.
Delivery: Deliver Toledo, Slice, Doordash.Kids’ Menu: Yes.
Fully vaccinated, Ohioans and restaurants are bustling once again. Just as newly-opened restaurants must find their rhythm, restaurants post-COVID are doing the same. While the last year was a tough one for many businesses, it was especially brutal for restaurants. The restaurant industry lost many jobs during the pandemic and now faces a new challenge— finding enough workers.
A new pizza fave for the kiddos
We arrived at The VI during prime dinner time on a weekend, and the entire restaurant was full, both indoors and outside. The hostess requested we wait outside or in our car to maintain social distancing. She called us and seated us within the 20-minute wait time that she had projected.
Once we were at a table, it was clear that our young waitress was spread thin, but she was cheery and accommodating. I asked for her appetizer recommendations, and without hesitation she said the pickle bread was the most popular. I had heard the same recommendation from others, so we ordered it to share.
Our drinks arrived after a time, but we never received the pickle bread. Our waitress was nowhere to be found, presumably running from one customer to the next, so when our meals arrived after nearly an hour’s wait, we didn’t mention the pickle bread Both kids ordered the Cameo pizza as we’d heard rave reviews. Since our son is lactose intolerant, we requested his pepperoni pizza without cheese, specifying that we wanted just sauce and pepperoni. Another server delivered our food, and both kids’ pizzas arrived with cheese. We alerted them of the mistake, and they put a rush on a replacement pizza— thankfully, they brought him a plate of fries to munch on in the meantime.
I ordered the chicken club sand-wedge — chicken, bacon, Cameo cheese and LTO (lettuce, tomato, onion) sandwiched between the Cameo family pizza crust—and a side of fries. It was a hearty sandwich, providing me with leftovers for lunch the following day. Alex ordered the American smash burger, which tasted thoroughly homemade and fresh off the grill. He upgraded to the tater tots, but after trying my fries, he regretted the choice, wishing he had stuck with the fries.
Camille, our five-year-old, devoured her pizza and happily exclaimed that it ranked as her new “#1 pizza!” Dexter (8) didn’t receive his pizza until we had all finished our meals, so we packed his to go, but he was equally happy with his Cameo crust covered in sauce and pepperoni.
A rich Sylvania history
After The Village Inn closed in January of 2018 due to health code violations, the owners of Bar 145 bought it with the plan to make it a “neighborhood sports bar,” according to co-owner Jeremy Fitzgerald. The new VI is decidedly more open than the former Village Inn, and the modern decor includes brick and oak with a dozen TVs gracing the walls.
Sylvania residents were invited to drop off photos and memorabilia to adorn the walls of The VI, as an ode to Sylvania schools, where Fitzgerald’s children attend. Co-owners Andy Grombacher and George Simon are also Sylvania residents, making The VI truly a local Sylvania spot.
Perfect for summer weather, the outside patio is stunning with a new bar, ample seating and plenty of umbrellas to create a perfect casual outdoor dining experience.
The arrival of Cameo Pizza was much anticipated, as it won awards at the 2019 Pizza Palooza at Sylvania’s Centennial Terrace. Cameo Pizza originated in Sandusky where the beloved family pizza recipe, handed down for generations, is a crowd pleaser—even with picky young eaters.
The VI is a Sylvania sports bar known for its history, fresh remodel, outdoor patio experience and Cameo pizza. While we experienced a few hiccups during our dining experience, these will all surely be ironed out once restaurants are fully staffed. The authentically delicious pizza was a hit with our family. We plan to order takeout from The VI soon, and we suggest you do the same!