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Matt Fish Named Business Person of the Year

With his wildly popular Melt Bar and Grilled, the local restaurateur is getting some proper Lakewood recognition.

In September 2006, there were a few doubters whether Matt Fish could run a successful restaurant with grilled cheese sandwiches as the featured item on the menu.

There’s nobody second-guessing him today. 

is now a staple on Detroit Avenue — serving an average of 500 grilled cheese sandwiches every day — and it’s landed Lakewood on the food scene.

For his contributions to the city, and for spurring local economic growth, Fish will be honored as the Business Person of the Year on Friday.

“It’s a complete honor and a complete surprise,” said Fish of receiving the chamber honor. “There are so many amazing businesses in Lakewood. We’ve been in business going on six years now, so I feel very blessed that we’ve been able to stay in business for six years and we were able to get the support of the Lakewood community.”

With favorites like the simple (and plain) Kindergartener and Parmageddon, Fish has expanded Melt to Cleveland Heights, Independence and fourth restaurant .

From his idea of a lifelong appreciation for grilled cheese sandwiches — along with his 17 years of experience as a chef — opened Melt with the plan of offering “comfort food dressed up.” 

“Coming from very humbly beginnings, with this crazy sort of concept, people really embraced it,” Fish said.

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