Troy – Welshfield Inn is a historic landmark, familiar to anyone who lives in the Portage/Geauga County area. It’s been an elegant family dining destination for generations, first established in 1842 as the Nash Hotel. But if you haven’t been paying close attention, you may have missed the fact that its owner is garnering lots of press, awards and national attention.
Welshfield Inn, which features fresh, local and seasonal foods on the menu, was recognized as a Top 10 Cleveland Restaurant and was named OpenTable.com’s Diner’s Choice Winner in 2012. These distinctions are just a couple among the several accolades coming to Scott David Kuhn’s Driftwood Restaurant Group, which reestablished the Welshfield Inn in 2007, after extensive renovation and restoration. The interior includes three large dining rooms as well as a separate bar room. The large outdoor patio offers guests alfresco dining amid landscaping. In 2010, the neighboring church was purchased and renovated to become a banquet facility for large private functions.
Kuhn is a restaurateur, chef and entrepreneur who graduated from Solon High School in 1986, then attended the University of Akron’s culinary program while working in local restaurants, and earned a degree in management from Malone College.
Kuhn founded Driftwood Restaurant Group with the purchase of the Allegheny Grille in the town of Foxburg, Pennsylvania in 2005. The family-style restaurant was recently awarded a Diner’s Choice Award by Open Table.
In 2007, along with the Welshfield Inn, Kuhn opened 87 West in Westlake’s Crocker Park. Recently recognized as one of Cleveland’s most romantic nightspots by Cleveland Magazine, 87 West is also a winner of Best of the West from West Shore Magazine.
In 2010, Kuhn opened Little Italy’s Washington Place Bistro and Inn (formerly the Baricelli Inn). Kuhn and Washington Place Bistro have been featured on Food Network’s Unique Eats, which spotlights America’s most exciting and revolutionary restaurants. Washington Place has also been recognized as one the best bed and breakfast locations in the country by the Cooking Channel, as well as Cleveland’s Best New Restaurant 2011, A Cleveland A-List Establishment, and as one of Cleveland’s Top Patios.
Kuhn’s partner, consulting chef Chris Hodgson, established his food truck, Dim and Den Sum, in 2010, making it the first-ever food truck to hit the streets of Cleveland. Hodgson was runner-up in the Silver Spoon Awards, coming in second to Celebrity chef Michael Symon.
Hodgson’s second truck, Hodge Podge Truck, achieved nationwide recognition when it finished second on Food Network’s The Great Food Truck Race (to be featured on Food Network’s Unique Eats).
As if that wasn’t enough on their plates, Hodsgon and Kuhn opened Hodge’s Cleveland in March 2012, which serves ‘global comfort food’ in an upscale setting.
And that’s not all! Kuhn also is now part of a big, new concept developing in Chagrin Falls. The Spillway will open later this year as a microbrewery with a high-end bar and family restaurant at the site of a former paper mill overlooking the falls. The project also calls for 16,000 square feet of office space, an outdoor plaza, mill pond, boardwalk and art area. Kuhn — not surprisingly — has been tapped as the restaurant owner.
Former proprietor of SKHM (Scott Kuhn Hospitality Management), Kuhn is passionate about volunteering and helping others. He is a board member of Veggie U, a program dedicated to educating fourth graders about a holistic approach to food, from understanding how food is grown to developing healthy eating habits. A member of the Slow Food Movement, he is also committed to supporting local farmers. Additionally, Kuhn is on an advisory board for University Hospitals.
Just as the Welshfield Inn has established itself throughout local history as a quality destination for discriminating palates, its owner is establishing himself as a leader making a lasting mark on the local culinary landscape.