There are many reasons to go to the Canal Tavern of Zoar in Tuscarawas County. We went for the sauerkraut balls.

A gal pal had planned a girlie getaway and made the Canal Tavern, in a building that dates to 1829, our first stop on our way from Akron. She gushed over the sauerkraut balls (five for $6.60) she discovered on another adventure. Some may say the fact that these sauerkraut balls don’t contain meat is heresy, but they are divine savory treats, made with kraut from Cleveland Kraut and Swiss cheese.

“We wanted to have food representative of Zoar’s German heritage,” Canal Tavern owner Jon Elsasser said of the sauerkraut balls, as well as the other German eats on the menu, including pork schnitzel and German-style wursts.

The Canal Tavern’s new chef, Adam Thompson, whose past experience includes cooking at various Dante Boccuzzi restaurants, said the balls are breaded with panko and then deep fried to get a nice crust. They are surprisingly light and airy. (There are other secrets to them that he wouldn't reveal.)

The place: Canal Tavern of Zoar

Where: 8806 Towpath Road NE, in Bolivar (just outside of Zoar)

Why you should go: Sauerkraut balls and more in a cozy, historic setting

More info: www.canaltavernofzoar.com

— Katie Byard