Breakfast. Lunch. Dinner. Columbus. Ohio.
Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner in Columbus
Columbus, Ohio is a great place to visit. It’s a sophisticated city with just enough enticing things to do to get you out and energized. It has a strong restaurant scene, with a lot of interesting options. In fact, if you like you can get a good taste of Columbus’ culinary scene with a tour of all that is delicious. Bethia Woolf leads just such a venture at Columbus Food Adventures. If you have the time and a keen interest in peeking under the lid of the metaphorical soup pot of Central Ohio I suggest you take one of the five adventures she provides the culinary tourist.
But what if you feel a little less motivated? What if your goal is strictly a lazy weekend in a lovely city– determined to relax, unwind, and reconnect? Well, the last thing you have time for is a disappointing restaurant. After all, a good meal is the prelude to all the other good things you may have been hoping for when you decided to take a long romantic getaway.
Which means, there just isn’t enough time in the day for poor choices. You can scour YELP. Sometimes YELP is very helpful. But sometimes YELP makes me cry for HELP! Just who the heck is Sweet Pea from Tallahassee? And what does she know about locally-sourced organics in Ohio??
In instances like this, I turn to bloggers. I turn to bloggers I trust. So here I am, trying to return the favor. Because I like to think you can trust me…
I spent some time recently in Columbus, the guest of Experience Columbus. I had some good meals. I had some okay meals. Some were pricey. Some were cheap(ish). Now I am home and I’d like to pass along my Ohio restaurant trifecta. Breakfast, lunch and dinner in Columbus, Ohio.
Breakfast: Tasi Cafe- 680 North Pearl Street, Columbus. 614–222-0788
If you asked folks in Columbus where to grab a quick breakfast at a fair price. You might get a hundred different responses. But if you asked me– and prefaced that request with the words seasonal, all natural, and immensely creative, I’d give you just one answer. Tasi Cafe. The cafe is a winning formula for good food, great energy & communal tables. It offers efficient counter service, making it very smartly conceived for people who want their food fast but won’t touch fast food. Because at Tasi, there aren’t any annoying trans-fats, corn syrup sweeteners or unidentifiable fillers. Plus there are a lot of great choices on the menu. I went with Poached Eggs with Black Bean Cake & Jalapeno Butter Sauce, which is kinda like a revved-up Eggs Benedict. A great way to start my stay in Columbus.
Lunch: fRESHSTREET TAKOYAKI & J‑CREPES- 1030 N. High Street, Columbus.
J‑Crepes! Maybe I’m a food snob. Okay, I am a food snob. But I never expected to find such a creative concept anywhere in this country outside a major metropolitan area. fRESHSTREET has a great story and it starts with Octopus Balls! Well actually it starts with Japanese Crepes served street-style from a food cart. The cart was the dream of Kenny Kim and Misako Ohba who found great success serving creative Asian inspired street food from a movable kitchen. But, when diner’s demands and (let’s face it this is Ohio) inclement weather comes roaring in, what’s a savvy entrepreneur to do? Well take the operation indoors. Sorta. There’s a pizza shack in a Columbus parking lot known as Mikey’s Late Night Slice, which is only open (you guessed it) late nights. Meaning the space, located in the Short North section, was available during the day. Well no more. It is now the spot for those famous crepes and a most texturally beguiling treat known as TAKOYAKI. These Octopus Balls are all at once crunchy and creamy– with a molten center that’s juxtaposed with chewy octopus. It’s a top 10 experience. No lie. Check out the video!
Dinner: Basi Italia- 811 Highland Street, Columbus. 614–294-7383
Basi Italia is my kind of restaurant. Good times and good food. It’s loud too. Meaning just one more thing. There’s good conversation in those rooms. One look at the menu and you’ll see– everything is innovative and fresh. It’s served with an artistic eye towards an upscale presentation of small plates. But nothing is precious or way too serious. Which isn’t to say that chef-owner John Dornback isn’t a serious cook. In fact there are some bold pairings that show a serious respect for the plate with the deftness of palate that can see the fun in food too: Beef Short Rib Stracotto or Zucchini Pronto– an innovative salad of toasted almonds and the thinnest most mind-boggling piece of pecorino I have ever eaten. Then there’s a Parmesan Creme Brulee, which playfully blurs the line between starter and dessert. Which is just fine with me, as I’d prefer to think of a meal at Basi Italia as never ending.
Sweet Treat: Sugar Daddy’s- 11 East Gay Street, Columbus. 614–888-4491
What managed to “throwdown” Bobby Flay, has a regular spot on The Ellen Show and got Rachel Ray to chant her famous mantra– “Yumo”? Well as anyone in Columbus can tell you, the answer is Sugar Daddy’s Sumptuous Sweeties. But let me give you the url, because a Google search of that phrase gets into R‑rated territory pretty quickly and I wouldn’t want you to miss their Couture Brownies or Babelicious Blondies, oops there I go again. I hope it’s clear to you that I am talking confection. Sweet perfection confection in fact. Because the “sweeties” I want to introduce you to have all the right curves, sure– but those curves take the form of round gourmet brownies and blondies in a constant array of daily flavors. So if you’re in Columbus or Polaris or Easton, drop by often and taste them all. But if your not, visit them on-line because they deliver. Just don’t Google the phrase, because that’s a whole other taste treat.
Though most of my meals were comped on this trip I did not include everywhere I ate in this post, only my favs. So you can be assured the opinions expressed here are my own. If you’d like more infotry: Experience Columbus or on Facebook & Twitter @ExpCols
Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner in Columbus