Brunchin’ it Up: Forno Kitchen + Bar
721 N High Street
Columbus, OH 43215
1. Breakfast Pizza
2. Chicken and Waffles
3. True Grit
5. Nutella Stuffed French Toast
Like so many Columbus food fans, I finally made it to Forno for brunch. Why did I take so long?! What a lapse in personal judgment. Located in the heart of the Short North, the vibe at Forno is clean and modern. The restaurant is filled with great natural light that is ideal for brunch lingering. I was ready to dine.
For an appetizer, we picked the arancini, tasty fried risotto balls with tomato sauce. It was a great start. Upon a quick scan of the menu, I knew I had to order the breakfast pizza, since it covered every component of brunch you could ever want: cheese, runny egg yolks, crispy Brussels sprouts, pancetta, wood-fired crust. Check all the boxes. When I woke up the next morning and came to the realization that I still had leftovers of this pizza, I got on my knees and thanked the food gods. I think it’s the garlicky, Parmesan crust that makes it so addictive. Chicken and Waffles seem to be everywhere right now, but this version was toothsome. It hit all the flavor spots: crunchy chicken, sweet maple syrup on waffles, and spicy hot sauce aioli. Forno also has Nutella Stuffed French Toast, biscuits and gravy, a BLT, + more lunch-leaning dishes such as salads and chicken saltimbocca available. What’s not to love?
If you eat brunch and don’t have a cocktail, can you even call it brunch? I think not. If you order a brunch entree, you can add on a mimosa for just $4, or a bloody mary for $5. I went with a mimosa and wasn’t sorry. As a bourbon-lover, I also sampled the True Grit cocktail, containing Bulleit Rye, bitters, lemon juice, and a muddled luxardo cherry, but the Kiwi Mule caught my eye as well. I need to come back at night too, for their happy hour specials and Forno’s late-night menu that includes spiked strawberries topped with whipped cream, and 1/2 off bottles of wine and champagne from 10 pm – 1 am!
Culinary Clue: Forno is the sister restaurant of Pint House, just down the block. Make your own tour of High Street and nosh at Forno, then head to Pint House for sports-viewing and craft beers.