2018 Restaurant Bucket List

Every year, I like to kick off the new year by compiling a list of restaurants that I haven’t yet had the pleasure of sampling, but hope to visit in the coming year. Some on the list are old favorites that I’m ashamed to say I’ve never tried, a few are new kids on the block, and one doesn’t open until later in 2018, but all are spots where I’m eager to eat. Here’s my 2018 Restaurant Bucket List!

Veritas

https://veritasrestaurant.com
Bacon Risotto from Veritas Tavern

I’ve written about one of my incredible experiences at the Delaware reiteration of Veritas here, but at the start of the year operations moved to Gay Street downtown. I expect to enjoy the dishes at this new locale just as much as the old one, since I still spy bacon risotto on the menu.

Cravings Cafe

http://www.cravingscafe614.com/

Another business reborn in a new venue, Cravings is at the top of my to-do list. All the beloved treats from the former setting are here: breakfast sammies, chocolate chip cookies, and of course, brioche donuts (bronuts). Plus, I’m currently drooling over the daily specials like the corned beef hash burrito or the chorizo and beans over fried goat cheese corn cakes.

Momo Ghar

https://www.facebook.com/momogharohio/

Lauded by critics and diners alike, Momo Ghar is a must-try for me this year. The Nepalese joint just expanded from the Saraga international grocery to an additional stall in North Market, and I’m currently drooling over the different iterations of the momo dumplings pooled in spicy sauces.

Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse Columbus

http://www.jeffruby.com/columbus

Photo Credit: Jeff Ruby Steakhouse via Instagram

This Cincinnati staple has put down Cbus roots, and I’m ready to devour all the steakhouse dishes next time I need a fancy night out. Classics like filet, Oysters Rockefeller, and crab cakes merging with more non-traditional items like prosciutto-wrapped pears and tempura lobster sushi rolls sounds just about perfect.

Harvey & Ed’s

https://www.cameronmitchell.com/our-story/news-releases/id/1332/cameron-mitchell-restaurants-introduces-unique-new-concept-a-modern-take-on-the-delicatessen

Coming in Spring 2018, this Cameron Mitchell concept has me hungry already. Billed as a modern delicatessen, the Short North spot seems both approachable and innovative, touting menu items such as potato latkes, egg creams, and carryout sandwiches. Stay tuned for more on this one!

The Keep

https://www.thekeepcolumbus.com

Photo Credit: The Keep via Instagram

The revitalization of downtown’s LeVeque building also brought with it a new restaurant and bar, The Keep. Visions of the menu’s enormous smoking seafood tower and cocktails with gin and rhubarb syrup have haunted me every since. Furthermore, the Art Deco style of the new hotel has me ready for a stay-cation.

Eden Burger

https://www.facebook.com/EdenBurgerNFries/

I’m far from a vegan, but I love veggie burgers. I’ve heard great things about Eden Burger’s take on the patty, made with beans, rice, spices, and more. The buffet of toppings especially sounds craveable, even sporting a Western burger on the menu, crowned with BBQ, onion rings, fried jalapenos, and ranch.

The Light of Seven Matchsticks

https://thelightofsevenmatchsticks.com/

Photo Credit: The Light of Seven Matchsticks via Instagram

A call to this speakeasy below Natalie’s Coal-Fired Pizza is long overdue. I’m intrigued by the secret hidden menu, the adventurous craft cocktails, and savory snack offerings. Soup dumplings, duck fat popcorn, and a brown butter bourbon drink might be the cure for the winter blues.

Asterisk Supper Club

https://www.asterisksupperclub.com/

Westerville’s Asterisk has proven it’s got staying power. I’m dying to try the afternoon tea, with finger sandwiches and scones, but the dinner dishes such as the chicken and waffles (fried chicken on a jalapeno and peanut butter waffle with honey butter syrup) appear mighty tasty too.

Vaso

https://www.vasodublin.com/

Photo Credit: Vaso via Instagram

Hotel restaurants are stepping up their culinary creations, and Vaso is another example of that. This Dublin locale has a rooftop lounge that makes me ready for summer, signature sangrias and tonic syrup, as well as Spanish tapas that will make you swoon.

What restaurant has your stomach growling in 2018? Send me an email or leave a comment below; I want your recommendations!

Keep Connected,

Caroline

2017 Restaurant Bucket List

The best and worst thing about Columbus’ phenomenal food scene is that there is always a new restaurant to try. I did a pretty good job at conquering last year’s locales, but this year there is a fresh crop of eateries to enjoy! I can’t wait to sink my teeth into the cuisine at the places below before 2017 ends:

Cosecha

https://www.facebook.com/Cosecha-Cocina-1789198708022380/

Cosecha Columbus
Photo Credit: Silas Caeton

With a Mexican-inspired focus and Salt & Pine’s Silas Caeton at the helm, this new venture can’t go wrong. The spot doesn’t open until early 2017, but you can bet I’ll be first in line. The pop-ups they’ve had around town have looked divine. Pictured: Grilled octopus with mojo-marinated cabbage, red mole, and roasted taters.

Simply Rolled

https://www.facebook.com/simplyrolledicecream/

A fun twist on Thai ice cream rolls, these treats are hard to track down but the reaction from fans radiates positivity. A flavored cream base is poured onto cold stones, mixed with toppings, and scraped into pretty rolls. Catch them at a festival or pop-up near you!

The Avenue Steak Tavern

http://theavenuesteaktavern.com/

The Avenue Steak Tavern
Photo Credit: The Avenue

As a huge Cameron Mitchell cheerleader, I must be crazy for failing to eat a full meal at this Grandivew joint. The classic steakhouse interior always looks inviting, and I’m such a sucker for a well-prepared steak. Plus, they have baked cheese fondue. When melty cheese is on the menu, you must order it, end of story.

Skillet

http://www.skilletruf.com/

Brunch is always a good idea, but when your diner of choice seeks out seasonal ingredients to create scrumptious-sounding comfort food, you can’t delay in visiting. I’ve got to visit Skillet in 2017, so I can gobble up entrees like quiche made with roasted butternut squash, kale, chevre, fresh thyme, and shallot baked in flaky pastry.

Prost

http://prostcafe.com/menu/3288556

This Reynoldsburg watering hole has been on my radar for awhile. The number one reason: a bruschetta bar! Mix and match varieties like Brie and apple with fig jam, burrata and bacon, or ricotta, dates, and pistachios sound heavenly, plus there is some great happy hour pricing on beer and wine.

Paulie Gee’s

http://pauliegee.com/short-north/

Paulie Gee's
Photo Credit – Paulie Gee’s

Where did I go wrong that I still haven’t made it to Paulie Gee’s, home of the mini pizza flight? That’s right, no more confining your choices to one pie – you can devour 3! When the menu contains pizza combos like the Monte Cristo (Canadian bacon, gouda, maple syrup) or The Katzingers 83 (swiss, pastrami, sauerkraut, Russian dressing drizzle), I’m drooling already.

Tensuke Express

http://tensukemarket.com/

A quick-service spot inside a beloved Japanese market, Tensuke Express cuts out the sushi and focuses solely on other delicacies. Dishes like ramen bowls, pork cutlet fried rice, and spicy shrimp udon make up the diverse menu, and I’m dying to try them all!

de Novo on the Park

http://www.denovobistro.com/

The views of the new de Novo location look stunning, with large windows facing Columbus Commons and eclectic furnishings. The menu is intriguing as well – Duck BLT sliders, lobster mac, and kangaroo (!) too. I’m sold on noshing here next year!

Did I miss any noteworthy restaurant you love? Tell me in the comments below.

Keep Connected,

Caroline

2016 Hot List

2016 Hot List

It’s my dining bucket list! This compilation contains some eateries that are brand-new and some fan favorites that I’m embarrassed to say I haven’t sampled yet. The thing I’m looking forward to the most about 2016 is discovering more Columbus cuisine and returning to the restaurants that I love.

Restaurants to Try

Salt & Pine:  http://saltandpine250.com
From ricotta gnudi to short ribs, every photo I’ve seen of the dishes here make my mouth water. Plus with Harvest Pizzeria as a sister restaurant, what could go wrong?

Krema:  http://www.krema.com
I’m obsessed with peanut butter anything, so I’m mystified that I haven’t made it to Krema before. With all kinds of peanut butter sandwiches and milkshakes too, this place sounds like my personal paradise.

Copious:  http://www.copiouscolumbus.com
This 2015 newcomer pops up on my radar constantly, so its menu must be pretty magical. Crab Dip? Duck Confit Risotto? Count me in.

Tai Tiki:  http://www.taitiki.com
Everything about Tai Tiki is tempting! They have seafood-heavy selections, and fruity, pineapple-garnished drinks. Who doesn’t want to be transported to the tropics in the dead of Ohio winter?

Kolache Republic:  http://kolacherepublic.com
The Czech bakery’s kolache are yeast dough pockets filled with sweet or savory goodies. I’m sure either kind will be divine.

Angry Bear Kitchen:  http://www.angrybearkitchen.com
Innovated dishes are the name of the game here, and I’m dying to check it out. Items like chicken-fried squash or grilled strawberry sauce sound wildly unique.

Sunflower Chinese Restaurant:  http://www.columbussunflower.com
I’m crazy for dim sum, so why haven’t I been here yet? This Dublin spot is touted as the best dim sum restaurant in town, and trying one of everything is the key to my heart.

Sweet Carrot:  http://sweetcarrotcolumbus.com
The beloved food truck turned brick-and-mortar in Grandview this year, and I’m intrigued by their offerings. Corn cakes and macaroni and cheese sound right up my alley.

Restaurants to Revisit

Here are some spots that I love, but that I’ve neglected lately. Each of these locations deserves a second or third visit, ASAP.

Guild House:  http://www.theguildhousecolumbus.com
I’ve enjoyed a remarkable happy hour at this beautiful Cameron Mitchell staple, but to gain a real appreciation for this spot, I need to come back for the full meal experience.

Denmark on High:  http://www.denmarkonhigh.com
It’s been far too long since I stopped back into Denmark, where my husband and I used to be regulars. The house-made cocktail components really shine through, and they serve up a mean charcuterie plate.

Charcuterie Plate from Denmark

Hounddog’s 3 Degree Pizza:  http://www.hounddogspizza.com
They know how to make a pie at this campus-area dive. Oh Smokin’ Joe’s crust, how I miss you. Can we get back together soon?

Veritas Tavern:  http://www.veritastavern.com
Every course I ate at Veritas Tavern this year blew my mind and the menu changes seasonally, so a return visit is definitely in order.

Veritas Tavern in Deleware

Lola and Giuseppe’s Trattoria:  http://www.lolas-italian.com
The teeny Gahanna gem is one of the best Italian spots in the city, but doesn’t get enough recognition. I could survive on the sweet onion bisque alone for at least a week.

The Refectory:  http://www.therefectoryrestaurant.com
It’s been forever since I’ve stopped into this upscale French classic. For my next special occasion meal, you’ll find me here.

Mikey’s Late Night Slice:  http://www.latenightslice.com/
I’m always in the mood for some Mikey’s. With the opening of the Fourth Street location with an expanded menu, there’s no time like the present!

Late Night Slice

What restaurants are must-try places for you in 2016? Have you been to any of these joints?

Keep Connected,

Caroline