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The Torpedo Room Coming to South Campus Gateway

Walker Evans Walker Evans The Torpedo Room Coming to South Campus Gateway
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The Gateway Film Center is booting the theater’s Martini Shot Bistro restaurant and bar in favor of that Columbus Food League upgrade that was teased back in May. The Center announced this morning that construction will begin soon on The Torpedo Room, a nautical-themed restaurant catering to movie goers looking for an escapist experience.

“People going to the movies really want to get away from reality, so the restaurant will have a similar feel,” explains Elizabeth Lessner, Founder and Owner of the Columbus Food League. “The vibe will be part steampunk and part 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea with some fun transformative decor by Nikos Rutkowski, which we’ll be installing in the next few weeks.”

The food menu and bar menu are currently in development, but Lessner says that it will be focused primarily on sandwiches, salads and appetizers with a fun beer and cocktail list. Rambling House will be serving draught ginger beer, and desserts include a take on Choco Tacos and Oatmeal Cream Pies.

“One of the other things we’re playing around with right now are Polcanes, which are funny little empanada type things,” she says. “Johnny DiLoretto won’t shut up about how great they are, so we want to have some unusual items like that on the menu.”

During the construction of the restaurant, the theater’s concession stand will shrink slightly, but an upgrade to the operations is also planned there with bulk candies, house-made nacho toppings, and a zero-waste program that aligns with the environmental mission of the Columbus Food League.

“Popcorn at home gives you a warm fuzzy feeling, so we want the theater to be more like that,” says Lessner. “We’re serving it in bowls to make it more personal and have been experimenting with flavors like Bloody Mary and Pumpkin Popcorn. I think I’m most excited about all of that.”

The Torpedo Room is expected to launch (pun intended) at the beginning of December — a quick turnaround explained by the lack of any major changes to the kitchen itself. The restaurant will open at 11am for lunch and remain open late to serve the final theater-going guests exiting the late shows. The upstairs lounge area is also slated for a future makeover that Lessner refers to as a part of “phase two”.

More info can be found at www.gatewayfilmcenter.com and www.columbusfoodleague.com.

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  • Eugene_C

    Well, I wish them good luck with it. I thought the concept behind the Martini lounge was a lot classier but they were never really able to run with it. Maybe this remodel will appeal more to the local clientele.

  • Lauren Wilson

    I dig all of this.

  • Ned23

    I love the idea of a movie-themed lounge at the movie theater. I can’t wait to see how this turns out. My friends and I used to bring board games and card games to the old lounge and we would sit up there for several hours on a Saturday afternoon and then grab dinner at the Tuna or Mad Mex and see a movie. Alas, a bunch of geeks using the space for free was not a money-making proposition for theater. So, I completely understand their motives.

  • Suddenly my costume makes a lot more sense in this group. https://scontent-a.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/1377095_10153359497730234_160183962_n.jpg

  • RBloodworth

    I thought the concept behind the Martini lounge was a lot classier but they were never really able to run with it. Maybe this remodel will appeal more to the local clientele.

    Condescending much? (From some of your comments, I gather that your opinion is that people in this city are too trashy to appreciate anything nice, and, thus, nothing that you deem “classy” exists here. That is so off-base, I don’t even know where to start.) I don’t know about the rest of you, but the whole “Martini Shot” concept was nothing more than a fancy-sounding name tacked on to the exact same type of frozen and reheated concessions served at the old Arena Grand. This concept sounds LEAGUES (no pun intended) better: homemade artisan concessions, chef-driven fare and a good selection of local beers and spirits. That sounds like a much more unique and- dare I say- “classier” experience.

  • Graybeak

    I suspect the “local clientele” referred to is college students, but that is just a guess.

  • Eugene_C

    My apologies RBloodworth, no offense or condescension intended. It was just an observation. I kind of liked the mid-century decor and theme of the lounge but I understood why it didn’t work in a movie theater setting across from a college campus. The only time I recall it actually being used was during a couple of special screenings with special guests during the first few months it was open. I was hoping it would work but it didn’t but I’m not bitter about it or anything.

  • I am super excited about this! I play trivia at the Gateway every week and it will be awesome to have a new place to eat dinner.

  • LOVE the steampunk, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea theme. makes sense to continue the fantasy of the movies. Looking forward to visiting the new place!

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