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Bites & Sips: Reopenings, Service Grants, Ice Cream, Pizza, Beer Collabs & More

Susan Post Susan Post Bites & Sips: Reopenings, Service Grants, Ice Cream, Pizza, Beer Collabs & MoreClockwise from top left: Hot Chicken Tenders at Sweet Carrot - Photo provided by Sweet Carrot; BrewDog Franklinton - Photo by Lauren Sega; Land-Grant's Always Open - Photo provided by Land-Grant; Rye River Social - Photo by Walker Evans
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There’s much to catch up on in the world of drinking and dining in Central Ohio. As things churn back to life, bars and restaurants are reopening, menus are expanding and there’s some special beer to drink. Plus, Service has reopened its grants for service industry workers and you can help raise more grant dollars! Read on for the rundown!

Service Relief for Hospitality Workers Distributing Next Round of Grants

Over the next eight weeks, Service Relief for Hospitality Workers will distribute up to $10,000 in grants to local service industry professionals experiencing financial insecurity due to the pandemic.

Individual grants max out at $1,000 and can be used to cover rent or mortgage payments, health-related bills or copays, utility bills, child-care costs, grocery bills, and more.

Workers interested in grants can fill out an application at servicerelief.org. The Service team will reach out to applicants who meet the criteria for need, based on priority, to deliver the funds.

Individuals looking to support the organization through grant funding can participate in the Service Chef Auction. Bids start at $250 for a private meal for up to six people from some of the city’s best local chefs. There will be one auction per week with all money raised going directly to funding ongoing Service programs.

For more information, visit servicerelief.org.

Boxwood Biscuit Co. Sets Opening Date for Short North

Boxwood Biscuit Co. celebrates its grand opening in the Short North on Friday, March 12, officially making this once pop-up permanent.

Fried chicken will join biscuits as signature dishes on Boxwood’s expanded menu. There are biscuits & gravy and biscuit sammies, a classic three-piece chicken and chicken sammies, and even biscuits in the dessert – a Biscuit Bread Pudding with seasonal jam, maple cream and honey.

For now, Boxwood will be carryout-only, offering breakfast, lunch and dinner from 7:30 a.m. – 8:30 p.m. Diners can order online or in-person at 19 W. Russell St.

For more information, visit boxwoodbiscuitco.com.

Barrio Adds Brunch

Barrio is now slinging brunch on the weekends. The build-your-own taco joint’s brunch includes a menu of set dishes spanning sweet, like the Donut Hoyos, to savory, like the Avocado Tostada. There’s a lineup of tacos, too, including the Crispy Camerone Taco, the BBT Taco and The Cowboy Taco.

Brunch is served on Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. – 3p.m. Barrio is located at 1416 W. Fifth Ave.

For more information, visit barrio-tacos.com.

Harvest Teams up with the Columbus Zoo

There’s a new pie at the Columbus Zoo. Locally-owned Harvest is now the official pizza of the Zoo.

“With their emphasis on local farmer partnerships and sustainable practices, the Zoo is proud to call Harvest Pizzeria a partner,” a social media post from the Columbus Zoo read.

Pizza from Harvest will be available at the Congo River Market Food Court, Mapori Restaurant in Heart of Africa and Harbor Pizza in Zoombezi Bay when open. Cheese and Pepperoni pizzas will be available.

For more information, visit columbuszoo.org.

Bonjour Cafe Opens Downtown

There’s a new coffee shop Downtown. Bonjour Cafe opened in early February at 330 S. High St., the former home of short-lived Just Love Coffee Cafe.

Bonjour Cafe serves up an extensive coffee menu to pair with its desserts and house-speciality crepes. There are savory dishes, too, with omelets, breakfast burritos and more in the morning hours, and wraps, sandwiches and salads for lunch.

Bonjour Cafe is open from 7 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

For more information, follow Bonjour Cafe on Facebook.

Fairfield County Launches Two New Trails

Beer, Coffee or Sweets – Fairfield County has a trail for that. While the Route 33 Beer Trail has been helping craft beer fans explore some of the region’s locally-owned breweries since May 2018, it has some new company in the form of local coffee shops and confectioners.

In February, Fairfield County launched its Sweet Tooth Trail highlighting plus 15 locally-owned businesses across Amanda, Baltimore, Lancaster, Millersport and Pickerington. Indulge on donuts, cookies, extreme milkshakes, ice cream and more.

For caffeine fans, there’s the Java Trail, which launched in November 2020. Find your favorite coffee (or other caffeinated drink) from eight local shops.

For more information, visit visitfairfieldcounty.org.

Land-Grant Debuts All the Collabs

Land-Grant has some new beers to keep your quarantine booze routine fresh. The Franklinton brewery is currently featuring three collaboration beers in its lineup.

There’s the Always Open, a Peanut Butter Chocolate Coffee Brown Ale infused with actual Buckeye Donuts and Stauf’s Coffee. It’s a nod to that campus institution that’s there with fresh donuts whether late night or early morning (or when those become the same thing).

Suco, a Brazilian Sour Ale brewed with Acerola, Feijola, and Pink Peppercorn, is a partnership between Land-Grant and Easton’s Forbidden Root. This special brew has a saturated tropical fruit profile with earthy, fruity spice.

Rounding out the trio is Little Fish collab Field to Fjord, a Nordic pilsner. Land-Grant teamed up with the Athens-based brewery on the crisp pilsner featuring Ohio grain, Ohio blue corn, Michigan Crystal hops, and Oslo Kveik Yeast.

The beers are limited releases available at select grocery stores, bottle shops, and craft beer retailers. They’ll also be available at the Land-Grant Taproom and Beer Garden, and to order online for local delivery or shipment throughout Ohio.

For more information, visit landgrantbrewing.com.

 Graeter’s Mystery Flavor Unveiled

A caffeinated favorite meets ice cream in Graeter’s new mystery flavor. Caramel Macchiato dropped in scoop shops and online as of March 1, and is soon to follow at grocery stores like Kroger and Giant Eagle.

Back in action after an enthusiastic test-run last summer, Caramel Macchiato features coffee ice cream with crunchy toffee pieces and milk chocolate caramel truffles.

Graeter’s annual mystery flavor celebrates the addition of another everyday flavor from the previous year’s bonus flavors.

For more information, visit graeters.com.

Sweet Carrot Expands its Menu

Sweet Carrot, 1417 W. Fifth Ave., is expanding its menu with two new proteins. First up is the Sesame Ginger Shrimp, available for a limited time only. The shrimp are seasoned with Sweet Carrot’s BBQ rub and finished with a sesame ginger sauce.

Becoming a permanent fixture are the Hot Chicken Tenders. Sweet Carrot adds extra spice to its original tenders batter and douses the strips in a spicy hot sauce post-fry. The tenders are served with a cucumber buttermilk sauce. Hot Chicken is available to order in a bucket, as its own meal served with a side of slaw and mac ‘n cheese, or as a protein topper to Sweet Carrot’s other dishes.

For more information, visit sweetcarrot.com.

Rye River Social Sets Reopening Date

One of several local bars and restaurants to temporarily close during the pandemic, Fifth by Northwest’s Rye River Social is ready for its comeback.

The bar and restaurant will reopen on Wednesday, April 7. Welcoming a new chef, the menu will be similar in style, with elevated yet simple, well-done American dishes, and feature several new items.

Rye River Social, 955 W. Fifth Ave., will (re)kick things off with dinner and brunch service. Hours are Wednesday and Thursday 4 – 10 p.m., Friday 4 p.m. – midnight, Saturday 11 a.m. – midnight and Sunday 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

For more information, visit ryeriversocial.com.

BrewDog Franklinton Reopens this Weekend

Another in the world of temporary closures, BrewDog Franklinton will once again be pouring beers as of Friday, March 12.

Opening weekend shenanigans include a new beer range, live music, prize giveaways, and a chance to win a two-night stay at the DogHouse Hotel in Canal Winchester.

Reservations are recommended and guests can book tables at http://bit.ly/3eiGFbj.

BrewDog will be open Monday to Thursday from 11 a.m. -11 p.m.; Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. – midnight and Sunday 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.

For more information, visit brewdog.com.

Austen & Company Debuts Cocktail Menu

Merion Village’s Austen & Company, 1530 S. High St., is many things – tea & coffee shop, bookstore, art gallery – and cocktail bar is now one of them.

The new addition, dubbed Bar Edna, is now slinging a limited menu of cocktails, including its signature drink, the The Romancefield – a Manhattan-Old Fashioned hybrid. Also on the menu are an Espresso Martini, Irish Coffee and Flat White Martini, with more cocktails to come.

Cocktails are available Monday through Saturday until 7 p.m. (Later hours are coming soon.)

For more information, visit austenandcompany.com.

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