City Welcomed 50 New Bars and Restaurants in 2018
It’s been a long ride, but it’s finally over — 2018 has come to a close. For some, it was a year of closure. But don’t mourn too long; there’s a natural rise and fall to the industry. And though we said farewell to a lot of favorites, 50 newcomers have entered the scene.
Another year, another growth spurt for Downtown Columbus. The neighborhood welcomed 12 new bars and eateries in 2018, the most of any neighborhood in the city.
The owners of Si Señor opened a Peruvian fast-casual restaurant, Criollo, on Gay Street. Around the corner, the vacancy left by Phatt Taco on the corner of Gay and High Streets was filled by Rio Fresh Cafe. Mikey’s Late Night Slice added another location at the corner of High and Vine streets, this one including a basement speakeasy. And a new fine dining restaurant, Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse, opened on East Nationwide Boulevard.
Downtown also saw the addition of cuisine from India (Haveli Bistro), Mexico (Tio’s Tacos & Tequila), Argentina (Barroluco) and Texas (Pecan Penny’s), and rounded out its burger and pizza options with Burgerim and Viiza.
Following right behind Downtown is the Short North neighborhood, with eight new spots opening their doors there in 2018.
The Lox Bagel Shop opened for breakfast and lunch just this month, and C. Krueger’s Finest Baked Goods, by the founder of Cheryl’s, now offers cookies, pastries and coffees out of the old Robert Mason store on Brickel Street. White Castle made a comeback as well, in the brand new Castle development by Borror.
A diverse range of restaurants and bars launched in Grandview Heights this year.
Brekkie Shack, as its name suggests, added a breakfast and lunch option to the area. Oshio Sushi Kitchen & Bar replaced GoCupz Korean Barbecue on West Fifth Avenue. High Bank Distillery opened their kitchen and taproom in May. Alchemy opened its second location in Grandview, simultaneously expanding their menu to include hot brunch and dinner. And Craft & Vinyl, a bar-slash-record-store-slash-recording-studio, opened in August.
Four new restaurants have opened in Bexley, all on the East Main Street corridor.
The University District welcomed back Japanese Oriental Restaurant, a destination for sushi lovers. The District PourHouse, a new gaming bar, replaced World of Beer at the Gateway. And Rippers Roadstand shut down to make way for Barbacoa, a Mexican fusion restaurant, though it was quickly converted into a Poké Bros. under the same ownership.
Dublin’s been the destination for several restaurants this year, particularly for businesses based in northeast Ohio. The Rail and Swensons Drive-In, both from Akron, opened in Dublin this year. They’re joined by a second location of the Avenue Steak Tavern, a Cameron Mitchell Restaurants venture.
Other notable additions to the Columbus food scene include: Ambrose & Eve and Antiques on High, both in the Brewery District; El Lugar and Alpine, adjacent businesses in German Village; a second Mrs. Turbo’s Cookies location, in Powell; local meadery Uprising Meadworks in East Columbus; intimate live music bar The Oracle in Olde Towne East; a third Poké Bros. location, in Westerville; a Brewdog kitchen and taproom in Franklinton; tapas bar Lupo on Arlington in Upper Arlington; G.D Ritzy’s in Clintonville; and a Clintonville location of Westies Gastropub, which was later converted into an event space.
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