Mozart’s will host its 25th-annual Mozart Festival & Open House event from 12-8 p.m. Saturday, January 25, in honor of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s 264th birthday. The iconic European-inspired bakery and restaurant first opened its doors in 1995, and has held an open house event to thank the community for its support every year since.
25 years ago, Anand and Doris Saha took the biggest gamble of their lives coming to Columbus with little more than their two suitcases and the American Dream. Doris was born in Mariazell, Austria, where she discovered her love of crafting European pastry and entertaining guests at her parent’s hotel. She completed her professional training in Austria, perfecting her talents in some of Europe’s finest hotels. She met Anand in Switzerland, where he studied at the Alpina School of Hospitality Management and trained at the prestigious Dolder Grand Hotel in Zurich and esteemed establishments in Austria.
The young couple took over the beloved GiAntonio’s bakery in Clintonville in 1995. Through the years, Anand and Doris have grown their fledgling European pastry shop into an iconic Clintonville restaurant and catering facility. Mozart’s longevity is a testament to the passion that the Sahas bring to their craft. As Anand proudly proclaims, “Without Doris, there is no Mozart’s. She is the soul of the business, like I am the heart. There would be no Mozart’s without Doris.”
The Sahas have invited former Columbus Mayor Greg Lashutka to reprise his role as Chief Guest for the 25th Annual Mozart Festival. Lashutka, who served as the 51st mayor of Columbus from 1992 to 2000, was the Guest of Honor for Mozart’s inaugural celebration in 1995. Over the course of his distinguished career, Lashutka also played tight end for the Buckeyes under Coach Woody Hayes, served in the U.S. Navy and as the Columbus City Attorney, amongst other accomplishments.
Mozart Festival always coincides with the birthday of the restaurant’s namesake, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and a ceremonial cake cutting with “Little Mozart” has become a beloved tradition. This year’s Little Mozart Everly McNamara is a 9-year-old fourth grader at Indian Springs Elementary. Everly has been taking piano lessons at Music Royale since she was 5, and in addition to piano, she plays drums, guitar and violin. Talented local musicians including Jayne Allison, Mark Werling, Paul Weiss and others will provide entertainment throughout the day.
Since opening in 1995 in its original home at 2885 N. High St., Mozart’s has cemented itself as a neighborhood institution. Customers love the distinctive European ambiance and elegant Old World atmosphere, highlighted by live piano music and handcrafted, made-from-scratch European pastries and baked goods. In 2013 the Sahas moved north to their current historic location on at 4784 N. High St.
Mozart’s has continued to evolve in response to Columbus’ growing restaurant market, focusing on catering and special events. The restaurant and bakery is open for breakfast and lunch, and hosts private events in the evening. Mozart’s was awarded The Knot’s prestigious “Best of Weddings” designation for 2018, 2019 and 2020.
The annual Mozart Festival has grown from its humble beginnings of 80 guests to hosting more than 2,000 in recent years. Guests will be treated to live local music and samples of Mozart’s signature pastries throughout the day. A photo booth will be an exciting new addition to this 25th Anniversary celebration, and guests are encouraged to dress in Mozart-themed costume and attire. Johnny DiLoretto will return as event emcee, and guests will enjoy a specially brewed beer from Lineage Brewing. Wolfgang Amadeus Stout is a robust oatmeal stout infused with coconut and marshmallow, with dark chocolate and toasted coconut notes and a slightly sweet finish.
“This event is our way to say ‘Thank You!’ to our loyal customers,” Anand Saha says. “We invite the community to join us to celebrate with live music throughout the day, delicious pastry samples handcrafted by our talented chefs, a magnificent piano-shaped birthday cake, ‘Little Mozart,’ and our very special Chief Guest.”
WHAT: 25th Annual Mozart Festival and Open House
WHEN: 12-8 p.m. Saturday, January 25, 2020
CAKE-CUTTING: 5 p.m. Saturday
WHERE: Mozart’s, 4784 N. High St., Clintonville
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