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21 Eat. Drink. (614).


Summer 2019


Stopping by The Oracle for a beer and a mythical look into the past, present, and future.


A look at how Ohio is making moves to bring in more bourbon to the state.


The beloved lager originally brewed by Four Strings Brewing Co. is back just in time for summer.


Your guide to cracking open cold ones this season.


Start your morning off with these summer themed dishes.


When it comes to getting an exclusive meal, sometimes it pays to be in the know.


Nothing says nostalgic summer more than a soft-serve treat from a roadside ice cream shack.


Go beyond mojitos for refreshing drinks with these 12 cocktails.


Helping you put together what you need for next outdoor eating adventure.


We went on a taco truck quest and we found a little bit more.


Our publisher, Wayne Lewis, dishes out three recipes to step up your next cook out.


Finding fresh menu options at food trucks for the summer season.

A LITTLE BIT OF EVERYTHING AT BLYSTONE FARM 104 From a taproom to a butchery, Blystone Farm offers quality options for food and drink.









have never been on a picnic. I’ve been on the State Park kind of picnics with shelter houses and charcoalcaked, precariously-leaning grills. And I’ve had group meals where everyone collectively dumps their food from a backpack or plastic grocery bag on a blanket and drinks wine from Solo cups. But that’s about convenience and fairness, which are not really picnic values. But an actual, real picnic—the kind that looks like it was ripped from an Impressionist painting? I’ve never been on one of those. Picnics are intentional and planned and quite inconvenient. They include a menu of tarts and crudites and cucumber-infused water. They require special equipment and organization. (Where do we put leftovers or trash? What do we do about sticky hands? Or bugs?) They require a reserved block of time and a view. Ideally they include outdoor entertainment. A good picnic needs master skills of management and food styling—like having a dinner party on your lawn with no tables or chairs. If I have to be honest, I have always been more about aesthetics than food. It actually pains me to remove fruit from my wooden bowl and erode its Renaissance-like appearance. So it’s surprising that I have never indulged in this cultural treat of a picnic. And yet…here I am. And now with this issue, in which we give you a wealth of advice in upping your outdoor eating game, I feel even more at a loss for excuses. I have the antique silverware. I have the elegant, non-breakable plates and glassware. I have an official 100-year-old picnic basket. And now I have a list of ideas, both visual and written—from international beverages to coleslaw to corn—curated from the pages of this publication. I just don’t have…an occasion. Summer is filled with occasions: graduations, weddings, and festivals. They’re all filled with fun and spectacle and purpose. But as I turn through the gorgeous images of this issue that capture the delights of summer fare at its most optimal, forgive me for thinking I’d like a moment instead. A fleeting, summer, selfish, inthe-present moment. A picnic moment. One that I’ve created by myself just for myself. Isn’t it enough to have the opportunity to create a moment, bubbling with culinary and sensory pleasure in the present and enjoy it for no other reason than such things exist? Isn’t creating a moment of magic with a blanket, a perfectly-built charcuterie board, and a


PUBLISHER Wayne T. Lewis

MANAGING EDITOR Laura Dachenbach ASSISTANT EDITOR Mitch Hooper PHOTO EDITOR Brian Kaiser 614NOW EDITOR Regina Fox STAFF WRITER Mike Thomas CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Rebecca Tien, Julian Foglietti Collins Laatsch, Zane Osler PHOTOGRAHPY INTERNS Lea Conway, Adam Fakult CONTRIBUTING WRITERS J.R. McMillan, Melinda Green John McLaughlin, Nathan Cotton Linda Lee Baird

COPY EDITOR Dan Sponseller CREATIVE DESIGNERS Jess Wallace, Sarah Moore GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Hugo Albornoz, Kalyn Schroer PHOTO BY B R IA N KA ISER

glistening arrangement of sliced fruit a grand enough occasion unto itself? Nothing is quite as “carpe diem” as the tastes of summer. That summer peach will last a day or two before it declines. It’s begging you to savor its transience, to embrace the immediate moment, to create for the sake of creation. This summer, don’t let anyone steal your moment. Go out of your way, and take a picnic all by yourself. I won’t tell anyone. Best,

Laura Dachenbach Managing Editor



(614) MAGAZINE 458 E Main St., Columbus, OH 43215 Office: (614) 488-4400 Fax: (614) 488-4402 Email submissions to: editor@614columbus.com www.614columbus.com










Hey Dad, Want A Beer?

Drink & Make Things

Lynd’s Fruit Farm Market on Morse Opens

(614)’s Restaurant Week

Brewing Company

LOCATION: The Market On Morse PRICE: N/A WEB: lyndfruitfarm.com

LOCATION: Varies PRICE: $15-$40 WEB: eat614.com

Game Of Thrones has concluded, but let’s be real, we’re all looking for a little more when it comes to the show. At Land-Grant Brewing Company, you can get a taste of what it was like to be a maker back in those days as the brewery will be playing host to a maker’s night complete with beer samplings, hors d’oeuvres, and desserts! Your options for creation include blacksmithing just like Gendry in the show, or you can try your luck creating chainmail for all those busy nights fighting crowds at the bar (*please do not use creations for harm). Of course, making GoT-like creations can be a dangerous art, so don’t go too overboard with the LandGrant brews because if you do, you might spend your night as an audience member rather than a tried-and-true smithy.

What’s the best part about living in the Midwest in the summertime? All the fresh produce readily available, of course! And if you’re looking to get your fill of freshness, Lynd’s Fruit Farm will be rocking-androlling come mid-July when fresh sweet corn, followed by peaches and nectarines will be ready for your picnics and patios. When it comes to apples, you might get lucky and score some in the July months, but they will be more available as fall rolls out and into the winter. In the meantime, berry season is here. Visit the Market, or check throughout the U-Pick season.

Your favorite week of deals on meals at iconic Columbus restaurants is back! Restaurant Week features three-course meals locked in at price points ranging from $15 to $40. Whether you’re looking to take your significant other out to an upscale date night, or just chowing down on some great deals that won’t put your bank account in the negative, this week is the perfect week to get out and try all Columbus has to offer! And as always, be on the lookout on 614now.com for giveaways throughout the week!

LOCATION: Varies PRICE: $55 WEB: cbusbrewbus.com With June being the month to celebrate the men in our lives who are notorious for bad puns and never letting anyone touch the thermostat, it’s time we give back on Father’s Day. Instead of heading out to Kohl’s last minute to grab a new necktie that he’ll never want or wear, give your old man the thing he truly wants: somewhere to be loud, listen to dated music, and drink loads of beer. On the CBus Brew Bus tour, your dad (and a bunch of other dads) can visit both Parsons North Brewing Company and Combustion Brewery and Taproom, listen to all the hair metal they can handle, and passionately argue about everything under the sun from sports to cars. We’ll let the CBus Brew Bus driver deal with who gets to set the temperature in the bus. 12

LOCATION: Land-Grant PRICE: $65 WEB: landgrantbrewing.com








The Ohio State Fair

Schneider’s Bakery Donut Run

LOCATION: The Ohio State Fairgrounds

PRICE: $6-$10 WEB: ohiostatefair.com Another year in Ohio means another year of farmlife and big name acts coming to the State Fairgrounds. The Ohio State Fair is your chance to experience rural Ohio right in the heart of the city while also enjoying deepfried everything. You like Oreos? How about deep fried Oreos? And who can resist an elephant ear?? We’re just patiently waiting for deep frying scientists to figure out how we can put a crispy, crunchy crust on our craft beers. Until then, we will joyfully gaze upon our butter cow overlord and gulp down some lemon shake ups.

LOCATION: Alum Creek Park North

PRICE: $10-$40 WEB: donutrun.itsyourrace.com Grab the kiddos, lace up your running shoes extra tight, and maybe loosen your belt a few notches: we’re going running, and then we’re eating donuts! Schneider’s Bakery in Westerville is hosting a 5K, 10K, and kids fun-run to round out the month and you can cap off your exercisefilled day with a jelly-filled donut, or any other donut of your liking. Participants will be going home with sore legs, but also plenty of swag as well as custom finisher medals and race bibs, and some softspun t-shirts. And, of course, if you happen to dominate your personal best time, it’s all the more reason to splurge out on the extra carbs and calories.





BIG PICTURE Traveling around the city searching for tacos is hard work and creates quite the appetite. Luckily, we had the means to suffice, and you can find more about our adventure on page 56. PHOTO BY BRIAN KAISER



Finding your future in the bottom of a glass BY MITCH HOOP ER PH OTOS BY REBECC A T I EN


hen The Oracle first opened, I heard rumblings there would be tarot card readings done on Thursdays. I have to admit, my first reaction was to go to John Oliver and watch his episode on psychics. I was skeptical, but curious. On the Thursday afternoon when I arrived, right on the door read “Tarot Card Readings from Libby Bruce at 7 p.m.” When it comes to finding a good bar, I don’t need much. I’ve been through my college party boy years of college closing down the bars on High Street, and I’m past that now. I’ve traded packed bars for roomy patios, television screens for ambiance, and Pabst Blue Ribbon for, well, still Pabst Blue Ribbon. The speedy bartenders slinging their drinks are for a different crowd; I want personality and conversation when I’m kicking back drinks. A tarot card reading fits that bill pretty nicely. •

I walked into the bar, a century-old building, and immediately felt like I had entered someone’s home. (The home of someone running a happy hour special of Jackie O’s.) Maybe it was because I was able to pull up and park like it was just my friend’s house, or maybe it was because I had to jiggle the front door knob a certain way to open the door (also like my friend’s house). There’s no in-house food service, but food trucks make a home just outside. And the cocktails are classic and impressive for a smaller establishment. The bartenders are friendly and knowledgeable. The making of a new favorite. A quick walk around showed off retro/antique decor, ready-to-sink-your-ass-into couches, and vibrant walls and curtains. The room to the side of the bar offered plenty of seating, and the patio out back could play host to larger crowds on the weekends... ...And tarot card readings. With the summer solstice on the horizon, I was feeling a bit mystic, if you will. I took a $20 mythical leap of faith, and was the first person of the night to have my tarot cards read. After some shuffling, reshuffling, and splitting of the decks, I was ready to hear my future. Was I going to be famous? Should I start writing that book? Am I gonna die? …. No, seriously, am I gonna die?! The cards seemed to be in my favor, or at least that’s my perspective. Of the seven cards we drew from the deck, five were geared towards work, which technically I was doing at the moment. But the predictions went deeper than just general work. Bruce read that my past was full of working and improving, my present is a quick moment to breathe, and my future holds putting my nose to the grindstone. As a recent college graduate, it progressively all sounded better and better. Wait, wasn’t I supposed to be a skeptic here?

The truth is that I had no clue if those readings were accurate, true, or self-confirming thoughts. And the other truth: perspective is everything. One way to look at my tarot card readings could be, “Great, now I have to go back to work. Isn’t my current work enough?” But, that’s short-sighted. I didn’t need tarot cards to tell me my past, present, and future; I just needed to think about my past, present, and future. I took another sip of my Jackie O’s, clearly in an unexpected situation at The Oracle questioning my existence. Well, so much for a casual Thursday. The night concluded with new friends met at the bar and bourbon—my favorite combination. We laughed about life, talked about the city, and bitched a lot. The relaxing atmosphere combined with the drinks and talks of mythology got to me and I felt at ease. Finally, a moment to breathe. On second thought, when it comes to finding a good bar, I need a lot. It’s not that I don’t like busy bars, and I don’t need to be an economics professor to understand why busy bars stay open and empty bars close down shop. It’s just that I’m selfish, and I like to have a place to call my own. I’ve staked out my spot in this neighborhood and I won’t be moving for a while.. 

The Oracle is located on 1159 Oak St. Follow @the_oracle_ote.



Whiskey Business Working with manufacturers, Ohio steps up its bourbon game.



he title “Superintendent of Liquor Control” may conjure the image of a barrel-chested, prudish, and punitive sheriff from the Wild West, but that’s far from the affable persona Jim Canepa displays when discussing his role as the CEO of Ohio’s liquor operations. In fact, Canepa’s job as Superintendent is less about enforcing stringent liquor laws and more about recruiting highly-regarded distillers to send their product his way, for the benefit of Ohio’s consumers and spirits enthusiasts. The former cold case homicide prosecutor and veteran government servant took charge of the Ohio Division of Liquor Control (ODLC) in early 2017, tasked with overhauling a 40-year-old inventory system and addressing consumer concerns. He’s embraced the role with aplomb, and in just over two years ODLC has made innovative strides to expand the selection of and ease of access to a variety of liquor. “When you compare doing a murder case or selling bourbon, I’m in the selling bourbon mode of my life right now,” Canepa laughs. “So I think that’s a lot of fun.” The history of alcohol in the United States is storied, divisive, and remains complex. All states regulate alcohol in compliance with some standard federal rules, such as a prohibition on any purchasing by people under 21 and investigating illegal resales on the black market. Most states are considered “Open.” Retailers can purchase high proof spirituous liquor—defined in Ohio as greater than 21% alcohol by volume, or 42 proof—directly from manufacturers to sell. 

But Ohio is 1 of 17 “Control” states, where manufacturers sell directly to the state, which then owns the product and sets retail prices through a statutorily-defined formula. Canepa contends Ohio’s arrangement has many advantages. For starters, control states are able to take more risk in purchasing bulk inventory than individual, risk-averse retailers in open states. Although these retailers maintain a greater degree of freedom and can satisfy the desires of liquor connoisseurs, states possess far superior purchasing power and ability to negotiate with manufacturers. “What the data has shown, is where you have an open system, the product selection is a lot less,” says Canepa. Bourbon is a particularly complex case study. Manufacturers have the ultimate leverage in choosing which markets to sell in, due to the unique process of distillation and the “crazy, outof-control demand” across the globe, according to Canepa. Sure, manufacturers can make a healthy return on an individual barrel of highquality bourbon, but that doesn’t necessarily help them achieve their number one goal: 22

greater market share. By selling directly to the state, manufacturers can ensure consistent sales and a runway to market a wide swath of spirits. “With regard to bourbon, the manufacturers hold all the cards in terms of merchandising, in marketing, in where they want to put it,” he explains. “With regard to everything else, we hold all the cards because they have to convince us that that vodka is going to sell, that tequila is going to sell, that gin is going to sell, because the demand for those things is fairly flat.” Some whiskey collectors see Control— and more specifically, Ohio Liquor (OHLQ), a partnership between the Ohio Division of Liquor Control which manages retail and wholesale operations of spirits, and JobsOhio Beverage System (JOBS), which owns spirits purchased by the state and supplies them to private, licensed agencies—as an adversary. But from the viewpoint of Dylan Richards, a bartender at OPA Grill and Tavern in Delaware, working with the state is a necessary part of the sales process. “From a behind the bar standpoint, we can get the product we want and need in a fairly reasonable fashion.”


At OPA, Richards manages one of Ohio’s largest whiskey inventories, over 1,000 bottles all told. “The system we have isn’t perfect, but it works. A lot of people complain, but that’s human nature.” Even though it can be more difficult to find rare bottles under the Control parameters, “the upside is that [in Ohio] everything is sold by the state at retail, so if you do find a hard-to-find bottle you won’t be charged an arm and a leg for it,” he explains. Canepa underscores the point: “My main job, my sole job, is to create a market that’s fertile that will entice those manufacturers to bring their bourbon to the state of Ohio.” By building a consistent, growing market, Canepa expands his credibility, leverage, and—crucially—his trust with manufacturers, who ultimately hold the power to bring exclusive and rare product to consumers. Canepa’s team hasn’t been afraid to test innovative ideas. OHLQ now operates “Last Call” stores, such as the Neil Avenue Giant Eagle, which offer discontinued, eclectic, or slowselling product (clearing JOBS’ spirits backlog


OHLQ-contract liquor agencies around the state. Agencies earn a commission on all liquor sales.


OHLQ-contract liquor agencies tasked with selling wholesale to restaurants and bars in their geographic area


Minimum predicted revenue for a new OHLQ retail agency application (driven by market research)


share of mash ingredients that must be maize for a spirit to be considered bourbon


bottles of High Bank Distillery’s Whiskey War sold in 2018, the top selling American whiskey in Ohio by an Ohio producer

in the process), and purchases barrels directly from distilleries, and operates raffles for exclusive bottles. These events have been smashing successes. With 1,200 people turning up at a Giant Eagle in Dublin for 84 bottles of Weller 12, and 500 people for 63 bottles of Old Fitzgerald 9-Year-Aged at a Kroger in Clintonville, the buzz for bourbon speaks for itself. And which Ohio distillers offer the best product? Columbus’ own Watershed Distillery, High Bank Distillery, and Middle West Spirits ranked 1, 2, and 3, respectively in Ohio sales in 2018 among all producers of less than 100,000 gallons. For Richards’ money, Ohio’s top distillers are Middle West Spirits (OYO), Watershed, and Cleveland Whiskey. But at the end of the day, he says, “We’re still Ohio, and most

$1.3 billion High Proof Spirituous Liquor Sales in 2018

Top 3 Ohio’s ranking in high-proof spirit purchasing by bottle volume, among control states

people are looking out for stuff that comes from Kentucky.” Catching up with the Bluegrass State will be no easy task, yet Richards remains optimistic about the progress made at home. “Ohio distilleries and bourbon lovers are beginning to make a name for themselves on a broader spectrum.” “They don’t have the marketing power that these giants have,” says Canepa of Ohio companies. “But these distillers are making some really good stuff right here [in Ohio].” And when the workday is over, what does Ohio’s authority on liquor control himself prefer to sip? “I like all my children,” he says with a smile, before delving into a specific fondness for McKenna’s 10-Year Bottled in Bond, Old Forester Statesman, Maker’s Mark Rye, and Sazerac products.  614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019


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A battle where you’re winning even when you’re losing BY M I TC H HOOP ER P HOTOS BY COL L I N S L AATSC H

I’m no competitive drinker; I’m just a regular guy with a serious appetite. Okay, so maybe I stole that from Adam Richman, but his show Man vs. Food always was a pleasure when I was growing up. He would take on these seemingly impossible challenges, and within a few minutes, you’d see his game plan unfold and his plate empty out. And it’s his bravado and courage that inspired me one sunny Saturday morning at Hadley’s. Browsing the menu, I noticed a mimosa cost about $6. Anyone who’s ever started their day with mimosas knows this: there’s no such thing as just one mimosa at brunch. What’s the harm? Champagne supposedly wears off quickly, orange juice provides vitamin C to fight scurvy, and a stemless glass at 10 a.m. says, “I’m sophisticated, and I like to party.” With that in mind, I started to calculate my totals. Two mimosas came to about $12 before taxes and tips, but they came in a larger glass if ordered separately. Let’s just say each $6 mimosa holds about two actual mimosas since the glass is larger. So if you really want to stretch the truth, $12 for four drinks isn’t too bad. That being said, once you hit $18, the question arises: if the brunch special offers endless* mimosas per person at about $20, wouldn’t it just be easier to pay the $20 up front? But what if I can’t even get past four mimosas? Then I would’ve been better just getting the two drinks separately. •



My head was spinning with equations like that meme of Zach Galifianakis in The Hangover. And then the voice of reason hit my subconscious: What would Adam Richman do? He wouldn’t worry about silly dollar signs, and math is for nerds. I’m getting the brunch special, dammit! And so I did. The first bottle of champagne and orange juice arrived and I started the first two drinks with the same ratio: a shit ton of champagne and a splash of OJ. They went down almost too easily. The stemmed glass in my hand combined with a refill-my-own-adventure at my fingertips; I was on cloud nine. Or maybe it was just the bubbles getting to my head. When my meal arrived, I was convinced: if I was wrong about cloud nine, I didn’t want to be right. Drinks three and four went down almost as easy as the first two and instantly my worries if I should’ve gotten the brunch special disappeared. Who cares about anything, really? I had mimosas. I should mention that these ones were a bit stronger than the first and the bottle of champagne is about half empty. Still had plenty OJ, though. I poured up drink number five and, what do you know, it went down easy. Or did I chug that? I don’t know. Empty glass. Refill. When it came time for drink number seven and eight, it came time for another bottle of champagne. The first bottle was running on low, and I thought I had plenty of gas left in the tank. I quickly slammed back the last of the first bottle, and had a slight moment of pride. Somewhere, I hoped Adam Richman was proud of me at this moment. It’s when I poured up any drink after 10, but not before 13, that I realized I had made a grave mistake. My belly was about to burst from all the bubbles. My fun and playful head buzz turned into a headache. My eyes were drowsy and, honestly, who knows if they were both even open. I squinted at the second bottle and felt I had done enough damage. A bottle and a half for one man is too much. I threw up the white flag, was whisked home by my designated driver, and instantly fell asleep on the couch. Though man was done with the mimosas, the mimosas weren’t done with man. The cold sweats ensued, the room began to spin, and I decided the cold tile in the bathroom would feel nice on my skin. It had nothing to do with the evil brewing inside of my stomach. A few hours later, I woke up feeling a bit groggy but I definitely didn’t get sick… So don’t ask me about it. Got it? In the battle between man and mimosas, let’s just say it was a tie. • * Short of alcohol poisoning. 26










hese days, Dan Cochran is busy meeting with distributors and getting marketing details ironed out for the launch of Hilltop Lager—again. In the summer of 2018, his current situation would have seemed almost inconceivable. Hilltop Lager, a decidedly working-class brew crafted by Cochran’s Four String Brewing Company, was all but inescapable in Central Ohio. With vintage-inspired art splashed across its 16-ounce cans, Hilltop and its light counterpart quickly became fixtures in the local beer scene since launching the year before. Originally intended to compete with the likes of PBR and Miller Lite in the crowded domestic lager category, Hilltop Lager bucked all of the trends established by the modern craft beer boom. In 2018, organizers of Columbus’ Community Festival announced that Hilltop and Hilltop Light would replace those aforementioned domestics as the fest’s only American lager options. It seemed Columbus finally had a stalwart hometown lager to call its own. And then, without warning, it was gone. In the fall of 2018, Four String Brewing closed its doors. For Columbus beer fans, the sudden closure of the brewery behind what was fast becoming one of the city’s most recognizable brands came as a shock. Hilltop Lager was an undeniable hit—how could have this happened? Answers were not immediately forthcoming. Cochran and Four String never issued a press release or spoke with media regarding the closure. 




” “I wasn’t going to let the blood get in the water, but the public were very surprised, especially with the growth of Hilltop Lager,” Cochran said. “It was just getting bigger and bigger every month. That was one of the biggest disappointments for me. We finally had this hit beer, but just a little too late.” Months removed from what was undoubtedly one of the most painful chapters of his life, Cochran opened up about Four String’s sudden closure. “It was really all about economics and finance,” he explained. “Our original model was to be in several states, and while we were out trying to build this business, local breweries in Columbus were doubling down and getting in deeper in this market. As a result, we weren’t selling the volume of beer that we wanted to be, and we started contracting to pay the bills. When that business went away, it was hard to replace, and frankly, we got to the point where I just had to shut the doors.” But Cochran is not content to dwell on the past. On the contrary, since Four String’s closure, he has been working tirelessly to secure a future for Hilltop Lager. First, Cochran reached out to his friend Blake Squires for advice. With experience in tech startups, Squires used business connections to gather a group of investors and secured the brand rights for Hilltop Lager from Four String’s lenders. It was the crucial first step in the brand’s latest chapter: a planned relaunch in the summer of 2019.



“I’m really excited that we were able to put this together as quickly as we have so we can make this summer [launch] happen. I know that the beer has been missed, and there’s just been this huge public outcry,” explained Cochran, who now serves as a consultant for the newly-founded Hilltop Brewing Company. With the foundations of the business established, the focus shifted to establishing a plan for production. Rather than starting from scratch with a new facility, Hilltop decided that finding an established brewery to produce their products on contract would be the best course of action. The search for a partner that could achieve the quality and volume that would be required started in Central Ohio, but the right fit could not be found. After expanding their search, Hilltop has found a home among the award-winning stable of beers at Brew Detroit in Detroit, Michigan. Brew Detroit is responsible for the modern incarnation of the heritage lager brand Stroh’s, which is in many ways a good example of what Cochran hopes Hilltop can be. “Something I’ve said since we first started is, I want Hilltop to be the Old Style of Ohio,” Cochran explains, comparing his creation to the longstanding, culturallyingrained brew from Chicago, Illinois. To make Hilltop the semi-official beer of Columbus that it was born to be, Cochran recognizes the importance of bringing the brand home. “As we grow this brand, at the top of our list is to bring production back to Columbus, Ohio. That’s important to me,” he explained. Cochran also assures fans that the recipe of the original Hilltop Lager remains intact in its new incarnation. Hilltop is still a biscuity, easy-drinking, American-style lager packed with plenty of malted barley, incorporating adjuncts necessary for color and flavor, but never to cut costs. Though some things remain the same, the relaunch means this brand will have to find its footing for the second time. While the future of Hilltop Lager has yet to be written, it’s hard to imagine the product that resonated so strongly with consumers will fail to find an audience following its brief departure from the market. Speaking with Cochran, his enthusiasm for Hilltop Lager clearly runs deeper than mere business. The loss of the brand seemed to affect him not only personally, but as someone who appreciates what a product like this can mean to a community—something for hardworking people to enjoy, identify with and depend on. With the relaunch comes redemption. If successful, a return from the ashes of financial ruin will forever become part of the Hilltop story. It’s a brand that’s faced seemingly insurmountable hardships, and somehow overcame the odds to survive. In 2019, is there anything more American? Foreclosure couldn’t kill this beer— there’s something hopeful in that. •




The Brews of



Find your delight this season at Columbus breweries


t’s blazing hot. You’re tired and thirsty. Or maybe you’re ready to party when the sun goes down. What’s better than a cold summer brew? A cold summer local brew, that’s what. With dozens of craft breweries around Columbus putting their literal creative juices to work, and many more around the state, there’s bound to be something that can quench your thirst and satisfy your taste buds.

Fruit’s Still Forward Fruit-flavored brews are still the rage, with citrus, peach, and tropical fruit abounding in juicy infusions. For those of you who like a little grapefruit flavor but don’t like the intensity of most grapefruit beers, check out Parsons North Brewing Company’s grapefruit wheat. The flavor is more floral than citrus, smooth without the usual bitterness of zest. If you do like the intensity of traditional grapefruit brews, go for North High Brewing’s Grapefruit Walleye APA. It has the tartness and bitterness of the full fruit, but remains balanced and juicy. Cleveland’s Saucy Brew Works plans to open their Columbus brew pub in late summer, but in the meantime, look for cans of their Don’t Stop Wit It Wit It Belgianstyle Tangerine Wit. With the spice of coriander plus the fruitiness of tangerine, this one is a perfect allday poolside refresher. •



For a heartier fruit-forward beer, Homestead Brewing’s Bimini Road double IPA bursts with pineapple, mango, and mint flavors that complement the intensity of its hops. If you’re looking for something unique, Wild Ohio’s tea beers (yes, that’s a thing) are great for summer. With flavors like peach, lemonade, and blueberry with a hint of lavender, most of their brews are light and refreshing—sort of a slightly fizzy, alcoholic iced tea, and much more enticing than the term “tea beer” sounds in print. One of the best things about these brews is that, being brewed from tea leaves instead of barley, they’re an option for glutensensitive drinkers.

Backyard Best Bets Combustion Brewing’s Sir Veza Jalapeño Infused Mexican Lager has the distinctive aroma and flavor of jalapeño, with none of the bite. It seems impossible with every sip, yet it’s true. This is a beer that could be equally at home with the chips and salsa tray or riding shotgun in your mower’s cup holder. Nocterra’s Mexican Lager, on the other hand, has the sweet fullness of corn first and foremost. My mind instantly went to the backyard barbecue, with smoky, grilled burgers, tangy sauces, and creamy side dishes. This is a beer that can bring an extra dimension to summer food. Zaftig’s Alina Pale Ale is another light, summery, easily-drinkable selection. It’s refreshing, with an allaround hoppy balance perfect for outdoor events and parties. Likewise, Land Grant’s Pool Party Pilsner is crisp, aromatic, and great for any hotweather occasion.



Summer Sours Maybe you’ve always wanted to try a gose but were wary of its sour and salty sides. Nocterra has two brews that might change your mind: The Tahitian and Hawaiian Swell Lines. Tahitian Swell Line is fruit-punch-quality pink guava forward, with a finish of strawberry; Hawaiian uses passionfruit and mango. The salt and tartness balance the sweetness of the fruit. They’re complex, but not overwhelming. If a salted slice of juicy watermelon is your thing, Warped Wing offers a “funky” Magic Melon gose, slightly salty, just a little sweet, and tart with juice. Ill Mannered Brewing Co. brings its Pseudo Insubordination Berliner Weisse to the party, this time infused with peach—semi-sour, fruity, and bright. Sour and peach may sound like a contradiction in terms, but Ill Mannered makes it work nicely.

Still Not Convinced? If you really, really, aren’t willing to drink craft beer, you could go with something from the big corporate brewery and still support the local workforce. But, really, why not try something more creative? If the selections so far don’t pique your interest (while they should), there’s more variety to be found. Brew Brothers’ Staycation, a margaritainspired gose, is refreshing and crisp, with coriander, sea salt, and lemon/lime zest. It’s not a true margarita, but it might be the next best thing, with a low ABV that will treat you better than tequila will. MadTree Brewing, in Cincinnati, has a brut rosé IPA that is bolder and heavier than many other rosé brews. Brew Brothers’ Jerry is a sour red ale but infused with cherries and aged in wine barrels for another intense experience. If you’re more of a stout drinker, The Brew Kettle (located in Strongsville) offers the smooth and summery Kitka coconut chocolate milk stout. Or go high-ABV with Zaftig’s 17%-intense Ol’ Rugger Russian Imperial Stout, available with a coconut variation. No matter what your preferences are, make it a point to try these or some of the many other local seasonal brews. You may find some new hot-weather favorites. •







araga International Grocery is stationed on Morse Road, a 62,000-square-foot hub of staples and flavors from around the globe. From Caribbean to Korean to Nepalese, whatever cuisine you’re searching for (or missing from home) is likely to be found here. But Saraga is more than a place to find a niche item. “Saraga” is the Korean word for “living,” and that’s the essence of all food and drink— finding and exploring what life has to offer. In the beverage aisles of Saraga, you’ll be surrounded with flavors of raspberry, mango, watermelon, mandarin, and guava. Temporarily (of course) ditching your cola obsession might be a fun and refreshing place to start your exploration. So try stocking your cooler with a bit of fun from around the globe. The high-fructose corn syrups and caffeine are absent from many of the beverages, and much of the world still consistently vends soda in charming glass bottles which maintains flavor and potency while regulating the beverage temperature. Admit it. It’s time for a change. Make this the summer your dark cola beverage takes a vacation. •



Topo Chico Mineral Water from Mexico: This fizzing drink is inspired by the legend of an Aztec princess cured from disease by the mountain waters flowing around the Cerro de la Silla. Add pineapple juice, ginger root, or lemon juice for more of a flavor spark.

Jarritos from Mexico: Less carbonated than most soft drinks, Jarritos means “Little jug” and comes in 15 fruit flavors, including piña (pineapple) and tutifruti (fruit punch). Mexico takes fruit seriously. The flavors are predominately natural and the sugar is real.

Cawy Soda from Cuba: Lemon-lime is the most well-known flavor of this bottling company with ten different fruit flavors, now headquartered in Miami, Florida. Fruit slices add a pop of color.



Pink Ting from the Caribbean: A refreshing sweetened grapefruit drink with a splash of lime, Pink Ting can be enjoyed on its own or can become the mixer of a rum or vodkabased cocktail in a highball glass garnished with a sprig of mint.

Milca Roja from Nicaragua: One of the most popular beverages in Nicaragua, light-tasting Milca Roja has hints of bubblegum popping through the carbonation. The bright color and flavor make it ideal for ice cream sodas or soda popsicles. • 614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019


Taking Sips Of Summer



A dozen picks to quench your thirst BY STO C K & B ARREL STAFF


hen it gets hot, you gotta find a way to deal, and we at Stock & Barrel understand and sympathize. Here are our recommendations to help you cool down when the temperatures rise.

0! 16-Bit

Hulk Hogan What’s more summer than lemonade? Boozy lemonade. And what’s more summer than boozy lemonade? Dropping in a frozen red, white, and blue bomb pop in the center of the drink! The iconic popsicle from your childhood is back and you’re gonna need a front row seat to your own sip down, brother!

0@ Matt the Miller

Blueberry Basil Limoncello Martini Skip the regular muffin. Here’s a martini for brunch instead! Two of summer’s favorite flavors come together in one glass with Stoli Blueberry and Limoncello, along with basil, lemon juice and simple syrup.

0# The Bottle Shop

Carribean Queen The Bottle Shop is known to whip up just about any creation you can think of, and their tiki drinks are quintessential summer vibes. Of course, the classic mai tai is available in these aesthetically pleasing tiki glasses, but our eyes are all on the Carribean queen. The drink boasts a savory over sweet flavor profile thanks to the Rum Zacapa 23 as well as the orgeat (almond syrup) which provides a slight nutty taste. The drink also features earl grey tea-infused falernum to add a floral profile, plus some mint sprigs to garnish. • 614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019


Pg 41: Hulk Hogan from 16-Bit Photo by Brian Kaiser Top Left: The Painkiller from Huli Huli Photo by Julian Foglietti Bottom Left: Lushie from Oddfellow’s Photo by Brian Kaiser

0$ Standard Hall

Red Sangria Nothing says summer like a cool glass of sweet sangria. Standard Hall’s Red Sangria is a blend of Pinot Noir, Triple Sec, Absolut Grapefruit, lemon juice, lime juice, and marinated fruit. It comes in a single serving, but once your friends catch a glimpse, they’ll want more than a gulp, so go for the shareable size.

0% Hubbard Grille

Agave Cooler Now that you’re grown, hopefully you’ve graduated from stealing your mom’s wine coolers and embarked on a new adult beverage endeavor. But, now we’re sending you back to your roots with Hubbard Grille’s Agave Cooler with A New Amsterdam Vodka, pure agave, pink grapefruit and lime juices, fresh basil; served on the rocks. Your mother would be proud.

0^ Oddfellows


With new options nearly every week, Oddfellows’ lushies are a sure fire way to beat the heat this summer. This frozen drink is similar to a slushie you’d find at a gas station, but it’s been upgraded with boujee flavors and booze. Options like The Carter have been featured in the past which is a mixture of Bumbu rum, creme de cacao, and lemon making for a bright orange cocktail perfect for the patio.

0& Asterisk

Asterisk Orchid Take time to stop and smell the roses (or the orchids) this summer. From the Asterisk proprietary cocktail menu, a choice of vodka or gin, St. Germain, with notes of lime, rose, and cucumber. A flower in a glass! 42


0* Local Cantina

Mango Manzana Margarita How can you go out for Mexican food without getting a marg to sip on the patio? The Mango Manzana Margarita combines Patrón Silver and Patrón Mango Citrónage with agave, lime, lemonade, and is garnished with an apple slice and a luxardo cherry. By our counts, that’s at least three servings of fruit per glass.

0( Two Truths

Penicillin This is one penicillin shot that even staunch anti-vaxxers will won’t be able to resist. With two scotches serving as a base for this ginger and fresh-lemon infused cocktail, penicillin at Two Truths is good for what ails you!

1) Huli Huli Tiki Lounge

The Painkiller

And if Penicillin can’t solve what ails you, a good old Painkiller should just about do the trick. This island-inspired cocktail features Sailor Jerry’s Spiced Rum with pineapple, coconut, and orange with the option to have it served on the rocks, or frozen. Beyond a drink that will take your mind straight to the beach, the bright pink flower garnish coupled with a pineapple slice and a speared cherry makes this drink every bit Instagrammable as it is drinkable.

1! Light of the Seven Matchsticks

Running with Scissors and Playing with Matchsticks This signature cocktail at this exclusive speakeasy is everything your mother warned you about. One sip of this high-falutin’ mixture of brown-buttered bourbon, Dolin Dry, Benedictine, and a house ancho syrup, and you’ll see why rules were made to be broken.

1@ The Market Italian Village

Barrel-aged Negroni Go native while visiting Italian village with this twist on the classic drink from the boot-shaped old country. Vim and Petal Heritage Blend Gin join Cynar 70, Sherry, and Apricot in this smoky, barrelaged cocktail—Maddon’, that’s good! • 614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019


Ten breweries with patios you have to visit this summer BY STOCK & BA R R EL STA F F P HOTOS BY COL L I N S L AATSC H




ome for the sun, stay for the beer. As summer rolls out in Columbus, the race to the patio begins. It’s truly one of life’s simple pleasures: an ice cold beer, a sunny day, and a spot to host your blissful and boozy adventure. The next time you and your squad is gearing up for a day in the sun, make sure to keep these local craft brewers on your radar.

BREWDOG FRANKLINTON | 463 W TOWN ST. This spot has grown in popularity, and it’s for good reason. The rooftop patio offers plenty of space while the ground level patio is perfect for a cozy evening around the firepit. Your options for elixirs include the favorites like Elvis Juice or Punk IPA, but might we suggest the Clockwork Tangerine—a session IPA with a 4.5% ABV keeping it light, but a little hoppy.

PLATFORM BEER CO. | 408 N SIXTH ST. Nestled away in Downtown is perhaps one of the most underrated views of the skyline at Platform Beer Co. Sure, the rooftop patio is a bit quaint, but the unadulterated view of the city is worth it. Throw in another patio to the side of the bar with wooden seats and your Instagram clout just went up 15 likes. Try the blueberry cider Becky if you’re after a sweet beer affair, or the Seltzer Project: Black Cherry is a darkhorse for a summer favorites. •



SEVENTH SON BREWING CO. | 1101 N 4TH ST. Rain or shine, Seventh Son will have you covered. The patio offers seating for large parties with the bench style picnic tables and the rooftop patio with a retractable roof is always open and often packed. Snag a Peach Blossom—a fruited saison boasting a 5.5% ABV, get there early, and never leave.

LAND-GRANT | 424 W TOWN ST. Land-Grant is a place to truly indulge in the new age of Columbus: craft beer and barbeque. The intimate patio is great for couples, and who doesn’t love smacking down some Ray Ray’s ribs on the first date? Forget the napkins, show each other what you’re really made of. And then wash it down with a Pool Party pilsner.

ANTIQUES ON HIGH | 714 S HIGH ST. A fireplace, couches, and a spectacular view of Downtown make for a beautiful summer evening as you enjoy a boutique selection of sour and funky beers. With some of these beers aging for over a year, you’re not going to find them anywhere else, and AOH has certainly created an experience for you to enjoy.

PARSONS NORTH BREWING | 685 PARSONS AVE. When Parsons first opened, summer couldn’t get here soon enough so they could open the doors to the patio. Well folks, we made it. The wait is over. It’s time to take it all in, celebrate the season, and try the Sour Lager, a new spin on a classic style.



NOSTALGIA BREWING | 81 MILL ST. GAHANNA The all-season patio at Nostalgia seats about 50, and is located in the beautiful Creekside District adjacent to Creekside Park in Gahanna. The decor and beer names (The Marvin Berry, The Koosh) are throwbacks to pop culture references of the past.

HOOF HEARTED | 850 N 4TH ST. Keeping up with Hoof Hearted ever changing beer menu is a challenge, but it’s one we willfully accept. Not only can we take on this task on the patio outback, we can move the party to the pool. Let’s meet at Hoof Hearted bright eyed and thirsty, and someone save us a Konkey Dong 4-UP IPA.

ENDEAVOR BREWING | 909 W 5TH AVE. With board games galore and a large patio, Endeavor is like a big kid’s dream. The patio is spacious with tables big enough to host plenty of parched people. We recommend hitting up Endeavor on Thursdays where weekly experimental small batches are released.

ROCKMILL BREWING 5705 LITHOPOLIS RD. NW, LANCASTER With a rustic vibe, this former horse farm will transport you to a simpler time. Fruit-forward flavors such as the Dubbel and Trippel will round out your summer weekend. • Previous Page: Brewdog Franklinton Top: Seventh Son Brewing Co. 614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019


a P r a c i d n i se c i P Outdoor dining for urban dwellers





hat bright, skin-scorching disc that occasionally appears over Columbus skies is back on the “high” setting, which can only mean one thing: summer is in full swing. Along with all the pool parties and barbeques that the season brings, spreading out the picnic blanket at one of the city’s pristine metro parks is an ideal way to enjoy the great outdoors while getting your grub on. Though you shouldn’t have too much trouble finding an ideal picnic spot, choosing the best items to load into your basket demands careful consideration. Let’s face it, chicken salad sandwiches and watermelon slices—delicious though they may be—are old hat. Fear not, persnickety picnic participants: allow us direct you to the best spots in central Ohio to find everything you’ll need for a picnic spread that looks picture perfect.

Giant Eagle Market District When it comes to sheer convenience, Giant Eagle Market District can’t be beat. For the uninitiated, a-la-carte items sold by the pound at this upscale grocery’s hot bar run the gamut from Italian favorites to southern staples like fried chicken and potato wedges. Throw in an equally eclectic salad bar and you’re on your way to stress-free picnic bliss. LOOK FOR: marketdistrict.com

Weiland’s Market The selection of high-quality Buckeye-proud foodstuffs at Weiland’s Market in Clintonville is unparalleled. Whether it’s a hefty helping of bung bologna from Falter’s Fine Meats, or a seasonal selection of the finest fruits and vegetables Ohio has to offer, Weiland’s has the hookup. LOOK FOR: weilandsmarket.com •



The North Market A picnic in the heart of the city can be an international affair thanks to the diverse offerings at Columbus’ best (and only) public market. Grab a charcuterie board and assemble the appetizer plate of the gods at Black Radish Creamery. Compare the finer points of authentic Tibetan momos from Momo Ghar and traditional Polish Pierogis from Hubert’s. Room for dessert? Top your globetrotting picnic experience off in style with French macarons from Pistacia Vera. LOOK FOR: northmarket.com

Dan the Baker No picnic would be complete without a nice, fresh-baked loaf of crusty bread leaning casually out of a wicker basket. Thanks to savory concoctions like an olive and polenta-infused loaf or a croissant stuffed with ham and gruyere cheese, the artisan creations of Columbus’ own Dan the Baker are the perfect picnic accent (or main course). Finish the affair with one of Dan’s Tahitian vanilla bean cream pastries and you’ll wonder why you ever need eat anything but carbs again. LOOK FOR: dan-the-baker.com

The Hills Market Columbus’ own locally-owned downtown grocery has all of the selection of the larger chains, complete with full-service departments to suit any need. Grab readyto-go meals such as Hill’s famous crab cakes or twice-baked potatoes from the chef’s case, snag a couple of slices of pizza, or have the deli whip you up a sandwich just the way you like it. Whatever you choose, Hills makes crafting the perfect picnic basket as simple as pointing at what you want. LOOK FOR: thehillsmarket.com •





Kernel A Salute to the

Five ways to enjoy your summer favorite BY MI TC H H O O P E R

Corn —it’s usually

the first thing anyone outside of the Midwest thinks of when they hear about Ohio. It hurts, but it’s true. Almost every true Ohioan knows the saying “knee high by Fourth of July,” and anyone who doesn’t shall be exiled to a rural small town immediately for training. But this Midwestern staple originally hails from Mexico and is considered a grain, a vegetable, and a fruit. It’s no wonder that there’s so many ways to do corn. And summer is the perfect time to try a few.



As Nature Intended Simple, sweet, addictive. What more can you need? Throw some butter on that ear, add a little salt and pepper (and some Lowry’s if you’re feeling adventurous), and proceed to munch like a typewriter.

South Of The Border Corn A simply buttered ear of corn is tough to beat, but leave it to our friends south of the border to add some flair to our beloved crop. Mexican street corn, also known as elote, is essentially the loaded baked potato of corn, featuring a blend of spices like chili powder and cayenne powder with loads of crumbly cotilla cheese and drizzles of a Mexican crema on top. Katalina’s is a sure-fire spot for your elotes, and their second location in Clintonville opened recently. 



Let’s Get This (Corn) Bread Standing as another southern treat, but more in the vein of barbeques, is cornbread. It’s a simple treat, but it delivers in flavor in so many ways. The subtle sweetness of the corn combined with the fluffy and airy bread only needs a spread of butter on top to complete the masterpiece. And at Pecan Penny’s, you can do just that. Whether you serve it straight up, or pile your smoked pulled pork on top for a new creation, there’s really no wrong way to devour this side dish.

Corn Cookies! Why not? We’ve seen corn in chips; corn in breads and puddings; and even sexy south of the border corn, but corn in cookies? That’s where the line is drawn… Or maybe not. At Acre Farm To Table, the sweet corn cookie is corn as a dessert. With some extra sweetness added, the cookie is the perfect balance between enjoying a treat with none of the guilt. Okay, admittedly, some of the guilt. There’s just no way something that tastes this good can be healthy! 54


Transcorned Whoever says nachos aren’t a dinner option shall be exiled with the rest of the people who don’t know the “knee high” saying. They’re just deconstructed tacos— open your imagination a little! And making them at home couldn’t be easier. Pick up a bag of OH! Tortilla Chips, grab all your favorite taco toppings, and get your napkins ready. Dealer’s choice on if you should go Modelo or Corona—just don’t forget the limes. 




FEAST • Sabor Costeño Taqueria's al pastor and chorizo tacos

Sample the best of authentic Hispanic cuisine right in Central Ohio





he secret is out: if you’re on the hunt for authentic, oftenregional, and reliably delicious fare from south of the border, food trucks are your best bet. Though they’re now a regular subject of thinkpieces, blog roundups, and even televised food competition shows, food trucks as we know them sprang forth from a culture of migrant groups serving and partaking of the unique flavors of a faraway home. Since their early days, food trucks have become a familiar staple in the landscape of American food culture; finding one often takes little more than a stroll to a nearby office park around lunchtime. Like many past innovations from immigrant communities, a concept that started from necessity and convenience has been embraced by the mainstream and reworked to include food of all imaginable origins. While attention today may fall on the hottest new chromespangled truck-slinging gourmet burgers or lobster rolls at $18 a go, there are still many purveyors of humble mobile eateries plugging away with the same affordable, Central-to-South American dishes that made the food truck concept a hit in the first place. Like any locale with a sizable population of migrants from Latin-American nations, Columbus boasts an almost daunting array of traditional food trucks to choose from. As it was in the beginning, these trucks often feature cuisine from their proprietor’s hometown or region. In spite of the wheeled vehicles that house them, many of these operations can be found dependably at a fixed location that they never leave. While Columbus is blessed with dozens of great brick-andmortar spots serving up legit Hispanic food, OG-style taco trucks are still slinging some of the best food you’re likely to find in the area. Even if these ostensibly-mobile food vendors are out of your way, they are worth the seeking out. You can try to Yelp your way through the taco truck tour of your dreams, but it might be easier to just get in the car and go. That’s what we did one afternoon, heading to the city’s west side where an established Hispanic community means a remarkable concentration of taco trucks-per-mile.

First up was Sabor Costeño Taqueria, a taco truck situated in the parking lot of a Shell gas station on Georgesville Rd. With an emphasis on coastal Oaxacan fare, this bright red truck featured a menu of special soups as part of their “weekend only” offerings (enticing weekend menus being a common sight at many trucks). While the al pastor and chorizo tacos we picked up at this first stop resembled familiar onion-and-cilantro-adorned street tacos, the rich flavors of the pork placed these a cut above the ordinary. It was a sign of good things to come. •





• Taqueria El Buen Sabor's chorizo tacos

Just up the street on Georgesville was Taqueria El Buen Sabor. Deeplyingrained fast-food impulses enticed us into trying the gorditas at this truck, but the delectable creation that passed through the window into our waiting hands bore little resemblance to the multi-tortilla’d cheese concoction at Taco Bell. These gorditas were something like a tostada with an additional top shell. The crispy tortillas used in this preparation were made fresh on-site—a sure sign of next-level taco skills. In this dish was every texture you’d want, from the crispyyet-delicate bite of the shell to the tender, succulent meat (chorizo again in this case). A strong undercurrent of fresh dairy from a splash of crema and queso fresco rounded out the gorditas’ exceptional flavor, which at three for $10 almost demanded a second helping. Directly following our meal, the staff at Taqueria El Buen Sabor treated our crew to a selection of fresh-squeezed tropical juices. Pulpintact, these chilled beverages offered a refreshing come down from the hearty dishes that preceded them. •



• Arepa Picante's black bean & cheese arepa



• Arepa Picante's arepa stuffed with plantains, spicy tofu, & avocado

After an afternoon of pork-stuffed delights, the final stop on our taco truck trifecta offered a selection of vegetarian and vegan offerings to satisfy the veggie-inclined among us. A fairly new venture according to employees within, Arepa Picante on Sullivant Avenue is a sleek black truck specializing in Venezuelan and Mexican offerings. As the name suggests, the arepas were the star ingredient in most of this truck’s dishes. A vegan arepa stuffed with plantains, spicy tofu, and avocado, as well as a simple black bean and cheese arepa, were among the creations we sampled that day. No matter what goes into them, these crispy, chewy, scratchmade arepas ensure that everyone leaves satisfied. It’s worth mentioning that while each of these trucks featured its own unique flavors and vibe, the unifying factor among them was exceptionally friendly staff. Every person we spoke to on our taco tour was more than happy to answer our questions, usually with the kind of warm genuine smile that may be hard to find in the rush for lunch at your nearest fast-casual chain. While some of the novelty may have worn off, food trucks remain a destination for those in search of authentic flavors and hard-to-find regional delights. Though our sample size was relatively small, there was still nothing we tried during our humble tour that was less than exceptional—and this was just one part of town. With countless trucks tucked away throughout the city, surely there are riches to be discovered just around the corner. •



Zah-Mazing Za’atar Traditional Hummus

Hip-Hoppin' Morockin' Carrot Dip

Sweet Po-Thai-To Coconut Curry Hummus

Step It Up A Beet Roasted Beet Hummus

¡Que Bueno! Piquillo Roasted Red Pepper Hummus




Take A



hips and dip. The easiest offering at a summer gathering. And one that carries a certain amount of guilt for its minimal efforts. But you don’t need to sacrifice time or convenience in order to bring a bit of interesting to the table. A bit of intentionality can make the difference between everyday and elegant. Enter Darista Dips. Inspired by world travels and flavors, Columbusbased Darista Dips provide a different spin on the chickpea, bursting with ginger, curry, almond, basil, and harissa flavors. Add a sprinkling of your favorite herbs and a plain white or clear glass bowl, and suddenly you’ve got a classic on your hands. While they stand alone as flavorful (and colorful) dips, the pastes can also become the secret ingredient of your tacos, quesadillas, salad, or even borscht, enlivening and elevating a basic summer recipe into the delight of the evening. With availability at a number of locations including many Fresh Thyme Farmers Markets, Giant Eagle Supermarkets, and The Hills Markets, you’re likely to find exactly what you need when that picnic pops up. Gluten-free and vegan, Darista Dips just might be the perfect answer for that versatile, delicious, and fun contribution to your next communal meal.

Zah-Mazing Za’atar Traditional Hummus RECOMMENDED PAIRINGS: Naan bread, sweet peppers, Sauvignon Blanc

Sweet Po-Thai-To Coconut Curry Hummus RECOMMENDED PAIRINGS: Shrimp, cauliflower, Riesling

¡Que Bueno! Piquillo Roasted Red Pepper Hummus RECOMMENDED PAIRINGS: Mozzarella cubes, carrots, Zinfandel

Hip-Hoppin' Morockin' Carrot Dip RECOMMENDED PAIRINGS: Cucumber slices, celery, dry Rosé

Step It Up A Beet Roasted Beet Hummus RECOMMENDED PAIRINGS: Black bean chips, Merlot 614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019



BREAK(FAST) Enjoy seasonal breakfast and brunch offerings at these three restaurants BY MI TC H HOOP E R | I L LUST RAT ION BY SARAH M OOR E


hen it comes to seasonal eating, it seems like breakfast is always left out of the conversation. While dinner and lunch get to feature fresh produce like tomatoes, corn, and other garden greens, breakfast is typically just your run-of-the-mill options. Eggs, bacon, and toast lead the pack followed by classic staples like biscuits and gravy or omelettes. Yawn. Don’t get us wrong, there’s a reason breakfast staples have become breakfast staples. They are reliable, delicious, and they never go out of style; kind of like a good pair of black shoes. But what about breakfast in style? We’re talking breakfast options that remind you of your favorite classics, but a bit freshened up. Look no further, my famished friends, Stock & Barrel woke up bright and early to do our research. 64


GRANDVIEW CAFE | 1455 W THIRD AVE. WHAT TO GET: BLT Benedict WHEN TO GO: Weekends at open (11 a.m.) Eggs Benedict is typically a special occasion breakfast. From making the hollandaise sauce to perfectly poaching your eggs to all the steps in between, it’s a lot of work to get your creation on the plate. Luckily, Grandview Cafe is willing to do the leg work for you, and they added some flair. The star of the BLT Benedict is the thick cut fried green tomatoes at the base which have a crispy exterior to hold up against all the toppings residing on it. Smoked bacon and arugula come next to add both flavor and color as the green of the arugula adds some needed pop to the plate. And, of course, what’s an Eggs Benedict without the eggs and hollandaise sauce? Grandview Cafe tops off the two fried green tomato masterpieces with poached eggs and hollandaise. It’s highly recommended you just stuff some of the skillet potatoes on the side into each bite you take (and maybe some hot sauce), but you’re free to live your own truth.  614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019


LINEAGE BREWING 2971 N HIGH ST. WHAT TO GET: Chilaquiles WHEN TO GO: Weekends from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Let’s just help you now before you get there— they are pronounced CHILI-key-AYES. Say it slow, practice in the mirror a few times, then head to Lineage Brewing. While these incredible bites are simple, they pack on tons in the flavor department. The dish starts with tortilla chips tossed in a verde sauce, but this isn’t just any old verde sauce from your local Chipotle—this is blistered verde sauce. The peppers in the sauce are broiled to achieve that smoky flavor on the exterior, then they are blended into a bright green salsa with ingredients like onions, cilantro, and garlic. Is your mouth watering yet? Next comes the addition of breakfast, aka, eggs. Two fried eggs, to be exact, topped with cotija cheese, because everything is better with cotija cheese. Throw on some thinly-sliced radishes and cilantro for garnish and you’re looking at one Instagrammable start to your morning. The next question: should you get a Lineage beer to wash it down with, or should you get two Lineage beers to wash it down with?



BREKKIE SHACK | 1060 YARD STREET WHAT TO GET: Plant-Based Hash WHEN TO GO: Weekday mornings It’s no secret that everyone could use more plants in their diet, and Brekkie Shack is making that easy for all of you who stick your nose up. Featuring a variety of fresh produce, the plant-based hash is a new take on breakfast skillet options. Instead of russet potatoes or hash browns, this dish uses roasted sweet potatoes, which add a subtle sweetness without being too much of a flavor diva. Your greens come in the form of asparagus and Brussels sprouts which are two “meaty” vegetables to provide a little extra “oomph” to your plant-based breakfast. This menu option continues down a powerhouse breakfast road with radishes, onions, and two sunny-side up eggs. Of course, you can always defy the name of the dish and add a side of bacon to this. And let’s be honest, you know you will. 







(614) 728-6438



[In the Know]

Restaurants keep customers coming back by keeping meals a secret 70



Close your eyes. Picture “your” dish—your go-to meal that keeps you coming back time and time again to “your” restaurant. Delicious. Dependable. You wouldn’t have it any other way. Or would you? Columbus is known for upscaling classics: burgers, pizza, pastas, even donuts. Midwesterners love to eat out, but don’t always want to be the first to try something different. What if I don’t like it? Many people will stick with favorites, and many establishments are happy to market those favorites to you. So what happens when a chef wants to flex some creative muscles and keep the customers coming back? At Service Bar, Executive Chef Avishar Barua and his kitchen staff had ideas—ideas that involved specials and and seasonal items (some of whose seasons were short-lived) and foods they wanted to introduce to Columbus. But how to create a regular menu that would allow them that flexibility? “We were going to do something like a Chinese menu,” said Barua. “At a Chinese restaurant they have ‘the menu’ and then they have ‘the real menu’ which they won’t give you unless you ask for it, and it’s usually written in Chinese [...] so it’s kind of secret, but they’ll give it to you.” Further brainstorming created the idea of a rotating picture board of dishes. And then technology made the answer apparent. “What if we just created an Instagram page?” mused Barua. “Then when someone comes into the restaurant and they want to see what we’re up to today [...] they can see a picture of it. They can read a little description of it.” The idea worked. The restaurant has made iPads available for the guest who (doesn’t have a phone!?!, or) doesn’t have Instagram. Customers don’t need to follow the page to order, but the information is always kept up-to-date. An entire impromptu menu of dishes is still a relatively unusual idea. But other restaurants are finding ways to introduce new flavors and dishes to curious patrons. For the past year, Trillium Kitchen and Patio has hosted a monthly supperclub-style dinner with anywhere from four to nine courses of one-time-only dishes. “Initially it was a way for us to sort of grow our wine program,” said Michael Kulikowski, Trillium’s general manager. “We have a number of people that actually have wine lockers with us. They purchase wine through us at retail minimum prices, keep it in there instead of paying a markup on a menu and when they come in they’ll drink out of there.” By cultivating these relationships, Trillium eventually found a following of patrons interested in a having chef-curated meal centered around wine. Each event would showcase a specific style, type, or profile of wine, pairing each course with a different wine. Now that the event has grown, Trillium has also featured bourbon meals, local meats, and local beverages. The event takes place at the restaurant on the last Wednesday of each month and ranges in price from $75 to $250. What started as wine/alcohol event quickly became a food adventure. •



Service Bar’s Mouthwatering Turkey

“In starting this we thought it would be kind of more about the wine,” Kulikowski said. “I think ultimately if you were to ask most people who come, while the wine is neat, and it’s fun to learn about, most people usually come back for the food.” Like Service Bar, Trillium has found that freedom and creativity make a difference in food quality and customer response. “It works really well,” said Kulikowski. “That’s probably the biggest thing for this all to work is [the chef’s] talent and his ability to come up with some of these menus and be as creative as he can be, and be as seasonal as he can be, and being as fresh as he can make it.” Because of the freedom a chef is given, and the experimental status of the meals which helps to garner feedback, a “secret menu” can serve as a perfect test menu for new regular menu items. A few “secret” items at both Trillium and Service Bar have become regular menu items through popularity and customer comments. “Feedback is something we like a lot in this restaurant,” said Barua. “It doesn’t do any good for [customers to say,] ‘Yeah, you guys are awesome, you guys are cool.’ That doesn’t make us any better.” Leveraging the relationship is important. It might fly in the face of conventional marketing wisdom, but the practice of keeping items “under the counter” seems to help draw attention and regulars rather than being viewed as sporadic or unpredictable. For customers, it’s about developing a connection with a kitchen rather than a dish or two, and learning to appreciate chef skills over a few favorite ingredients. “Most people that come to these now, they wouldn’t mind what wine, what alcohol they’ll be served. It wouldn’t matter.” Kulikowski said of the guests enthusiasm for the meals. “[They say] I’ll be there. We believe in it, we trust, we’ve come in long enough. We want to participate. We want to experience it.” 72


Service Bar’s SB Filet O’ Fish

“It doesn’t do any good for [customers to say,] ‘Yeah, you guys are awesome, you guys are cool.’ That doesn’t make us any better.” Service Bar is located at 1230 Courtland Ave. The secret menu specials can be found on Instagram at @secretkitchenmenu. Trillium Kitchen & Patio is located at 2333 N High St. for information about its Supper Club, visit trilliumkitchen.com/supper-club. 614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019








Old-school ice cream stands provide a summer’s worth of refreshment and nostalgia BY M I TC H HOOP ER P HOTOS BY BR I A N KA I S E R


LON G BEF OR E the days of upscale

ice cream shops serving up scoops of ice cream flavored with mocha and salty caramel, there were the classic roadside ice cream stands providing syrup, sprinkles, and joy through a sliding window. And those places still have a hold on us. Maybe it’s the iconic softserve twist on a cone on a hot summer day, or perhaps it’s a distant memory of you and your friends scrounging up coins, then riding bikes to the nearest ice cream shack, and sitting on sticky picnic tables to share a treat. Regardless of how you know these places, these now-nostalgic spots were once the height of any casual summer day. And this isn’t to say we don’t love all the incredible variety of frozen desserts now available. But when it comes to ice cream, it was never broken (unless it’s the machine at McDonald’s), so why fix it? You probably don’t need your bike to get to your nearest ice cream stand anymore, but these places are still worth the trip. •




Just southwest of Columbus on Brown Rd. is the little ice cream shop Double Happy. On the menu here is a wide variety of options ranging from sundaes to the classic banana boats, but the big seller is more than 25 different flavors of milkshakes, with customer feedback or suggestions sometimes shaping the menu. The mixed berry features vanilla soft-serve with blackberries, strawberries, and raspberries making it almost taste like a berry creampop. Other options, like the honey-roasted peanuts milkshake, taste identical to their name. And if you’re feeling wild, try the spicy peanut shake. In addition, the menu also features Belgian waffle-style brownies topped with your choice of vanilla or chocolate soft serve, homemade chocolate and caramel sauce, whipped cream, sprinkles, and a cherry. •






Most old-school ice cream stops are on the smaller size, and the tiny, redroofed Dairy Hut in Pataskala certainly fits that picture. However the menu is large and impressive with options like black raspberry soft serve in a waffle cone and actual malted milkshakes. And what’s an Ohio ice cream shop without an homage to the beloved buckeye? At The Dairy Hut, your Buckeye Sundae is layers of vanilla soft serve, hot fudge, more vanilla soft serve, peanut butter sauce, crushed candy buckeyes, and whipped cream for the extra calories you have to spare.


With an ice cream shop attached to the side of a pizza shop, Mick’s 1872 offers a little bit of everything. The ice cream menu here offers plenty of classic treats like chocolate or vanilla cones dipped in flavors like chocolate or butterscotch sauce, as well as insanely decked out ice cream parfaits. In particular, the Snickers parfait is a layer of vanilla soft serve with crushed Snickers, more vanilla ice cream, chocolate and caramel sauce, more vanilla soft serve, more crushed Snickers, and topped with more chocolate and caramel sauce. Top it all with some chocolate candy eyes and you have a cavity-inducing monster looking you dead in the face. But, like the sign on the ordering window of Mick’s says, “Seize the moment. Remember all those women on the Titanic who waved off the dessert cart.” 78



At Cones N’ Concoctions, it’s all about options. If you or your little one is looking to add a little flair to a cone, the dipped cone options here include birthday cake and the elusive, vintage, bright-red, child-appealing cherry. Also on the menu are flurries, or if you’re a kid, it’s known as “I definitely can eat a large!” The options for flurries range from standard Oreo to tempting cheesecake. Beyond the little kid options, there are the big kid options like banana splits, peanut butter parfaits, and turtle parfaits. And if you haven’t learned from your little ones at this point, these options are always best with a little help. But not too much, because, well, it’s your ice cream after all. •











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WAY NE T. LEWIS President/CEO @BBQ614



s the publisher of the magazine you’re reading (along with (614) Magazine) and as the mind behind events such as 614 Restaurant Week, you’d think I go out to eat an awful lot. But, the truth is I spend far more time in my own kitchen. I love it there—a space where my natural instincts to experiment and tweak come to life. This is especially true when it comes to side dishes. While I skew toward the simplicity of salt, pepper and a great sear on a quality piece of meat, side dishes are where I can really explore the sweet, salty, tangy and savory angles that make for the perfectly balanced meal. Since we’re in the heart of barbecue and grilling season (my favorite season) here are a few zesty sides I’d like to share. I’ve been making/ tweaking these for many years. I hope you enjoy!

New World Slaw Coleslaw is a tricky thing. Some prefer the bite of vinegar; others like it creamy. This recipe combines the best of both worlds. As you’ll see in my recipes, I try to do as much from scratch as possible/practical. You can substitute bagged slaw rather than risk your fingertips on the mandoline— just make sure it’s sliced angel-hair style. 1 Medium green cabbage

¼ CUP Rice vinegar, unseasoned

½ Red onion

1 TBSP White vinegar

1 TBSP Kosher salt

3 TSP Black pepper, coarse

¾ CUP Sour cream

3 TSP Ground mustard

¼ CUP Mayonnaise

1 TSP Celery Seed

¼ CUP Cider vinegar

1 TSP Sugar (disolve in vinegar)

PREP: Notch out cabbage stalk and cut into quarters. Using a mandoline set to fine (safely!) shred cabbage angel hair style. Do the same with the 1/2 onion. Whisk all ingredients together in a large bowl until well blended then add the cabbage and onion. Toss to combine. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours.  614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019


Diabolico Baked Beans These beans require some work, but believe me, they will be the star of the “side show.” The secret is in the homemade espresso sauce and coffee rub. They add an undeniable uniqueness to the typical flavor profile of baked beans. This recipe is pretty middleof-the-road, heat-wise. So feel free to spice it up or down with more hot peppers. 5 Strips bacon cut into ½ inch squares 1 Small Onion, diced 1 Small Green pepper, diced 1 Jalapeno, diced with seeds 2 Habaneros diced, no seeds 55oz Bush’s Original baked beans (drained) ¾ CUP Light brown sugar

½ CUP Ketchup ½ CUP Espresso BBQ sauce (see recipe) ½ CUP BBQ sauce (Sweet Baby Ray’s) 1 TBSP Ground Mustard ¾ CUP Beef stock 1 ½ TBSP Coffee Rub (see recipe) 1 LB Chopped brisket

PREP: Sautee bacon ¾ way to crisp. Add onions, peppers and sautee. Combine all ingredients into cast iron pot. Stovetop simmer for 30 min OR smoke for 1 hour 82


Espresso BBQ Sauce 1 ½ CUP Ketchup

1 TBSP Garlic powder

½ CUP White vinegar

1 TBSP Onion powder

½ CUP Cider vinegar

¼ CUP Dark brown sugar

¼ CUP Dark soy sauce

¼ CUP Beef stock

3 TBSP Fresh espresso (one serving)

PREP: Mix ingredients into medium saucepan. Simmer over low heat until slightly reduced. 10 min.

Coffee Rub 1.5 CUP Dark Brown sugar

¼ CUP Garlic powder

¾ CUP Kosher salt

1 TBSP Cinnamon

1 CUP Finely ground espresso

½ TBSP Cumin

¼ CUP Black pepper medium grind

1 TBSP Cayenne



German Kartoffelsalat There are so many regional variations on German potato salad that I would hesitate to label any of them as “authentic.” Nonetheless, this hearty, tangy recipe makes the perfect side for sweet meats such as ribs and pulled pork. Best served around room temperature and always better the next day! 5 LBS Yukon Gold potatoes (one bag) 1 Small red onion, finely chopped (about 1 cup) 8 Bacon strips cut into ¼ squares 2 TBSP Reserved bacon fat 1 TBSP Dill ¼ CUP Fresh parsley, chopped

¼ CUP Chicken stock 1.5 TSP Sugar 2 TSP Kosher salt 1 ½ TSP Fresh cracked pepper ¾ CUP Red wine vinegar ¼ CUP Japanese rice vinegar ¾ CUP Vegetable oil

PREP: Fry bacon to a slight crisp, drain and set aside bacon grease. Peel and dice potatoes into ½-¾ inch chunks. Boil until fork can pierce through easily. (but not mushy). Drain and let cool. Sprinkle salt & pepper over warm potatoes in large mixing bowl. Pour vinegars over potatoes and let sit for a few minutes. Add bacon, onion, dill, sugar, chicken stock, bacon fat. Mix well. Add vegetable oil and toss to blend. Potatoes should have a nice sheen. Add and mix fresh parsley. Refrigerate at least 12 hours. Take out 1 hour before serving to get it closer to room temp. •





get 86




in Motion The why, how, and where of farmers market season in Columbus BY STOCK AND BA R R EL STA F F


side from growing it yourself, there aren’t too many ways to get fresher produce than a farmers market. All summer long, Columbus will be dotted with the pop-up booths every weekend, bringing in goods from around Central Ohio. Small and family farmers have cared enough about their work to bring it right to your neighborhood. Here’s why you should pay them a visit, and how to get the most out of your shopping trip.



There’s nothing like produce in season. Strawberries in May and June. Tomatoes in July and August that have never been refrigerated. Because it doesn’t have to travel across the country to be held in storage, the produce can be picked at greater maturity, when the natural sugars that help to create flavor are most plentiful. The ripeness also means the food is at its maximum nutritional value.

IT’S AFFORDABLE ORGANIC. Organic produce is generally marked up substantially in conventional grocery stores because the distribution chains for organics tend to be inefficient. But farmers market items, which are mostly grown organically with more sustainable farming methods, often beat grocery organic prices. IT SUPPORTS FAMILIES. Small farms are

small businesses, and family farms have decreased in numbers over the years, struggling in the era of agribusiness to remain competitive and offer alternatives in the food market. Your purchase helps Ohio families, who in turn support the local economy.


farmers generally use fewer pesticides and fertilizers, resulting in less chemical runoff. Grocery store produce is sometimes shipped from thousands of miles away, while the produce found at a farmers market is relatively local, and less fuel is used in transporting it. And an open-air market doesn’t need to support a brick-and-mortar building or a large processing plant, reducing their carbon footprints.


ever-changing with the months and seasons. Shopping for food becomes a meaningful ritual as certain foods come into season and can be anticipated. Mindfulness in eating begins with the purchase of food and the gratitude for those people and processes that have brought that food into your life.

IT’S FUN! There’s not just produce at farmers

markets. There are often additional vendors selling flowers or baked goods. They’re places where you can find peach salsa or hand-made citronella soap. Yes, you’re there to find staples, but set aside a bit to splurge. Events are often held in conjunction to the markets and you can often put together an entire afternoon of fun without leaving your neighborhood. A good farmers market builds a community, so get out there, buy a few ears of corn or jar of honey and be a part of something.  614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019




FIGURE OUT WHAT YOU WANT. If you want the best produce, shop early before the best of the pickings are gone. If you want the best deals, shop later and see if you can spare a vendor extra reloading and hauling. You just might get a discount. GET TO KNOW WHAT’S IN SEASON. The Ohio Farm Bureau provides an extensive chart of Ohio produce and peak seasons at ofbf.org/whats-in-season. Search by the fruit or vegetable name or the month. HAVE A LOT OF COINS ON HAND. Paying

exact change makes your purchase go a little faster, and is always appreciated, especially at the beginning of the day when the bank is low. Some vendors will accept cards, but cash still reigns supreme.

BRING MULTIPLE BAGS. Prevent your most

fragile items from crushing by putting them in their own bag. Also keep meats separate from the rest of your purchases to avoid cross-contamination. And make sure to wash all of your produce thoroughly when you arrive home.

TALK TO THE VENDORS! Markets are generally not for bargaining. (Sometimes prices are set by consensus.) They’re generally not for small talk either. (This is a workplace, after all.) But farmers do like to talk about what they do and share their expertise to make sure you have the best experience with their goods. It’s always helpful to know more about where your food comes from and how it was raised. You don’t have this opportunity anywhere else, so take advantage of it. •



BEXLEY FARMERS MARKET Intersection of Dawson and Main Streets, Bexley Thursdays through October 17 from 4:00 pm—7:00 p.m.

CANAL WINCHESTER FARMERS MARKET Stradley Place 36 S High St., Canal Winchester Saturdays through September 28 from 9:00 a.m.—12:00 p.m.

CLINTONVILLE FARMERS MARKET 3519 N High St., Columbus Saturdays through November 23 from 9:00 a.m.—12:00 p.m.

FRANKLIN PARK CONSERVATORY FARMERS MARKET 1777 E Broad St., Columbus Wednesdays through September 4 from 3:30 p.m.— 6:30 p.m.

GROVE CITY FARMERS MARKET 4069 Broadway, Grove City Saturdays through September 14 from 8:00 a.m.—12:00 p.m.



HILLIARD FARMERS MARKET 5445 Scioto Darby Rd., Hilliard Tuesdays through September 10 from 4:00 p.m.—7:00 p.m.

NEW ALBANY FARMERS MARKET 200 Market Square, New Albany Thursdays through September 12 from 4:00 p.m.—7:00 p.m.

NORTH MARKET FARMERS MARKET 59 Spruce St., Columbus Saturday from 8:00 a.m. —1:00 p.m.; Sunday from 11:00 a.m. —4:00 p.m, June through October

THE PEARL MARKET North Plaza, Ohio Statehouse, Columbus Tuesdays and Fridays through October 11 from 10:30 a.m.- 2:00 p.m.

UPPER ARLINGTON FARMERS MARKET 2850 Tremont Rd., Upper Arlington Wednesdays through September 25 from 4:00 p.m.—7:00 p.m.

UPTOWN WESTERVILLE FARMERS MARKET N State and E Home in Uptown Westerville Wednesdays through October from 3:00 p.m.—6:00 p.m.

WORTHINGTON FARMERS MARKET 646 N High St. Saturdays through October from 8:00 a.m. —1:00 p.m. •







Over the Fence Urban Farm gives city dwellers the chance to dig in the dirt





t’s the first hot—really hot—weekend of the summer, and I’m digging 18-inch deep trenches to plant potatoes. I’m layered in sunscreen, soil, and sweat, concentrating on the task at hand. Were this my yard, I’d be concerned this experiment would go nowhere. (Brown thumb that I have, I’ve never been able to accomplish the supposedly simple task of getting an avocado pit to take root in water.) Luckily, this isn’t my property. It belongs to Jodi Kushins. She’s converted the whole yard into a vegetable garden and community-supported agriculture (CSA) project called Over the Fence Urban Farm where a $500 membership and a couple hours of work per week nets subscribers a summer’s worth of fresh produce. Looking at the edible greens popping up all around me, I feel confident that these potatoes will be just fine. And if I’m right, I’ll have them on my dinner plate before the summer ends. In 2013, Kushins and her husband were living in a house in Clintonville that his grandparents had once owned, growing summer vegetables in beds in the backyard the way they had once done. While the results were satisfying, it wasn’t enough. Kushins began looking over the fence at the neighbor’s backyard, imagining what they could grow if they had access to that land too. As fate had it, the house went up for sale, and they jumped. Their plan was to start their own CSA on the new land, and bring in the community to share both the work and the rewards. Kushins said that putting members to work was the traditional CSA model, but that many CSAs no longer do so. After all, it takes time to teach inexperienced gardeners how to do things properly. However, an educator by training, Kushins was up for the challenge. “The sharing and inspiring is just part of who I am and how I’m wired,” she said. Six years into the project, Over the Fence Urban Farm now works with 20 subscribers. •



“There are a lot of women farming right now in Columbus on various scales, and I think it’s really important that we continue to be part of the face of urban farming in Columbus.”



Kushins plans a 22-week season this year. Members can expect everything from spring greens and herbs to summer tomatoes and okra to those potatoes I planted (fingers crossed). Fresh eggs from the farm’s chickens sometimes round out the weekly haul. Most amazing: all of this food is grown on just 2,000 square feet—about 1/20 of an acre. “I definitely see myself as a successful female farmer in the city,” Kushins said. “There are a lot of women farming right now in Columbus on various scales, and I think it’s really important that we continue to be part of the face of urban farming in Columbus.” Kushins has become an ambassador of sorts for the local food movement in Columbus, hosting visitors of all ages, organizing the Kids Garden Club at the Clintonville Farmers Market, and championing local agriculture to city policymakers. With seemingly endless dining options that feature “local” foods on their menu, the time is ripe for her work. Yet, ever the educator, she advises that consumers ask questions, as she has concerns about “greenwashing” in the industry. The term “local” doesn’t always look like Over the Fence—produce essentially grown in a backyard— and while there’s nothing wrong with following a different model, consumers concerned about eating local should understand where their food is coming from so they can make informed choices.

Of course, for the members, it’s about more than food. Member Ryan Hlavin said, “To me, finding local, high-quality food is just as important as contributing to and helping out in my community. Over the Fence gives me the ability to do both.” Member Haley Knotts added that getting an assortment of different vegetables each week has expanded her diet. “One thing I’ve learned is to try many different types of greens, and that radish greens make a delicious pesto.” Just as Kushins’ small garden eventually grew over the fence, what members can learn from this project extends far beyond the borders of the farm. “We suburban and city dwellers seldom get a material sense of the cycle of seasons, the real material consequence of the change in weather, and increasingly, climate, but people who grow things in a systematic way do get that sense,” member Julian Halliday said. And of course, there’s something special about preparing food you’ve helped to grow. “I think the stories of where our food comes from is like a spice that adds flavor to what we’re eating,” Kushins said. If that’s the case, the potatoes that I’ll be cooking later this summer will be anything but bland. •

Visit overthefenceurbanfarm.com for more information.







•W  affle Bowl from Redwood Wagon


ith the heat of Summer finally upon us, many of your annoyingly proactive friends and family members will pick up productive hobbies: swimming, cycling, running, soccer. If you’re like me and the thought of physical activity in the thick, humid Ohio air sounds nothing short of abhorrent, I have good news. It’s also food truck season. The city of Columbus boasts an ever-expanding number of fun, delicious mobile eateries for you to dig into this Summer. Here are our picks. NOTE: Many food trucks don’t adhere to a completely set location schedule. Be sure to consult each truck’s website or Streetfoodfinder.com for reliable location information and hours.

AJUMAMA Ajumama is a longstanding player in the Columbus food truck game, opening seven years ago after founder Laura Lee returned to the Midwest from California, where she worked as a full-time chef. And while the veteran eatery does specialize in Korean street food, it does with it a unique blend of Korean and Ohio cuisine that’s both delicious and unexpected. “[Our original menu of Korean street food] sort of evolved with me taking inspiration from growing up in the Midwest and wanting to mix things with different Korean dishes to find commonalities,” says Lee. “I grew up in Ohio; we do a lot of sandwiches, so it kind of turned into me being like hey, these two items are common, how can I make them mesh together in a way • 614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019


• Bulgogi Cheezesteak from Ajumama

that is relatable, but flavor-wise true to what I know? There’s an honesty in that as well that’s really appealing.” And while Ajumama’s fare can be described as refreshing and honest, there’s another word that can be applied: delicious. Take for example the asgood-as-it-sounds Bulgogi Cheezesteak which pairs the traditional shaved beef and marinated onions on a warm hoagie roll with Shishito peppers instead of bell peppers, topped with Lee’s “Kimcheeze” sauce. Another flagship menu item is their Kimchi Bratwurst, which features a Butcher & Grocer sausage topped with homemade kimchi and spicy mayo. As evolution seems to be at the core of Ajumama, Lee believes in regularly rotating the truck’s offerings, allowing for a wider range of items to be enjoyed. Don’t worry though, staple items such as the Bulgogi Cheezesteak and Kimchi Bratwurst remain on the menu at all times. They aren’t going anywhere. Check: ajumama.com.

REDWOOD WAGON While the veteran Ajumama serves up flavors of the East to hungry Columbus customers, another relative newcomer to the scene is embracing dishes from the West. Well, the West Coast that is. Like the towering trees in the truck’s name, Redwood Wagon aims to bring large flavors to the middle of the country while capturing the bold, original culinary character of the Pacific Northwest. While Redwood Wagon’s owner Kyle Hood is a Columbus native, he has spent a considerable amount of time on the West Coast through personal travel, where he was able to establish connections and take in some of the area’s unique cuisine. “The Pacific Northwest is kind of a microclimate; there always seems to be summery food that’s mixed with fall.” And in replicating this confluence of styles, Hood decided to blur some flavor boundaries in his own way—a move that yielded the exceptionally delicious savory waffle. This simple but elegant twist to a classic dish is crafted as a bowl to hold other ingredients, and is scrumptiously dotted with garlic, chives, and rosemary. The two year-old food truck is all about getting food to their customers as fast as possible, and allowing diners full customization as well. Customers begin each order with a choice of “carry” options, including 100


the savory waffle bowl, a regular bowl, or fresh bread. Following this, a variety of different proteins, fresh seasonal vegetables, sauces, and other accoutrements are chosen to make something that is uniquely delicious. With choices from pulled pork and pulled chicken to shredded beef and a vegan vegetable base, diners can add jalapenos, corn, caramelized onion, cole slaw, bacon, mac and cheese, and more, plus cheese and a wide variety of sauces. And if you can’t figure out just what to add, a Redwood Wagon employee can assist your custom meal by suggesting great flavor pairings. Redwood Wagon is also a proud supporter of U.S. Servicemembers, and customers can find Hood’s father-in-law John Harden, a 26-year veteran of the Air Force, on the truck regularly. Check: redwoodwagon.com.

• Redwood Wagon

MOMMA CAN COOK You probably have a preconceived notion of what homestyle cooking is: rich, hearty, and delicious, but without a lot of real variation of nuance. And while Momma Can Cook, the Columbus food truck, self describes its tasty cuisine as “Gourmet Homestyle,” don’t let the name fool you, owner and head chef Janeen Rogers can cook, and her truck serves up much more than typical comfort food. Since the truck’s start she’s been serving up everything from the mouthwatering Jalapeno Popper Grilled Cheese, complete with a cream cheese spread and jalapeno pieces, to her Chicken Adobo Bowl, featuring chicken in a rich adobo sauce with cheesy rice, all inside of a fried tortilla bowl and topped with Pico de Gallo, lettuce, sour cream, and a dash of cilantro. Two of Rogers’ daughters (she has four children total, and three of them—Brittany Rogers, Glen Rogers, and Brooke Stadtlander— play integral roles in Momma Can Cook, making it a familyrun business in the truest sense of the phrase) are vegan, and Janeen slowly took inspiration from them, trying more and more vegan dishes, and eventually adopting the lifestyle herself in the majority of her meals. Now, not only can patrons purchase premade quantities of Rogers’ vegan mac and cheese sauce (the group is attempting to sell more products from their truck alongside food, such as handmade menu boards), but as a part of “Mama’s Rollout,” an extended menu for the truck, diners can order everything from vegan gyros to vegan mac and cheese, plus much more, creating a truly unique dynamic for homestyle cooking. “I do this vegan Mongolian bowl and it’s so good. So much so that people who aren’t even vegan order it right and left,” says Rogers. “I was thinking about taking the bowl off and I did very temporarily, and it wasn’t a good thing because everybody wanted to have it.” With Brittany Standtlander being an American Sign language Interpreter, Rogers would like to formally welcome the Columbus deaf community to her truck with open arms as well. “I just want the deaf community to know that they can come here and be understood,” she says. • Check: facebook.com/mommacancook7. 614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019


•J  alapeno Popper Grilled Cheese & Chicken Adobo Bowl from Momma Can Cook



• Stir Fire bowl & Medi (Mediterranean Bowl with Greens) from Kinetic

KINETIC And while many Columbus food trucks offer fresh seasonal veggies and healthy options, it’s rare for a truck to be built around the concept of healthy eating entirely. Enter Kinetic. Opened in 2014 by Andy O’Brien as the product of an OSU marketing course, Kinetic was born out of what O’Brien identified as a clear gap in service, with wellness-oriented individuals wanting healthy food truck meals that they couldn’t always find. Like several other trucks in the city, Kinetic is embracing customization. Diners begin their experience by selecting one of six “Chef-inspired builds,” including enticing options like the savory Medi, with cherry tomatoes, feta, lemon crema, chickpeas, and hummus; or the bright and spicy Stir Fire, which mixes bell peppers, cucumber carrots, jalapeno, Thai sauce, Sriracha, and lime. By grouping each option into a different flavor profile, Kinetic allows their customers to craft their own perfect dish while still allowing for guidance from the chef. Next, customers select a base of either hearty grains, leafy greens, or roasted sweet potatoes, and the dish is completed by choosing a protein (including grilled chicken, spicy chicken, or house veggies) and throwing in any extra items that might be wanted (such as avocado, chickpeas, or extra protein). O’Brien believes that Kinetic gives healthy options to diners who are already locked in to a wellness regimen, but through tasty, approachable preparations, the truck can also help people who might not otherwise eat well consistently. “We’ve always been centered around providing healthy options at a reasonable price point, while making things healthy and accessible,” he says. “By accessibility, we mean that we’re easy to find, but we also mean accessible in the way that we make eating better easier for a lot of people. We’re preparing food to keep its nutritional integrity, but also in a way that it’s appealing to people who might not always eat healthy.” • Check: kineticfoodtruck.com. 614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019






Blystone Farms grows by cultivating both quality and community BY J.R. MCM I L L A N | P HOTOS BY Z A N E OS L E R


ave you ever ordered a steak that was so spectacular, you wished you could ask the chef to carve off a couple more and wrap them up for the road? That probably wasn’t what Joe and Jane Blystone had in mind when their fourth-generation farm started processing their own meat on-site more than a decade ago. But that’s kind of how it worked out. Their butcher shop and bakery soon led to a taproom, which inspired a bona fide farm-totable restaurant. With a crafted collection of better beers and an enviable selection of elevated fare, Blystone Farm in Canal Winchester has evolved from a destination into a gathering place that lures more than just the locals. Despite the burgeoning business, Blystone is still small where it matters most, treating guests and staff more like family, and attracting top talent like Tyler Toles as executive chef. “We’re not very big on titles around here. Joe is just good at putting the right people in the right position,” admitted Toles, whose experience in better-known kitchens in Columbus didn’t dissuade him from stepping outside his culinary school comfort zone to run a four-star farm stand. “We talked as we walked around the farm, and I admired what Joe was trying to do at Blystone. So he invited me to become part of the family.” What once was a commercial sheep farm has become a passion project. Joe’s hands-on approach to operations combined with Jane’s coffee shop and bakery background also made the couple perfect business partners. “He’s so much more than a boss. Joe is everyone’s dad, but he still feeds the cows everyday,” Toles chided. “Jane is a pastry chef and beer connoisseur, but if we’re short-staffed, she’s out in front waiting on customers. It’s just part of the culture here at Blystone.”

“I’m from a fine dining background, so coming to Blystone was a bit of a culture shock—somewhere people appreciate real mac and cheese more than I’ve ever had guests appreciate foie gras or beluga caviar.” Lunch and dinner daily with breakfast on the weekend sounds pretty typical, until you take your first bite. Even something as simple as a sandwich seems entirely original when it’s hand-pressed Wagyu beef smothered in fried onions and gooey Gouda—or a house blend patty topped with four strips of bacon, two slices of cheddar, and a fried egg, rightly called “The Whole Dang Farm.” “A lot of people love our pasta, especially our mac and cheese. We start with semolina and durum flour and eggs; every shell is hand cut. The sauce is heavy cream and shredded cheddar,” he noted. “I’m from a fine dining background, so coming to Blystone was a bit of a culture shock— somewhere people appreciate real mac and cheese more than I’ve ever had guests appreciate foie gras or beluga caviar.” Vanilla pancakes, scratch-made biscuits and gravy, and breakfast hash made from bacon ends instead of corned beef are surely standouts. But the star of the menu is still the steak. • 614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019


“We dry-age our steaks in-house so we’re able to offer them at a price point where a 20-ounce ribeye will cost you $45. If you order that same steak in some locations in Columbus, you’re going to pay at least $170,” explained Toles. “American Wagyu is also hard to find at our prices. We work with farms like ours to meet our demand, so we don’t really have a middleman.” As tempting as every confection is on the bakery side, the butcher shop offers an equally enticing case for carnivores. From flat irons and filets to short ribs and sliders, all the way up to a whole Wagyu brisket for $158. Those stocking up for a backyard soiree will find plenty of entry-level options as well, from those same hand-pressed patties to bucka-brat specials. “We don’t raise chickens here, but we work with four local farms because every chicken tastes different and we only want the best,” he revealed, preferring to feature local purveyors and products that make more sense to source instead. “We can’t supply everything ourselves, so we find folks who do it better than we could. Quality determines our partnerships, not price.” The livestock and crops aren’t the only offerings from Blystone Farm that are organic. So is the marketing—limited to word of mouth, Facebook posts with preparation suggestions from their butcher shop, and Hank, one of their cattle dogs, whose popular pic wearing a cowboy hat earned him his own Instagram account. Asked about the exact inspiration of each expansion, Toles explained it was the butcher shop that unexpectedly led to the taproom, then the restaurant, because customers wanted to stay, sit out on the patio, and have a beer and a bite to eat. “Our taps are more seasonal. Right now, we have a lot of pilsners and goses, but during the cooler months Jane features more porters and stouts,” he noted. “Exclusivity also brings folks in. Kinda Fuzzy by Jackie O’s is kind of hard to get in this market, 3 Floyds is rare to find and we feature them regularly.” One of the first events Toles undertook was a beer dinner in collaboration with Jackie O’s. The event sold out and everyone raved about it. Joe told Toles, “We should really do more of this. We’re pretty good at it.” Not long after, Toles pulled into work one day and noticed Joe clearing ground, so he walked up and asked what was going on. • 106






“We can’t supply everything ourselves, so we find folks who do it better than we could. Quality determines our partnerships, not price.” “ ‘I’m building an event center,’ said Joe. It was that simple,” Toles recalled. “Joe built it personally in less than a year. He had some help with the brick and the electrical, but other than that, it was all him. The design, the details, down to the staining of the concrete.” The Barn, a nearly 4,000 square-foot event space, is key to their expanding scope. A petting zoo is in the works and fundraising for the new Blystone Agricultural Community is underway, a nonprofit with an emphasis on education and experiences for future farmers. “Beards & Brews” and a “Wagyu Cookout” are already scheduled for this summer to get the program started. “Columbus is urban, and Canal Winchester is definitely growing. But we’re still a farming community,” Toles explained. “Joe wants to encourage the next generation of family farms by giving city kids who may not consider farming the opportunity to raise livestock. We have almost a hundred acres out here. If I know one thing for certain, as long as Joe has land and can keep building, Blystone is going to keep growing.” •

For details on all that Blystone Farm has to offer, including menus and special events, visit blystonefarm.com 614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019




- JUNE 6 -

Fantastic Fours: Barrel on High getting divey rebrand There are many food- and drink-related LFT’s (look forward to’s) during the summer months, including the expansion of your favorite campus bar franchise. If Thr3es didn’t fill the void in your heart left when Toos was demolished, maybe Fours will be the ticket. After almost five years of owning and operating Barrel on High in the Short North, Scott Ellsworth will be rebranding the bar as a “divier” version of the whiskey, bourbon, and spirits hangout. Ellsworth and his team will knock out walls, add another bar, and host live entertainment at the 1120 N High St. establishment and reopening as Fours On High. Barrel’s last day will be June 15 with renovations beginning June 16. The hope is to reopen as Fours by the middle to end of July.

- JUNE 6 -

Donut worry, new bake shop now open on Hamilton Road So, your drink LFT is covered and you donut have to worry about the food front, either. Donna’s Delicious Dozen is now open at 5322 N Hamilton Rd. Customers can customize their made-to-order vanilla cake donuts with 14 different toppings, five icings, and three or more glazes. Donuts will be $1.40 each or $14 for a dozen.



- MAY 30 -

5 of the coolest coffee shops to hang out And what about coffee, you ask? There are copious coffee headquarters here in Columbus, but at Stock & Barrel, we like to make things real easy for our readers. We took all the guesswork out of choosing your next caffeine fuel-up station by singling out five of our favorites to hang out at. Shoutout to Upper Cup Coffee Company at 79 Parsons Ave., Blank Slate Coffee at 152 Mill St., Olentangy River Brewing Company at 303 Green Meadows Dr. South (yes, a brewery with coffee), Red Velvet Cafe at 246 S Fourth St., and Global Gallery Coffee Shop at 3535 N High St. for not only brewing up quality morning go-go juice, but providing an excellent ambiance to enjoy it in. - MAY 14 -

7 perfect patio pairings With patio season upon us, it’s an absolute necessity that you take your beverages—be they caffeinated or alcohol—out of doors. Mello out on Platform Brewing’s rooftop with a Mello Hello IPA. Or a Konkey Dong DIPA by Hoof Hearted Brewing on their action-packed Fourth Street-side patio. And then there’s Parsons North Brewing patio where a Grapefruit Wheat tastes just a little better. Got nobody to impress? There’s no shame in slugging a good ol’ Pabst Blue Ribbon on Oddfellows Liquor Bar’s pizza-smelling patio.

- MAY 15 -

5 trending desserts you need to put on your Columbus Bucket List Lastly, we encourage you to cool off this summer with five trending desserts at sweet shops near you: Glazed Churro Bar Food Truck, Cookie Dough Creamery at 7227 N High St., Rime Time Curiously Crafted Pops wagon, Simply Rolled Ice Cream at 970 N High St., Bonifacio at 1577 King Ave.

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•Summer is here and so are the festivals! Nearly every weekend from

June to August is stocked with different ways to celebrate with the community, listen to live music, and of course, dive into tons of delicious foods. The Columbus Food and Wine Festival will take place on June 21 at Battelle Riverfront Park where visitors can participate in wine samplings from across the country. And if you can’t make it for the food and wine on Friday, the following day offers the Ohio Wing and Beer Festival which will include breweries such as Columbus Brewing Co. and Zaftig Brewing and wings from places like Pecan Penny’s and Red Door BBQ.

Moving into July is the North Market Ohio Wine Festival on July 13 and 14 which will have numerous different wines to sip on as well as educational classes. And the ever-popular Jazz and Rib Fest on the weekend of July 20 returns for another year where jazz music will fill the air, and white t-shirts are no match for barbeque sauce. To kick off August, the Dublin Irish Festival at Coffman Park on the weekend of August 3 will feature all kinds of Irish cuisine, but let’s be real, everyone’s after those fish and chips. We’ll have the food trucks fire up for Food Truck Festival on August 17 and 18 on the Scioto Mile featuring some of the best mobile food spots in Columbus.


•The wait is over, but if we had to guess, the lines are just now

beginning for Katalina’s newest spot in Clintonville on 3481 N High St. The second spot is six times larger in square footage than the first location—maybe those lines won’t be too bad after all! Also recently opened on High is the English pub Geordie’s now occupying the former location of the Columbus Explorers Club on 1586 S High St. On tap for Geordie’s will be English style beers like Newcastle Brown Ale and Guiness, while the menu will feature classics like a traditional English roast beef, fish and chips, or Newkie brown (steak and ale pie). With warm and filling meals, this is a sure runner for becoming another Columbus comfort classic.

For a taste of Moroccan cuisine, Couscous House on 1611 Morse Rd. uses the fast casual approach for ordering where patrons can choose between two different types of couscous bases and build their bowl however they please, or they can create their own salad or wrap. The setup is perfect for meat eaters as grilled chicken, chicken drumsticks, and steak are all available as protein, and the vegetarian side offers more than 20 vegetable, nut, and sauce options. Never let your stomach growl again at Daily Growler German Village with the new Short & Stout Kitchen. Formerly a mobile bar, the restaurant at 702 S High St. will be serving up breakfast to beer fans seven days a week starting at 9:30 a.m., with a dinner and late-night menu of scratch-made favorites like burgers, salads, and poutines available Wednesday through Saturday from 5:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. Coffee and cocktails will also be available. 112



Beyond the restaurant scene comes The Pearl Market which runs on Thursdays and Fridays until October 11 from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Pearl Alley and Gay St. Visitors are free to browse the fresh and local produce, and of course, purchase some to take home. Just in time for summer sundaes and baseball games, a new ice cream has hit freezers in Columbus. Perry’s Ice Cream Company, Inc., a Great Lakes regional brand and Upstate New York’s #1 ice cream choice, will begin stocking over 600 local freezers and local events, such as the Columbus Jazz & Rib Fest, Ohio State Fair, and at Huntington Park for Clippers games.


•While the wait is over for some newly-opened Columbus restaurants,

the waiting begins for others. First incoming to the Short North from Cleveland is TownHall. The restaurant is completely non-GMO driven, offers plenty of vegetarian and vegan options, and an expansive draft and liquor list. The bar complete with a rooftop patio will be residing on 800 N High St. this summer.

Hilliard’s Mini North Market slated to open in the middle of October, will feature Florida-based Crooked Can Brewing Co. as well as 11 other tenants such as Meatball Mafia and Pokebap. Also in the pipeline for a fall opening date is Sono Wood Fired. It stole plenty of local awards for best pizza back home, and its menu with options like octopus, high-quality cuts of meat, and an extensive wine list shows it’s way more than just some old pizza shop. Easton Town Center will play host to the wood-fired pizza and Italian restaurant on 4055 The Strand West. In the booze scene, Columbus’ own city treasure and Bombay Sapphire’s Most Imaginative Bartender Annie Williams-Pierce will be opening a wine and cocktail bar called Law Bird. Ahead of their open, the pair are looking to their fans and the community in the form of crowdfunding efforts on Indiegogo to raise additional funds to keep the launch on schedule. Ever wanted to be your own bartender? A Youngstown-based concept wants to put the tap handle in your hands. Whistle & Keg, a self-service craft beer taproom, is planned to open this summer at 343 N. Front Street in the Arena District. When open, Whistle & Keg will feature 50 self-serve taps. The taproom will also have an open food policy, allowing patrons to bring their own food or get food delivered direct to the taproom. With no end in sight for the craft beer boom, upstart breweries are leaving the city behind for the wide open spaces of the suburbs. Outerbelt Brewing will be the latest to toss their hat into the central Ohio Craft Beer ring when they open their doors on June 15. Located in a former Lowes hardware location at 3560 Dolson Ct. near Carroll, Ohio, the new brewery will occupy about 25,000 square feet, with about 5,600 square feet set aside for a taproom. Plans also include a spacious 2,000 square foot patio. • 614NOW.COM SUMMER 2019


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Stock & Barrel: Summer 2019  

Summer is filled with graduations, weddings, and festivals. They’re all filled with fun and spectacle and purpose. But, isn’t creating a mom...

Stock & Barrel: Summer 2019  

Summer is filled with graduations, weddings, and festivals. They’re all filled with fun and spectacle and purpose. But, isn’t creating a mom...

Profile for 614media