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Columbus has spent the last decade cementing itself as a food city.
In this city, the only reason you need to give yourself to go out to dinner is that there are so many places worth trying. It would be criminal to stay home when there is delicious food being crafted just for you!
The restaurants included in this list aren’t all fancy date-night type places, although you will find a few of those. We’ve separated the restaurants into the most popular food categories in the city: Brunch, American cuisine, Tacos, International cuisine, Seafood, BBQ, Pizza, Breweries, Burgers, Fried Chicken, Steakhouses, and Fast-Casual dining. Think of it as your go-to list when you and your friends can’t decide what type of food you want or how much you want to spend.
On this list, you’ll find popular spots and hidden gems, with menu items ranging from tacos to carrot cake to high-end fine dining. But that’s enough yapping. You’re getting hangry and looking for suggestions, so look no further.
Price per Person scale: $= under $10. $$= $11-30. $$$= $31-60. $$$$= over $61
Location: 410 E Whittier St, Columbus, OH 43206
Favorite Menu Item: Skillet’s menu changes seasonally, but my current favorite brunch item is their Huey, Louie, Andouille Hash. Yes, the name may be a little too literal, but it’s delicious and worth it. This dish consists of duck thigh and leg confit hashed with roasted local sweet potatoes, house-smoked andouille, candy onions, and blistered sweet peppers.
Third and Hollywood
Location: 1433 W 3rd Ave, Grandview Heights, OH 43212
Favorite Menu Item: There’s no bad time of day to dine at Third and Hollywood, but stopping by for brunch is such a treat. If you get there early enough, you can enjoy some phenomenal cinnamon rolls. But they have limited availability so if you miss them, don’t feel too bad. I promise, you’ll be satisfied with the incredible Croque Madame on the menu, which is the restaurant’s take on a French grilled cheese, made with Neuske’s ham, gouda, and fried eggs with arugula.
Website: Third and Hollywood
South of Lane
Location: 1987 Guilford Rd, Upper Arlington, OH 43221
Favorite Menu Item: Greek Omelet. South of Lane is my favorite neighborhood diner and it’s my go-to brunch when I’m craving an omelet. The Greek version comes with spinach, tomato, onions, peppers, and feta cheese.
Website: South of Lane
Location: 169 E Beck St, Columbus, OH 43206
Favorite Menu Item: Eggs Lindey’s. This classic dish is elegant and delightful, just like this iconic restaurant. It is made up of two petite filets and poached eggs on English muffins served with tasso ham hollandaise and fresh fruit.
Location: 1105 Pennsylvania Ave, Columbus, OH 43201
Favorite Menu Item: Pancake balls. Hands down. The pancake balls at Katalina’s are what we’re all showing up for. Choose your favorite filling, you really can’t go wrong.
Hang Over Easy
Location: 1664 Neil Street and 51 Parsons Ave.
Favorite Menu Item: Chicken & Waffles. It’s one of the pricier things on the menu (not that anything on the menu would be classified as expensive) but it’s worth every penny. A delicious, fluffy buttermilk waffle topped with perfectly seasoned chicken tenders? Sign. Me. Up.
Website: Hang Over Easy
MORE LIKE THIS: The Best Brunch Spots In Columbus
Cap City Fine Diner
Location: 1299 Olentangy River Rd, Columbus, OH 43212
Favorite Menu Item: 24K Carrot Cake. This sweet treat will be the perfect ending to a great meal at Cap City. This carrot cake is made with pineapple, golden raisins, and walnuts and topped with white chocolate cream cheese icing.
Website: Cap City Fine Diner
Location: 8954 Lyra Dr. Columbus, Ohio 43240 and 6791 Longshore St Suite 110 Dublin, Ohio 43017
Favorite Menu Item: The entrees, salads, pizzas, and sandwiches are all great at Kitchen Social, but the real trick to a perfect visit to this scratch kitchen is an order of the Cheddar and Scallion biscuits. They are served with honey butter and they are perfection in the form of warm, soft bread.
Website: Kitchen Social
Location: 262 E Sycamore St, Columbus, OH 43206
Favorite Menu Item: The menu at Sycamore changes by season, so depending on when you’re reading this, any specific suggestion I offer may not be available. But what I can say with absolute confidence is that you should just get whatever sounds the best to you, because you won’t be disappointed.
Website: The Sycamore
Location: 711 North High Street, Columbus, OH 43215
Favorite Menu Item: Lincoln Social is a glamorous, rooftop bar that offers incredible cocktails in addition to some delicious small plates. Don’t want to choose between pizza or sushi? Don’t choose, go wild and get both.
Website: Lincoln Social Rooftop
READ MORE: The Best Rooftop Bars In Columbus
Matt and Tony’s Kitchen + Tavern
Location: 340 E Gay St, Columbus, OH 43215
Favorite Menu Item: When you see “Big Bowl Salads” on the menu at Matt and Tony’s, you should know, they mean big. All of the salads are served in large stainless steel mixing bowls with dressing already mixed in for your convenience. You can get the dressing on the side, but don’t be afraid to trust the process.
Website: Matt and Tony’s Kitchen + Tavern
Del Mar SoCal Kitchen
Location: 705 North High St, Columbus, OH 43215
Favorite Menu Item: I’m a sucker for scallops and Del Mar knows how to make the perfect scallop dish. Served with golden beets, yellow squash, kale, asparagus, and chimichurri, this yummy seafood dish will leave you feeling like you really are having lunch on the coast.
Website: Del Mar SoCal Kitchen
Los Guachos Taqueria
Location: 5221 Godown Rd, Columbus, OH 43235
Favorite Menu Item: The Original Taco Al Pastor. Los Guachos signature marinated pork is served on corn tortillas and topped with sliced pineapple, onions, and cilantro. The food here is comically cheap and absolutely phenomenal.
Website: Los Guachos Taqueria
Location: 733 N High St, Columbus, OH 43215
Favorite Menu Item: Bistec tacos. At Bakersfield, I’ve honestly never had a bad taco. But the one that I dream about is their Bistec taco. It’s made with marinated grilled short rib, chipotle slaw, and cilantro and it’s basically heaven in taco form.
Location: 59 Spruce St, Columbus, OH 43215
Favorite Menu Item: Dos Hermanos Tacos. It’s that simple, pick the meat you want and let them serve you an authentic, delicious taco. If you’re feeling like you want to pass on tacos (I don’t understand why, but just in case) you should definitely try their tamales.
Website: Dos Hermanos
Agave & Rye
Location: 1295 Grandview Ave Columbus, OH 43212 and 479 N High St Columbus, OH 43215
Favorite Menu Item: Does Agave & Rye have the cheapest tacos on this list? Certainly not. But will you absolutely find some unique, strange tacos full of exciting flavor combos there? Yes. The Crown Jewel taco is made up of butter & garlic lobster, shiitake mushrooms, Mac n Cheese, truffle oil & shavings, and shaved green onions. Is it sort of extra? Yes. Will you love it? OF COURSE.
Website: Agave & Rye
Location: 263 E Whittier St, Columbus, OH 43206
Favorite Menu Item: Everything on the Tapas menu. I really like tapas and I love ordering it at Barcelona. If I had to choose my favorite item it would be the Calamares Fritos, aka corn meal dusted, delicious calamari.
Location: 1664 W 1st Ave, Grandview Heights, OH 43212
Favorite Menu Item: Gnocchi al Forno. I love good gnocchi and no one does it better than La Tavola. This dish is a homemade potato pasta, baked with fresh artichokes, onion,
garlic, and herbs in a creamy, white wine and fontina cheese sauce.
Website: La Tavola
Location: 50 W Broad St, Columbus, OH 43215
Favorite Menu Item: Coq au vin. The Keep was such a pleasant surprise. The French brasserie has a variety of dishes, but there’s nothing better than a well-made coq au vin. For those of you who haven’t had the pleasure, it’s a red wine braised hen served with smoked bacon, mushrooms, carrots, and whipped potatoes. You’re welcome and I’m sorry for introducing you to your new obsession.
Website: The Keep
Location: North Market, 59 Spruce St, Columbus, OH 43215
Favorite Menu Item: Jhol Momo. There is a reason this is the best-selling item on the menu. These delicious Himalayan chicken-filled dumplings are seated in a spicy sauce and honestly, you won’t believe the complex flavors your mouth is experiencing when you eat them.
Website: Momo Ghar
Location: 1092 Bethel Rd, Columbus, OH 43220
Favorite Menu Item: The Refectory offers the most elegant and finest dining you’ll find in Columbus. Their whole menu is out of this world and you can see which options are available by checking out their menu online before you visit.
Website: The Refectory
Ampersand Asian Supper Club
Location: 940 N High St, Columbus, OH 43201
Favorite Menu Item: The lunch special at Ampersand is available every day and offers your choice of a starter and a main for $14. For starters, you can pick from edamame, nori fries (my favorite), miso soup, or a gem salad. The main options include three ramen options and three rice bowl options.
Website: Ampersand Asian Supper Club
Location: 245 King Ave Columbus, Ohio 43201
Favorite Menu Item: The menu at Pelino’s changes seasonally, so if you visit and don’t see anything that immediately grabs you, your best best bet is to ask your server. They will absolutely know exactly what to suggest so that you have an experience that will leave you asking, “when can I come back?” You can choose a 3 or four-course option, both of which include the most important part of any meal: dessert.
Website: Pelino’s Pasta
Location: 5871 Sawmill Rd, Dublin, OH 43017
Favorite Menu Item: Do yourself a favor and order the best Chicken Tikka Masala in town. Oh, and before I forget, order some samosas for your appetizer.
Website: Amul India
Alqueria Farmhouse Kitchen
Location: 247 King Ave, Columbus, OH 43201
Favorite Menu Item: For a modern take on meat and potatoes, try the Braised Beef Short Ribs, which are served with an herb mascarpone potato puree, sautéed mushrooms, zucchini, summer squash, cherry tomatoes, sweet corn, beef jus, and crispy shallots.
Website: Alqueria Farmhouse Kitchen
Location: 1026 N High St, Columbus, OH 43201
Favorite Menu Item: This tapas menu is all about sharing your meal with your friends. They’ve got appetizers, salads, veggie options, seafood, meat, and more. If you’re looking for the real deal experience, order the Chef’s Tasting menu, which offers a hand-picked sampling designed just for your table. Your visit may not be cheap, but it will certainly be worth it.
Website: Fireproof Columbus
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Mitchell’s Ocean Club
Location: 4002 Easton Station, Columbus, OH 43219
Favorite Menu Item: Dutch Harbor King Crab Legs served with asparagus and drawn butter. They always say “go big or go home” but I prefer “go big and go home full of delicious crab legs”.
Website: Mitchell’s Ocean Club
Kai’s Crab Boil
Location: 839 Bethel Rd, Columbus, OH 43214
Favorite Menu Item: I wouldn’t dream of telling you which delicious combinations to choose at this fast-casual seafood joint. But I will say that you won’t be disappointed. And if you’re looking for a concrete suggestion, consider this: whatever you get, get it with the Kai’s Kajun sauce. You can thank me later.
Website: Kai’s Crab Boil
Location: 641 N High St, Columbus, OH 43215
Favorite Menu Item: Shellfish Tower. Get some friends together and treat yo’ yourself. The tower includes a dozen Oysters and Clams on the Half Shell, Half Pound Peel & Eat Gulf Shrimp, Louie Dressed Colossal Crab, Cocktail Sauce, and Pickled Horseradish.
Website: The Pearl
B & K Smokehouse
Location: 1114 E Main St, Columbus, OH 43205
Favorite Menu Item: Ribs, ribs, and more ribs. Just kidding, you can just get a half-order or Rib tip if you aren’t feeling too famished. These fall-off-the-bone pork ribs are served with B & K’s sweet, special sauce.
Website: B & K Smokehouse
Smoked on High
Location: 755 S High St, Columbus, OH 43206
Favorite Menu Item: Pulled Pork with sweet whiskey sauce. If you’re getting sides, don’t skip the coleslaw, even if you aren’t normally a fan. This coleslaw made me rethink everything I thought I knew about the subject.
Website: Smoked on High
Ray Ray’s Hog Pit
Location: Multiple locations
Favorite Menu Item: I know you’re going to think this is a cop-out, but I just cannot pick one thing on Ray Ray’s menu. I’ve sincerely never been disappointed with anything I’ve ordered there. The meats are seasoned beautifully and always perfectly cooked. Just go and pick anything that tickles your fancy.
Website: Ray Ray’s Hog Pit
Mikey’s Late Night Slice
Location: 268 S 4th St, Columbus, OH 43215
Favorite Menu Item: Spicy pepperoni. I’m a simple person with simple pleasures, and a slice of Mikey’s spicy pepperoni pizza makes me smile from ear to ear. It’s best enjoyed with a delicious beer and good friends.
Website: Mikey’s Late Night Slice
Location: 2643 E Main St, Columbus, OH 43209
Favorite Menu Item: Rubino’s is a little bit of a time warp. They don’t accept credit cards and you’d be hard pressed to find any sort of web presence. But it doesn’t matter because the pizza is unique and delicious. Pro tip: whatever pizza you choose, get extra cheese.
Adriatico’s New York Style Pizza
Location: 1618 Neil Ave, Columbus, OH 43201
Favorite Menu Item: Sicilian pizza. Adriatico’s has several crust options, but the Sicilian is the best. It’s thick and doughy and perfect after a fun night out.
Website: Adriatico’s New York Style Pizza
Location: 2657 N High St, Columbus, OH 43202
Favorite Menu Item: Any pizza with a Smokin’ Joe’s crust. Smokin’ Joe’s is a hand-tossed garlic butter crust, served with a sweet tomato and basil sauce.
Website: Hounddog’s Three Degree Pizza
Location: Multiple locations
Favorite Menu Item: It’s a tie between the Ohio Double Bacon and the Spicy Yuma. The Ohio Double Bacon is topped with fresh mozzarella, roasted red pepper, Aleppo pepper, and oregano. The Spicy Yuma is topped with a delicious Gouda/Havarti blend, chorizo, jalapenos, corn, roasted red pepper, and chipotle-spiked tomato sauce.
Want more Pizza options? Where To Find The Best New York Style Pizza in Columbus
Breweries & Brewpubs
Watershed Kitchen & Bar
Location: 1105 Pennsylvania Ave, Columbus, OH 43201
Favorite Menu Item: Brussell sprouts. I know you probably think I’m crazy, but they are honestly the best brussell sprouts I’ve ever had, and I hate brussell sprouts. Whatever Watershed is doing to them, they’re doing it right.
Website: Watershed Kitchen & Bar
Hoof Hearted Brewery & Kitchen
Location: 850 N 4th St, Columbus, OH 43215
Favorite Menu Item: Bayou Bitez. If you’re interested in trying new food, Hoof Hearted Kitchen is where you need to be. I never thought I’d enjoy eating tempura fried alligator, but you learn something new every day.
Website: Hoof Hearted Brewery & Kitchen
Location: 4080 Worth Ave, Columbus, OH 43219
Favorite Menu Item: Forbidden Root may have tavern vibes, but they’ve got an elevated menu that’s so much more than pub grub. They have a great selection of small plates if you’re in the mood to share, but the real magic can be found on the main course menu in the form of Duck and Dumplings. This dish is ricotta gnocchi, duck confit, mirepoix, and herbs. Yum.
Website: Forbidden Root
Wolf’s Ridge Brewing
Location: 215 N 4th St, Columbus, OH 43215
Favorite Menu Item: The kitchen at Wolf’s Ridge takes the craft of making a perfect meal very seriously. If you want to experience an incredible night of dining, go for the Chef’s Menu. There are vegetarian and gluten-free options available upon request.
Website: Wolf’s Ridge Brewing
Want to take a closer look at Columbus breweries? The Best Breweries In Columbus
Preston’s: A Burger Joint
Location: Various locations
Favorite Menu Item: The smash burger at Preston’s is absolutely delicious. It comes topped with American cheese, lettuce, red onion, pickles, and their special sauce, which is most definitely special and 100% amazing.
Website: Preston’s: A Burger Joint
The Thurman Cafe
Location: 183 Thurman Ave, Columbus, OH 43206
Favorite Menu Item: The Thurman Burger. It’s massive, overwhelming, a touch greasy, but totally worth it. This isn’t an everyday item that you’d order, it’s for special, hungry occasions.
Website: The Thurman Cafe
Pat and Gracie’s
Location: 138 Graceland Blvd, Columbus, OH 43214
Favorite Menu Item: It’s tough to choose just one thing on the menu at Pat and Gracie’s, but if we had to narrow it down, it would definitely be The Chimi Burger. Two smashed patties are topped with Monterey Jack cheese, avocado, caramelized onions, bacon, and a housemate chimichurri sauce. Also, if you’re in the mood for an appetizer, don’t sleep on the house-made tots. Trust me, they are unlike any tater tots you’ve ever had before.
Website: Pat and Gracie’s
Location: 3503 Trabue Rd, Columbus, OH 43204
Favorite Menu Item: The cheeseburger. No fuss, no frills, just a good, juicy, tavern burger.
Read more: Johnnie’s Tavern Is The Best Kept Secret In Columbus
Want more Burger options? The Best Burgers in Columbus
Location: 790 N High St, Columbus, OH 43215
Favorite Menu Item: The fried chicken, duh. Honestly, it doesn’t matter if you choose dark or white meat, whatever your preference is, you’ll leave feeling absolutely stuffed and superbly happy.
Website: The Eagle
Mya’s Fried Chicken
Location: You can find this delicious food truck all around the city. Click here for deets.
Favorite Menu Item: Fried Chicken Biscuit sliders. These delicious treats are perfectly fried and topped with a herb honey drizzle.
Website: Mya’s Fried Chicken
Want more Fried Chicken options? The Best Fried Chicken Places In Columbus
The Top Steakhouse
Location: 2891 E Main St, Columbus, OH 43209
Favorite Menu Item: Dry Aged Kansas City Strip. This may be the most perfectly seasoned steak I’ve ever had. It is the definition of “melt in your mouth.”
Website: The Top Steakhouse
The Avenue Steak Tavern
Location: 1307 Grandview Ave Ste 3013, Columbus, OH 43212
Favorite Menu Item: Porterhouse. This steak is big, juicy, flavorful, and yes, a little expensive. If you’ve got some extra cash to drop on an unforgettable meal, go to The Avenue.
Website: The Avenue Steak Tavern
J. Gilbert’s Wood Fired Steaks & Seafood Columbus
Location: 1 E Campus View Blvd, Columbus, OH 43235
Favorite Menu Item: Prix-fixe menu. They have two tiers on their fixed menu, a $44 option and a $54 option. You can’t go wrong with either. J Gilbert’s has amazing food, but it has exceptional service. It will be a full dining experience and you’ll love every second of it.
Website: J. Gilbert’s Wood Fired Steaks & Seafood Columbus
Want more Steak options? The 7 Best Steakhouses In Columbus
Location: 1270 W 5th Ave, Columbus, OH 43212
Favorite Menu Item: Bibibop lets you build your own meal with both meat and non-meat options. Get the purple rice in your bowl and once you’ve chosen your perfect ingredients, order some kimchi.
Mezze Mediterranean Grill
Location: 5326 N Hamilton Rd, Columbus, Ohio 43230
Favorite Menu Item: Schwarma. I love this fast-casual restaurant, and my go to is a yummy pita with Schwarma, aka an Israeli favorite of chicken cooked in Middle Eastern spices.
Website: Mezze Mediterranean Grill
Location: 4386 N High St, Columbus, OH 43214
Favorite Menu Item: Pho bowl with beef and beef broth. At 6-1-Pho, you can customize your Pho to what you’re feeling. There are plenty of vegetarian options and it’s a great place to grab a quick bite of Vietnamese street food to eat.
Location: 855 W 5th Ave, Columbus, OH 43212
Favorite Menu Item: I couldn’t choose one if you made me. Here’s the deal, I love sushi. FUSIAN has a pre-made menu that you can choose from if you need suggestions, but you can also customize just about everything in your sushi roll, from the type of rap to the internal components, to the sauces. Go crazy!
Location: North Market, 59 Spruce St, Columbus, OH 43215
Favorite Menu Item: The dishes at Hoyo’s Kitchen are made to order. You get to choose whether you’d like a bowl, wrap, or salad topped with your choice of protein and veggies. Don’t forget to order a Somali chai tea!
Website: Hoyo’s Kitchen
Now that we’re all a little hungrier, let’s make some plans! Who’s buying?
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