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Food & Drink

Chill out with 4 cold, boozy dessert at bars near you




When it starts to scorch here in Columbus, nothing sounds more refreshing than a popsicle or a frozen lemonade—especially if it’s been spiked with booze.

You get to cool off and work up a buzz!

What’s not to love?

From boozed out milkshakes to iconic orange creamsicles, here’s how Columbus stays cool with frozen boozy concoctions.

These treats will have you sent back to your childhood of chasing down the ice cream truck man, and they’ll have you a little tipsy, too.


Milkshakes are such a classic summer staple. Our grandparents’ parents drank ‘em on special occasions. Our grandparents shared them over burgers at a diner. And our parents have continued the tradition. Now it’s time for a new tradition, and that’s milkshakes with liquor.

Hadley’s is growing as a brunch spot, but let’s not forget about their boozed up milkshakes for $10 a pop. The flavors rotate throughout the year—the Oreo bonanza will have you thinking you’ve been doing milkshakes wrong you’re entire life—and the shakes are huuuuuge so bring your best drinking buddy and ask for two straws.

Moving to the Short North and into Standard Hall, the little brother milkshake cocktail is perfect for you coffee lovers out there. It’s got vodka, a scoop of vanilla ice cream, and Thunderkiss coffee for $9 a drink.

Need we say more?


Popsicles are one of the summertime treat essentials. Sure, to some it’s just a mixture of sugar, water, and food coloring that has been frozen.

But at Pint House and Standard Hall, they know it’s more than that.

Pint House truly channels your nostalgia with its orange creamsicle push pop, and knows how to hit on your love for Ohio State with the buckeye push pop, both at $6 a piece.


The buckeye push pop is great for die-hard fans, but the orange creamsicle is a must try.

And while Pint House keeps it old school with hints of new flair, Standard Hall is really flipping the frozen cocktail idea on its head.

Everyone loves strawberry daiquiris and who doesn’t love pina coladas (and getting caught in the rain!)? Standard took those iconic flavors and made popsicles out of them. They are dangerously delicious, and a buck cheaper ($5) than their counterparts at Pint House.

The alcohol flavor is almost completely masked by the strong flavors of mixers and juices so don’t be surprised if you find yourself eating one after another…or if you walk away a little too tipsy.


In a time where slushies are common and can be found at any gas station on any corner, Dirty Frank’s Hot Dog Palace dares to be different.

Frank’s has two different kinds of slushies on tap and he’ll let you throw in your choice of whiskey, rum, gin, vodka or tequila in any of their signature flavors.

The safe betters will probably go with the Cowboy Curtis—RC cola mixed with a cherry slushie—and add rum, but the true adventurers will try the Hot Rod Slush—Monin habanero-lime syrup swirled into a lime slush—with some tequila.

But if you really want your spiked slushies to pack a punch, head over to Oddfellows. They’ve got three flavors spinning in the old-school slushie machines, but you’ve gotta try the wildberry mule.

A little (ok, a lot) of Kettle One Vodka with wildberry puree, fresh ginger, lime juice, and simple syrup. You don’t have know what half that means, just know to order it.


Though you won’t catch a buzz off this, Jeni’s Frosé Sorbet can at least give you the facade of trying some liquor. It’s everything you love about Jeni’s frozen treats—smooth, creamy, tasty—combined with everything you haven’t legally enjoyed yet—liquor!

It’s $12 to scoop a pint (this is a double entendre to anyone woke), so grab a friend to half the pint and the price.

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Food & Drink

Eat Like a Kid: 6 childhood favorite foods, all grown up

Madi Task



Sometimes I think back on the food I ate as a kid and wonder how the heck I was able to go back outside and continue playing with surely fewer nutrients than the human body needs to work with. Pop a quick Little Debbie Fudge Round or inhale a bowl of Kraft mac ‘n’ cheese and go. I don’t know how I did it, but I know that today I definitely value food existing as an experience all on its own. With this list, I give you memory-making foods that will either flash you back to a simpler time, or feel like a true upgrade from the fast-meal nature you used to adore but sadly outgrew. Stay gold!

Boozy Milkshakes| HADLEY’S BAR + KITCHEN | 260 S FOURTH ST.

The shortcut to turning any kid treat into an adult favorite is simple: add booze. And at Hadley’s, they are all too familiar with this formula. The menu here features sophisticated flavors like Oreo Bonanza with Smirno Vanilla, Key Lime Pie with Absolut Lime, and a Bacon Bourbon Maple with Bulleit Bourbon. Of course, we all have a vegan friend who avoids dairy, and Hadley’s made sure they were covered with a vegan Coco Coffee Shake with Watershed Vodka. Usually, I’d say grab a few straws and share with your friends, but these are best enjoyed separately.

The Octodog | DIRTY FRANK’S | 248 S FOURTH ST.

Some of those disgusting combinations you crafted as a child have potential in the eyes of the chefs over at Dirty Frank’s. Forget cut-up hot dogs mixed into mac ‘n’ cheese, you completely neglected to consider the presentation of the dish. (Classic kid move.) Order The Octodog, an octopus-shaped hot dog sitting happily on top of a pile of mac ‘n’ cheese from Dirty Frank’s. This could also be seen as the adult-equivalent to dinosaur-shaped chicken nuggets. Since when was the last time you ate something shaped like an animal? Probably before junior high. Feel young again by stuffing your face with creamy mac ‘n’ cheese and an octopus hot dog cooked to adult standards, but visually appealing to the five-year-old at heart.

Ramen Noodles | FUKURYU | 1600 W LANE AVE.

Photo: Kyle Tracey

Here we transition into adulthood and arguably the first meal you ever learned how to cook: ramen noodles. Your standards have surely upgraded since the last time you made a $0.98 meal from home, so prove it at Fukuryu, where you can eat actual, authentic Japanese ramen. This quick-and-easy, Costco-style dinner has been given a bad rep for far too long, because one trip to Fukuryu will show you how ramen is supposed to taste. Piled with chicken, pork belly, soft shell crab, or tofu, and a mountain of toppings you pick like sweet corn, chili pork, naruto, leeks, chili oil, toasted garlic oil, and more, their flavors are more expansive than your under-developed child taste buds could probably take. Now, they’re right up your alley. Get slurpin’.

Edible Cookie Dough | COOKIE DOUGH CREAMERY | 7227 N HIGH ST.

Butter, flour, sugar, and a secret ingredient...don’t worry, it’s not eggs. No one’s getting hit with a spoon for eating raw cookie dough around here, they’re just getting tips at Cookie Dough Creamery. Fill a cup with one of six cookie dough flavors and pile it high with ice cream and toppings the way you always over-did as a kid. They have five main flavors of cookie dough: chocolate chip, sugar cookie, Oreo, peanut butter, and brownie batter. Plus, every few months they offer one to three seasonal flavors to try. (This summer it’s lemon!) As far as making your own cookie dough at home goes, quit the risk and trust whisk at Cookie Dough Creamery. I can tell you from experience it’s just like Mom’s, minus the lecture for eating it.

Gourmet Peanut Butter & Jelly Sandwiches | KREMA NUT COMPANY | 1000 GOODALE BLVD.

Photo: Julian Foglietti

The picky eater in all of us died at age 12 when we quickly became aware of how good food combinations foreign to us actually taste. In other words, we aren’t as stuck to only strawberry or grape jelly as we used to be. We’re not as hard on our friends who were scared to try peanut butter and fluff as a kid. Today, we go gourmet. Krema’s has a wide variety of PB&Js, all with an unconventional twist. Strawberry preserves are used instead of strawberry jelly, and fresh slices of strawberries sit in the sandwich with it. Other combos include The Kicker, or peanut butter and spicy raspberry preserves for the kid who made sure everyone knew it was his rock, not the neighborhood rock. Plus other game-changers like PB Apple Cheesecake, and almond or cashew butter instead of peanut butter are up for grabs at this one-of-a-kind nut company serving classic American favorites with a twist.

Cotton Candy Cocktail | FORNO | 721 N HIGH ST.

The days of begging your parents for overpriced u at baseball games are over, but the days of making our everyday cocktails more Instagrammable are coming quickly. As a result, Forno is now serving a new cotton candy cocktail served in two glasses: one for the drink, and the other to hold a cloud of pink cotton candy, set aside for you to dissolve when your iPhone ash is ready. Sip one and you’ll start acting like those sugar-high cartoon characters who were actually acting drunk to get a laugh from the parent viewers helicoptering over their kid’s TV shows. Grow up and spike your cotton candy this summer!

Cover photo by Brian Kaiser.

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Food & Drink

Survival Guide: Columbus Summer Beerfest




Every year, beer enthusiasts flock to Express LIVE! to sip, sample, and savor brews from 90+ of the best breweries this country has to offer. That's right, lushes, Columbus Summer Beerfest is back this weekend with food, entertainment, and, of course, lots of great craft beer.

Some of you may be first-timers, others have had their pretzel + string cheese + beef jerky necklaces on lock for years. No matter, there are always ways to improve the way you experience this celebration of beer.

Welcome to the 614NOW Summer Beerfest Surivival Guide. As always, drink responsibly.

It is not a race, seriously

Sometimes, kegs do kick, but it's not going to happen within the first hour of doors opening. Relax, there is more than enough beer to go around. I'm talking to you, Kevin, who feels the need to elbow throw the queue and sprint inside the venue every year.

There's truly no need to pregame

The Beerfest-issued plastic mugs may be small, but those samples add up fast. You're gonna wish you hadn't shotgunned that mango White Claw before you left your apartment, we promise.


You're not going to miss anything if you take a five minute hydration hiatus. It'll most likely be hot and the only thing that will quench your thirst from all those salty pretzels is a cup of cold agua. Do yourself a favorite and spend some time near the water stations throughout the night.

Don't wait to use the restroom

The lines are going to be long—real long—all night long. Rather than waiting until the absolute last minute to visit the restroom, grab a sample and head that way before your bladder deems necessary. That way, when the agony sets in, you'll already be next up for a stall.

No really, it's not a race

Slow. Down. This is your chance to try tons of new exciting brews and decide which ones you'd like to add to your normal drinking roster. Brewers from all over the U.S. worked tirelessly to perfect their beers—don't disrespect them by chugging.

Feed your face

Don't let the excitement of the festival distract you from your growling stomach. There will be plenty of food trucks present to tide over even the most specific craving, though everyone knows the best options are always deep friend and covered in cheese.

Walk, bike, rideshare

Most people exiting the Express LIVE! gate at the end of the night are in no shape to drive and neither should you. Not only would you have to deal with parking if you drove yourself, but walking, biking, or ridesharing to and from the festival is the only way to ensure safety.

Tickets to the Columbus Summer Beerfest are still available. Visit for more information.

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Food & Drink

Olde Towne East’s first brewery to open doors tomorrow




Late is always better than never, especially in the case of a new local brewery. After setbacks, Gemut Biergarten will officially open tomorrow at 734 Oak St. Prost!

"We'll be pouring biers, serving food, and dishing ambiance for all you patient, and not so patient, folk tomorrow!" wrote Gemut Biergarten on Facebook.

The brewery was supposed to open to the public on August 16, but ran into a "little bump with the state."

Guests can expect European and German-style lagers and pilsners brewed by former Four String Brewing Co. employees Kyle Hofmeister, Rob Camstra, and Nick Guyton. Gemut Biergarten is owned by Camstra, Guyton, Hofmeister, and his wife Chelsea Rennie.

In addition to brews, the venture will serve wine, cocktails, and traditional German and European fare.

Click here for the food and beer menus.

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