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Sidekick Spotlight: 5 of the best side dishes in Columbus

Mitch Hooper

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Whether it’s sports, entertainment, or cooking, no all-star anything is complete without its sidekick. What’s Batman without Robin? Who’s Michael Jordan without Scottie Pippen? And maybe the most important question, what’s a burger without fries?

I’m here to argue that a burger without fries is just a sad and lonely sandwich. The world is a better place with sides. Could you imagine Thanksgiving with no sides? It would be a nightmare. Thankfully, we don’t have to live in a world without entree sidekicks. These are just a few of the can’t-miss menu options here in Columbus.

Caramelized Brussels Sprouts

Philco Bar and Diner | 747 N High St.

Photo by Jamie Benjamin

If caramelized onions can make a $10 burger cost $15, it’s a damn steal that Philco’s side of caramelized brussels costs only $5. The dish truly lets the flavor of the vegetable do the heavy lifting as it’s minimally seasoned with salt and  pepper, and tossed in olive oil. But the caramelization process highlights the “meaty” flavor of the brussels while also providing for some crispy and crunchy leaves that fell off during the cooking process.

Sesame Stir Fry Snap Peas

Mitchell’s Ocean Club | 4002 Easton Station

A trip to Mitchell’s Ocean Club is typically on a special occasion—graduations, anniversaries, birthdays—and that usually means the focus is on a stellar seafood entrée, but making a meal out of a single item is no way to celebrate anything.

Nearly every side dish is elevated at Cameron Mitchell locations, but the sesame stir fry snap peas are perfect with everything from steaks to salmon. The simple side features fresh snap peas sauteed in a savory sesame sauce and topped with sesame seeds for the visual pop and textural crunch. The subtle sweetness of snap peas combined with the savory sauce creates for a perfect umami marriage.

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White Cheddar Grits

Hubbard Grille | 793 N High St.

Just because Columbus isn’t in the South doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy southern favorites here like grits. At Hubbard Grille, this Southern treat is on the menu with a slight spin which comes in the form of white cheddar. Anyone who has experienced a bad bowl of grits knows how off-putting they can be—for lack of better words, they become… gritty.

Luckily, the experience at Hubbard is nothing like that. The grits hold their texture without becoming too firm or too mushy, and white cheddar is a great cheese that won’t overpower the dish with too much cheese (if that’s even a thing?) while adding depth, richness, and creaminess.

Elote Mexican Corn Cob

Katalina’s | 1105 Pennsylvania Ave.

Katalina’s has seemingly stolen the city’s heart by way of pancake balls, but that’s not the only delicious dish they have tucked away on Pennsylvania Avenue. Whether you order it straight from the menu, or it comes with your order of breakfast tacos, the elote Mexican corn cob is quite literally dripping with flavor. The quartered corn cob is rolled in guajillo pepper from North Market Spices, smoked paprika, parmesan, and Sriracha-lime aioli. While it is just as messy to eat as you imagine, it’s worth all the stains you might risk on your shirt. 

Cowboy Caviar

Two Dollar Radio Headquarters | 1124 Parsons Ave.

Similarly to Katalina’s elote corn on the cob, you can snag the cowboy caviar from the regular menu, or as a side to your entrée. The important thing is that you order it. The vegan dish (caviar can be vegan, too) has a relatively simple ingredients list, but these ingredients combined together pack a real punch when it comes to flavor. The bean salsa is zesty and hearty and served with avocado to add some “fat” to your protein-packed dip as well as tortilla chips from Koki’s Tortillas in the Hilltop.

millennial | writer | human

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Food & Drink

Too Good To Eat: Lion Cub’s Cookies and Cream Cookies

@findyourfork

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Imagine yourself being transported into the centerfold of a bakery: a place where magic happens and dreams are created. Imagine yourself being surrounded by the welcoming scents of sweet treats made fresh from the oven.

Now open your eyes, take a bite of that cookie and prepare yourself for an experience you will want to relive again and again.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B3h0X-dgNdf/?igshid=appw9q4eu82p

The bite: a perfect concoction of thick doughy sweetness, with a slightly crispy edge. It bears a subtle resemblance to a combination of cake meets cookie. It is a taste unlike any other, and stands in a category all on its own.

If you have yet to experience this for yourself, I encourage you to give it a try. Trust me.

Follow @LionCubsCookies on Instagram or check out the "Where We Are" section of the website to see where the cookies will pop up next.

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Food & Drink

10 unique vendors announced for Hilliard’s community market

614now Staff

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They say you can't teach an old dog new tricks, but that's not the case with one local city. A brand new community market is coming soon to Old Hilliard!

Center Street Market, a new community market, set to open next month with the intention to support local food and retail vendors, according to its Facebook

So far, 10 vendors have been announced: Al’s Delicious Popcorn, Bakes by Lo, the Cheesecake Girl, Coffee Connections of Hilliard, Dumplings of Fury, Legacy Station (from the owners of Legacy Smokehouse), Meatball Mafia, Pitabilities, Rime Time Curiously Crafted Pops, and Serendipity.

Scroll down to see photos and learn more about these vendors.

For more information on the Center Street Market anchor, Crooked Can Brewing Company, click here.

Al’s Delicious Popcorn

Al's Delicious Popcorn offers 60+ flavors of gourmet popcorn in a variety of colors and sizes.

Bakes by Lo

Serving up specially handmade decorated cookies to satisfy your sweet tooth.

The Cheesecake Girl

Creative made-from-scratch cheesecakes made locally and deliciously.

Coffee Connections of Hilliard

Fresh locally roasted coffee and espresso, teas, chai, bagels, donuts, muffins, scones, cookies, full catering services and more.

Dumplings of Fury

Tender, succulent, traditional dim sum.

Legacy Station (from the owners of Legacy Smokehouse)

Legacy Station will still be featuring 100% wood-smoked meats, but will offer Chicken Wings, Street Tacos, and other daily surprises!

Meatball Mafia

Two-time Food Truck Fest winner, Meatball Mafia offers hot, juicy meatballs smothered in cheese and sauce.

Pitabilities

Mediterranean and American flavors at Pitabilities, with fresh ingredients made-to-order just the way you like it.

Rime Time Curiously Crafted Pops

Creative popsicles Seasonal produce, specialty ingredients, and creative pops. Made with science, delivered on wheels, eaten with love.

Serendipity

Serendipity; The art of happy discoveries will offer vintage, repurposed, and handcrafted home decor, gifts and furniture.

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Food & Drink

Insanely creative ice cream shop now treating Short North

614now Staff

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A Mexican-style ice creamery is now open in the Short North.

Dulce Vida Ice Cream Factory opened its doors for the first time Thursday at 1127 N High St. 

The unique, family-owned ice cream shop specializes in unique, fruit-forward treats like the "Crazy Pineapple," berry paletas, and Mangonada. Dulce Vida also serves hot foods like Mexican Street Corn, tamales, walking tacos, and tortas.

Dulce Vida also has locations at 4201 W Broad St. and 6140 Cleveland Ave. See way more offerings on Instagram.

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