Around Ohio: New upscale restaurant opens—inside a previously undiscovered sandstone cavern

Jack McLaughlin

The Columbus food scene has experienced everything from donut trees to bagel-flavored ice cream in the last year, but one new Mansfield restaurant has all of these gimmicks beat.

Prohibition at the Caverns—as its name describes—is a new upscale eatery, located entirely within a network of man-made sandstone caverns.

The caverns were (re)discovered recently, while crews were working to complete the restaurant Hudson & Essex in Downtown Mansfield.  They were first entered in 2018.


According to a Mansfield News Journal story, there are two caverns located underneath the eatery. Sitting side by side, they feature 20 foot-tall ceilings and are more than 16 feet, wide made from hand-carved sandstone. The new eatery’s website says the caverns were likely built sometime during the Civil War era (between 1850 and 1865), and were originally used by brewers to cold-ferment lagers.

Rick Taylor, the owner of Hudson & Essex, decided to capitalize on the unlike discovery, and converted the caverns into the brand-new fine dining concept. The space took years of work to make habitable, but the result is a truly unique–and unexpectedly spacious–restaurant.

Diners are served from an eight-course menu that’s buffered by an extensive wine list. Reservations are currently being accepted.

Want to read more? Check out our print publication, (614) Magazine. Learn where you can find a free copy of our new February issue here!


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