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Monthly Archives: November 2011

Breakfast News | October, November, & beyond

Like everything else in the culinary world, Columbus’ breakfast scene continues to change and evolve. Here are some new breakfast and brunch options that have opened recently, or will be joining the scene soon!

Downtown breakfasters and brunchers are getting more options these days. Cinco, located at the corner of Broad and High in the Huntington Building, has started offering breakfast burritos and tacos, as well as yogurt, hash browns, pastries, and coffee. Milestone 229 also introduced brunch to their menu, including dishes like quiche, eggs benedict, huevos rancheros, grits, and chicken and waffles. You can now enjoy some tasty comfort food in their prime location overlooking the Scioto Mile fountains, the river, and the Main Street bridge.

L’Appat Patisserie, which was “coming soon” for a long time on the corner of Long and Third Streets, has moved and finally opened on Oak Street in Olde Towne East. Although not strictly serving breakfast, L’Appat still offers a range of pastries, tarts, and cakes. In L’Appat’s place, Flaxella Cafe has now opened. Owner Godofai Tgiorgis sells coffee and espresso, plus bagels, breads, and muffins. Many of his products will, yes, feature flaxseeds.

In the Short North, Justin Boeheme of Da Levee has started serving Sunday brunch. He’s giving Columbus unique offerings like eggs and rice on magic toast, jambalaya, and spinach and mushroom etouffee, as well as breakfast burritos and sausage gravy and biscuits.

In the world of chain restaurants, Waffle House has announced that they are going to open a location across from Ohio State’s campus, at 1712 N. High Street. You can read a feature about it on Columbus Underground here. As the article states, this will be the first of Waffle House’s “urban” locations in Central Ohio. All others are stand-alone buildings, close to highways and other major roads. Panera announced a few months ago that it would expand further in the Columbus market. They started the process on October 26 by opening the country’s largest Panera on Lane Avenue across from the University.

There are more openings and closings on the horizon, too. If you’re a fan of Dragonfly Neo-V’s brunch, you need to get there by the end of 2011. On January 1st, Dragonfly will close to re-form and renovate into Till, a neighborhood bar and restaurant focused on biodynamic food. The On the Fly space, part of Dragonfly’s operation, will become Glaze, a small bakery serving artisanal donuts. You can also keep an eye on Dempsey’s Restaurant, scheduled to open soon on 346 South High St. across from the Franklin County Courthouse (and around the corner from the Jury Room). Keep track on their progress on Facebook or through Twitter.

Finally, there’s a breakfast burrito food cart called Dos Gringos that’s set to open any day now. They’re planning on setting up near Otterbein College in Westerville on 13th Avenue and High St near Ohio State. You can follow them on Facebook and Twitter.

Small Business Saturday, aka #shoplocal

Believe it or not, Thanksgiving is nearly upon us, which for many marks the “official” start of the holidays. Friday morning (or even Thursday night), many will line up for $10 blu-ray players and entire clothing stores at 99% off. Not that this is necessarily a bad thing. But this Saturday is Small Business Saturday, and I wanted to encourage you  to think about about shopping local that day and over the coming weeks.

May I suggest any of the following items, places, or events?

1. I’m just going to come out and say it: buy my book! The book makes for a great gift. Did you know that the book was created entirely in Columbus? Writing, photography & design, and printing. We’re very proud of that. (P.S. You could even get a copy signed by the author if you can find him.) Also, look for free shipping if you order on Cyber Monday.

2. Give giftcards to area restaurants. The perfect way to support a local restaurant and help someone discover some place new. I found that some people have bought the book and given giftcards to some of the featured restaurants, too. Brilliant!

3. Visit the Celebrate Local store at Easton. This temporary Easton store, just a couple doors down from the Apple Store, features products from all over Ohio: cards, crafts, paintings, ice cream, beer, coffee, candles, books (*ahem*), you name it!

4. Shop in our neighborhood districts. Spend Friday morning in Short North (one of my favorite places this time of year), stroll the shops in German Village, hit up the antiques and gift stores in Clintonville, or walk through Olde Worthington.

5. Support the members of the Small Business Beanstalk. The SBB excels in promoting Columbus’ small businesses. Follow their lead. Search their site for a list of member businesses.

6. Use Columbus Underground’s retail guideColumbus Underground is a big supporter of all things local, so use their handy guide to find some unique gifts.

There are many more options out there, but these are a few ideas if you want to give some unique gifts and put your dollar in the hands of a local small business this year.

Photos: new menu items at Real Food Cafe

Whenever we head to my hometown of Grand Rapids, Michigan, at least one visit to our neighborhood favorite, the Real Food Cafe, is in order. A couple weekends ago, we went three-for-three: three mornings in town, three breakfasts at Real Food. It’s not an addiction, we swear.

Real Food embodies everything we love about breakfast. It’s colorful, it’s familiar, it’s welcoming. And the menu is big enough to keep us second-guessing our orders.

Owner Frank Amodeo and his crew recently made our lives more complicated by expanding their menu. Naturally, our three visits included a sampling of the new items. My family is used to the routine now, where they don’t touch their food until I lean in and snap a picture. It’s not an addiction, I swear.

And now, your Real Food new menu item travelogue. First, the Healthy Start Waffle: a big crunchy waffle topped with berries, bananas, yogurt, and granola.

I love Real Food’s eggs benedict, and now Frank has started slinging the Irish Benedict. Take the poached eggs, English muffin, and hollandaise (plus a side of their amazing potatoes), but now add corned beef and spinach. It’s essentially corned beef hash with spinach and hollandaise. Winning combo.

As if their French toast isn’t rich enough, you can now bolster it with the Nutella Stuffed French Toast. Thick French toast with Nutella between the layers, an entire sliced banana (to keep it healthy), and chocolate syrup. Drink some coffee to balance out the sugar coma.

The Loaded Pancake is an occasional special that’s joined the new menu. A hang-over-the-edge-of-the-plate pancake with sausage and bacon in the batter, topped with two eggs cooked to order.

The new menu always includes the arrival (finally!) of Biscuits and Sausage Gravy. Frank and his crew make a thick, very chunky gravy (always good to see). The biscuits are nice and soft. Comes with two eggs.

Another crazy addition is the Wafflewich: scrambled eggs, bacon, and cheddar cheese between the two halves of a waffle. Brilliant.

They updated their already-popular list of scrambles and omelets, too. This is the new Capicola Scramble, with capicola (obviously), spinach, provolone, roasted red peppers, and basil.

And I cannot (CANNOT, I TELL YOU!) resist getting their classic Eggs Benedict. Perfectly poached eggs, Canadian bacon, English muffins, some of the best hollandaise ever, with a gigantic side of the best potatoes. Honestly, this might be my favorite breakfast. I mean, just look at it!

Where can I find the book?

The breakfast book has been released! We’ve mailed copies to most of our Kickstarter supporters. We’ve fulfilled all current online orders. But I’m still getting a lot of questions as to where you can find the book. Here are three ways you can get your hands on a copy:

1. You can purchase a copy online by clicking HERE! The book is $20 (plus tax), $5 for shipping first copy (an additional $2/copy for two or more).

2. The book is currently available at the following locations:
Beehive Books – 25 N. Sandusky St, Delaware
The Best Breakfast & Sandwiches – 5916 Westerville Rd, Westerville
The Book Loft – 631 S. Third St, German Village
Cambridge Tea House – 1885 W. Fifth Ave, Marble Cliff
Celebrate Local – 4030 The Strand East, Easton
Cover to Cover – 3560 N. High St, Clintonville 
Cup O’ Joe
 – Bexley, Clintonville, Easton, German Village, downtown, Short North, airport, and Lennox
DK Diner – 1715 W. Third Ave, Grandview
The Hills Market – 7860 Olentangy River Rd., Worthington
Igloo Letterpress – 39 W. New England Ave, Worthington
Jack’s Sandwich Shop – 52 E. Lynn St, downtown
Katalina’s Cafe Corner – 1105 Pennsylvania Ave, Harrison West
Stauf’s Coffee Roasters – 1277 Grandview Ave, Grandview
Wholly Craft – 3169 N. High St, Clintonville

3. You can buy one in person at one of the schedule book-signing/pick-up dates. (Hint: look for a full list on the Events page.) In fact, there are two coming up this weekend:

(Pssst… all of this information can always been found, with current updates, on the Breakfast With Nick: Columbus page.)

Photos: Breakfast Week Columbus

I declared last week Breakfast Week Columbus! It was a fun week of me eating waaaay too much breakfast, but also getting to meet a lot of folks. Thanks for everyone who joined me. Here are a few pictures of what you missed…

On Tuesday we visited Jack’s Sandwich Shop downtown. Jack’s is an old-school diner hidden down Lynn Alley downtown. Chris Kowalski, the owner, decorates for every major holiday. That week, you could catch his Halloween decorations.

We were joined for breakfast by Emily, Bo, and Daniel!

Here’s Chris hard at work, making Jack’s signature pancakes!

You can’t visit a diner without having a cup of diner coffee.

Thursday I spent an hour at Buckeye Donuts, where Jimmy Barouxis and his crew feed hungry college students twenty-four hours a day.

My son Will tried some French toast sticks.

I had a breakfast sandwich of sausage, egg, and cheese on a croissant.

Chuck, who met us at the restaurant, had a plate of hash browns and toast. Chuck said he was a senior at Ohio State when Buckeye Donuts opened.

Last Friday we camped out at Katalina’s Cafe Corner. I never pass up a chance to eat there, and neither should you.

In the colder months, Katalina’s feels like a warm little kitchen.

They introduced a new special that week: spicy caramel French toast. Oh my goodness…

They had another special named after yours truly (bucket list!) called Nick’s Breakfast Nest.

I, however, just couldn’t resist the French toast special. It sounded too good. The French toast was perfectly soft, and the spice of the caramel builds nicely while you eat it.

My son opted for his favorte: the Latin pancake balls filled with Nutella. I ate most of his sweet and spicy bacon.

Overall, a full week of delicious breakfast! It led up to a very fun release party. And the book is now available!

Book release today!

It’s the day of the book, y’all! Thanks to everyone who has supported the project so far. We’re incredibly grateful.

Tonight, we release the first books at our party at North Market. The party runs from 7-9pm. There you can…

  • Get your copy of the book (and get it signed!)
  • Sample food from featured restaurants.
  • Buy breakfast-themed T-shirts from ThoughtCo. They have shirts for $10, or you can bring your own for $5.
  • Try Genre Creative’s Soapbox photobooth!
  • Enjoy some music and fun!

Starting next week, will be ship pre-ordered books and deliver them to bookstores and restaurants.

Let me know what you think when you get a copy, and tell me when you start exploring!




I’m getting a lot of traffic to the site because of Robin Davis’ lovely article from the Dispatch, so I wanted to say hello and welcome to all the new readers! Thanks for visiting. Please feel free to read through the blog. Let me know what you think, suggest some new places, or try discovering a new breakfast spot for yourself!

My Columbus breakfast guidebook, Breakfast With Nick: Columbus, will be released this coming Saturday, November 5. You can pre-order the book by going here. You can also get the first copies (and get them signed!) at the release party on Saturday. The party takes place from 7-9pm at the North Market Dispatch Kitchen. Tickets are $25 (includes a copy of the book) and $10 (without a copy). You can purchase tickets at the door or ahead of time here.

ADDITION: starting the week of November 7th, the book will be available in a variety of bookstores and restaurants around Columbus. I will maintain a list on the book page and announce when books are available.

In celebration of the book’s release, I’ve declared this week Breakfast Week Columbus, and am visiting various restaurants for breakfast and brunch. Check the link for the schedule, and please come join me! I’m also giving away giftcards to different restaurants. If you want enter some of those giveaways, and to tag along on more of my breakfasting journeys, give me a follow on Facebook ( and Twitter (


While you’re here… I also wanted to highlight some of my other recent writings and appearances. I write a regular column for (614) Magazine, and was recently asked to write about food sites for PC World. Last week I got to appear on Fox 28’s Good Day Columbus and WCBE’s Foodcast. Enjoy!

Breakfast With Nick: The Breakfast Burrito, (614) Magazine
November 1, 2011
Featuring Katalina’s Cafe Corner, Northstar Cafe, and Nancy’s Home Cooking

Find the Best Local Food With These Useful Websites
PC World
October 31, 2011

Breakfast With Nick
WCBE Foodcast
October 29, 2011

Good Day Columbus (Fox 28), at Starliner Diner
October 28, 2011


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