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Category Archives: event

Giveaway: tickets to Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams Desserts release party!

COVER_JENI'S SPLENDID ICE CREAM DESSERTS

UPDATE: The drawing is now closed!

Columbus is the epicenter of many great things, ice cream included, and Columbus’ – no, America’s – ice cream queen Jeni Britton Bauer just released her second cookbook, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream Desserts. This is her second book; the first is Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams At Home (for which she won the James Beard Award). The new book teaches recipes using ice cream in cakes, cookies, sauces, and more. The Columbus book release party is this Friday, May 30th from 7-10pm at the Wexner Center for the Arts.

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Want to win a pair of tickets to the release party? Just comment on this post by 5pm today with your favorite Jeni’s flavor. I’ll start: my go-to’s are the Pistachio & Honey and the Buckeye State.

Mother’s Day brunch suggestions

Confession: a couple years ago I completely dropped the ball when I didn’t make any plans for Mother’s Day brunch… while my parents were visiting us IN COLUMBUS. That’s right: Breakfast With Nick forgot to make brunch reservations for his own mother. And his wife. For Mother’s Day. In his own city. Thankfully, a trip to Starliner Diner saved the day.

Don’t be like me. If brunch is part of your plans to celebrate Mom (and Grandma!), think ahead. At this point, being the week of Mother’s Day, many of the fancier places will be full up already, but lucky for you there are some creative (and less expensive) alternatives. Understand, though, that most places will be busy on Mother’s Day. Make reservations if they take them; if not, just be prepared to wait or to show up a little earlier.

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Ethyl & Tank
– E&T is a recent discovery close to campus that really impressed us. Parking is a little awkward, but the restaurant space is huge, as are the portions. We enjoyed the over-the-top Tank Pancakes with pulled pork and cheddar, and the juicy Breakfast Burger. And you can’t beat the $5 build-your-own Bloody Mary bar! Special bonus: they’re a full service coffee shop and have a small arcade upstairs.

Cravings Carryout Cafe – this Italian Village carryout has become a favorite of our family. The space is more ideally suited to carryout, but they have a couple picnic tables next to the campfire outside. We haven’t had a bad item on the menu, but our favorites are the breakfast roll, the BLT, and the cinnamon rolls made with their brioche bread. (Check out Karina and I visiting the cafe for 10TV!)

The Angry Baker – this corner cafe in Olde Towne East serves up beautiful baked goods alongside knife-and-fork burritos, sandwiches, and quiche. If Mom prefers vegan or gluten free, Angry Baker has you covered, too, with their oatmeal pancakes and biscuits & mushroom gravy.

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Mughal Darbar – our favorite Indian restaurant is set up in an old house just north of campus. They offer a Sunday buffet that’s a regular stop. Perfect if you’ve got a big group and the family is up for more adventurous eating.

The Hungry Soul Cafe – we just hit up Hungry Soul’s brunch for the first time this past weekend and walked away full and happy (full post coming next week!). The long, wood-accented space serves as a quiet and comfortable atmosphere for a Sunday brunch of classics like waffles, omelets, and biscuits & gravy, or more creative dishes like Hungarian crepes with apples, apple butter, and sausage, or oatmeal with peaches in bourbon butter sauce. Tack on a delicious $5 Bloody Mary, and you’re set!

de-NOVO bistro & bar – de-NOVO is probably the most traditional brunch spot of this list, but I think their breakfast and brunch deserves more attention. We enjoyed rich biscuits and gravy, Bloody Marys, and omelets on our visit, and you can’t beat their funky decorations.

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Sunflower Chinese Restaurant & Lounge – Sunflower is one of the only places in town serving dim sum, and fortunately for Columbus it’s a very good one. Get the full dim sum experience on weekends, when the dining room is full of carts being pushed from table to table. Select shareable dishes with dumplings, noodles, rice wrapped in lotus leaves, and so much more.

Olive Tree – out in Hilliard, Olive Tree serves a delightful Mediterranean breakfast on Sundays. Front and center on the menu is shakshouka, a rich Middle Eastern/North African meal featuring eggs poached in tomatoes, peppers, and spices. Other dishes include Mediterranean omelets, challah French toast, and frittatas.

Village Crepe – this downtown Pickerington spot serves up a varied menu of sweet and savory crepes. Sweet crepes are loaded with salty caramel or banana hazelnut, while savory ones are filled with cheeses or spinach and ricotta.

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Visit a food truck! Stop by one of Columbus’ many food trucks for a tasty meal. Find Mya’s Fried Chicken or Ray Ray’s Hog Pit in Clintonville, or enjoy a pint of Seventh Son‘s beer while getting brunch from Challah Food Truck parked out front.

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Don’t want to go out? Impress Mom with your mad brunch-making skills. Pre-order some Sammy’s Bagels (order by 3pm on Friday!), look over my post on 11 Ways To Cook An Egg, and practice some poaching.

Event: Drink Up Columbus’ 3rd Anniversary

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Columbus is fortunate to have many excellent blogs covering a wide range of resources. One of my favorites – and a regular go-to for all things related to beer, bars, and booze – is Drink Up Columbus. At the end of this month, they’re celebrating three years of keeping Columbus informed about all things drink-related.

You can join up the celebration by registering for the party at Strongwater Food & Spirits here. As a special bonus, I have a bright blue XL Drink Up Columbus shirt to giveaway!

To enter, comment on this post by midnight tonight with your favorite place to grab a drink in Columbus. And be sure to tell us why you love it!

Photos: North Market Coffee Roast 2014

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Yesterday North Market hosted the third Coffee Roast on a perfectly beautiful spring day. This year the event moved outdoors to the farmers market plaza (and the date was pushed back from March), with the roasters lined up in front of the market. Together as a family we beat most of the crowds by hitting up the event just as it started.

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We strolled up and down the lines, saying hello to some favorites and trying a couple new roasters. Like every good event – and every day, let’s be honest – we started with a stop at One Line Coffee. Mrs. Bfast w/Nick is there often enough that she knows the baristas by name; they were pulling delicious, delicious shots of espresso.

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Down on one end stood Das Kaffee Haus‘ table, complete with their modified ambulance (labeled the Emergency Kaffee Unit) parked nearby. DKH is located in Lithopolis, but their coffee can be found around Columbus at places like Milestone 229 and the Columbus Brewing Company Restaurant. Amy and Joe (aka Frau Burkhardt and Herr Joseph) told me their place is modeled on the European coffee shops they’ve encountered while traveling and serving abroad in the military.

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And of course we were on the lookout for Jason and Emily from Thunderkiss Coffee. They’re the coolest. Also, their coffee is great. Some of my favorite in town. Jason has a small but mighty roasting operation; you can find his beans at restaurants and on store shelves all around town.

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Strolling down the line we took in brews from Crimson Cup, Backroom Coffee Roasters

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…plus Silver Bridge and the newer Roaming Goat Coffee. The fun thing about this event is that everyone is excited to talk about coffee – and not just their coffee, but coffee in general. And you could witness nearly every type of coffee prep available.

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Dayton-based Boston Stoker has established their presence in Columbus with a shop near OSU’s campus. Like a couple other places, they displayed coffee beans for smelling or to reference the colors of the roasting process.

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Stauf’s Coffee Roasters, one of the mainstays of the Columbus coffee scene, was on hand with a tiny electric roaster. The portable setup roasts in small sample batches, allowing them to treat the same beans in different roasting lengths quickly.

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Rich the roaster showed me samples of his roast in progress. The machine roasts in 80 gram batches.

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The most unique offering of the day came – not surprisingly – from Cafe Brioso. They served two excellent hot brews – some of the standouts from the morning – but they also featured coffee sno-cones.

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Yes, coffee sno-cones. J. J. explained they used a rare Ethiopian Nekisse bean, cold-brewed, mixed with a dash of Ohio honey, and served over shaved ice. It was as delicious as you’d expect. I think we have a new definition of summer in Columbus.

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Further down the line – right next to Snowville Creamery with their samples of milk and yogurt – we found Actual Brewing‘s roastery crew in full swing.

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They make superb beer, really strong coffee roasts, and they’ve got some of the best beards in the biz.

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The event space indoors was dedicated to coffee education, with Brioso’s crew kicking off a demonstration of espresso preparation. On the other end of the room, baristas from a mix of shops made espresso drinks for customers.

We couldn’t have had a better day for the event. The move outdoors and to a Sunday (see photos from 2012 and 2013) offered more space and prevented longer lines. The one thing that confused me was the branding of it as a “brunch.” When I hear “brunch” I assume there will be food involved, but what that really meant was “you can go into the market to find food.” Many vendors had special $5 brunch bites, but the market opens at noon on Sundays (the Coffee Roast started at 10), so a majority of the stalls were closed during the first half of the event (although the newly moved and re-branded Taste of Belgium was hopping). I was also a little disappointed that attendees were given generic North Market mugs, and not the fun branded ones with colorful Clinton Reno artwork like years past. I know it’s gimmicky, but I like having a memento that references the specific event.

Aside from those details – it was a wonderful event that really featured Columbus’ great coffee roasters and brewers. We have much to be proud of, and our coffee keeps getting better and better.

Giveaway: Giant Eagle Market District coffee packs

GE coffee giveaway[UPDATE: The contest is now closed. Thanks all who entered!]

Who’s up for coffee? Giant Eagle has shared some Market District coffee packs with and my readers, and I’m spreading the coffee love! I’ve got two packs to give away. Each pack has a Market District mug, two 12-oz bags of coffee (Moka Java Blend and Hazelnut, both ground), plus a couple $1 gift certificates for more GE coffee!

To enter the random drawing for one of TWO coffee packs (yes, I’m giving away two!), comment on this post and share your favorite coffee or place to get coffee. What type of coffee is it or where do you get it, and why is it a favorite?

Comment on this post by midnight Eastern time on Sunday, April 13 to enter!

Giveaway: Penn Station gift certificates!

Snap Advertising-Four Penn Station Subs[UPDATE: The contest is now closed!]

The kind folks from Penn Station East Coast Subs have provided a $20 gift certificate for my readers, so I’m giving it away today! Penn Station has about a dozen locations in the greater Columbus area.

I’m a fan of sandwiches in any form and at any time of day, although obviously my heart lies with breakfast sandwiches. To enter the random drawing, comment on this post and share your favorite sandwich. What type of sandwich is it, where to you get it, and why do you love it?

Comment by midnight Eastern time tonight to enter!

Event: Brunch & A Classic at Gateway Film Center

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I know dinner and a movie is a thing, but what about brunch and a movie? Well, the Gateway Film Center is trying to rectify that. Starting this Sunday, March 2nd, the GFC is hosting a monthly brunch + movie series, starting with Goldfinger. The event will pair a classic movie with a special brunch at the new Torpedo Room, one of the latest openings from the Columbus Food League group of restaurants.

Brunch kicks off at noon; the movie starts at 2pm. $15 gets you brunch and the movie ticket (or $7.50 if you just want to see the movie). You can pair your meal with all sorts of Ohio beers and specialty cocktails. The event will be hosted by Johnny DiLoretto (director of ops at the theater) and John DeSando, known for their Cinema Classics program on WCBE. Expect to see participation from other local businesses like pur-suit as well. Once you’re impressed by Sean Connery’s gray three-piece suit in Goldfinger, talk to Nate DeMars about buying your own.

I always enjoy pairings like this. I love the theater, with its combination of first run movies, independent films, and classics. (We recently took our 5-year-old there for his first movie-in-the-theater ever, The Lego Movie.) Plus, their beer and cocktail list is solid. And I’m a big fan of Liz Lessner-led Columbus Food League restaurants. The match-up of Gateway + Torpedo Room is brilliant. I got a sneak peak at the brunch menu, and it’s looking pretty awesome. It’ll include things like bourbon-glazed French toast with toasted almonds and maple syrup, egg & cheese breakfast enchiladas, huevos rancheros, and bottomless silver dollar pancakes. True to CFL form, expect to see lots of vegetarian, vegan, and gluten free options, too!

If you can’t make it this month, you can catch Breathless on April 6th and Annie Hall on May 4th. Look for more offerings to join the list in coming months.

Video: Breakfast With Nick visit to Kolache Republic

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In case you missed it on Saturday, my second segment on 10TV aired, with me and Karina Nova visiting Kolache Republic in the Brewery District (see some behind the scenes photos here). We got to talk with Doug and Ben and watch them make fresh kolaches for the day. Watch the video clip here!

Photos: Taste of Dine Originals

Taste of Dine Originals is this week Thursday! Hosted by the members of Dine Originals Columbus, the event raises money for Buckeye Ranch.

I’m sharing some of Mrs. Bfast w/Nick’s photos from last year’s event to give you a taste of what you can sample. The event is a showcase of some of Columbus’ best and brightest in the culinary world.

Expect all sorts of delicious treats and drinks.

Tickets are $100, but it supports a good cause. And you’ll get to eat and drink your way through an amazing Columbus culinary tour the whole evening.

Event details:
Taste of Dine Originals
Thursday, May 9, 6-9pm
Capitol University Field House
670 Pleasant Ridge Ave.

Chinese New Year giveaway!

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Happy Chinese New Year! The celebration of the Year of the Snake starts today and runs for fifteen days. The folks at Molly Woo’s Asian Bistro are kicking things off with a traditional Chinese Lion Dance at 4 p.m. today, and to include others in the overall celebrations, they’re providing a $25 giftcard to give away to my readers!

To enter, first take a look at the Molly Woo’s menu, and simply comment on this post (by 11:59 p.m. EST on Tuesday, February 12) by saying what you would order if you were going to celebrate the Chinese New Year there!

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