In openings, hot on the heels of the success of places like the new Five Guys Burgers up at Polaris comes Burger Boys, which opened this week at 3650 E. Main Street in Whitehall. The menu offers several variations of interesting burgers, with free fries with the signature burgers being one of the draws.
Jason’s Deli opened March 2nd in Dublin, at 225 W. Bridge Street. This Texas-based chain, new to Ohio, offers sandwiches, soups and more.
Joining the ranks of fine dining establishments embracing the “small plates” and “bistro” concepts, Handke’s Cuisine has reopened the bistro area of the restaurant with the name of “encore”. “encore” offers small plates at a reasonable price in a less formal setting than Handke’s proper. It’s located in the Brewery District at the upstairs of the same building at 520 S. Front Street, and is open from 4pm-2:30am (the kitchen closes at 11pm) Monday through Saturday.
Also offering a new bistro-style menu is Short North fine dining restaurant Rosendale’s, who launched their “Comfort Series” this past week. The menu will be posted by noon daily (it changes from day to day), and will offer 3 courses for $30, 4 courses for $40, with an option to complement your meal with a carafe of wine for an additional $10. This menu is only offered Monday through Thursdays, and you’ll need to call to make reservations once the menu is posted at noon.
In closings, Arlington Pizza and Meatballs has closed as of last Friday, another victim of the economy, according to a neighbor of the business. This was almost immediately on the heels of the closure of building-mate Dino’s Cappucinos, who closed in late January. A hard to find location may have been a contributing factor.
You all are probably getting sick of hearing me talk about Restaurant Week, and how excited I am about it. So I’m going to bring this issue up in an area that doesn’t talk about Restaurant Week directly, but restaurant news in general, just to get a gauge on how you all feel about this.
There was an article in The Other Paper a couple of days ago about how one Wayne T. Lewis, publisher of UWeekly and (the as of yet to print an actual issue) 614 Magazine, taking umbrage at Dine Originals Columbus’ use of the phrase “Restaurant Week Columbus”.
To just give a little history, there technically has been a Restaurant Week in Columbus before, put on by CORA (Central Ohio Restaurant Association) back in 2002. Current CORA president Liz Lessner was thrilled when Dine Originals Columbus wanted to resurrect the concept – a concept which, by the way, seems to be an industry standard and is done all over the country. So everything is good and everybody wins, right? The restaurants get customers in the seats, the customers get some really good fixed price meals, and everyone is happy.
Not so fast. Apparently the media group Lewis runs decided to up and trademark “Columbus Restaurant Week” back in January, and now is trying to shake down Dine Originals over their use of the name. He says that “614 Magazine’s event plans were ‘on a scale far beyond anything contemplated by your event””, and has basically accused Dine Originals of stealing his idea – an idea that has already been done in this city by the trade group that most of the major restaurateurs belong to.
Now, before I go into rant mode, let me just state the obvious. Dude, you’ve just alienated 42 of the independent restaurants and countless other restaurants that belong to CORA. Who the heck are you going to get to participate in 614’s idea of Restaurant Week? Seriously? I’m almost curious to see how this all plays out to see how much of a joke his event ends up being, especially given the ill-will and animosity he’s generated among the very people whose help he would need to execute it.
As a person who is supportive of both Dine Originals Columbus and CORA, I’m siding with them on this matter. Here’s a media group that is not only trying to profit on an idea that belongs to the restaurant industry at large, but is also trying to cast a rainy cloud over an event that people should be happy about. If anything, this has left an extremely bad taste in my mouth about both Lewis and 614 Magazine and guarantees that I will never buy an issue or attend an event they are affiliated with.
I’m curious to hear your thoughts on the matter.