It’s often said that the strength of Columbus lies in its neighborhoods. We’re a big city, yes, but every neighborhood and suburb has its own identity, with a strong sense of ownership over the restaurants, businesses, parks, schools, landmarks, and hangouts there.
We love our neighborhood of Clintonville, and that we can find just about everything in it; grocery stores, restaurants and bars, big parks and hidden ravines, coffee shops and kitschy cafes, even our own outpost of the Columbus Library. We’ve been fortunate to call it home for nearly 10 years, and we’ve seen many families join the neighborhood with the help of realtors like HER Realtors.
Here are some of our favorite finds that make Clintonville a joy to call home.
Columbus is a beer-drinking town, and Clintonville is no exception. We have beer shops like Weiland’s Market, Palmer’s, and Savor Growl with great beer selections. Our neighborhood brewery Lineage Brewing gets a lot of love (and I love their weekend brunch!), Savor Pint always has cheap pints of craft beer, and Growl is a terrific spot to grab a pint or fill a growler. And Studio 35 is one of our favorite places in the city – it’s both our go-to movie theatre and our neighborhood bar, where they have fun cocktails and 40 beers on tap.
Clintonville food has really grown up over past years. The neighborhood features a solid collection of restaurants, from dive bars like O’Reilly’s (with the pepper burger) and watering holes with great food like Old Skool and Local Cantina, to fast casuals like Fusian (sushi), 6-1-Pho (Vietnamese), and Bibibop (Korean). Harvest Kitchen nails it with the pizzas and cocktails (I’m partial to the Spicy Yuma and Ohio Double Bacon). The Crest on Indianola features great beer, cocktails, and upscale pub food, while Bareburger serves up all sorts of burgers like beef, boar, and chicken. Northstar Cafe is famous for its veggie burgers, Lavash is some of the city’s favorite Mediterranean, Ying’s serves up dumplings, Bonchon covers Korean wings, and Pat & Gracie’s has solid pub fare burgers. The La Poblanita truck serves up great tacos, tortas, and carne asada. Finish any meal with a stop at Jeni’s. And coming soon are Hot Chicken Takeover, Little Eater, and we just learned this week – Condado Tacos!
We have our choice of breads, cookies, and cakes from new and old bakeries. Mozart’s is a neighborhood institution, serving beautiful European pastries to go with Austrian breakfast, lunch, and dinner dishes. It’s also one of the few places in Columbus for a proper afternoon tea. Pattycake Bakery serves up chocolate chip cookies, whoopie pies, and cinnamon rolls. Dough Mama‘s storefront is a cozy hideaway for pie, cookies, and sandwiches. And the new Flowers & Bread offers a quiet respite serving coffee and beautiful breads and pastries.
Clintonville is also home to many families, including ours. There are plenty of kid-friendly spots – we’ve spent many hours playing at Firefly Play Cafe, playing soccer at Whetstone Park, checking out EVERY book on owls from the Whetstone Library, and playing board games at Tabletop Game Cafe.
We enjoy some seriously old school establishments in Clintonville, like Wildflower Cafe and the newer (although already a classic) Beechwold Diner on Indianola. Both are institutions with loyal patrons who crowd the parking lots on a regular basis. Nancy’s Home Cooking has been around for over 40 years, and it’s so beloved that when it closed in 2009, the community banded together to help renovate it and get it back on its feet. When does that happen?
It’s safe to say Clintonville is a caffeinated neighborhood, with a selection of coffee shops for studying, holding meetings, or just picking up a quality cup of java. Cup O’ Joe is a go-to spot for meetings, working, and catching up. Global Gallery is a great spot for coffee, snacks, and ethically sourced goods. Crimson Cup offers both drive-through service and a full brew bar of different preparations. And Yeah, Me Too is the epitome of the hidden gem, a small coffee shop that’s cash only and makes some of the city’s best coffee.
Do you live in Clintonville, or just love the neighborhood a lot? What’s your favorite place there? Comment on the post with your favorite spot in Clintonville, and be entered to win $25 to Studio 35! Comment on the post by midnight, Saturday, May 20 to enter. EDIT: the contest is closed. Thanks to all who commented!
Disclosure: this giveaway is a partnership with Nakturnal. Opinions and photos are my own.