Columbus Convention

American Institute of Building Design

July 29 - August 1, 2014

Good Things Come to Those Who...

Wait, right?

Well the wait is finally over folks! All jokes aside, the Ohio Society would like to officially welcome you all to Columbus! In just a few days now, the convention will kick off at the grand Hilton Downtown Hotel. To wrap up our weekly blog posts, we thought we'd share a great article on the cutting edge LED lighting solutions that can be found at the Hilton. Check it out here.

And once it's all said and done, we'll share a quick recap of the week right here on this site. So if you weren't able to make it, you'll feel like you caught all the action. 

As always, we wish everyone safe travels as you make your way to OHIO. 

See you soon!

Every Eater's Guide to the City

Short North Specialties Not to Miss!

Bakersfield

This country-music loving cantina specializes in “tacos, tequila, whiskey” in the heart of the Short North. Bakersfield offers a tight menu of TexMex standards like chips and salsa, huac, tort as, and roughly eight styles of tacos on house-made tortillas.

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Barley’s Brewing Company

The Short North microbrewery offers an expansive selection of brews, which can be enjoyed at the hand-carved, century-old mahogany bar alongside American bar favorites like nachos and burgers. 

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Bodega

Located in the heart of the Short North District, Bodega offers a fresh and delicious menu and a wide array of quality drink options. Bodega has been awarded the “Best Happy Hour” in Columbus by ColumbusAlive five years running. Check it out!

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DeepWood

DeepWood offers the balance experience of living and dining well, sincere hospitality, personal connections, inviting atmosphere, local responsibility, and a fresh evolving menu.

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Dirty Frank’s Hot Dog Palace

A favorite for speciality hot dogs and its unique atmosphere. Wacky menu items include Sarva’s Tato-cho dog topped with tater tots and cheese sauce and the Hot Bollywood topped with spicy mango chutney. Root beer on tap, need I say more?!

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El Camino Inn

Where burritos, tostadas, gorditas, and margaritas rule the menu for less than $5. Come for the cheap drinks, stay for the tasty Mexican bar fare.

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Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams

Jeni’s creative and seasonal ice cream flavors are renowned across the nation. Think Salty Caramel ice cream, ice cream sundaes, and ice cream sandwiches.

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Late Night Slice

Where their mission is to give the denizens of downtown Columbus a fun and friendly place to “pizza their faces off.”

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Marcella’s

Cameron Mitchell’s Italian bistro is fast-paced and always packed, which suits its bold flavored and affordable food. Ristorante, pizzeria, and wine bar.

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Martini Modern Italian

Cameron Mitchell’s revamped Short North staple combines contemporary Italian style with class Italian influence.

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Northstar Cafe

Northstar boasts an imaginative menu with a healthful emphasis on local, organic ingredients and an in-house bakery. 

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Rigsby’s Kitchen

After more than two decades, Rigsby’s Kitchen remains fresh by regularly offering new and creative Italian and Mediterranean dishes, including an expanded list of small plates.

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$$$: Average entree is $16—$25

$$: Average entree is $11—$15

$: Average entree is under $10

Nature Escapes

If you're planning on seeing the greatness of our city, you should plan on stopping by these great nature areas. 

Scioto Audubon + Battelle Darby Creek

Scioto Audubon is a 120-acre oasis in the heart of Columbus, Ohio. It is a partnership effort between metro Parks, the City of Columbus Recreation and Parks Department and Audubon Ohio. The park sits on the bank of the Scioto River and has five acres of wetlands. Wetland birds such as wood ducks, egrets, herons and osprey visit regularly. Visitors can enjoy fishing, boating, hiking and jogging. The park features the largest free outdoor climbing wall in the United States.

Audobon Ohio operates the Grange Insurance Audubon Center, a nature center providing educational programming and information in the park. In addition, the Columbus Rotary has a nine-station course that features a tire run and flip, an eight-foot wall, tunnel crawl, balance beams, monkey bars, cargo climb, belly crawl, over/under and a log run.

Battelle Darby Creek is the larges metro Park with more than 7,000 acres of praries, fields and forests and more than 20 miles of forest land along the Big and Little Darby Creeks. Designated state and national scenic rivers, the creeks are home to around 100 species of fish. This park has more than 500 acres of lush flowering prairie land and is home to the park’s herd of bison. 

More information here.

The Nature Conservancy

The Nature Conservancy in Ohio has worked to protect more than 60,000 acres of state’s lands and waters. The open preserves in Ohio are:

- Morgan Swamp Preserve is home to swamps, bogs, and beaver ponds.
- Great Egret Marsh is a 150 acre preserve that is directly connected to Lake Erie.
- Edge of Appalachia Preserve is a 16,000 acre preserve that protects extensive stands of eastern deciduous forest.
- Brown’s Lake Bog features a forest bog habitat.
- Kitty Todd Nature preserve has one of the highest concentrations of rare species of birds in the state.
- Herrick Fen Preserve was formed as glaciers retreated from the last ice age.
- Big Darby Headwaters is a 900-acre preserve that features a mixture of wetlands and stream side forests.

More information here.

Franklin Park Conservatory

The Franklin Park Conservatory and botanical Gardens, just two miles east of downtown, offer beautiful indoor and outdoor gardens, exhibitions and artwork. Collections include tropical and hardy bonsai, cactus and succulents, and over 40 species of palms. Glass artwork by Dale Chihuly are placed within the pant collections under natural light and illuminated in the evenings.  Outdoors you can explore botanical gardens, art sculptures, and a walking path on the grounds of the conservatory. Family activities and crafts are offered every weekend, as well as special events and entertainment throughout the year. 

More information here.


Caffeine Fix

Columbus is a great city for the coffee lover. The availability of well-sourced and meticulously roasted beans is impressive and the deep knowledge of coffee preparation found at our better purveyors amounts to tremendous wealth of useful info waiting to be tapped. Here's our suggestions for the best shops within walking distance of the Hilton! 

Cafe Brioso 

14 E. Gay Street
Mon-Fri 7a—5p, Sat 9a—4p, Closed Sundays

Cafe Brioso is a lively, fun-filled musical place focused on providing high-quality gourmet coffees, loose-leaf teas, and coffee accessories, as well as a made-from scratch daily menu of sandwiches, soups, salads, and baked goods. Their artisan-roasted coffees are roasted in-store by owner and roastmaster providing customers the opportunity to enjoy the process, as well as the product. This means that regardless if you're in the mood for a specialty coffee, a cup of delicious java or you want to purchase beans by the pound, you won't get any better than what's offered at this cafe. Plus, with freshly baked scones, muffins and croissants (just to name a few of the goodies), this place is ideal for a time-out during any hectic day. With a kid-friendly atmosphere and wheelchair accessibility, Cafe Brioso is perfect for just about everyone.

Must Try: Signature Ohio Honey Vanilla Latte and/or The Cubano

Mission Coffee Co. 

11 Price Avenue
Mon-Fri 7a—7p, Sat-Sun 8a—7p

Mission Coffee Co. is located in the area known as the heart and soul of the city. They’ve developed an environment with the characteristics of the Short North district in mind, with seating for collaboration as well as an expresso bar for a quick stop-in. In the 1930s, 11 Price Avenue was home to a car dealership and garage, and they’ve preserved the original concrete floors and exposed brick walls to retain the heart and character of their space, providing a welcoming environment and beautiful ambiance for the city of Columbus. Mission Coffee Co. recently launched their very own cold brew cart that services the Short North District. The cart is a fully functioning cold brew coffee tap installed on a tricycle, allowing mobile access to delicious, locally-made cold brew coffee. It’s the perfect way to get your coffee fix on those hot, humid days. Keep your eyes out for the cart! Love the cold brew? Take home a growler!

One Line Coffee

745 N. High Street
Mon-Thurs 7a—8p, Fri 7a—10p, Sat 8a—10p, Sun 8a—8p

One Line Coffee specializes in hand-dripped coffee, espresso-based drinks, select teas, and iced coffees in various forms. They also sell home brewing equipment and whole bean coffee. On any given day, One Line is brewing using any four of their current methods including Via Hario V60, Clever Dripper, Kalita Wave, french press, and Chemex. Enjoy espresso pulled from one of the rarest machines in the world, the La Marzocco Strada EP, or watch the baristas use that espresso to create beautiful art on a latte or cappuccino. They even offer a single-origin chocolate from Askinosie to sweeten up your beverage, if that’s your style. They also have a huge selection of home brewing equipment available at great prices, including all of the brew methods listed above. For the tea connoisseurs, One Line offers a selection of three high-end teas, brewed at the perfect temperature, all of which a tea lover can embrace.

Impero

849 N. High Street
Mon-Thurs 7a—8p, Fri 7a—9p, Sat 8a—9p, Sun 8a—8p

Impero Coffee Roasters is definitely a solid choice for the casual coffee drinker who’s looking for a morning pick-me-up, or for the coffee connoisseur who enjoys a beverage that is roasted to perfection. Impero offers many of your standard coffee shop items, specialty drinks, and more, plus some breakfast & lunch food. They offer what’s referred to as 3rd Wave Coffee, which is a product of careful roasting and brewed by processes such as Chemex’s, pour-overs and French presses. The baristas are friendly, knowledgeable, and willing to make your coffee just the way you like it. Check them out the next time your comfort food craving kicks in. 

Stauf’s @ The North Market

600 N. High Street
Mon 9a—5p, Tues-Fri 9a—7p, Sat 8a—5p, Sun Noon—5p

Stauf’s is a micro-roaster that has been serving the Columbus coffee community since 1988. They operate Stauf’s Coffee shop in Grandview. In addition, they serve wholesale, retail and mail-order customers throughout the country. Since opening, their business has been built on providing the highest-quality Arabica coffees, and they do their best to communicate this passion to the customers. They’re passionate with the entire process of achieving the finest cup of coffee. Stauf’s quest for the perfect cup starts with a search for the best beans. They source the highest-quality Arabica beans from over 20 countries around the world. Once a coffee has met their strict quality standards, they introduce it to the customers. The most unique thing about Stauf’s: they roast their coffees to order, by hand, on gas-fired roasters, so your coffee is always at peak flavor and freshness when you receive it! 

Cup O’ Joe

600 N. High Street
Mon-Thurs 6:30a—10p, Fri 7a—9p, Sat 8a—9p, Sun 8a—8p

The obsession with achieving the perfect cup of coffee started at Stauf’s in 1988 and led to the opening of the first Cup o’ Joe in German Village in 1994. In the years that followed, Cup O’ Joe researched the coffee you drink right down to the care and cultivation of the plant to the processing practices of coffee’s many international and dynamic flavors.

Cup o’ Joe’s expert buyers assess and purchase only the most distinctive and delightful beans. From Kenya’s fine acidity and Sumatra’s syrupy body to Costa Rica’s clean flavor, you will taste the expertise in every cup. Cup O’ Joe’s wants to bring you the best cup of coffee in Columbus. Even though their beans come from around the world, they roast them locally in their Columbus warehouse and deliver them to their seven Columbus coffee houses within 48 hours of roasting. Whether you’re grabbing a quick cup of coffee before work or stopping by to relax or study, Cup O’ Joe’s guarantees you’ll taste the difference in their fresh, locally roasted coffee every time. That’s one of the reasons why they believe they were voted 2010′s Best Coffee House in Columbus by Alive, Columbus Monthly and 614 Magazines.

Un peu d'Charm

French isn't one of my strong suits. Today we'll be chatting about a little European pocket in the center of town; Sessions Village. Although it's still a privately owned community, this little spot gives passers-by the impression that there is a great castle fortress beyond the stone enclosure. 

Robert R. Reeves, an architect enamored with a French Village in Europe, designed Sessions Village in the 1920s. It was a labor of love to replicate every piece of charm he felt in France. The cluster of 28 homes emulate classic European style with narrow cobbled streets, varied rooflines, and a village fountain center. 

Although Reeves designed Sessions in the 1920's, it wasn't until 1928 that the first family moved in. Since then, many occupants have claimed to travel across oceans, yet never feel the weakness of jet lag. They love their community so much that they continue to govern under their own regulations.

If you're planning on wandering the city, this is a place you don't want to miss!