Spring is brunch season. It’s the time of year when the sun is brighter, the weather’s warmer, and we’re all excited to get out of the house. It’s also the time of year with the biggest brunching days of the year: Easter and Mother’s Day. (Not mention all the graduation parties!)
Brunch has transformed over the years. When you used to say “brunch,” people would think of white tablecloth restaurants and fancy eggs benedicts and upscale service; in Columbus that meant places like Lindey’s or the Worthington Inn. It still is that, but brunch has also become more casual and accessible, adaptable to every style of restaurant. What’s not to like? You can eat almost any type of food for brunch, and no one judges you for having a drink in the morning!
Columbus is a brunching city, and these five brunches have proven ideal for celebrating Easter, Mother’s Day, graduation, any special occasion (or any occasion, no matter how special or not!). I love how these show the diverse styles of brunch, whether it’s in a brewery, at a corner bistro, or in a creative barbecue spot.
Wolf’s Ridge Brewing
It’s almost unfair how well Wolf’s Ridge does everything: they have a beautiful restaurant space, a top-notch chef, and a brewery that absolutely nails every style they brew. Their weekend brunch menu is classy but approachable: French toast with bacon ice cream, toad in a hole with brioche bread and local eggs, and cocktails crafted from house beers. Stick around afterward to visit the taproom and sample more of head brewer Chris Davison’s creations.
The Market Italian Village
It’s hard to pin down The Market. It’s situated in an up-and-coming neighborhood in central Columbus. It’s a restaurant… but it’s also a grocery store… but it’s also a bar, and a coffee shop, and a deli. Whatever it is, it’s an ideal spot to celebrate a quiet and cozy brunch. The chefs outdo themselves with creative dishes like fried chicken on French toast, a brunch salad with crispy egg, or shakshuka, an Israeli specialty of poached eggs in a rich tomato sauce.
Rockmill is a beloved brewery crafting organic Belgian-style brews on a beautiful old horse farm in Lancaster. They’ve long been a destination for bringing a picnic to enjoy on the rolling hills, but now they’ve brought the destination to central Columbus. Their new Brewery District haunt is a two-level brick-walled space, and their brunch menu ranges from Mexican chilaquiles to a BLT with bacon braised in house witbier. Try their towering breakfast sandwich paired with their Saison Noir, tasting of caramel and dark fruit.
Rooks Tavern serves dry-rub barbecue that’s grilled and smoked over open flame. And this doesn’t mean just meats – it means vegetables, sweets, and everything in-between. Their brunch ranges from smoked trout scrambled with eggs and Leicester cheese to buttermilk pancakes with berries, maple syrup, and smoked cream.
The Whitney House
True to its name, the Whitney House feels like coming home. The cozy restaurant in Old Worthington is the place for artfully prepared comfort foods. Chef Max Avon crafts classic pairings like biscuits and gravy or steak and eggs, but he also branches out with a breakfast ramen, a risotto-style farro with mushrooms, and colorful chilaquiles. And you simply can’t pass up their boozy cereals: small but strong cocktails mixing childhood-favorite cereals with adult-favorite alcohols. The Cinnamon Toast Crunch, for instance, is a glass of the cereal with milk, spiced rum, and Brothers Drake apple pie mead.
Wherever you choose to go for your next special brunch, bring your loved ones, bite into an exciting new meal, and check out all the other food adventures Ohio has to offer.
For more Ohio eats, Find It Here at Ohio.org.