Best Fine Dining, Best Wine List and Best Romantic Restaurant: The Refectory

From the March 28, 2013 edition

Classic French technique converts beautiful ingredients into delicious art on plates in this magnificent eatery — and savvy Alive readers have duly honored it again.

Overseeing the kitchen magic in this unique-looking, converted 19th century church is Richard Blondin, who studied under revered French chef Paul Bocuse (yes, that Bocuse).

But the serene and refined Refectory isn’t just about stunning food — its tome-sized and frequently lauded wine list and perspicacious servers have long set the standards in Columbus. Hint: check out the Refectory’s cost-cutting “bistro” menus and excellent happy hour discounts.

With that menu comes a staff that readily offers recommendations, which can come in handy if you’re, ahem, trying to make an informed-looking choice while on a date at The Most Romantic Restaurant in Columbus (yep, The Refectory took this honor as well).

Speaking of, although it’s unclear what factors our readers judged the most romantic restaurants in the city by, our best guess is that a delicious meal, outstanding drink menu and an atmosphere that makes you want to linger a while play a strong role.

The Refectory consistently boasts all three.

This Northwest Side restaurant makes regular appearances in national restaurant ratings, so you can be sure you’ll dine on something that will impress your date (oven roasted venison for two, anyone?).

The menu’s deliciousness continues into dessert, and the whole experience is topped off with an intimate atmosphere and top-notch service that’s so smooth, you almost can’t believe you’ve been there for three hours by the time you leave.

Best Fine Dining runners-up: G. Michael’s, Rigsby’s Kitchen

Best Wine List runners-up: Vino Vino, Rigsby’s Kitchen

Best Romantic Restaurant runners-up: Basi Italia, Third & Hollywood

Best Local Treat >>