There are many holidays in the U.S. during which we suddenly embrace a collective heritage, whether it's truly ours or not. On Mardis Gras suddenly we're all from New Orleans. On Cinco de Mayo (which is not, I repeat, not "Mexican Independence Day") we're suddenly all from south of the border. And on St. Patrick's Day, we all become Irish. Here are a few spots to eat like you're Irish this week.
There are many holidays in the U.S. during which we suddenly embrace a collective heritage, whether it’s truly ours or not. On Mardis Gras suddenly we’re all from New Orleans. On Cinco de Mayo (which is not, I repeat, not “Mexican Independence Day”) we’re suddenly all from south of the border. And on St. Patrick’s Day, we all become Irish. Here are a few spots to eat like you’re Irish this week.
Explorers Club has made a name for itself by helping adventurous diners explore world cuisines without leaving Columbus, including a Hungarian night the second Wednesday of every month. The restaurant’s special monthly menu features a different style of cuisine each go-round, and for the month of March they’re featuring — you guessed it — an Irish menu. Feast your way through lamb sliders, fried Reuben balls, bangers and mash, even desserts like chocolate Guinness mousse.
Fado Irish Pub
Look, it’s got “Irish Pub” in the name! Fado Irish Pub at Easton certainly doesn’t shy away from the Irish theme. The menu speaks volumes: Guinness beef stew, chicken boxty quesadilla (a boxty is an Irish potato pancake), corned beef and cabbage, and even Harp-battered fish tacos. Bonus that they serve an all-day Irish breakfast, a big Irish weekend brunch and, of course, drinks like Guinness Blonde, Harp, Smithwick’s and Irish coffees.
Dempsey’s Food & Spirits
Dempsey’s often sits at the center of Irish culture in Columbus. Owner Mark Dempsey is involved with the Shamrock Club of Columbus, and his bar and restaurant reflect Irish traditions. The breakfast menu includes items like the Irish Breakfast, hash and eggs and Grandma Dempsey’s Steel Cut Irish Oatmeal. Lunch and dinner are rounded out with Irish nods like the Rubenesque sandwich, the Patty McDonald burger or the Cold Weather sandwich with smoked ham and Irish cheddar.
Claddagh Irish Pub
Another spot with “Irish Pub” in the name! Like Fado at Easton, Claddagh offers a watering hole in the Brewery District with an Irish-themed menu. Feast on wings tossed in “shamrock sauce” or Jameson, beer-batted Irish bangers, Gaelic chicken or the Jameson Burger with a Jameson glaze. Sip on all the Irish standards, too: Guinness, Smithwick’s, Harp and Magner’s Irish cider.
Wolf’s Ridge Brewing
In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, Wolf’s Ridge is holding special hours and offering a specialty Irish menu. Their taproom will open early at 11 a.m. to serve lunch at happy hour pricing. Specials for the day include a corned beef Reuben and a housemade Irish coffee. For dinner they’re offering their take on corned beef and cabbage: as a puree with carrots, fingerling potatoes, pumpernickel chips, horseradish and a caramelized sugar made with their Blood Moon imperial red ale.
That’s a start to an Irish-themed tour of Columbus. Of course, you can find more Irish-ish food and drink at spots like O’Reilly’s, Patrick J’s, Brazenhead, Tiled Kilt, Three-Legged Mare, and many more.
Nicholas Dekker writes about breakfast at http://BreakfastWithNick.com and authored the guidebook “Breakfast With Nick: Columbus,” with a second edition coming spring 2015. He leads breakfast and brunch tours for Columbus Food Adventures and brewery tours for Columbus Brew Adventures.