Food News: Ohio restaurants and bars avoid shutdown; Mmelo's confections make a comeback

Erin Edwards
eedwards@columbusmonthly.com
Michelle Allen, owner of Mmelo Boutique Confections, pictured in April 2020. Her business is making a comeback after a move to a new production space in Polaris.

A second shutdown of bars and restaurants did not come to fruition on Tuesday as many business owners feared. Instead, Gov. Mike DeWine announced astatewide curfew that will run daily from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. The curfew will be in effect for 21 days, starting Thursday, Nov. 19. The action is an attempt to strike a balance between business interests and the recommendations of health experts to slow the spread of COVID-19. On Tuesday, Ohio’s new case count was 7,079.“We tested this idea of the curfew with the business community, and the hospital community, the health community, and they all thought this was a reasonable compromise to get there to find that balance,” said Lt. Gov. Jon Husted during Tuesday’s COVID-19 update. 

Mmelo Boutique Confectionshas returned after a lengthy hiatus. Known for its artisanal tea cakes, chocolates, Marshmmelos and more, Mmelo closed its Vine Street location in May. The business, owned by local confectioner Michelle Allen, is now offering curbside pickup at its new production facility located at1900 Polaris Parkway. Local deliveries and shipping are available above a minimum order.

The Columbus City Council on Monday approved a $500,000 COVID-19 relief grant for theNorth Market. The new infusion of funds,made possible by the CARES Act, will provide rent relief for struggling merchants, investment dollars for adelivery service (which launched last month) and funds to help new merchants with start-up costs. 

Local bartenderJoshua Gandee launched a new podcast Wednesday called“No Proof” through Focus on Health, a website that seeks to provide health and wellness resources for hospitality professionals. Through the podcast, Gandee aims to stoke discussions around “mindfulness, sobriety and health” as he navigates his own journey. The first episode is now up on Spotify. 

Cincinnati-based Macaron Bar has opened a kiosk inside Polaris Fashion Place. The shop, which sells French-style macarons in several cities in the Midwest, also has a location at 668 N. High St. in the Short North.