In Columbus, it’s not just the chefs and cocktail artists and writers pushing our palates forward, it’s the everyday folks who via social media are leaving a trail of crumbs for the rest of us to follow. Taste Profile, a new monthly feature in (614) will introduce you to the local handles and give you the low-down on what’s good in the capital city.
What’s the last great dish you had? Anyone who follows my account knows that I have a major obsession with the Chorizo Queso at Condado—I eat it as often as possible. If I’m thinking about my last amazing splurge in Columbus, it would have to be the tenderloin from Martini; it’s smothered with the most amazing cambozola butter and Chianti wine reduction.
What’s the last great dish you cooked? Cheese is one of my biggest weaknesses, so I regularly crave this baked brie that I make with puff pastry, prosciutto, fig jam, and honey. It has the perfect balance of sweet and salty, complimenting the creamy brie. When I visit my parents, I also love to help my mom with the Greek staples, from making trays of spanakopita (spinach pie) to picking grape leaves for dolmades (stuffed grape leaves).
What drives you to be a tastemaker in Columbus? I was so lucky to grow up in a cultural home where my mom and two grandmothers were amazing cooks. I was essentially born with a passion for Greek and Italian food, and I learned to explore other cuisines at a young age. Columbus has so much to offer as a food city flying under the radar, and I love that my Instagram account enables me to explore the city’s culture through food and to share my passion with my followers.
What is the most significant way food and drink has changed in Columbus in the last five years? Social media has certainly impacted the Columbus food scene significantly over the last five years. It’s become increasingly important for every restaurant, food truck, pop-up, etc. to masterfully manage their social media presence. As a great test city, Columbus has also been very lucky to be home to some very innovative chefs who are inspired by the freshest, local ingredients.
Favorite filter: Instagram filters and food don’t play well together, so I don’t use them. I take all of my photos on my iPhone, so in restaurants, I try to sit as close to natural light as possible. If I need to increase the exposure, I have a really obnoxious light that I bring with me to darker restaurants, or I’ll use VSCO.
Least favorite style of Instagram food photo: I like to see the food as it was served, so I don’t like photos that are over-edited.
Put together your perfect night on the town, from pre-meal cocktail, to dinner, to nightcap: I would start with drinks at M because their happy hour specials are awesome and the Black Orchid martini tastes as wonderful as it looks. Then I would head over to Basi for dinner and wine on their patio, which has a seasonal menu and the perfect atmosphere for a date or girls night. From Basi, I would take a stroll through Goodale Park and head to Forno for some after-dinner drinks. I also have a bad habit of going to Press Grill for one last beer and their Original Pizza with the crispiest pepperoni, so I am sure that would come into play.
One Columbus celebrity you want to break bread with? Well I love fine dining and ice cream (duh), so I struggle to choose between Cameron Mitchell and Jeni Britton Bauer. I would be honored to spend time with either.
Describe Columbus’s taste in a six-word sentence:
Experimental and robust food with flair.