Best dinner in Columbus near (or easy access) convention center
I will be in Columbus next week for a conference and may have time for one or two dinners to explore the "best of" Columbus cuisine. I need something near the convention center or easily accessible (public transportation? taxi?). Any style cuisine is fine. Nothing too fancy as I don't plan on packing anything other than what I need for the conference.
Any Columbus Hounds with ideas to share?
Thanks in advance!
Thank you for all the suggestions, which I shared with some of my fellow conference-goers. On Wednesday I arrived just in time to hit North Market before it closed. I enjoyed a trio from Jeni's (wildberry lavender, mint, and sweet corn/raspberry). In fact, I more than enjoyed it! (And that was after tasting about six other flavors...) I shared my newly discovered favorite ice cream find with some other folks and said that it was a can't-miss experience. On Thursday several of them, ice cream cones in hand, found me after lunch so they could thank me for the recommendation - so I thank all of you on their behalf. I'm sorry to say that I never made it anywhere else for a meal. I did get back to Jeni's on Friday evening - it was dinner! - on my way to a move in the Arena District. Another terrific trio - this time honey vanilla, strawberry buttermilk, and the mint again (yum - fresh picked mint from the garden!). So Columbus may or may not have better food than Minneapolis (the other midwestern city I visited this summer) but in my ice cream comparison (Jeni's versus Sebastian Joe's) Ohio came out the winner!
Second on Uhockey's recs, but they are fine dining restaurants. If you are looking at more casual, the Short North area around High St. has lots of options. Mac's is a Scottish bar which has great hamburgers and the best chicken salad. It's probably a 10-15 min walk from the convention center. A Piece of Cake is a bakery which serves light breakfast or lunch at High & Warren St.
Directly across from the Convention Center on Nationwide Blvd is The Flatiron Bar & Diner http://www.flatironcolumbus.com/ Their specialties are Cajun, Creole & BBQ. Love their BBQ brisket sandwich & oyster Po' boy.
Just south of the Nationwide complex on High St. (south of the Convention Center) is The Elevator Brewery & Draft House http://www.elevatorbrewing.com/. I've only been there for lunch, not dinner and can recommend the hamburger, crab cakes and half club trio (soup & sandwich).
The recs I gave you are reasonably priced, not haute cuisine and you can go in shorts, if necessary. I wouldn't call them the "best of" but represent good choices in non chain restaurants and are walkable from where you will be staying. If you go, please report back on your experience.