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Oct 7, 2009 06:24 PM

Columbus -- something casual in the Polaris area

My brother and I are coming for the Buckeyes game Saturday and we're staying in the Polaris area. We're looking for a decent meal nearby -- burgers, pasta, pizza, good beer. We prefer no chains. Any thoughts?

Oh, and breakfast too. Thanks.

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  1. Carfagna's Kitchen has great pasta, it's right on Polaris a few blocks east of I-71.

    The bad thing about Polaris is that there really isn't much up there that isn't a chain. Are you definitely wanting to stay in the Polaris area to eat or are you open to something closer to the OSU campus area too?

    2 Replies
    1. re: columbusfoodie

      I thought that might be the case about Polaris, but the hotel is convenient for lots of reasons, and I ask because you never know.

      Carfagna's looks good. There's a brewpub up that way called BJ's. Is that any good?

      1. re: johnbycz

        BJ's is OK - another chain, decent food but not good enough to bring us back there a second time.

        If we eat Polaris, we tend to go for ethnic eats - Bayleaf India Bistro is a winner, as is Ha Long Bay for Vietnamese food. Wholly Joe's isn't bad for dogs. There's a Five Guys Burgers that seems to be popular, although it's not my cup of tea. Avoid the Marcella's up there like the plague, as it's not unusual to be waiting there for a table up to an hour past your reservation time.

        As for breakfast, it's a chain but lots of choices for breakfast - Mimi's Cafe at the corner of Polaris and Lyra.

    2. Five Guys is probably the biggest cult chain in the country right now. I'm not normally a burger eater, but i'm hooked. There's one right on Polaris Parkway.

      1. Between the stadium and Polaris there is a myriad of options - why stay near Polaris when you could hop off midway between and do much better?

        2 Replies
        1. re: uhockey

          Lots of reasons we stayed up there, not the least of which is I'm collecting Hampton Inn points. We ended up at Carfagna's, which was good -- cheap and fast, which is what we wanted after a day at the stadium. I liked my brother's chicken creamy pesto better than my bolognese; still, the meal hit the spot. I'd go back. But what is it about Columbus where even the family-owned joints look like chains?

          Carfagna's Kitchen
          2025 Polaris Pkwy, Columbus, OH 43240

          1. re: johnbycz

            Alana's, Kihachi, Refectory, Rigsby's, Refectory, Lindey's, Thurmans, Black Creek, Banana Bean...........they don't look like chains to me.