Throughout the year, different sites and publications ask their readers to vote on the best restaurants, shopping areas, local celebrities, events, sports, etc. around Columbus. It’s a great way to gauge readers’ interest and opinions. Just about every publication out there does it.
But there’s something that irks me every time one of these lists gets published. I vote in and keep track of these lists, because I like to know what readers think, especially about breakfast and brunch spots around town. But here are a few things I’d like to say to those readers:
1. Bob Evans, while a consistent and very likable breakfast, is NOT, I repeat NOT, the best breakfast in Columbus.
2. Neither is First Watch, although I’ve had nothing but great experiences at their restaurants. Still, not the best in town.
3. Cap City Diner is NOT A FREAKING DINER. Have you people never stepped foot in Nancy’s, or Jack’s, or German Village Coffee Shop, or Dan’s, or any of the twenty old diners that dot Columbus?
4. Also, Columbus Monthly readers, I’d really like to know which local farms are directly servicing the 570 Bob Evans restaurants. Talk to the Caskeys at Skillet or Rick and Krista at Knead or all the folks at Slow Food Columbus about how farm-to-table dining really works.
Okay, yes, I know that these polls are all a matter of opinion and that all the different people of the world love all the different restaurants out there, but Columbus: you can do so much better. The world of breakfast and brunch dining is not a scary place, and with a little effort you can soon be enjoying better breakfasts while putting your dollar in the hands of a local business owner.
Let’s get some of the following in those Yearly Best Lists in 2012:
Breakfast: Starliner Diner (which readers of Columbus Alive wisely voted #1), Lac Viet, Katalina’s Cafe Corner, Tasi Cafe, The Best Breakfast & Sandwiches, Northstar Cafe
Brunch: Skillet (voted by CU.com as #1), Sage American Bistro, Due Amici, Worthington-freaking-Inn, Third & Hollywood, Rivage Atlantique, Northstar Cafe (the one answer I get behind when people vote for them)
Diner: Jack’s Sandwich Shop, Jack & Benny’s, Nancy’s Home Cooking, German Village Coffee Shop, DK Diner, Tommy’s Diner, Fitzy’s Old Fashioned Diner
Coffee Shop: I love Cup O’ Joe; they’ve provided a welcome writing space for years and I really enjoy their coffee. But in terms of absolute quality of coffee, I’d like to see more votes for Luck Bros Coffee Shop, Cafe Brioso, and Yeah, Me Too.
Those are my suggestions. Please, take the time to explore and suggest other great places. By all means.
Important note: I don’t fault the publications and websites and their writers and editors that do these lists – Columbus Alive, Columbus Monthly, (614) Magazine, ColumbusUnderground.com. I’m friends with many of the folks who work on them. Heck, I’ve even written for some of them. (Heck, I’ve even written for some of their Best-Of issues.) I like that they do these lists. I appreciate that they engage their readers, evaluate opinions, see what people are interested in. I’m just challenging their readers to do better. To explore a bit. To think outside the red and white barn.