Creole Kitchen | Columbus, OH

March 2, 2017

Creole Kitchen | Facebook | T: @creole_kitchen | IG: @creole_kitchen
1052B Mount Vernon Ave. (map it!)
Columbus, OH 43203
(614) 372-3333
Carryout open Mon-Sat, 8a-8p; Sun, 8a-3p
Dining room open Mon-Thurs, 11a-9p; Fri, 11a-10p; Sat, 8a-10p; Sun, 8a-3p
Vegetarian/vegan/gluten free? Y/N/N
Kid-friendly? Y

Visited: Saturday, February 25, 2017 at 9:00 a.m.

Chef Henry Butcher first brought authentic Creole cooking to the city years ago. He was one of the first to teach Columbus about po’boys and beignets and blackened catfish and crawfish etouffee. He and his family have built his restaurant into an institution for his neighborhood and the city as a whole. For years he operated solely as a carryout, but last fall they finally completed their biggest project: a full service dining room.

When you walk in the restaurant you’re immediately greeted by Chef Butcher’s face. He turned 69 recently but he’s still busy at work in the kitchen.

The new dining room is very nicely done, offering rows of two- and four-top tables, plus a small bar. There are a couple TVs, Mardi Gras masks and beads on the walls, plus colorful jazz-themed posters.

The carryout side is still active, too. It got a complete overhaul with the renovations. In fact, the carryout opens earlier than the dining room on weekdays, so you can still get hot breakfasts to go.

We’ve made a couple stops for breakfast recently, working our way through a good chunk of the menu. On our most recent visit the service was leisurely and a little confusing; our table was split between two servers who weren’t always communicating, it seemed, so food took a while to arrive, and not all at the same time.

That said, we still enjoyed the meals and the chance to sit down and enjoy Chef Butcher’s breakfasts in-house. Any breakfast should start with an order or two of beignets. They come six in one order, and are lightly sweet and positively caked with powdered sugar. If you’ve got kids in your party, be ready, because they will dive in head first.

One of Chef Butcher’s signatures is his Eggs Basin Street, essentially his take on an eggs benedict but with a base of red beans and rice, poached eggs, andouille sausage, and a bearnaise sauce. A bearnaise is a form of hollandaise made with vinegar and tarragon, so it’s more tangy and herbal.

French toast fans should check out the bananas foster French toast.

It’s very simply done, but sweet and custardy.

We ordered the shrimp and grits, too. They came served in separate bowls but we mixed them together. There’s a nice flavor to it, heavy on the tomato but still very rich.

The chicken and waffles are served in separate portions, too, as a thin waffle and chicken tenders. Not the most dynamic version, but our 5-year-old was pleased with it.

The Creole eggs benedict was a big hit. The base is a crispy biscuit, then it’s layered with tasso ham, poached eggs, and a rich and well-seasoned hollandaise (one of my favorite tastes of the morning). It comes with side of nicely seasoned potatoes.

The simple breakfast sandwich comes between triangle-sliced buttered toast, with eggs, cheese, and your choice of meat.

There are more breakfast items to be had, from omelets and pancakes, to fish and grits, biscuits with jam, or a la carte items.

If you’re lucky you’ll spot Chef Butcher in the kitchen.

He said he just turned 69, but he’s still going strong in the kitchen. Chef Butcher grew up in Louisiana, learning to cook in his family, and eventually working in New Orleans. He made his up to central Ohio and worked in a variety of restaurants before opening Creole Kitchen in 2006.

While there are maybe some kinks to work out in service, the food is delicious and unique. It’s great that Chef Butcher continues to share his warm welcome and hearty breakfasts with us, I hope the new sit-down area draws more crowds.

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FOOD + TRAVEL WRITER

I go by Dr. Breakfast, but in addition to restaurants and recipes, I write about family travel, breweries and distilleries, the arts, outdoor fun, and so much more.

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