Where to Eat Local at Polaris

January 19, 2022

It’s easy to assume that around the bigger shopping centers in Columbus you’re committed to dining only at chain restaurants. But we’ve seen in recent years that many of the developments like Polaris Fashion Place have become home to plenty of local eateries. Are you shopping, dining, perhaps seeking some entertainment around Polaris? Here’s where you can support locally owned restaurants!

In the Food Court + Lifestyle Center

  • The Royce: sitting in the Lifestyle Center near Barnes & Noble, The Royce is an elegant but very approachable pub with brunch served every day, lounge space, igloos in the winter, and a creative food menu.
  • Bubbles Tea & Juice: find a location of Bubbles inside the mall, a perfect stop for tea, smoothies, cold-pressed juices, and snacks.
  • Bibibop: this ever-expanding Columbus-based chain features build-your-own Korean bowls. Find a location in the food court!
  • Levant: a new local Mediterranean fast casual in the food court that lets you build your own bowls, wraps, and pitas
  • COMING SOON: North High Brewing will open a pub inside the Polaris Cohatch, the Buns & Brews team will open Buns & Soul in the food, and Stadium will add a location in the Lifestyle Center by Barnes & Noble.

Gemini Place

  • Sushi En: sushi and sashimi, plus soups, salads, noodles, full entrees. Nice sake list and happy hour.
  • Chile Verde: a long-running local spot featuring Southwestern favorites
  • Carfagna’s: the much-loved family-run Italian market recently combined their store and restaurant last year under one giant roof. Shop there for grocery items, fresh pastas, meats, desserts, then stay for a glass of wine and dinner.

Lyra Drive

  • Kitchen Social: a popular upscale pub with interesting cocktails, local beers, and a menu that spans everything from tacos to pizzas to sandwiches to international flavors. Open for weekend brunch, too!
  • Atlas Tavern: a smaller eatery next door to Kitchen Social, with great burgers, beer, and bar snacks.
  • Condado Tacos: build your tacos and sip margaritas as this Columbus-based (but quickly growing) chain.

West of the Mall

  • Ashtyn’s Seafood House: Ashtyn’s just opened, and focuses on farm-to-table seafood, including unique items grown in-state. The owners opened the first saltwater shrimp farm in Ohio, and the Seafood House is a new outlet for them.
  • The Pancake House: a smaller local restaurant serving terrific pancakes and even better Venezuelan breakfast dishes
  • Spires Social Brewing Co.: family-owned brewery with a spacious taproom and big patio. In addition to beer, they brew their own sodas.
  • Sushi Factory: what’s quickly become one of my family’s favorite spots for sushi, Sushi Factory seems like a chain, but it’s local and family-run.
  • Rude Dog Bar & Grill: lively sports bar with games, comedy, live music, and more
  • Tula Taqueria: family-run Mexican spot, another BwN favorite, serving excellent tacos, tortas, burritos, you name it
  • Dadu’s Bakery & Sweets: a family-run Indian bakery serving fresh pastries, cakes, and other sweet and savory snacks
  • Nawabi Hyderabad House: the Polaris outpost of this restaurant features a wide-ranging menu of Indian and Indo-Chinese specialties
  • Claudiana Italian Restaurant: a family-run spot for all of your Old World Italian favorites
  • Yohan Pizza: Yohan has more than a decade of plying locals with great pizza, subs, and pastas
  • Sunny Street Cafe: a Columbus-based chain serving easy-to-love breakfasts and lunches

East of the Mall

  • Nomad: Nomad is an interesting new concept building its menu around live-fire cooking and using a Spanish charcoal-fired oven
  • 101 Beer Kitchen: the third location of this beer-centric pub, featuring very creative dishes and a huge beer selection
  • The Original Pancake House: it’s based out of Portland, but the two Columbus-area locations are locally owned. Plus, they make great pancakes, eggs benedicts, Dutch babies, hash browns.
  • Little Ladies Soft Serve: a BwN favorite! A family-run ice cream shop that started with a truck and opened their first storefront east of the mall down the parkway. Visit for hands-down the best soft serve and sundaes.
  • Duck Donuts: okay, Duck Donuts originates out of North Carolina, but the ownership is local. Stop by to order fresh donuts with custom toppings.
  • The Suisse Shop Bakery: long-running bakery whipping up cookies, breads, pies, plus wedding cakes

South of the Mall

  • Marcella’s: one of Cameron Mitchell’s mainstays for modern Italian fare
  • Molly Woo’s Asian Bistro: another Cameron Mitchell outpost, a long-running and much-loved spot for Asian fusion dishes
  • Bibibop: in addition to a location in the mall food court, find a Bibibop on the south side of Polaris Parkway, too!

Curious about more activities and eats around Polaris? Read about A Day of Fun and Games at Polaris.

Nomad image courtesy facebook.com/nomadcolumbus; Marcella’s photo from facebook.com/marcellasrestaurantpolaris; Molly Woo’s photo courtesy mollywoos.com; Bibibop image from facebook.com/BIBIBOPAsianGrill.

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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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