Because I’m such an evangelist, always sharing what I love, it makes me happy when others tell me about their favorite places to eat or visit. This is part of why I write about my experiences. Either I know about a place someone loves and can share in their enthusiasm, or I add it to my list of places to try. This is how I learned about Northstar Cafe in Columbus. My physical therapist, knowing I spend time in Columbus visiting family, recommended Northstar Cafe as one of her favorite restaurants. I love having an arsenal of places to visit when I’m traveling. Discovering a city through its food and coffee shops- the perfect way to travel!
Northstar now has multiple locations in Columbus- our visit took us to The Short North location; if you haven’t spent time in The Short North, it’s a must. To me, it’s reminiscent of the heart of OTR in Cincinnati. We arrived at Northstar Cafe as the breakfast crowd was weening and the lunch crowd was expanding. I was a little concerned because the line was out the door. However, we perused a menu and before we knew it, we were ordering and had a seat. Northstar is bright and bustling. The menu focuses on fresh breakfast, brunch, and baked goods. The drink menu is extensive- from tea to coffee, beer to wine, smoothies to cocktails. I was drooling over the Mint Iced Coffee!
I went to Northstar Cafe specifically for their burger! This farm-to-table, mostly organic restaurant features a Classic Cheeseburger made of brisket and ground chuck (ground in-house daily). This burger is topped with cheddar cheese, onion, tomato, pickle, and lettuce. My husband ordered The Northstar Burger, recommended by my therapist, which is a veggie burger made of organic black beans, rice, and beets topped with white cheddar, kale, tomato, onion, and pickle. Both are served with a simple salad comprised of fresh chopped greens and cabbage, tossed in a light vinaigrette. This light side is a great addition to the rich burger. My brother got his burger with a side of Rosemary Roasted Yukon Potatoes– perfectly seasoned and the skins were crispy. The burgers? Delicious. I never order veggie burgers, but had to taste this one. I found it surprisingly good and tender- like a beef burger. My husband said this was the best veggie burger he’s had! High praise! The bun, soft and made in-house, is the perfect compliment to both burgers.
I’ve never seen a restaurant with a section of lounge-esque seating surrounded by shelves of magazines to read. Fun touch. It’s restaurant meets bookstore. People were sipping smoothies, coffee, and mimosas while flipping through magazines or chatting with a friend.
I don’t have a picture, but if you go for breakfast, my sister had eggs with biscuits and blackberry jam; this could easily become my jam. These biscuits are special . . . made in-house, fresh, fluffy, slightly sweet, and warm. Another shout out is the nitrate free bacon– as a headache sufferer, I try to shy away from nitrates so I appreciate restaurants with this option. I was also impressed with their service; initially, my brother’s hamburger was medium, but he asked for it well-done. We got a free meal without asking for anything! That alone makes me want to return- the customer is valued here for sure!
Looking for a good solid burger in Columbus, check out Northstar Cafe. Soon we will have one in Cincinnati as well!