A Foodie Christmas in Columbus

Tasi Cafe

My husband and I have had a hard time finding a good breakfast place in Columbus. After years of going to Columbus to visit my in-laws I think he and I finally found a breakfast spot we can agree on during this last trip. He loves Waffle House and I go as a favor to him, but I prefer a place with a little bit nicer atmosphere and with a little more creative food selection. Tasi Cafe opened in the Short North area of Coumbus a couple of years ago, the fact that it’s tucked away in a back alley is probably the only reason I didn’t find it earlier.

The first morning we stopped for breakfast I had a caramel roll and a side of grilled chicken apple breakfast sausage. The caramel roll was fantastic. Large, tender and the right amount of caramel and sweetness. The sausage was tasty, but I didn’t get much of the apple flavor. My husband tried their buttermilk pancakes with maple syrup and a side of regular sausage. I’m not one to be wowed very often by pancakes, but these were outstanding! I kept stealing bites from his plate. There were two plate-size pancakes that were the perfect texture and taste. Light, tender and fluffy with a rich buttermilk flavor that didn’t overpower and the syrup added a natural sweetness that was right on.

We went back the next day for breakfast. I had read several reviews that their banana French toast was incredible, but I thought “it’s French toast, how good can it be?” so I had to try it for myself. It was probably the best I’ve had. It was made with fresh cinnamon challah bread, caramelized bananas and maple syrup. It had lightly crisp edges, soft, but not soggy, center and the cinnamon flavor was well balanced. I also tried the sweet and spicy bacon, but was a little disappointed. It was good quality bacon and well cooked, but the “sweet” name implied more of a candied flavor that I found missing. The only other disappointment for me was that Tasi’s doesn’t add syrup to their espresso drinks and being a coffee wimp I only like mine flavored, but they’re probably delicious.

Jeni’s
Jeni’s has fantastic creative ice cream flavors. I usually make a point to visit at least twice when we’re in Columbus for a long weekend. You won’t find your typical plain vanilla or chocolate here, the closest you’ll come is Honey Vanilla Bean and Belgian Milk Chocolate. Most of the flavors are little more adventurous and are made daily, but the staff is always more than happy to let you sample until you decide on your favorite. I’m a sucker for their Salty Caramel and the Gravel Road (Salty Caramel with smoked almonds added). Both are fantastic, but since  you can mix and match flavors for the second “half” of a small scoop I usually add one of the ever changing seasonal flavors to the mix. This past weekend I had the Gravel Road with their seasonal Blackstrap Praline (bold molasses flavor with spiced pralines), fabulous! In Columbus Jeni’s has two locations, one inside of North Market and the other off High St. in the Short North. We usually go to the one on High Street because it tends to be less hectic and I can take more time sampling flavors!