Strongwater Food & Spirits

401 W. Town St.
Columbus, OH 43215
614.928.3170
website

Built into an old industrial building with a definitive emphasis on retaining some of that history, this restaurant and cocktail bar in the middle of Franklinton wastes absolutely no time winning you over. Whether it is the immensely complex cocktail menu with great subtlety behind all of the drinks, or the expansive windows letting you see the changing neighborhood. Or maybe it’s the overarching character to it all. The current trend is to refurbish so many buildings and retain their history. But in a wave of new and interesting, this neighborhood has threatened to be swamped. But places like this one really do honor the history in the right ways.

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So the menu here relies a lot on good cocktails – that’s what brings people out! There’s a list of about 20 rotating cocktails at a time; the menu isn’t online but Instagram will introduce you to a few. Some I liked:

  • Smoked Martinez: A fall 2018 cocktail. Gin, sweet vermouth, bitters and cloves. The smoke is this nice backdrop, but the sweetness brings it up pretty quickly.
  • Lavender Lemon Smash: Spring 2019. A lighter take, that had a bit more of a floral side but not too much. I didn’t get all the ingredients in this one, but it was my favorite.
  • Berry Nice: Spring 2019. Created by bartender Amina, this one is bright and very fruity. Almost like a sangria, hints of strawberry and raspberry with sweetness and muted spirits.
  • Old Fashioned: The litmus test of a good bar, whiskey, bitters a splash of sweetness and an effervescence of citrus.

The menu isn’t subject to as much change. Some of the things I liked:

  • Nashville Hot Chicken: A a toned-down hot fried chicken sandwich with a “red hot aioli” that’s perfect with one of the springier, fruity drinks.
  • Pork Belly Taco: Crispy pork belly with a warm crema, as well as lime pickled onions, sweet potatoes and cilantro.
  • Jackfruit Taco: Marinated roasted jackfruit topped with corn and pepper relish and a basil-based sauce for character.
  • Mousse: This thick chocolatey concoction topped with a heavy whip cream just hits the spot.

This entire building is a formerly industrial space that has been worked out into a couple different uses, there are artist workplaces and an event venue popular with weddings. So it kind of feels like an old factory when you walk in, and not in the sanitize way that you find in so many other kinds of venues these days. So it’s nice, I do think there is something to be said for environment like that.

Prices aren’t too bad and the staff is nice to good folks, and it’s a good time all around. People of Strongwater for two things: weddings and cocktails. You’re likely to come for one more than the other, but all the same you’ll find it’s a place were coming to.

Recommendations

  • The cocktail menu isn’t online, that’s the thing that makes people most excited.
  • Warm weather does bring an outdoor seating area.
  • A food menu here is shorter and probably less adapted to any one specific cocktail but still pretty good.

Strongwater Food and Spirits Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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