161 N. High St.
Columbus, OH 43215
There are only a few names in craft beer in Columbus that preceded the current boom of dozens of breweries in town. Those that did come first have a lot of name recognition outside of the city. That’s definitely the case with Elevator Brewing Co., which set up shop in an old gentlemen’s saloon downtown and so has a wonderfully old-time feel. These breweries that predate the current craze often have a more traditional restaurant feel and that’s still a pretty good thing, especially when we’re talking about a restaurant with a focus on the quality.
The first thing to try on the menu has to be the beer! There are a few different brews that make a good first impression:
- Dirty Dick’s Nut Brown Ale: One of my favorites. Slightly nutty and definitely a good warmer for the cold-weather months.
- Hefeweizen: This beer is inherently kind of a simple brew, and in this place that’s well achieved. A crisp beer and a simple finish.
- Three Frogs IPA: An American IPA with an assertive bitterness and a 6.9% ABV for a smooth ride.
- Bleeding Buckeye Red: This red ale is another mid-range beer, with a heavy flavor but a light finish.
- 1810 Oktoberfest: Popular of course in the fall and around drinking season, this beer has a dryness and a pronounced spice.
- 380 IPA: Named after Columbus’ new area code, this brew has a lighter touch, a bit of pine and a brisk malt.
- Red Wheat and Blue: A Fourth of July special. A farmhouse ale with a light berry flavor. Easy as an Ohio summer.
The menu is a bit of a classic Americana restaurant, with more traditional sit down kinds of food; meat and potatoes, literally. Some things to try:
- Bott Burger: A thick burger patty cooked the way you like it and served American style. Toppings include Bacon, cheese, lettuce, tomato and onion. Comforting.
- Crab-stuffed scallops: Crab cake stuffed sea scallops, mashed potatoes, asparagus atop a Dijon cream.
- Root Beer Float: A pretty classic dessert, I had hoped it would be made with one of those wonderful Elevator milk stouts, but the house-made root beer is just as good.
The bar has kind of a classic and maybe a little dated feel, relative to the other kinds of breweries that are opening up shop in Columbus these days. But there’s something to the feel, almost a heaviness to the place. Of all the craft beer shops in town, this one has some of the deepest history; an attraction before one of these shops was on every corner.
Elevator might not have the notoriety of some of the other breweries its age, but it’s definitely got the class. I like this place and think of it as a good quiet and comfortable spot to spend a little time.
- The beers are available in stores and all, but there are plenty of things that can’t be had elsewhere here.
- Consider the food pretty classic, and there are a lot of comfort food dishes here.
- Good for a nice meal inside and on a cold or poor weather day. There is a patio, too, though.