German Village might seem an unlikely spot to go for some of the best Southern-style fare north of the Mason-Dixon line, but G. Michael’s Bistro and Bar serves just that. Chef and co-owner David Tetzloff, who did his culinary training in Charleston, South Carolina, is the man responsible for familiarizing central Ohio diners with delicious low-country dishes like shrimp and grits ($13).
For more than 10 years, G. Michael's has enjoyed a well-deserved reputation as one of Columbus' best restaurants. Housed in a centuries-old stable, the restaurant is divided into two elegant dining rooms and a lively bar area. The chef uses locally sourced ingredients whenever possible for a menu that changes with the seasons. Standout entrees include fried chicken over scallion mashed potatoes with black pepper gravy ($21) and a roasted beet salad with arugula, almonds, raisins and goat cheese vinaigrette ($7). A grilled butternut squash appetizer consists of three perfectly grilled rounds atop sauteed pears, fennel, onion and Swiss chard topped with Carolina peanut vinaigrette and Maytag blue cheese ($8). On paper, some flavor combinations don’t sound like they should work, but they do beautifully.
The dessert menu changes often; if you can catch it, the lemon tart with gingersnap crust is divine ($6.50). G. Michael’s offers happy hour specials Monday through Thursday, as well as a three-course dinner on Monday nights for $30 a head. Off-street parking can be difficult; we recommend the valet option ($5).