Happy Hour: Spagio

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

For Spagio fans, two roads diverge outside the establishment's bold Grandview frontage. To the south lies Spagio Cellars, a place to buy wine or lounge while enjoying a single glass and tapas. To the north sits the venerable sit-down restaurant, prime real estate for long meals with good company.

Along this dividing line of sorts lies the restaurant's unjustly overlooked bar: a comfy belly-up counter alongside a few tables with stools. Take an open seat any day from 4 to 7 p.m., and you'll find drink specials, tasty bar bites and an entirely new Spagio experience.

The booze

Wine reigns at Spagio, but bartenders serve a range of cocktails as vibrant and clever as the ad-hoc interior design. (Somehow even a scraggly blue tree, stock car hood panel and chandelier of antlers seem completely classy.)

Poured strong and garnished well, the bar's unique drinks blend the season's standout flavors with the spirits you trust. Five new ones were introduced Tuesday, including the Pumpkin-Cream Soda ($7), an elixir of vanilla vodka, pumpkin-infused simple syrup and soda.

Specialty cocktails, house wines by the glass and bottled beers are half-price during happy hour.

The food

Known for blending Italian and Pacific Rim cuisine, the restaurant offers traditional dishes and others with unmistakable flair.

The happy-hour slate features small-plate fare designed for sampling but still bears the creativity of Chef Hubert Seifert. Bar bites are less ambitious but less expensive - exactly what you need for post-work repose.

Mainstays are a handful of $3 sandwiches that tread the line between bite-sized and beefy. Skip the served-cold beef tenderloin version for a miniature Kobe burger prepared with tangy mustard on a thick, toasted bun.

Complete your meal with an order of delightfully light truffled french fries ($3) and a generous dish of mixed kalamata olives ($3).

Autumn on Tap

Keeping things characteristically fresh, Spagio rolled out a new menu of fall drinks on Tuesday. Here's what's shaking.

Asian Pear: Pear vodka, ginger liqueur and apple juice with a spiced sugar rim

Pumpkin Cream Soda: Vanilla vodka, pumpkin-infused simple syrup and soda

Cherry Manhattan: A cherry-infused bourbon Manhattan with cherry garnish

Apple Cider Martini: Apple vodka, Cointreau and freshly squeezed lime with spiced sugar rim

Peppermint Mochatini: Godiva liqueur, espresso and peppermint schnapps


1295 Grandview Ave., Grandview



Hours: 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-12 a.m. Friday-Saturday, 10:30 a.m.-10:30 p.m. Sunday

Happy hour: 4-7 p.m. daily. Half-price bottled beer, glasses of house wine and specialty cocktails; $3 bar bites menu