Food News: Alpine Restaurant & Bar and El Lugar open in German Village; Criollo opens on Gay Street

Erin Edwards
Sweet Carrot photo by Tim Johnson

Alpine Restaurant& Bar and El Lugar, two new restaurant and bar concepts from partners Alban Ndreu, Enis Ndreu and Elidon Hizmo, are set to officially open Monday, Oct. 29, at 525 S. Fourth St., previously home to Juergens German Bakery & Restaurant. Separated by a wall, the two German Village businesses offer contrasting cuisines from Europe. Alpine serves a menu of German and Swiss classics, like schnitzel, Bavarian pretzels, rouladen and an entire section dedicated to cheese, including raclette. The bar menu includes wine, cocktails and an interesting selection of German beers. Next-door, the more intimate El Lugar, meaning “the place”, offers Spanish-style tapas and pinchos (small, skewered snacks), plus a full bar.

Criollo, the new fast-casual concept from the owners of Si Senor, opened Downtown this week at 51 E. Gay St., formerly The Carvery. Currently open for lunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., the Peruvian eatery invites diners to build their meal Chipotle-style, with rice or quinoa, veggies, proteins and sauces.

Block's Bagels, Columbus' longtime New York-style bagel bakery will join the North Market this fall as a pop-up on select weekends starting Sunday, Nov. 4, and running through Sunday, Jan. 27. Bagels and cream cheese will be available, or patrons can order from the Bexley cafe's full menu ahead of time to pick up.

The Market at Flint Station is holding a grand opening celebration 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 27. The 1890s-era building, located at 225 Park Rd. near Westerville, was formerly home to the Flint Carry-Out. The new owners, sisters-in-law Gracie and LeighAnn Guagenti, plan to embrace a “shop local, be local” philosophy in the renovated market/event space, offering local produce and provisions, craft beer and wine and a barista bar.Saturday's open house will feature live music, food trucks, craft beer, children's activities and more.

Last week, The Daily Growler announced plans to open inside Polaris Fashion Place in December. This will be the fourth Central Ohio location of the craft beer bar/growler fill spot owned by John W. Blakely and his parents, John R. and Delores Blakely.

Sweet Carrot, the fresh-casual spot from Angela Petro, plans to open its third location on Tuesday, Nov. 13, at 7571 Sawmill Rd. in Dublin.

C. Krueger's Finest Baked Goods,a retail bakery, milk bar and gift shop from Cheryl Krueger opened in the Short North this week. Krueger is the co-founder and former president and CEO of Cheryl's Cookies. The new, 2,400-square-foot boutique bakery is located at 17 E. Brickel St., formerly home to Homage and Robert Mason Co.

The fast-casual chain Freshii is now open at 2511 E. Main St. in Bexley.

Last Call, the temporary liquor outlet run by Ohio's Division of Liquor Control, continues its clearance sale Thursday, Oct. 25, through Sunday, Oct. 28, at the former Giant Eagle at 777 Neil Ave. in Victorian Village.

Leone's Pizza, Ryan LaRose's New York-style pizzeria, closed on Sunday at5413 Sinclair Rd.

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