Best of the Burbs: A day in Bexley
Bexley offers multiple options to indulge a breakfast sweet tooth. More traditionally inclined patrons should hit up Resch's Bakery (4061 Livingston Ave.), a longstanding, old-school bake house where you can score a sticky-sweet glazed doughnut. If you're looking for something more upscale, visit Cherbourg Bakery (541 S. Drexel Ave.), a gluten-free baker that features cake-like doughnuts, meal-worthy muffins (spring for the blueberry/raspberry combo muffin if it's offered) and more savory options like the cheesy jalapeno bite. The shop also offers pour-over coffee if you're looking for a caffeine boost.
After fueling up on breakfast foods, and before the weather sours completely, grab your bike and hit up the Alum Creek Greenway Trail, which riders can pick up just east of the intersection of Main Street and S. Parkview Avenue. From there, head either north or south. The northern path takes you along shadier, more winding trails all the way to Westerville, passing over numerous boardwalks and bridges (if it's scenery you're after, this is the way to go). Heading south, there are more open fields and less turns, meaning a faster go if speed is your aim. Distance-wise, it's a relative draw. A southbound loop (picking up the Blacklick Creek Greenway Trail for a portion of the ride) runs about 37 miles, while a northbound loop runs just a tick over 34 miles.
After cleaning up, why not spend some time sitting in an air-conditioned theater and taking in an independent film? You can do just that at the historic Drexel Theater (2254 E. Main St.), which reopened this summer after extensive remodeling. The finished results are striking, to put it mildly, restoring the 1930s art-deco structure to its previous glory. (The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.) So grab a pint at the newly refurbished concession stand - several local brews are offered on tap - and settle into one of the venue's cozy new seats for a matinee.
Bexley, a quiet, family-centered burb, doesn't offer much in the way of nightlife (the stretch of Main Street running through the heart of the 'hood is largely deserted by 11 p.m., even on weekends), but if your idea of a night out tops out around 10 p.m. there are a handful of great options available. Local beer nerds should definitely hit up Grain + Grape (2780 E. Main St.), a taproom-slash-bottle shop that offers a great selection both on draft and in bottles (as a heads up, the taproom is only open Wednesday through Friday). If scotch is more your thing, try Wings (2801 E. Main St.), a Chinese restaurant that specializes in the Scottish whiskey. Those looking for a high-end cocktail would do well to visit Giuseppe's Ritrovo (2268 E. Main St.), a family run Italian joint that features both fantastic cocktails (the menu changes seasonally and never disappoints) and great eats (order the antipasto). There's a reason Mick Jagger and Keith Richards dined here when the Rolling Stones visited Columbus for a 2015 concert at the Shoe.
After loading up on beer, scotch and assorted cocktails, you'll need some food to help sober up. For that, we recommend Rubino's Pizza (2643 E. Main St.), a throwback pizzeria that offers cracker-crust pies served in an environment that screams "we still use dial-up internet." If you're looking for something similarly old-school, but a bit more upscale, grab a steak dinner at The Top (2891 E. Main St.), a 1950s, "Mad Men"-esque dining experience completely untouched by time. Afterwards, cap the evening with a scoop of ice cream courtesy of Graeter's (2282 E. Main St.), which Alive readers voted the city's best ice cream this year.