Food News: Jeni’s CEO John Lowe Steps Down; Chef Hiro Opens on Parsons

Restaurant openings, closings and more Central Ohio food and drink news

Erin Edwards
Columbus Monthly
Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams CEO John Lowe announced that he will step down after 13 years once a successor has been identified.

Openings & Announcements 

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams CEO John Lowe announced this week that he’s stepping down from the position that he’s held for 13 years. During Lowe’s tenure, Jeni’s grew from four shops to 67 stores plus a thriving online business. He is leaving the company as a $100 million business with more than 1,400 employees. Lowe told Columbus Business First that he’s not sure what comes next professionally, but he will step down as CEO once his replacement is identified and will remain on Jeni’s board of directors. 

Wool & Vine, a new micro-winery and cidery, is set to make its debut this weekend at 8290 Porter Central Road in Sunbury. The winery’s tasting room, located in a 100-year-old barn, will hold its grand opening on Friday, June 17. 

Chef Hiro, an anime-inspired restaurant from owner Jeanclaude Ba, is set to debut on Juneteenth (Sunday, June 19) at 1297 Parsons Ave. Ba first launched Chef Hiro as a food truck in 2019, serving a menu of jerk tacos, jerk lamb chops, burritos and more. The Parsons address has seen a rotating cast of businesses, including Village Taco and Tatoheads Public House and Hal & Al’s.  

Brittani “Tudie” Hoffman recently unveiled her first retail bakery, Tudie’s & Cookies & Sweets, at 3009 N. High St., formerly home to Pattycake Bakery in Clintonville. Hoffman’s rotating menu includes a variety of cookies, cookie sandwiches, cinnamon rolls, mini quiches, muffins and more. Florin Coffee is on hand as well. Tudie’s is open 7 a.m.–2 p.m. Wednesday through Friday and 7 a.m.–3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. 

The Columbus Downtown Development Corporation is looking to lure lunchtime diners to Downtown Columbus again by offering $10 LunchBucks vouchers through Aug. 24. The vouchers can be picked up 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Tuesdays and Wednesdays (and must be used during that timeframe) at Capital Crossroads (23 N. Fourth St.), the Columbus Museum of Art (480 E. Broad St.), the Experience Columbus Visitor Center (277 W. Nationwide Blvd., Ste. 125) and the Lazarus Building (150 S. Front St.). The vouchers may be used for lunch at any of the participating restaurants, which include Dirty Frank’s Hot Dog Palace, Lexi’s, Milestone 229, Oshio Station, Wolf’s Ridge Brewing and others. For more information, visit

The Topo Chico Hard Seltzer booth at Seltzerland


Seltzerland, a festival celebrating all things hard seltzer, is coming to Field (96 Columbus Crew Way) on Saturday, July 30. The event will offer games, DJ tunes and more than 100 flavors of hard seltzer to sample, including brands such as The Long Drink, Mighty Swell, Stewart’s Spiked, Topo Chico Hard Seltzer and Vizzy. Visit for tickets.