Natural Wine Festival Coming to Downtown Columbus in July

In other Central Ohio food news, Hilliard loses a bakery but regains a barbecue spot.

Erin Edwards
Columbus Monthly
Natural wines at the Bottle Shop, one of the sponsors of Columbus' inaugural Natural Wine Festival


Columbus’ first Natural Wine Festival is set to take place Downtown this summer, offering curious wine drinkers the chance to sample dozens of natural wines poured by the winemakers and distributors. The inaugural Natural Wine Festival will take place at the Galleria of the Lazarus Building (50 W. Town St.) from 1 to 5 p.m. on Saturday, July 8, according to organizer Greg Stokes of Accent Wine and the Bottle Shop. “Our goal is to have 15 tables of wine, with some of the winemakers coming in from California, and to host around 350-500 people to raise awareness for the Columbus natural wine scene,” Stokes said via email. A variety of local restaurants, such as Comune, Agni and Chapman’s Eat Market, will be on hand to support the event but are not expected to be serving food. However, food trucks will be lined along Town Street for the event. A portion of the event proceeds will benefit Love Boldly, a faith-based charity for creating safe spaces for members of the LGBTQ+ community. Tickets for the inaugural Columbus Natural Wine Festival can be purchased here

Openings & Announcements

A new carryout called Two Fat Indian Fusion recently opened at 177 S. Cypress Ave. in Franklinton, formerly home to Red Door BBQ. The new concept is from Amit Kumar, one of the founders of Two Fatt Indians food truck. In additional to traditional lamb, chicken, vegetarian and vegan Indian dishes, the carryout offers Indian-inspired pizzas, much like the ones featured in our recent story about the global pizza trend. Check out the menu on Instagram

Echo Spirits Distilling Co. (985 W. Sixth Ave.) is set to release its first two bourbons this weekend: its 95-proof bourbon and barrel-proof bourbon. Co-founder Joe Bidinger, a 2022 Columbus Monthly Tastemaker, describes the 95-proof bottle as “an easy drinker with notes of tea leaves, white chocolate, peppered cherry, marzipan and pistachio." Meanwhile, the barrel-proof bourbon is geared toward the bourbon connoisseur, with notes of “pecans, cantaloupe, crème brûlée, chipotle cherries and fruited tobacco.” To celebrate the bourbon release, Echo Spirits is hosting an exclusive launch on Saturday, May 27, from 10 a.m. to noon at the distillery. Both bourbons will be available for purchase at select retailers soon.  

The first Ohio location of Chung Chun Rice Hot Dog is coming soon to the Columbus area. The international chain boasts more than 200 branches and specializes in Korean-style corn dogs dipped in rice flour batter and fried. Rice dog fillings range from beef hot dogs to stretchy mozzarella to Spam, and can be rolled in panko, potatoes or even ramen noodles before frying. Chung Chun is set to debut June 15 at Polaris Fashion Place, according to a spokesperson for the company. The franchisee plans to open additional Chung Chun locations in Ohio soon. It’s the second Korean hot dog chain to hit Central Ohio. A year ago, a franchise location of Myungrang Hot Dog opened at 850 N. High St. in the Short North. 

After suffering a fire in December 2021, Hilliard's Legacy Smokehouse is finally set to reopen for business Friday, May 26, at 3987 Main St. in Old Hilliard. The opening coincides with the debut of Rickhouse 41, a new bourbon bar located above the barbecue joint. 


This week, Great Harvest Bread Co. in Hilliard announced that it would be closing permanently, just shy of its fourth anniversary. The café’s last day at 5311 Westpointe Plaza Drive will be Wednesday, May 31. The Great Harvest location will continue offering fresh breads, sandwiches, salads and more through the end of the month.