Revamped Sycamore opens in German Village

By ThisWeek Community News  • 

Chris Crader said he didn't want his third German Village venture to be too complicated.

He describes the Sycamore, his latest project, simply as a "neighborhood tavern with great food."

"I didn't want it to be too far in any one direction," Crader said.

"I just wanted it to be a casual restaurant that's tastefully designed, not fitting any trend."

The 50-seat Sycamore opened Friday at 262 E. Sycamore St.

Bradley Balch, a partner and executive chef, has created a multifaceted menu, using local ingredients as much as possible.

For example, the poutine uses braised Ohio beef cheeks over house-cut fries, cheese curd from Blue Jacket Dairy and heavy cream from Snowville Creamery in the chive gravy.

The menu covers a lot of territory and price ranges, offering a homemade turkey burger on a brioche bun ($11); a braised pork shank with harissa sauce ($21); and a dry-aged Ohio bone-in ribeye ($33).

"You've kind of got a broad range," Crader said.

He said the bar will have a full liquor license, with a selection of craft beer, "a small but thoughtful" wine list and spirituous liquor.

The place is open for dinner only Monday through Friday, lunch and dinner Saturday and closed Sunday.

A special brunch menu will be offered from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday.

Both Balch and Crader have worked for a number of notable independent restaurants in central Ohio -- Tucci's, Local Roots and Rossi -- and have worked together, including at Elevator and Barrio (the latter has since closed), on occasion.

"We always knew we wanted to do something for ourselves, not for other people," Balch said.

The Sycamore replaces the Sycamore Cafe, which had been around for at least 75 years.

Crader bought the place last spring and began construction June 1.

The owner of Harvest Pizzeria and Curio, operating side by side on South Fourth Street, said the Sycamore will be unlike the other two.

"I live here and I think we needed a good casual option," Crader said.

"It's a great location," he said.

"I think in German Village, there aren't many opportunities for new restaurants."

On a related note, Crader will open Harvest -- a spinoff of Harvest Pizzeria -- in the next two months in Clintonville.

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