Ryan Stroup and Corbin Wrights were determined not to open just another sports bar.
So they made sure to create some distinguishing characteristics at the Clubhouse, their new "sports grill and bar," from the pack.
"We don't want to be a bar, we want to be a restaurant," Stroup said of the Clubhouse, 340 Greenlawn Ave., in a somewhat troubled location that has housed a number of eateries, most notably, Banana Bean Cafe.
So the two hired chef Howard Biggard, who has assembled a 21-item menu that has a focus on creative, homemade fare.
Chicken wings, for example, are brined, marinated and finished on the grill.
Each of the nine sauces is mixed in-house. Pizzas are made with house-tossed dough.
Burgers also get a signature touch.
One is stuffed with homemade mac 'n' cheese. Another uses two fried Portobello caps as the bun. Fries are fresh-cut.
For dessert, there are build-you-own sundaes and ice cream sandwiches using homemade cookies.
"The food is the thing," Stroup said. "Everybody does the same thing. We wanted to do a twist on your classic items."
The place has a full liquor license, and offers several local brands of spirituous alcohol. There are 13 taps, five dedicated to local and state microbrews.
Meanwhile, the sports element can't be discounted, Stroup said.
The interior was given a few cosmetic improvements, including an updated color scheme that gives a nod to the Columbus Clippers.
Flat screen TVs are available at almost any angle. And Ryan and Wrights installed garage doors that will access a 3,000-square-foot patio, which should be open around the first of March.
It's no coincidence it will be poised to welcome softball players and spectators from nearby Lou Berliner Park, which will have its first tournament March 15.
The softball facility has 40 ball diamonds, drawing 8,000 to 15,000 people on the weekends.
The Clubhouse is open for dinner only Monday through Friday and lunch and dinner Saturday and Sunday, with weekday lunch hours being added soon.