The Grandview Cafe, the anchor of one of central Ohio's hippest restaurant and retail strips, has gone through another reboot.
The cafe, in operation since 1925, has been updated in several significant ways: more natural light, retractable walls, a new patio bar on the first floor and updated fixtures throughout the two-story tavern at 1455 W. 3rd Ave., immediately off Grandview Avenue in Grandview Heights.
It has been closed for about 18 months during a change in ownership and major renovations.
"I wasn't trying to recreate the Grandview Cafe," owner Brian Swanson said. "I was trying to give people the 2017 Grandview Cafe.
"The neighborhood has changed, so I felt it was appropriate that Grandview Cafe change with it."
Still, Swanson has paid homage to the past by naming drinks after former owners and local officials and asking patrons to submit photos, which were used as wallpaper in the dining room.
"I'm all about the history of the place, the nostalgia of the place," he said.
The 4,200-square-foot building seats up to 400 people. The kitchen has been relocated to the second floor, which has two bars and a speakeasy-type vibe, Swanson said. It can be closed off for private parties, he said.
The popular patio also has been retained.
One major change has occurred, though: No more live music, said Swanson, who owns Balboa (next door to Grandview Cafe), Bodega and Hadley's Bar + Kitchen.
The downstairs bar, which was built partly with discarded suitcases, has been expanded. The first-floor patio, which also features a bar, has been extended and outfitted with fresh patio furniture.
"That's prime real estate out there," Swanson said. "There was no bar out there, no comfortable seating."
The menu is fairly limited and largely affordable, with the steak and frites being the most expensive item at $16.
Other highlights are corn-and-crab bisque, a signature burger made with dry-aged beef, a fried-green-tomato BLT and skillet mac and cheese.
"This really is where menus are nowadays," Swanson said. "The days of the four-page menus are pretty much nonexistent."
Kitchen hours are 4 to 11 p.m. Mondays, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays and 10:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.
South Village Grille was expected to open Memorial Day in the former Easy Street Cafe, 197 Thurman Ave. on the south end of German Village.
The restaurant is part of George Tanchevski's central Ohio-based group of restaurants, which includes Local Cantina and Old Skool, among others.
The interior has been remodeled and has a more open floor plan than Easy Street, which closed Feb. 25 after nearly 25 years in business.
Chef Josh Wiest, who trained at the French Culinary Institute (now known as the International Culinary Center) in New York City, said he created a menu that is both traditional and modern.
A few examples are crab croquettes, oysters, specialty pizzas, a burger made with ground short ribs, wild halibut and scallops.
The beverage offerings include premium cocktails made with homemade syrups and fresh-squeezed juices, a small selection of quality wines and eight beers on draft.
Corned beef and gyros have emerged as the early favorites at Olympic Diner, which recently opened at 5454 Roberts Road near the southern border of Hilliard.
The classic diner, which seats about 100, has all the favorites: chili, burgers, salads, boneless pork chops, fish, coney dogs and the like, manager Chelsey Groff said.
Biscuits and gravy, rib-eye steak and eggs, corned-beef hash and other breakfast items, some starting as low as $3.99, are available all day.
Nearly everything on the menu is priced less than $10.
The corned beef is put to use in more than the hash, Groff said. Cooked and sliced on premises, it is used in gyros and Philly steak sandwiches, she said.
Olympic Diner, which replaced the Chef's House, is a sister operation of Olympic Coney Island in Springfield. Both are owned by Tony Rama.