While occupying less than two square miles, Grandview manages to boast the highest concentration of progressive food and drink tours in the nation’s 14th largest city. Take a private behind-the-scenes peek into Spagio‘s kitchens and you’ll spot works of art in unlikely places. Get an after-hours tasting tour of independent microbreweries and hidden gems like Watershed Distillery. Most tours are surprisingly affordable, accommodate 10 to 50 people, and accept individual registrants. Plan a day out with friends, sign up solo (tour-goers are all friends by the time you hit the tasting room), or book a group tour for a party, reunion, or company outing.
See the process of producing top-shelf vodka, gin and bourbon and learn how distillers banded together to bring back this lost Ohio tradition. Watershed founders Greg Lehman and Dave Rigo have revitalized this forgotten craft in a small corner of the Grandview Brewery District. During this after-hours tasting tour, you’ll learn about the distilling process, from mashing the grain to writing the batch numbers on the labels. The owners (many of them, family) are knowledgeable, friendly, and happy to answer questions. Settle into the inviting, woody tasting room to savor premium hand-crafted vodkas, gins and bourbon. Theirs is the first bourbon legally crafted in central Ohio since prohibition! Buy a bottle of your favorite direct from the distillery and then peruse Greg and Dave’s favorite cocktail recipes on Watershed’s website.
Grandview Brewery Tour
1130 Dublin Road • Columbus, Ohio 43215
Operated by Columbus Brew Adventures
Starts at Smokehouse Brewing Co.
Enjoy a laid-back guided tour of Columbus’ most exciting independently-owned microbreweries and taprooms. This fun and educational afternoon is led by an expert guide at Central Ohio’s first brew tour operator, Columbus Brew Adventures. You’ll learn about little-known intricacies of the brewing process, the Grandview area’s brewing history, and usually some fun backstories told by the brewers themselves. Enjoy comprehensive beer tasting and light appetizers, including what many consider to be the best wings in Columbus. Your DD will get you around in CBA’s air-conditioned van… Equipped with cold storage, of course. Private tours available. Runs year-round.
Grandview Avenue Food Tour
1460 Grandview Ave. • Columbus, Ohio 43212
Operated by Columbus Food Adventures
Meet and park free at The Arlington Bank
Grandview is a mecca for exceptional dining in central Ohio. Discover this outstanding and diverse restaurant scene on a walking and tasting tour of vibrant Grandview Avenue. The tour explores a mix of Grandview’s renowned landmark restaurants, leading innovators in new food trends, preeminent coffee roasters, critics’ picks and foodie favorites, all within a couple of blocks on the main strip. Meet the chefs and owners and savor dependably sublime cooking from established restaurant stars Spagio and Figlio, as well as fresh twists on classic American plates from Third and Hollywood’s organic and locally-sourced menu. You’ll get the backstories and chat with your hosts while sitting down to sample great dishes from at least 6 food and drink stops. Your guide will also fill you in on the history of this treasured neighborhood as you stroll to the next stop. Runs every Saturday year-round.
Grandview’s Hofbräuhaus is one of only five modeled after the legendary 400-year-old Brauhaus in Munich, Germany. Everything – from the biers and authentic German fare to the traditional lederhosen and dierndls worn by the servers – meets the stringent specifications of the Stäatliches Hofbräuhaus in München.
Even Biermeister Robert Makein was brought in from Dusseldorf, Germany, where breweries and beer gardens are institutions comparable to churches and city halls. Makein oversees the brewing following the original recipes developed by the Duke of Bavaria in the 1500s. He conducts tours for groups of 10 or more if you call ahead. He’ll take you through the entire process, beginning with a whiff of hops. Follow along and learn what happens in each of the tanks, and don’t hesitate to ask questions. Makein’s vast knowledge is impressive and his German accent adds to the appeal of his smiling, self-effacing manner.