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Your one week guide to Restaurant Week

For Columbus foodies, Restaurant Week is a great time to experience the city’s cuisine at a fraction of the cost.

In just a few days, 614 Media Group will kick off its summer Restaurant Week, which will feature preset, three-course menus from more than 120 of the city’s most popular eateries at a discounted price.

The week-long event will take over every part of Columbus –– stretching as far as Polaris, New Albany and Gahanna –– and will include “prix fixe,” or set price, menu options ranging from $15 to $35.

Popular spots participating in this year’s restaurant week will include El Vaquero, Union Cafe, Biscuit & Branch and The Crest.

Twenty-two restaurants will also be offering three-course vegetarian and vegan-friendly options.

As the start of Restaurant Week gets closer, The Lantern Arts and Life duo chose our favorite menus at each price point.

Restaurant week will run from July 17 through July 22.

Food from Marcella’s Italian Kitchen in Short North | Credit: Courtesy of Cameron Mitchell Restaurants

–– $15 ––

Ghezal’s Pick: Mazah Mediterranean eatery, 1453 Grandview Ave. If you’re a fan of the delicacy that is mediterranean cuisine, this is the place for you. With a few different options, my perfect three-course meal starts with lentil soup, is followed by lamb kebob skewers and rice and ends with a sweet and crispy walnut baklava.

Sara’s Pick: Fukuryu Ramen, 1600 W. Lane Ave. This isn’t your microwave ramen. If you’re looking to take your favorite dorm-room dish to the next level, check out Fukuryu. I would start my meal with the Fukuryu salad, featuring house-made sesame ginger salad dressing, followed by the vegetarian miso ramen (which can be made vegan), and I would finish up with soft-serve ice cream, also made in-house.

–– $20 ––

Ghezal’s Pick: Union Cafe, 782 N. High St. I’m usually a big advocate for Union’s food, and 10/10 recommend their weekend brunch buffet, but that’s off topic. For my three-course meal here, I’ll start with the kale caesar salad, follow it up with the shrimp pad Thai and finish it off with the skillet chocolate chip pecan cookie and vanilla custard. MMMM.

Sara’s Pick: Bareburger, (Clintonville and Short North) 4560 N. High St. and 463 N. High St. I don’t eat meat, but I love a good veggie burger that I can really sink my teeth into. Bareburger gives me just that, and I’ve heard good things about their other options as well. For this meal, I’ll take the falafel cups for my first course, followed by the Guadalupe burger –– a black bean and roasted corn patty topped with guacamole, pickled red onions, tomatoes and alfalfa –– and I’ll finish up with the vegan carrot cake.

–– $25 ––

Ghezal’s Pick: Biscuit & Branch, 685 N. High St. I’ll admit I haven’t tried B&B yet, but I’ve heard nothing but good things and the menu just sounds incredible. For my restaurant week meal, I’m going with the hummus plate for my starter, the maple glazed salmon for my main entree and ending the night with the bittersweet chocolate orange tart.

Sara’s Pick: Rooks Tavern, 195 Chittenden Ave. Rooks Tavern opened less than a year ago, and although I haven’t checked it out yet, I’ve been interested in trying it since it’s so close to campus. For this meal, I would go with the pickle plate for my starter, the bittman –– house black beans and polenta cake with seasonal greens and garnishes –– for my main course and I would finish up with kaffir lime creme brulee.

–– $30 ––

Ghezal’s Pick: Lemongrass, 641 N. High St. This trendy Short North spot has the best Asian-fusion eats. I’ll be ordering the Thai chicken cakes as an appetizer, the sushi special –– two new rolls specially designed for Restaurant Week ––  for my meal and the exotic green tea cheesecake to finish up.

Sara’s Pick: The Crest (Parsons Avenue and Clintonville) 621 Parsons Ave. and 2855 Indianola Ave. For restaurant week, The Crest is offering a different menu at each location, so be sure to check out the menus from both. For this meal, I’m choosing from the Parsons Avenue location and I would start with the fried tofu, followed by the vegetable pot pie and finishing up with the blondie, which features gin and tonic ice cream.

–– $35 ––

Ghezal’s Pick: Barcelona, 263 E. Whittier St. For the most expensive meal on the list, my motto is go big or go home –– and try to pronounce everything in my best Spanish. To finish off restaurant week, I’m starting with mejillones, or sauteed mussels, followed by bacalao, a pan-roasted cod with a fancy potato salad, and finally, miguelito, a chocolate filled pastry with blood orange and powdered sugar. Beautiful and worth every dollar.

Sara’s Pick: Wolf’s Ridge Brewing, 215 N. 4th St. Glancing at the restaurants at this price range, most of them are steakhouses and seafood places, which are out of my dietary wheelhouse. If you’re looking for a meat-free option, Wolf’s Ridge Brewing is offering some tasty-looking vegetarian and vegan picks. I would order the bread and butter, the mediterranean-inspired vegetarian entree, and end with the orange and chocolate sponge cake.

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