It was beautiful in Columbus today — bright and sunny, with temperatures that touched the 80s. It was so nice that the Bus-Riding Conservative and I decided to venture out for lunch and check out some of the more recent editions to the downtown food scene.
We strolled a few blocks east on Gay Street, turned north on Grant, and ended up at the Grass Skirt Tiki Room next to the Hills Market. I’d heard some good things about the proprietor, who runs the Surly Girl Saloon in the Short North, and also heard that the Grass Skirt features some of the fabulous, kitschy Polynesian bric-a-brac previously found at the fabled Kahiki Restaurant, which was a Columbus landmark. The part about the Kahiki decor was true — at least, I’m assuming they got the big wooden masks and outsized spoon and fork from there — but the Grass Skirt offers some great food, too.
The BRC and I sat outside in a pleasant eating area right next to the Hills outdoor dining plaza and enjoyed the sun’s rays while wolfing down our chow. I got the spicy peanut pasta with grilled chicken and it was marvelous — vividly flavored and just hot enough to induce a light sheen of sweat on the forehead. The BRC raved about his dish, which featured grilled Spam. The menu had lots of other enticing options from sandwiches to noodle fare to rice bowls. We quickly vowed to return for more.
The Grass Skirt is a welcome addition to the downtown dine-around and fills one of the ethnic food slots — Polynesian, Pan-Asian, and of course Spam-oriented — that has been unfilled until now. The next time we might just get a beer or a Navy Grog, because no Tiki Room is complete without a full array of debilitating rum-based drinks.
Thanks to the BRC for taking the picture and joining me today!