Review: Northstar Cafe, Columbus

Terry and I love breakfast. Okay, let’s be honest: we haven’t met a mealtime we don’t like (except that stupid Fourth Meal thing. Call it “drunk munchies”, because that’s what it is). I poked around TripAdvisor the last time we were in Columbus to find a place for brunch, and ended up finding Northstar Cafe. It sources locally (and helps sponsor a CSA!) and is about as “green” as a restaurant can go these days without being vegan. Terry was a bit worried, as several of the reviews said, “very little meat, just some poultry” but he relented, and boy was it worth it.

Northstar Cafe’s menu is tiny. It had maybe six things– a few sweet things, and a few savory things. Terry’s pick was easy: sweet potato hash topped with two eggs, with a side of bacon. The hash was perfect– soft centers with crispy, sometimes burnt outsides. Terry and I are both the sort of people who like the edges of brownies, the crispy cheese on baked macaroni and cheese– you get the idea– so this was heaven.

Northpoint, Columbus

Northpoint, Columbus

(Man, do I love natural light.)

I was going to get pancakes until I saw the house-smoked turkey sandwich with roasted red peppers, rosemary foccaccia and pesto aioli. I admit that I’m getting tired of restaurants calling mayonnaise “aioli” (it isn’t), but this was incredibly good. Terry helped me finish it, after briefly playing with the biggest toothpicks I’ve ever seen.

Northpoint, Columbus

Northpoint, Columbus

This peanut butter cookie was huge– we ate it in the car on the way home and I also had some for lunch the next day. Salty, a little sweet but not overly so, and obviously made with natural peanut butter. The best PB cookie I’ve ever had.

Northpoint, Columbus

As far as brunch goes, this beat out Cap City Diner, if only because they had more brunch-like selections and they sourced locally. Plus, they didn’t have the Evil Chips of Doom to tempt me. Check it out– they have two locations, one in Beechwood and one in Short North. They were pretty crowded on Sunday, but totally worth the wait.

Northstar Cafe on Urbanspoon

  • Chris

    As a former Columbus resident, I always try to stop in at Northstar when I’m back in town. I always always always order the ricotta pancakes with bananas and a side of their excellent hash browns. Also, their juice is about as fresh as you can get. Pricey, but well worth it. Is there anything comparable to Northstar in Cincinnati? Maybe brunch at Slims?

  • marlatiara

    This entry is drool-worthy, and I too love the crispy edges of things. Nice!

  • Cin Twin1

    I don’t know what I was thinking..I could never try to go vegetarian. My mouth was watering at that bacon picture!

  • vogelap

    I always considered “Fourth Meal” the meal between breakfast and lunch.

  • Julie

    Chris– I think Slims might be the closest, or perhaps Sitwell’s (though they don’t entirely locally source).

    Marla– Even with the bacon? :P

    Cin Twin– I was a vegetarian for a year and a half. Bacon brought me back. Bacon is bliss.

    Drew– Isn’t that “brunch” or “midmorning snack”? :P

  • vudutu

    I am with you mariatiara, I love crispy bits. Crispy fish and chicken skin, pork, the top of mac and cheese, our friend Bob’s chicken diablo, hash browns, fries, mmmm.

    I can’t think of anyplace comparable in Cincinnati but we need one, I was hoping Greenup would be this way.

  • dew

    Great review…Northstar is by far one of my favs in Columbus.

    Also, the last time I was there last summer, I went to the finest Italian I’ve ever had in this country: Basi Italia – http://www.basi-italia.com/

    If you haven’t been, you haven’t been to one of Columbus’ best. Right in Vic Village, on a cute little alley, with a great outdoor space too.

    Thanks! Dave