Best of Columbia 2012
Our readers pick their favorite people, places and things in CoMo
(page 4 of 7)
Best Place For Bar Food
Known for its bar, D. Rowe’s Restaurant & Bar also provides a family-friendly atmosphere and a varied menu. For three years, D. Rowe’s has been serving barbecue smoked chicken wings, the No. 1 selling item on the menu. Cooking 1,000 pounds of chicken wings a week, the kitchen ensures you can eat to your heart’s content.
1005 Club Village Drive, 573-443-8004. Silver: Trumans Bar & Grill, 3304 Broadway Business Park Court, 573-445-1669; Bronze: Shiloh Bar & Grill, 402 E. Broadway, 573-875-1800
Place With Best Beer Menu
Columbians love to support local foods, but it’s no different with beer. At Flat Branch Pub & Brewing, you can get a tall glass, a pitcher or even a whole keg filled with some of the brewery’s award-winning beers. From chili-flavored to pumpkin, the brewery is always adding to its list of handcrafted ale. And with a changing list of beers on tap, your tongue will never get bored. 115 S. Fifth Street, 573-499-0400. Silver: 1839 Taphouse, 212 E. Green Meadows Road, Suite 2, 573-441-1839; Bronze: 44 Stone Public House, 3910 Peachtreee Drive, 573-443-2726
Best Place For Margaritas
Achieving the perfect margarita is a chemical feat any mixologist would be proud to master, but it would be hard for them the keep up with the bartenders at El Maguey. Order the icy blend to wash down your favorite Mexican dish, or simply to take the edge off. Choose from a series of flavors or keep it classic. Priced at $1.50 during happy hour, you can try them all.
901 E. Nifong Blvd., 573-874-3812; 21 Conley Road, Suite U, 573-443-7977; 504 Business Loop 70 W., 573-449-6558. Silver: Tequila Mexican Restaurant, 3605 S. Providence Road, Suite 1, 573-256-1115; Bronze: Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant, 3306 W. Broadway Business Park Court, 573-445-2947
Place With Best Happy Hour
Maybe your small typo led to an embarrassing memo or you poured coffee all over your white pants, but that work stress is sure to go away as soon as you pull into the Houlihan’s parking lot. During happy hour from 4 to 7 p.m., or from 9 to close, choose from $4.50 Long Islands, half-price well drinks and more. No wonder the Houlihan’s menu calls it “Happier Hour.” 2541 Broadway Bluffs Drive, 573-815-7210. Silver: Trumans Bar & Grill, 3304 W. Broadway Business Park, Suite D, 573-445-1669; Bronze: 1839 Taphouse, 212 E. Green Meadows Road, Suite 2, 573-441-1839
Best Place For A Girls’ Night Out
Is there really anything better you could put in a white Styrofoam cup than Trops? The alcoholic slushies from Tropical Liqueurs are a Columbia staple, and it’s the best way to inject a quick dose of fun into any girls’ night. We also think it’s the best for a girls’ day by the pool. Or on the sledding hill. Or at home in front of the TV. Trops is acceptable for all occasions.
515 E. Broadway, 573-442-8098; 3805 S. Providence Road, 573-256-7141. Silver: Room 38 Restaurant & Lounge, 38 N. Eighth St., 573-449-3838; Bronze: Houlihan’s, 2541 Broadway Bluffs Drive, 573-815-7210
Best Place For Guys’ Night Out
1839 Taphouse has all the “Guys’ Night” essentials. Take your pick of 24 draft beers and a menu full of pizza, wings and burgers built to satisfy a man-sized appetite. And with a different drink special every night of the week, there’s no need to limit your night out to the weekend. Why not meet up with the guys on Monday for trivia and pitcher specials?
212 E. Green Meadows Drive, Suite 2, 573-441-1839. Silver: Harpo’s, 29 S. 10th St., 573-443-5418; Bronze: Shiloh Bar & Grill, 402 E. Broadway, 573-875-1800
Most Kid-Friendly Restaurant
Manager Kurt Mirtsching admits he isn’t sure why Columbians think Shakespeare’s Pizza is the most kid-friendly restaurant in town, but he guesses it’s the restaurant’s laid-back style that allows kids to be, well, kids. While you wait, employees are happy to give your child a golfball-sized piece of dough to play with before they enjoy this award-winning pizza. We’ve seen kids eat it after dropping the dough on the floor, but at least they’re having fun. 225 S. Ninth St., 573-449-2454; 3304 Broadway Business Park Court, 573-447-1202
Silver: Chuck E. Cheese, 2003 W. Worley Road, 573-445-1728; Bronze: McDonald’s, 500 E. Nifong Blvd., 573-442-2433; 3206 Clark Lane, 573-474-2031; 205 Business Loop, 573-443-7785; 1012 Smiley Lane, 573-449-6336; 415 Conley Road (in Walmart), 573-449-4913; 415 Stadium Blvd., 573-445-6211
Best New Restaurant Opened In 2011
They say a restaurant’s first year is always the most difficult. But, Columbia’s premier gastro-pub, 44 Stone Public House, had no trouble impressing our readers since opening its doors in February 2011. Serving contemporary food inspired by the British Isles, owners Dave Faron and Mark Sulltrop strive to create an approachable atmosphere for patrons to enjoy gourmet entrées and craft beers. Among the bevy of steak, seafood and pork dishes, crowd favorites include the authentic fish and chips, and the bangers and mash.
3910 Peachtree Drive, 573-443-2726. Silver: Babbo’s Spaghetteria, 1305 Grindstone Plaza, 573-442-9446; Bronze: Red Mango, 1009 E. Broadway, 573-442-8066
Best New Bar Opened In 2011
Perhaps the stock of craft beers rotating on tap, along with “approachable but high-end” whiskeys from the British Isles are why 44 Stone Public House grabbed the “Best New Bar” title. Or maybe integrating one brew into several dishes on the menu for a specialty “beer dinner” gave the gastro-pub an edge on the competition. Most likely, though, it was owners Dave Faron and Mark Sulltrop’s aspiration to create a tone where everyone feels welcome that clinched the award. At 44 Stone Public House, anyone and everyone is welcome to grab a stool and enjoy a pint, which are imported from all over the world. 3910 Peachtree Drive, 573-443-2726. Silver: Babbo’s Spaghetteria, 1305 Grindstone Plaza, 573-442-9446; Bronze: 10 Below, 29 S. 10th St. (below Harpo’s), 573-443-5418
PERFECT COLUMBIA MEAL
As a repeat winner, Addison’s Nachos Bianco is a local favorite and we know why. Prepare your taste buds for the restaurant’s homemade Italian pasta chips, Asiago cheese, tomatoes and more. Then choose between chicken, black beans or chorizo sausage. Customers leave Addison’s satisfied with a full stomach and ready to join in on the chatter about the best appetizer in Columbia. 709 Cherry St., 573-356-1995. Silver: Chokes ‘n Cheese, Flat Branch Pub & Brewing, 115 S. Fifth St., 573-499-0400; Bronze: Brock’s Green Pepper Rings, Murry’s, 3107 Green Meadows Way, 573-442-4969
Panera Bread Co. takes broccoli and cheese to another level with its Broccoli Cheddar Soup. Made with chopped broccoli, shredded cheddar and velvety smooth cheese sauce, you’ll melt away with the café’s famous homemade broth. Top it off with a slice of Panera’s freshly baked breads and you’ll have a meal that’s perfect for lunch or dinner.
Panera Bread Co., 102 S. Ninth Street, 573-442-4455; 3709 S. Providence Road, 573-449-6466; 2300 Bernadette Drive (Columbia Mall), 573-446-7374. Silver: Tomato Basic Bisque, Pickleman’s Gourmet Café, 1106 E. Broadway, 573-875-2400; 2513 Old 63 S., 573-886-2300; 3103 W. Broadway, Suite 105, 573-875-0400; Bronze: Broccoli Cheese Soup, Bread Basket Café, 2101 W. Broadway, 573-445-1965
You may have come to Murry’s for dinner, but with the Dinner Salad with Peppercream Dressing, you may find yourself too full to finish an entrée. Mixed with lettuce, provolone cheese and carrots then tossed with homemade dressing, we won’t judge if you order seconds even before your steak comes. 3107 Green Meadows Way, 573-442-4969. Silver: House Salad, CC’s City Broiler, 1401 Forum Blvd., 573-445-7772; Bronze: Custom Salad, Ingredient, 304 S. Ninth St., 573-442-1502
The official way to describe the Chairman of the Board Steak at CC’s City Broiler is to call it a 12-ounce barrel-cut filet mignon. Most CC’s fans just call it delicious. The restaurant has been a Columbia staple since it opened, and so has this entrée’s traditional recipe. It’s wrapped in double-smoked bacon, and though customers love the bread, salad and side it comes with, the steak is the main event. 1401 Forum Blvd., 573-445-7772. Silver: Bangers & Mash, 44 Stone Public House, 3910 Peachtree Drive, 573-443-2726; Bronze: Scallops, Sycamore, 800 E. Broadway, 573-874-8090
With a constantly changing list of daily dessert specials, Murry’s not only keeps diners on their toes, but also satisfies their sweet tooth. Among chocolate, brownies, cheesecakes, pies and ice cream, the Gooey Butter Cake is the icing on any dessert-lover’s cake. Don’t hesitate to sink your teeth into this sugary treat or else it might sell out before you get a taste.
3107 Green Meadows Way, 573-442-4969. Silver: Stout Brownie Sundae, Flat Branch Pub & Brewing, 115 S. Fifth St., 573-499-0400; Bronze: Chocolate Decadence, The Upper Crust Bakery & Café, 904 E. Elm St., 573-874-4044; 3107 Green Meadows Way, 573-874-3033
Best After-Dinner Drink
With a base of vodka, rum, gin, and sweet and sour, the Long Island Iced Tea at Houlihan’s is a heavenly concoction. Add more ingredients to create the 11 flavors available — there’s a fruity flavor for everyone, from raspberry to Georgia peach. This drink is tasty, but the best part is its size; order the 1 liter pitcher, and enjoy a perfect end to your evening. You could order a smaller size, but we don’t know why anyone would do that. 2541 Broadway Bluffs Drive, 573-815-7210. Silver: Taphouse Ale, 1839 Taphouse, 212 E. Green Meadows Drive, Suite 2, 573-441-1839; Bronze: Blueberry Singe, Room 38 Restaurant & Lounge, 38 N. Eighth St., 573-449-3838