The Monster’s lifelong friend AJ swears by The Pearl. The Monster checks out the menu, impressive. It’s a Cameron Mitchell joint and like Midas he touches, it’s gold. And so The Monster and AJ head to the Short North on a Friday with food and drink dreams. The Monster is sure he will be disappointed. It’s Columbus after all.
A funny thing happens along the way, The Monster ends up loving The Pearl.
Stupid beepers while you wait aside, The Pearl pretty much nails the upscale gastropub that is so in vogue.
Cool space, raging scene, friendly service, hip cocktail program. All that is but window dressing if the food doesn’t make the grade.
Well, it does.
Jalapeño corn spoon bread, chicken wings confit, oysters, pot o’ pickles, crab and creamy clam chowder with chorizo dust starters are all well done and worthy of being ordered. Nothing reinvents the wheel but it doesn’t need to.
So far, so good.
Next up comes the Arctic char with roasted cauliflower, aged balsamic vinegar and cauliflower purée. Surely this will disappoint.
When in fact it is quite lovely. What is going on Columbus? The Monster has to give a little love because The Pearl is every bit as good as similar places in LA.
Why go? AJ is taking you.
Monster rating: 4½/5 Monsters
641 North High Street
Columbus, OH 43215