28 March 2012


The menu at Carsonie's has pizza and pasta and sandwiches. But the star attraction on is stromboli.

Carsonie's has a location in Upper Arlington as well as one in Westerville. The Upper Arlington location has a full bar.

The stromboli crust is thin with a crispy exterior. It stands up well to its substantial filling.

The vegetarian stromboli is stuffed with onions, black olives, artichokes, tomatoes and an ocean of cheese. The accompanying marinara sauce is sweet and adds a nice punch to the stromboli.

The decor at Carsonie's in Upper Arlington is heavy on local tchotchkes. There is a separate take-out entrance.

Carsonie's Pizza and Stromboli Kitchen on Urbanspoon

21 March 2012

Flip Side

Flip Side is a fancy hamburger joint that started in the Akron area. The first location in Central Ohio opened recently at Easton.

The decor at Flip Side is fun. There is an emphasis on fresh, local ingredients on the menu.

Despite the burger focus, Flip Side actually does have a few vegetarian menu options.

The first warning for vegetarians is that many of the fried items are fried in lard. The staff asked the kitchen and did a great job pointing out vegetarian items on the menu.

The macaroni and cheese is vegetarian. Straight macaroni noodles are dressed with a creamy white cheddar sauce that is flecked with oregano and parsley. It had a nice creaminess but was undersalted.

The veggie burger is prepared low-carb with two chickpea patties surrounding avocado, sprouts and romaine alongside house made ketchup. The patties were crispy on the outside and soft and crumbly on the inside. It is a tasty veggie burger that might benefit if it were served on a bun.

There are a couple of thick shakes on the menu. The blueberry pie shake was delicious and gave the straw fits.

The beer list at Flip Side was heavy on small brewers. The were 20 taps, as well as bottled option from Ohio producers including Great Lakes, Thirsty Dog, Rivertown, Columbus Brewing Company and Elevator.

Flip Side on Urbanspoon

14 March 2012

Sun Tong Luck Asian Cuisine

Sun Tong Luck is a gem of a restaurant settled into a strip mall on Bethel Road. The modest decor belies the high quality vegetarian and vegan fare served there.

Owner and chef Frank Louie has been a fixture in Chinese food in Central Ohio since 1982. His wife is a gracious host who effortlessly recalls the ordering specifications of regular customers.

Service is quick. While Sun Tong Luck is geared toward take-out, there is seating for about 20 inside. Prices are reasonable.

Sun Tong Luck focuses on healthy ingredients. They use separate vegetarian equipment in the kitchen. The staff capably addresses all requests for vegan food.

The spring rolls are fried. The vegan dumplings taste great with hot mustard or soy sauce.

Tofu dishes can be prepared with the bean curd boiled or fried. There are 13 vegetarian or vegan entrees on the menu.

The General Tso's tofu was delightfully spiced. The house made sauce is slightly less sweet than the goopy mess that dresses this dish at lesser establishments. The version at Sun Tong Luck is excellent.

The black bean tofu is prepared in a traditional sauce with broccoli, carrots and water chestnuts adding texture. It was well prepared.

Overall, Sun Tong Luck offers great choices for vegetarians. It isn't the flashiest, but it packs a lot of punch for the price.

Sun Tong Luck Asian Cuisine on Urbanspoon

08 March 2012

Sogo Asian Bistro

Sogo Asian Bistro is a modern sushi joint in Grove City on Stringtown Road. The menu is mostly a list of the usual suspects for vegetarians that is expected from a place focused on sushi.

Sogo has seating for nearly 100. There is a sushi bar that seats about 10 as well as seating at the booze bar.

The menu offers Chinese and Japanese fare which includes a vegetarian starter, three vegetarian entrees and a couple of vegetarian sushi rolls.

The edamame was a nice portion. The soybeans were unevenly salted, and the dish suffered greatly from this flaw.

The home style tofu is a traditional preparation with broccoli, carrots, white onions, baby corn, green peppers and water chestnuts in a brown sauce. This dish might have benefited from more spice, but was otherwise well constructed.

Sushi options for vegetarians include an avocado roll, a cucumber roll, a mixed veggie roll with avocado, burdock root, cucumber, pickled oshinko, kanpyo squash and sesame seeds in a soy wrapper, and yubuchobap, which are seasoned tofu skins stuffed with rice.

The sushi was prepared to a much higher standard than the hot dishes. The veggie rolls had a great crunch, and the flavor was bright with underlying earthy contrasts. The bright color of the rolls was appealing. The tofu pockets were also excellent.

Service at Sogo was even. Overall, it is a restaurant geared towards seafood eaters that makes vegetarian fare that is hardly worth going out of the way to eat.

Sogo Asian Bistro on Urbanspoon