03 June 2015

Guild House

The Guild House is Cameron's Mitchell's latest shot in the quest to occupy every building in the Short North. The farm-to-table small plates concept is vegetarian/vegan-friendly, and business seems to have been brisk since its opening.

The decor features interesting juxtapositions. Dark wood gives the room a forest feel, the open ceilings add a modern touch, and the green chandeliers seem to have been time-warped from some past grandmother's parlor. The whole thing almost doesn't fit together.

The soundtrack was workout music played too loudly. The music seems a pinch louder than in other Mitchell restaurants, but the music also might have stood out because it sounds better on a weight bench than a dining room.

Despite minor atmosphere complaints, the menu shows promise. The menu favors local ingredients. Outstanding breads come from Dan the Baker. There are Blue Jacket Dairy cheeses. Ohio's original national ice cream Graeter's is part of the dessert menu.

Brussels sprouts were prepared with caramelized onions, white cheddar, pecans and sweet mustard dressing. The dish is rich, sweet and deeply addictive.

The house-made chips and onion dip are also a great bar snack. A couple orders at happy hour with cocktails seems like the right idea. 

The vegetable lasagna is topped with crispy garlic, asparagus pesto, cabbage, onions, peas and more. The pasta carries a deconstructed version of the dish that showcases a bounty of vegetables.

Desserts were very good to excellent. The flourless chocolate torte with peanut butter mouse and vanilla tuille looks too good to eat. It isn't, but it's close. It's a must order barring nut allergies.

The house-made doughnuts were greasy. They would have succeeded if the pasties were better executed.

 The two person cocktail served in a glass porthole looks like a blast. The wine list has a nice range of selections, and there are a few draft beers, including one from North High Brewing.

Guild House is a great farm to table concept packaged in a strange dance club. Despite a few problems, there is plenty to like here.

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