New restaurants offer students more possibilities for lunchtime meals

by Noah Grumman ’12

Carsonie’s Stromboli and Pizza Kitchen

  • Price: $8-12 for an entrée
  • Distance: Two minutes by car* to Lane Avenue location

With bright red umbrellas and prominent outdoor seating, the new Carsonie’s Stromboli and Pizza Kitchen on Lane Avenue is difficult to miss.

Carsonie’s, located at Ritter’s previous spot, gives the customer a choice: the classic option of pizza, or pizza’s lesser known cousin, Stromboli. While slightly greasy, the original Stromboli, priced at $8.95, is a delicious shell of crust stuffed with cheese, pepperoni, and sausage to be dipped in a marinara sauce. The stromboli and pizza are made from scratch, which means a longer wait but presumably fresher food. Vegetarian and chicken options of the Stromboli are also available.

Carsonie’s offers treats such as Tiramisu priced at $4.95, and the Elephant Ear, priced at $3.95, a huge, delicious slab of fluffy fried dough covered in cinnamon sugar and dipped in chocolate.

The only catch: Carsonie’s does not open until 4 p.m. so lunch is not an option.

Five Guys Burgers and Fries

  • Price: $2-6
  • Distance: Seven minutes by car* (expected to open in November) to 1004 West 5th Avenue, Grandview location

The name gives a clear idea of what to expect at Five Guys Burgers and Fries. Not variety, because there is little more on the menu than variations of the burger and defintely not ambience, because the walls are decorated mostly by burger reviews and awards.

Customers come to Five Guys Burgers and Fries for one reason—an unbeatable burger and fries. Simply taking a bite, something is noticeably different from the average fast food restaurant. The difference is the promise of fresh, never frozen burgers cooked right in front of you, topped with a delicious bun and 15 different free burger toppings.

The fries are similar. Made from only Idaho potatoes, they are delicious, salty, and don’t feel too greasy. They are a nice change of pace from the thin, and often fake-tasting fast-food restaurant fries.

By simply walking into Five Guys Burgers and Fries, it is obvious that it is not attempting to be orthodox fast-food. Waist-high sacks of potatoes line the route to the cash register, and open boxes of unshelled peanuts give the customer something to munch on as they order.

The decor is not what Five Guys concentrates its efforts on. They simply focus on making honest, mouth-watering burgers and salty fries, at which they do an excellent job.

Pho Asian Noodle House & Grill

  • Price: $5-8
  • Distance: Five minutes by car* to 1288 W. Lane Ave. location

The first impression of Pho Asian Noodle House and Grill is not exactly positive. The Lane Avenue location still evokes memories of the Taco Bell it replaced with the cheap-looking brick exterior and low ceilings.

Despite the less than impressive appearance, the food tells a different story. The multitude of options make ordering difficult, but the food is tasty, and made quickly. Food options ranges from Vietnamese to Thai to Chinese, all delicious options.

Though the atmosphere and interior are less than impressive, the food is worth trying. The drive through allows customers to enjoy the food on the go, making this a desirable lunch spot.

Bruegger’s Bagels

  • Price: $1-5
  • Distance: Two minutes by car* to Lane Avenue location

The lack of bagel shops in Upper Arlington has been a long-standing problem, but a solution is near with the arrival of Bruegger’s Bagels. Soon toasty and fresh-cooked bagels can be enjoyed at Bruegger’s newest location on Lane Avenue.

Variety is Bruegger’s greatest advantage. The options range from the plain bagel with plain cream cheese to Jalapeno bagel with Bacon Scallion cream cheese. With a total of 21 types of bagels and 13 different types of cream cheese, the options are practically endless.

The choices do not end there. Also on the menu are baked goods including muffins, cookies and brownies, a variety of salads, and soups. For the morning meal, Bruegger’s offers a variety of breakfast sandwiches and coffee as well. But for those who prefer simplicity the classic plain bagel with plain cream cheese is still available, too.