Columbus Cafe

★★★★☆
  • 535 Columbus Ave

    Boston, MA 02118

    Map & Directions
  • 617-247-9001

About Columbus Cafe

Categories
Hours
Monday To Friday From 11:30 AM To 11:30 PM Saturday To Sunday From 09:00 AM To 11:30 PM

Food

Food
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I can not believe the reviews below. Columbus Cafe is a truly neighborhood gem. Their menu is original, and has a strong South American flavor, which I love, love, love. They always have fresh seafood on the menu. And if you are lucky, and the menu has lobster raviolli, go for it! Amazing. It is so close to my place, that I take all of my out of town visitors there and yet to hear a disappointing review.

5
★★★★★

I can not believe the reviews below. Columbus Cafe is a truly neighborhood gem. Their menu is original, and has a strong South American flavor, which I love, love, love. They always have fresh seafood on the menu. And if you are lucky, and the menu has lobster raviolli, go for it! Amazing. It is so close to my place, that I take all of my out of town visitors there and yet to hear a disappointing review.

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Columbus Cafe is just ok. The food is basic and not very appealing however the bar is quaint inside and always packed. The weekends draw a large brunch crowd when people can sit outside as does the bar until late into the evening.

2
★★☆☆☆

Columbus Cafe is just ok. The food is basic and not very appealing however the bar is quaint inside and always packed. The weekends draw a large brunch crowd when people can sit outside as does the bar until late into the evening.

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The Columbus Cafe has a lot of promise. The outdoor seating is there year round and is fantastic, the bar is so quaint and comfortable and the service is entertaining. But the food is just barely mediocre and the menu is extremely limited. Although I live quite close to Columbus Cafe I rarely if ever choose if for a meal. I recommend checking out one of the other 4 restaurants on the same block.

2
★★☆☆☆

The Columbus Cafe has a lot of promise. The outdoor seating is there year round and is fantastic, the bar is so quaint and comfortable and the service is entertaining. But the food is just barely mediocre and the menu is extremely limited. Although I live quite close to Columbus Cafe I rarely if ever choose if for a meal. I recommend checking out one of the other 4 restaurants on the same block.

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The food here is decent. I don't think Ive had anything ive ever been disappointed by, and even a few things I really did like. The bar is O.K., the odd movies choices turn from interesting to mildly annoying, however. Burger is good...meatloaf is respectable...the fries need to be fried more...I've had a few that are still raw in the middle.

2
★★★★☆

The food here is decent. I don't think Ive had anything ive ever been disappointed by, and even a few things I really did like. The bar is O.K., the odd movies choices turn from interesting to mildly annoying, however. Burger is good...meatloaf is respectable...the fries need to be fried more...I've had a few that are still raw in the middle.

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Only go to this restaurant/bar if you want to feel like an outcast from the crowd! I was enjoying drinks with my girlfriend when an employee (older, i'd guess manager or owner) started saying belligerent things to us while we were sitting in the corner on the right, by the window, minding our own business. He honestly made me feel like I was 12 years old (I'm 32). I'm not sure why an employee would attempt to lure customers away from the restaurant but that is apparently what they do at this bar. I will not go back because I was insulted and confused as to why the manager/owner would find it necessary to get hammered and cause people to leave.

0
★☆☆☆☆

Only go to this restaurant/bar if you want to feel like an outcast from the crowd! I was enjoying drinks with my girlfriend when an employee (older, i'd guess manager or owner) started saying belligerent things to us while we were sitting in the corner on the right, by the window, minding our own business. He honestly made me feel like I was 12 years old (I'm 32). I'm not sure why an employee would attempt to lure customers away from the restaurant but that is apparently what they do at this bar. I will not go back because I was insulted and confused as to why the manager/owner would find it necessary to get hammered and cause people to leave.

Pros: great drinks

Cons: uncomfortable environment

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I really enjoyed having a few drinks here last weekend. The bar is really small, the bartender was friendly, and the atmosphere was cool. The night was going great until the owner made my whole group feel uncomfortable. He was with a posse of his friends yelling at our group on our way out. It sounds like this might be some sort of trend. I won't go back until Columbus Cafe is under new management.

0
★☆☆☆☆

I really enjoyed having a few drinks here last weekend. The bar is really small, the bartender was friendly, and the atmosphere was cool. The night was going great until the owner made my whole group feel uncomfortable. He was with a posse of his friends yelling at our group on our way out. It sounds like this might be some sort of trend. I won't go back until Columbus Cafe is under new management.

Pros: small cozy bar, cool bartender

Cons: the owner

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Where to begin. I live in the neighborhood and have wanted to adopt this as "my neighborhood bar." It is close, seemingly unpretentious, and the space has the potential to be something great. The food is so-so, but the bar is a great place to grab an appetizer and a good drink....if you aren't run off by the "in crowd" (aka dressed-in black pseudo intellects) that take over the place every day. While leaving the bar with two friends after what would have otherwise been characterized as a great night, the owner--yes, the OWNER, and a group of other pseudo-intellects said, "goodbye kids" (we are late 20s) in a surprisingly aggressive tone. We were a little off-put by this but didn't think much of it until my husband, who was waiting for us with our dog, said that the same group of people (owner included) had been flat out making fun of him and our dog for no apparent reason. I am really disheartened at how the owner of a neighborhood restaurant would treat his loyal patrons. I will not be back to Columbus Cafe and would encourage others not to go there as well. It's unfortunate, because the place has a lot of potential.

0
★☆☆☆☆

Where to begin. I live in the neighborhood and have wanted to adopt this as "my neighborhood bar." It is close, seemingly unpretentious, and the space has the potential to be something great. The food is so-so, but the bar is a great place to grab an appetizer and a good drink....if you aren't run off by the "in crowd" (aka dressed-in black pseudo intellects) that take over the place every day. While leaving the bar with two friends after what would have otherwise been characterized as a great night, the owner--yes, the OWNER, and a group of other pseudo-intellects said, "goodbye kids" (we are late 20s) in a surprisingly aggressive tone. We were a little off-put by this but didn't think much of it until my husband, who was waiting for us with our dog, said that the same group of people (owner included) had been flat out making fun of him and our dog for no apparent reason. I am really disheartened at how the owner of a neighborhood restaurant would treat his loyal patrons. I will not be back to Columbus Cafe and would encourage others not to go there as well. It's unfortunate, because the place has a lot of potential.

Pros: Lots of potential

Cons: What are the drawbacks?

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During my visit to Boston, my friend Tom took me in for a drink and the place has a great vibe... attentive and friendly bartenders and relaxed and interesting clientele. It's very small but more in a cozy way than an annoying way. On Sunday morning, before I left town, we had breakfast there and I had the best eggs florentine I've ever had.

2
★★★★★

During my visit to Boston, my friend Tom took me in for a drink and the place has a great vibe... attentive and friendly bartenders and relaxed and interesting clientele. It's very small but more in a cozy way than an annoying way. On Sunday morning, before I left town, we had breakfast there and I had the best eggs florentine I've ever had.

Pros: Great food, great people, great ambiance.

Cons: Very small.

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A great little (small, but in a good way) place in the south end with lots of regulars. Seats aren?t on top of each other and it never gets too loud. All of the food is uncomplicated and full of flavor - proving that the chef, whoever s/he is, knows what they're doing. The service is always full of smiles and recommendations, so if you don't know, ask! They'll give you honest opinions.

2
★★★★★

A great little (small, but in a good way) place in the south end with lots of regulars. Seats aren?t on top of each other and it never gets too loud. All of the food is uncomplicated and full of flavor - proving that the chef, whoever s/he is, knows what they're doing. The service is always full of smiles and recommendations, so if you don't know, ask! They'll give you honest opinions.

Pros: Affordable without sacrificing anything

Cons: Bar can get crowded fast

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Coming from out of town, my fiance and I really liked this place - interesting and flavorful food, decent small wine list, and really adorable waitstaff. Mostly we loved the ambiance, very chill & down to earth. It's quiet, dark, and cozy enough to sit there for a couple of hours having animated conversation or just listening & people watching. The Rhode Island calamari was delicious; the fried plantains weren't quite what I expected (more like chip-patties) but also flavorful.

2
★★★★★

Coming from out of town, my fiance and I really liked this place - interesting and flavorful food, decent small wine list, and really adorable waitstaff. Mostly we loved the ambiance, very chill & down to earth. It's quiet, dark, and cozy enough to sit there for a couple of hours having animated conversation or just listening & people watching. The Rhode Island calamari was delicious; the fried plantains weren't quite what I expected (more like chip-patties) but also flavorful.

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To be fair, this is primarily review of the bar side of the Columbus Cafe and not the restaurant. The South End has precious few places with liquor licenses so the primary draw (for me) is the cozy little bar space of the Columbus. Desserts are decent but the reason to visit is as a easy to get to place for drinks and great outside three season people-watching.

The restaurant is a very recent conversion from the Claremont Cafe which had arguably the best brunch in the neighborhood.

3
★★★☆☆

To be fair, this is primarily review of the bar side of the Columbus Cafe and not the restaurant. The South End has precious few places with liquor licenses so the primary draw (for me) is the cozy little bar space of the Columbus. Desserts are decent but the reason to visit is as a easy to get to place for drinks and great outside three season people-watching.

The restaurant is a very recent conversion from the Claremont Cafe which had arguably the best brunch in the neighborhood.

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I have eaten at this neighborhood South End restaurant many times, I?ve tried almost everything on its menu, and it has never disappointed me in its consistency in service and excellent meals. The waiters are always helpful, pleasant and agreeable. The atmosphere is romantic and the outdoor tables are a great alternative option. For the value in service, food, and satisfaction, your time and money will be well spent here!

2
★★★★★

I have eaten at this neighborhood South End restaurant many times, I?ve tried almost everything on its menu, and it has never disappointed me in its consistency in service and excellent meals. The waiters are always helpful, pleasant and agreeable. The atmosphere is romantic and the outdoor tables are a great alternative option. For the value in service, food, and satisfaction, your time and money will be well spent here!

Pros: food, service, atmosphere, value, quality

Cons: parking

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Although the ambiance inside is below mediocre, this is a great place to sit outside and enjoy their excellent food. One of the few places you can have really good mexican food in Boston - their enchiladas are excellent. We also had the Ceviche, which was very good. The service here is good as well.

2
★★★★☆

Although the ambiance inside is below mediocre, this is a great place to sit outside and enjoy their excellent food. One of the few places you can have really good mexican food in Boston - their enchiladas are excellent. We also had the Ceviche, which was very good. The service here is good as well.

Pros: great food, reasonable prices

Cons: ambiance inside not so great

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I've spent 33 + years in the catering / restaurant field. I've waited tables at some of Boston's "finest". The city has a lot of fun places to go for a meal, or a drink. Many in the South End. In my experience, Columbus Cafe is unique. Others have mentioned the cozy, casual decor, the well prepared , and presented food. What struck me was how welcome and comfortable I felt there. I couldn't figure it out at first, and had to go back again and again. I learned the owners and most of the staff have all worked together before. That shared history holds a bond of trust that translates into confidence, even on those rare occasions when things don't go right,( every one, every place, has bad nights sometimes). I know how hard it can be to find and develop a good staff. This place is blessed with a bright and gifted team. This has attracted a faithful following of regulars, who are in and of themselves part of the attraction. The close proximity of seats / stools in the bar provides ample opportunity to strike up conversation. One of the delights of this diverse crowd, is the mix of generations, from college students to retirees. Don't go there if your looking for the game on t.v. But if your looking for good food and drink, and good company, Columbus Cafe is hard to beat. Let their staff bring their gifts to your table or seat at the bar. They'll nourish your body and spirit.

2
★★★★★

I've spent 33 + years in the catering / restaurant field. I've waited tables at some of Boston's "finest". The city has a lot of fun places to go for a meal, or a drink. Many in the South End. In my experience, Columbus Cafe is unique. Others have mentioned the cozy, casual decor, the well prepared , and presented food. What struck me was how welcome and comfortable I felt there. I couldn't figure it out at first, and had to go back again and again. I learned the owners and most of the staff have all worked together before. That shared history holds a bond of trust that translates into confidence, even on those rare occasions when things don't go right,( every one, every place, has bad nights sometimes). I know how hard it can be to find and develop a good staff. This place is blessed with a bright and gifted team. This has attracted a faithful following of regulars, who are in and of themselves part of the attraction. The close proximity of seats / stools in the bar provides ample opportunity to strike up conversation. One of the delights of this diverse crowd, is the mix of generations, from college students to retirees. Don't go there if your looking for the game on t.v. But if your looking for good food and drink, and good company, Columbus Cafe is hard to beat. Let their staff bring their gifts to your table or seat at the bar. They'll nourish your body and spirit.

Pros: They deliver the whole package: Food, service, atmosphere. The bathroom

Cons: Parking, the bathroom

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Excellent food and great prices

I just started school at Northeastern and stumbled into the Columbus cafe, with a friend. We started off with mojitos, with sugar cane, they were perfect. We then shared the ceviche, Excellant! The steak was a perfect medium rare and the shepherds pie was just like moms. Dave are waiter was very friendly and recommended the shepherds pie. We then went to the bar and had a night cap and listened to music ranging from Jazz, 40s style, classic country to Brit pop. We left with big smiles and are coming back often.

2
★★★★★

Excellent food and great prices

I just started school at Northeastern and stumbled into the Columbus cafe, with a friend. We started off with mojitos, with sugar cane, they were perfect. We then shared the ceviche, Excellant! The steak was a perfect medium rare and the shepherds pie was just like moms. Dave are waiter was very friendly and recommended the shepherds pie. We then went to the bar and had a night cap and listened to music ranging from Jazz, 40s style, classic country to Brit pop. We left with big smiles and are coming back often.

Pros: great food, prices, drink selection

Cons: none

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My wife and I on a recent trip to Boston were lucky enough to find the Columbus Cafe. We had a wonderful dining experiance. We love to travel and our hobby is dinning out. The restruant was recommend by some locals we met and when we arrived we were promptly seated by our waiter Kevin. We enjoyed an excellent dish of Marlin and fava bean risoto. The fish was perfectly prepared moist and seasoned to prefection. The fava bean was unusual, but complimented the risoto prefectly. I dined on the Carribean Steak served with black beans and rice with plantains and fried egg. They have a great wine list and we shared a bottle of Montes Alpha Cab. We also found the Cafe's ambience to be very warm and friendy. The staff and our waiter Kevin were welcoming and professional. I woud rate the whole experience a 10. I must recommed that if you are in the Boston area you try this restaraunt.

2
★★★★★

My wife and I on a recent trip to Boston were lucky enough to find the Columbus Cafe. We had a wonderful dining experiance. We love to travel and our hobby is dinning out. The restruant was recommend by some locals we met and when we arrived we were promptly seated by our waiter Kevin. We enjoyed an excellent dish of Marlin and fava bean risoto. The fish was perfectly prepared moist and seasoned to prefection. The fava bean was unusual, but complimented the risoto prefectly. I dined on the Carribean Steak served with black beans and rice with plantains and fried egg. They have a great wine list and we shared a bottle of Montes Alpha Cab. We also found the Cafe's ambience to be very warm and friendy. The staff and our waiter Kevin were welcoming and professional. I woud rate the whole experience a 10. I must recommed that if you are in the Boston area you try this restaraunt.

Pros: Food, Service & value.

Cons: none

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I'm not usually fussy when it comes to a slightly long wait to be served. My party of two however, waited 1 hour 45 minutes from the time we were seated to the time we saw our entrees. By that time we had asked our server, who was very polite, to pack our meals to go. One note concerning the menu, we'd ordered the five layer dip for an appetizer. When it finally arrived 45 minutes later we realized that it was served cold. I'm not certain, but I've never been served cold refried beans before, so I suspect that the dish was rushed out to us without baking the dip, 45 minutes after ordering it.
Ontop of all this is the fact that its a relatively small restaurant, probably seating around 50, and we only waited 5 minutes to be seated, so it was not an extremely busy night.
I look forward to reheating my seafood gumbo and seeing what it tastes like, maybe I'll write another review. I will not be returning under any circumstances though.

0
★☆☆☆☆

I'm not usually fussy when it comes to a slightly long wait to be served. My party of two however, waited 1 hour 45 minutes from the time we were seated to the time we saw our entrees. By that time we had asked our server, who was very polite, to pack our meals to go. One note concerning the menu, we'd ordered the five layer dip for an appetizer. When it finally arrived 45 minutes later we realized that it was served cold. I'm not certain, but I've never been served cold refried beans before, so I suspect that the dish was rushed out to us without baking the dip, 45 minutes after ordering it.
Ontop of all this is the fact that its a relatively small restaurant, probably seating around 50, and we only waited 5 minutes to be seated, so it was not an extremely busy night.
I look forward to reheating my seafood gumbo and seeing what it tastes like, maybe I'll write another review. I will not be returning under any circumstances though.

Pros: Friendly staff

Cons: Slow kitchen

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I have the luxury of living within a block of this gem, which I visit at least once a week when I don't feel like cooking. The relaxed atmosphere and the waitstaff are totally inviting without smothering... The food is amazing... Dinners are varied and inventive, while still feeling like relaxed comfort food. You have to check Columbus Cafe for their delicious weekend brunch. They offer an Omelet and a Fritatta special which are ever- changing. But you must try the Eggs Florentine...I have had brunch at many of the cities "best" restaurants, but Columbus Cafe beats them every time!!! keep up the great work!!

2
★★★★★

I have the luxury of living within a block of this gem, which I visit at least once a week when I don't feel like cooking. The relaxed atmosphere and the waitstaff are totally inviting without smothering... The food is amazing... Dinners are varied and inventive, while still feeling like relaxed comfort food. You have to check Columbus Cafe for their delicious weekend brunch. They offer an Omelet and a Fritatta special which are ever- changing. But you must try the Eggs Florentine...I have had brunch at many of the cities "best" restaurants, but Columbus Cafe beats them every time!!! keep up the great work!!

Pros: atmosphere, menu, outdoor seating

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Slowly, this intimate, modestly priced restaurant has emerged with great food at a fantatic bargain, and our favorite neighborhood dining spot! Located at the corner of Claremont & Columbus (replacing the Claremont Cafe), it took a few months to get settled on a basic international menu of varied seasonings where no entree is over $16. Now bolstered by daily specials, valet parking, reliable reservations, friendly wait staff and an impressive wine list, this is the best quality restaurant for value in the South End. Nothing on the menu is a disappointment. I wish the number of dessert selections were larger, but 8 times out of 10, we've been too full to do more than share a slice of rich chocolate layer cake. I do recommend reservations, but the adjacent bar serves full meals at small tables, and walk-ins have only a short wait.

2
★★★★★

Slowly, this intimate, modestly priced restaurant has emerged with great food at a fantatic bargain, and our favorite neighborhood dining spot! Located at the corner of Claremont & Columbus (replacing the Claremont Cafe), it took a few months to get settled on a basic international menu of varied seasonings where no entree is over $16. Now bolstered by daily specials, valet parking, reliable reservations, friendly wait staff and an impressive wine list, this is the best quality restaurant for value in the South End. Nothing on the menu is a disappointment. I wish the number of dessert selections were larger, but 8 times out of 10, we've been too full to do more than share a slice of rich chocolate layer cake. I do recommend reservations, but the adjacent bar serves full meals at small tables, and walk-ins have only a short wait.

Pros: Inexpensive, Great Food, Atmosphere

Cons: Parking

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I've been to the Columbus Cafe twice now and love the place. I live in NY but have family in Boston and we've gone for dinner there my last two trips. The food is excellent! There is something on the menu for everyone's taste. I highly recommend trying a few different dishes to share with the table - the calamari is to die for. They made some tortilla treats (can't remember the name), and we ordered another plate because 3 of us devoured them in minutes! Everything has a home made taste - gourmet, but still comfort food. It's a great place for a group, or even for a romantic date.
The place is so pretty and cozy - you could stay all night. Oh - and don't forget to get a drink at the bar, very cool vibe and great drinks. Music selection is excellent!

2
★★★★★

I've been to the Columbus Cafe twice now and love the place. I live in NY but have family in Boston and we've gone for dinner there my last two trips. The food is excellent! There is something on the menu for everyone's taste. I highly recommend trying a few different dishes to share with the table - the calamari is to die for. They made some tortilla treats (can't remember the name), and we ordered another plate because 3 of us devoured them in minutes! Everything has a home made taste - gourmet, but still comfort food. It's a great place for a group, or even for a romantic date.
The place is so pretty and cozy - you could stay all night. Oh - and don't forget to get a drink at the bar, very cool vibe and great drinks. Music selection is excellent!

Pros: Food, Interior Design, Bar

Cons: None

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I found the Columbus to offer a casual and inviting atmosphere. The proximity of the dining tables coupled with the ambience of friendly neighborhood chuckles persuaded me to strike up a conversation with the patron sitting next to me.

I observed smiling servers gaiting from the kitchen to the adjacent dinning area carrying large brunch plates consisting of Belgian waffles, fruit, and omelets.

I had the huevos rancheros. After the first few bites, I considered my meal to be very rich in flavor and highly complimented with homemade salsa and a side of English muffins. It is apparent the head chef has done his homework.

In my experience, for a warm and friendly atmosphere, which is dually matched by the perfection and authenticity of the handsome portions at a price that is reasonable, I would highly suggest making the Columbus Cafe in the South End of Boston your next stop!

2
★★★★★

I found the Columbus to offer a casual and inviting atmosphere. The proximity of the dining tables coupled with the ambience of friendly neighborhood chuckles persuaded me to strike up a conversation with the patron sitting next to me.

I observed smiling servers gaiting from the kitchen to the adjacent dinning area carrying large brunch plates consisting of Belgian waffles, fruit, and omelets.

I had the huevos rancheros. After the first few bites, I considered my meal to be very rich in flavor and highly complimented with homemade salsa and a side of English muffins. It is apparent the head chef has done his homework.

In my experience, for a warm and friendly atmosphere, which is dually matched by the perfection and authenticity of the handsome portions at a price that is reasonable, I would highly suggest making the Columbus Cafe in the South End of Boston your next stop!

Pros: atmosphere, price, authenticity

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I recently visited the Columbus Cafe with my wife and friends. We had a terrific, well-priced meal and a great time afterwards in the bar. I ordered the Argentine steak and my wife had the chicken enchiladas. Both were delicious. Our friends ordered the butternut squash ravioli and the tuna special which was cooked to perfection. We topped off the evening at the adjacent bar, relaxing to a great mix of music and Buster Keaton reruns. Kelly the bartender had us laughing in stitches. I highly recommend this place before it gets too crowded!

2
★★★★★

I recently visited the Columbus Cafe with my wife and friends. We had a terrific, well-priced meal and a great time afterwards in the bar. I ordered the Argentine steak and my wife had the chicken enchiladas. Both were delicious. Our friends ordered the butternut squash ravioli and the tuna special which was cooked to perfection. We topped off the evening at the adjacent bar, relaxing to a great mix of music and Buster Keaton reruns. Kelly the bartender had us laughing in stitches. I highly recommend this place before it gets too crowded!

Pros: food quality, ambience, price value

Cons: none

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We were so sad when the Claremont closed but have been delighted with their replacement. The Columbus Cafe has a wonderfully eclectic menu, and everything I have tried has been wonderful. The prices are very reasonable and the food is excellent. I would definitely recommend this restaurant.

2
★★★★★

We were so sad when the Claremont closed but have been delighted with their replacement. The Columbus Cafe has a wonderfully eclectic menu, and everything I have tried has been wonderful. The prices are very reasonable and the food is excellent. I would definitely recommend this restaurant.

Pros: price, food, atmosphere

Cons: none

Editorial from

Picking up where the Claremont cafe left off, this funky neighborhood cafe aims to please everyone with its wildly eclectic menu, veering from Mexican to Italian to American and back again. Of course, you know what they say about…

 

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