If there’s one thing that unites the hard-working people of Columbus, it’s the simple pleasure of great food. When we sent out the call for our customers to give their favorite local restaurants a shout out in this year’s Best of Fooda Columbus awards, they responded loud and clear. Forget the fashionable fusion places and pricey gastropubs, they just want good grub. This year’s nominees are united in their devotion to top-notch ingredients, customizable menu items, and exceptional customer service. Let’s take a look at this year’s winners.
Best Entree of 2023 – Chicken Bowl from BIBIBOP Asian Grill
Inspired by the simplicity of traditional South Korean cooking, BIBIBOP Asian Grill specializes in serving high-quality, unprocessed, and healthy food. It’s the kind of wholesome meal that everyone can feel good about eating, particularly when compared to the typical delivery options of most fast-casual eateries. Their Chicken Bowl starts with a serving of roast chicken on a base of white rice, purple rice, noodles, or salad. Add a few hot toppings, like roasted sesame broccoli or black beans, and a few cold toppings, like cucumber or kimchi, and you have a perfectly personalized feel-good meal.
Runner Up: Ooey Gooey Mac & Cheese from Jessie Slice of Heaven
Best Customer Service – Jessie Slice of Heaven
Facebook: Jessie Slice of Heaven
Real soul food cooking is about more than just the ingredients. It’s about sharing the history of a community through family recipes and traditions that span generations. What soul food connoisseurs crave most of all is a deliciously authentic menu, spooned onto the plate by someone who cooks from the heart. Serving a menu of classic Southern soul food dishes, from “Mississippi Po Boy Sandwiches” to their signature “Ooey Gooey Mac N Cheese,” Jessie Slice of Heaven has nothing to prove when it comes to authenticity. This fact has helped them build a truly devoted following, delivering the top spot in the category by a wide margin.
Runner Up: BIBIBOP Asian Grill
Most Likely To Visit Outside Of Work – Hot Head Burritos
A true Ohio success story, Hot Head Burritos has grown from a single shop in Kettering to a sprawling franchise with more than 70 locations across the country. Their success is easy to understand, combining a classic Tex-Mex menu with a wide range of “mild and wild” flavor options. Add a healthy serving of nachos and their ever-so-slightly hot queso on the side, and you have a truly hunger-taming meal. The entire chain is known for having a relaxed and friendly Midwestern vibe, making Hot Head Burritos an easy choice for both a casual meetup or a quick meal. With a half-dozen locations in the Columbus area, you’re also never more than a short drive away.
Runner Up: Redtyes Family Kitchen
Best Overall Popup – BIBIBOP Asian Grill
One of the things that sets BIBIBOP apart from most national fast-casual chains is their dedication to providing delicious, affordable, and healthy foods that everyone can enjoy. This is as true at their popup catering as it is at their physical restaurants, where even the most steak-obsessed omnivores and gluten-intolerant vegetarians can happily order from the same menu. From a workplace catering perspective, BIBIBOP’s everyday menu is a logistical magic trick, creating a crowd-pleasing experience that your company’s crankiest eaters would struggle to grumble about. Combine this with a long track record of excellent customer service, and it’s not hard to understand why Fooda’s voters are big fans of BIBIBOP Asian Grill.
Runner Up: Redtyes Family Kitchen