The Short Story Brasserie is the gastronomic brainchild of owner James Housteau and Executive Chef Robert Harrison, whose shared love for fine wine and European cuisine translates into this escapist’s paradise set along a picturesque country road in rural Ohio. Short Story's seasonal menu invokes the comforting pleasures of fine dining with fabled small plates such as the crispy macaroni and cheese, featuring luxurious lobster and black truffle ($14). Larger plates include the pan-roasted sea scallops with truffled cauliflower custard and lobster hollandaise ($25), whose gussied-up presentation impresses sea-worn Ishmaels and grizzled gourmands alike. Pair the scallops with a chardonnay ($8) or dangle dangerously from a cliff of libations with the No No Martini ($9), a harmonious medley of Grey Goose vodka, pear nectar, and ginger liqueur.
True to its name, Flags and Beyond doesn't simply stock the stars and stripes. Its catalog boasts colorful banners for both general decoration and holiday cheer. Seasonal flags ring in autumn with images of kittens lounging in a jack-o'-lantern or honor spring with Easter bunnies and painted eggs. Alternatively, a selection of patriotic flags includes classic American symbols, such as the Liberty Bell and a soaring eagle carrying George Washington in its talons. Flags for everyday display proclaim welcoming phrases, from There's no place like home to You are my sunshine! And for added exterior decor, the store carries creative mailbox covers that delight neighbors and mail carriers alike.
Despite its inland locale, Pappy's Grill on 79 models itself after a seaside paradise in the Florida Keys. The dining room's walls open wide to let in evening breezes, which intermingle with the aromas of seafood and bar classics. In the kitchen, he hand-breads shrimp, beer-batters frog legs, and tops thick-cut bologna sandwiches with a sauce forged from a secret recipe known only to the spies hidden behind his grill. His bartending staff whip up island-style cocktails and fill 120-ounce towers with beer, which patrons can imbibe while keeping abreast of the latest Buckeye games or sporting events.