It's GastroPub Week! All week long, we're blogging about the Columbus gastropub and what it means for visitors. Join us Thursday, Aug. 8 at 2 p.m. on Twitter for a chat all about - you guessed it: gastropubs, co-hosted by Cheryl Harrison of DrinkUpColumbus.com - follow along, ask questions and give your recommendations using #CbusChat.
The Pearl, the newest concept from Columbus restaurant impresario Cameron Mitchell opened in the Short North this spring. Serving up oysters, great appetizers, updated pub fare and decadent pie for dessert, The Pearl has been a home-run. The tidy, rustic interior makes you feel this place has been here forever, and the service is easy-going but also attentive. It's just plain comfortable.
The beer list is extensive - and features one of the best selections of Belgian beers in the city. A slightly tart saison matches perfectly with briny oysters. You'll also find a fair number of Ohio-brewed beers in stock. I'd be remiss not to mention the Moscow Mule - a tangy concoction of vodka, ginger beer and lime juice served over crushed ice in a copper mug - it's everything a cocktail should be.
Appetizers range from deviled eggs and bacon wrapped dates to housemade sweet bread and butter pickles (wonderful) and jalapeño spoon bread (luxuriously paired with whipped butter and a pool of honey.) Entrees lean toward seafood, but also include a pub burger, braised short ribs and a vegetarian-friendly ricotta gnocchi dish.
Oysters, of course, take center stage. With several varieties to choose from, as well as several preparations (both raw and cooked) you'll leave The Pearl happy as a clam.