Third & Hollywood - Americana Refined

1433 West Third Ave., Grandview Heights, OH 43212 (614) 488-2303

 
WHAT:
Immediately feel the embrace of an emanating warmth as you step inside Third & Hollywood. You’ll want to experience the bar for a bit simply to reflect upon the ambient details in the décor, which with large black walnut-framed mirrors, you can take it all in. These pieces, coupled with a dark, open ceiling, lend to presenting a spacious, yet cozy setting. Enjoy a draft as you observe the swirling wait staff, all youthful in gleaming white Oxfords and denim, taut ponytails and sculpted faces. We tried the Dortmunder Gold Lager and were pleased with its spiced hop zest. This spot exudes a classic Americana vibe replete with a vintage collection of art and jazz echoing in the background.
 
WHO:
Owner Kevin Malhame, of Northstar fame, opened Third & Hollywood in 2009 and speaks passionately about his recruited staff and mission. The restaurant, he says, was designed and built to be both casual and elegant, familiar and extraordinary. And who could deny his food fervor when he keeps a fact sheet as a testament to his commitment to using locally grown, organic ingredients. When asked about the restaurant’s classic Americana theme, he says, “This place is not intended to be unique; it’s just intended to be good.”

WHEN:
This spot opens Monday through Thursday for dinner only at 5:30 p.m. There’s no predetermined closing hour; staff simply waits until business dies down. You can find brunch and lunch here Friday, Saturday and Sunday, starting at 11:30 a.m. and going until 4:00 p.m. Dinner starts at 5:30 p.m. Reservations aren’t required, though strongly suggested. Diners can find a covered patio here as well, in full view of the bustling Grandview neighborhood.

WHERE:
Many of Third & Hollywood’s staff consider Grandview one of Columbus’ enduring great neighborhoods. Their hope is to become a permanently loved neighborhood restaurant that stays a valuable part of the community

for years to come. Nestled away in a historic side-street building, the restaurant takes the place of former popular bar, Gibby’s. The spot was completely gutted and rebuilt. You’ll find complimentary valet parking here, which, if you don’t mind leaving a tip, is a great option. Parking spaces in this area might be hard to come by.

THE TEST:
We made our way to our table, where owner Malhame was gracious enough to join us. Plates arrived quickly here, whole grilled artichokes to start. These char-grilled globes thrilled us with their crispy, soft leaves, all so boldly complimented by the Creole remoulade we dunked them in. Drinks arrived. Start with a lighter signature drink, such as the Fitzgerald, a fizzy Tangueray Gin tonic with fresh lemon juice and organic cane syrup.

Mussels came next. What uber-trendy restaurant doesn’t include these meaty morsels as part of their offerings – so sweet, delicate, plump and delicious – all artfully touched by a chef’s own blend of seasonings. These premium Blue Hill Bay mussels travel from Maine and are hand-selected and shipped overnight. Grilled croutons flank this bowl; the mussels’ tasty juices soak up the crusty ends.

Rounding out these starters came a plate of tortilla chips with hefty clumps of avocado dip and pimento cheese spread. This isn’t the usual processed cheese. Here, it’s spiced up with pimento, Gouda and Parmesan cheeses. To get ready for the next line-up, we were offered hot cloth napkins, necessary, yet unexpected.

The heirloom tomatoes up next stunned with their candy-like presence – so brightly colored that they could have passed for watermelon chunks. These splendors get treated with mustardy vinaigrette, basil, croutons and creamy rich goat cheese, which was so soft and fluffy, it melted in our mouths. It must be noted, as well, that every ingredient on this salad came from various Ohio farms, as is the case with most of this eatery’s dishes. One last small plate before the main event: Fontina bruschetta, super-salty prosciutto with a pesto-sage tapenade.

A beefy Maker’s Manhattan cocktail arrived with our main courses –icy, stiff and delicious – perfect for the pork we tried. These colossal chops were cooked up juicy pick and sweet and served with braised red cabbage and whole braised red pears.

The Alaskan Salmon with fingerling potatoes and green beans was sort of a side note to the red-rare cheeseburger we were served. This is the kind of gourmet burger one craves and expects when getting a homemade-tasting restaurant burger. The fries were equally gourmet tasting with a sprinkling of truffle salt, so subtle, but with great impact.

Lest it be forgotten, we were brought a pan of this restaurant’s signature cheese biscuits. We thought dessert had begun – they were so gooey looking with a melty buttery blend on top. So fantastic, it could have been our dessert. It was molten, garlic-tasting, and full of tasty scallions.

Last, but certainly not least, we were treated to lemon squares and a mammoth vessel of pecan pie sundae, which could have easily satisfied a family of four. We dipped deep for the warm pie, careful to be certain to get it, the ice cream and the whipped cream in every bite. In the end, we polished off these desserts with pressed French roast coffee, a final surprising, but impressionable touch.