A custom blend of bourbon. A thick steak grilled to perfection. A moist cake covered in coconut and served in a pool of warm chocolate. Need I say more?
The Barn at Rocky Fork Creek, Cameron Mitchell’s latest addition to Gahanna’s culinary scene (joining Cap City Diner), is a slice of heaven on earth. The restaurant, located at 1370 E. Johnstown Road, at the corner of Route 62 and Morse Road, looks like a combination of a rustic farmhouse and a comfortable den on a Kentucky horse farm.
A highlight of the “upscale casual” Barn is its spectacular Bourbon Bar – which offers more than 60 bourbons in addition to two different bourbon blends that were especially created for the restaurant by Woodford Reserve. (And can we boast that “Whiskey Pete,” who led the new bourbon tastings at the Gahanna Convention & Visitors Bureau’s Creekside Blues & Jazz Festival, consulted with the restaurant in designing the bar? We knew we loved that man!) Not a regular bourbon drinker? Try a bourbon “flight” and sample!
The menu itself offers something for everyone – traditional steakhouse fare, seafood, ribs and burgers. During my recent trip to The Barn, my husband and I decided to forego mouth-watering appetizers and go straight to entrees (I already was thinking ahead to dessert….). We took the “when in Rome” approach and ordered the chateaubriand for two. While waiting for our dinner to arrive, we watched a worker slice ribs in the restaurant’s own cut house, which is separated from the eating area by a big glass wall. We also challenged each other with an informal game of “I Spy,” identifying items from Hoggy’s that are displayed throughout the restaurant in an unspoken homage to the building’s predecessor. (Even the infamous tractor that hung over Hoggy’s restaurant floor can be found on the property…look carefully!)
As for dinner itself, as my kids would say, “OMG.” The beef was perfectly cooked as ordered and melted in the mouth. There was just the right amount of accompanying roasted vegetables and potatoes, and our side order of creamed spinach (one of our favorites) was made with an ideal balance of spinach and cream.
When I thought dinner couldn’t get any better, dessert arrived….the infamous coconut cake that I had heard so much about. And it was worth waiting for! The high-rise cake (think of the large cake slices served at Cap City Diner) was like eating an Almond Joy bar without the nuts. Covered in coconut, the cake was served in a small pool of warm chocolate. My only challenge was trying to beat my husband to bites of the cake…
I’m already looking forward to our next visit there (it’s such a success that reservations are definitely required!). In the meantime, perhaps I’ll swing by for a takeout slice of that cake….
~Post by Laurie Jadwin, Executive Director
Gahanna OH Convention and Visitors Bureau