Arepazo Tapas and Wine
I love how well my friends know me. As I was planning my trip to Columbus, my best friend was planning our food journey. She had several places all mapped out that she had experienced. THIS was one of the places she chose. When I told my brother we would be in his neck of the woods, he made sure to clear the night. That’s how good this place is.
Arepazo is located near the Gahanna creekside area, but it isn’t on the same side of the street as the creek. It’s a block off of the main street.
Overall: 4.25 out of 5
Food/Beverage: 4.5 out of 5
Ambiance: 4.5 out of 5
Value: 4 out of 5
Service: 4 out of 5
The atmosphere was very cool!
I love those lights! Not too bright, not too dim.
And the bar area was beautiful too. The bar itself had a good amount of ledge, so if you ate there, you wouldn’t have to worry about whether or not you could pull all the way up to the bar if you were eating at it.
Our waitress was good. Provided quick service, and answered all the questions asked. She wasn’t too familiar with the menu, but did get answers to all of the questions we asked.
Looking over the menu, I was overwhelmed with all of the amazing choices. They have a great selection of appetizers, tapas and entrée size meals. My friend and I decided to share several tapas, so that we could taste a larger portion of the options.
For our first choice, we picked the steak kabobs.
Looking at the menu now, I don’t see it listed. But it was steak in a chimichurri sauce with tomatoes. The steak was tender, and cooked well. There was plenty of sauce, which was salty and full of cilantro.
The Peruvian ceviche was my favorite part of our meal. For $9, we got this good sized portion of talapia, marinated in lime juice, with corn, onions and avocado. My only complaint about this was the small amount of chips we were served with it.
The Venezuelan Empanaditas, stuffed with beef, chicken and black bean and cheese, were served with a cilantro sauce. The dish was $8, and well worth it. The fillings were perfectly seasoned and the outside was very unique. When I’ve had empanadas at other restaurants, the shell has been more of a flaky pastry. This one was a corn meal style shell. It was a little mushier than the other style, but from what I was told it is more traditional. I honestly don’t know, but it was good.
We also ordered the fried green plantains (tostones con hogao $7). They were crispy and soft at the same time and came with a delicious dipping sauce. I’ve ordered this dish at another restaurant and was terrified at how something could taste so much like cardboard and be a vegetable…but not here. They were delicious.
My brother ordered this amazing steak entrée. I can’t remember what it was called, but it was steak, rice, avocado and fried plantains with onions and peppers. I believe it was called the Peruvian lomo saltado ($13). Whatever they called it, the dish was delicious.
They had several choices on the kids menu that all sounded good. Our young diners tried the ham and cheese empanada and the chicken tenders. The chicken nuggets were a huge hit, and the empanada, while a delicious treat to the adults, was not as popular with the young ones. They weren’t a fan of the outer shell. The other kid complaint was the lack of coloring pages. The kids menu was located on the adult menu, so they had to entertain themselves while we waited for our food. Fortunately, it was quick to come out.
Overall, this was a place I would frequent if I were still living in Columbus, Ohio. I can’t wait until the next time I visit so that we can go back again.