Destination Dining: Follow the Foodies
As we embarked on our own food-driven adventures for the October cover story on Destination Dinner, we couldn’t help asking a couple of pros for their favorite meals worth the drive.
Last week, Kevin “Woody” Rider opened Divvy (71 W. City Center Dr., Carmel, 317-706-0000), a sleek, small-plate restaurant in Carmel’s Arts & Design District. This isn’t Rider’s first rodeo, though. In 1998, he transformed a historic 1913 Andrew Carnegie library into Woody’s Library Restaurant (40 E. Main St., Carmel, 317-573-4444), an haute Hoosier eatery that is still going strong. Before that, he owned Parcel Pizza, and he opened the rural-gourmet outpost Bonge’s Tavern (9830 W. 280 North, Perkinsville,765-734-1625), a spot famous for its pre-meal tailgating. Divvy—for which Rider has enlisted his wife Richelle (who was chef at Scholar’s Inn for 10 years) to helm the kitchen—lists Thai chili-frizzled frogs legs with creme fraiche, pheasant sausage, and petite buffalo burgers among its small-plates offerings.
What makes this Columbus institution really sweet is the counter-side charm of Wilma Hare and her fellow soda jerks, who will pull you an ice cream soda the way it was in 1900 and serve it with a side of sass: “When that ice cream hits the carbonation, it will explode like a volcano. And I will laugh at the look of panic on your face.”