Did you know that CbusFoodBloggers consists of over 50 different bloggers/instagrammers? Some of us you may already
stalk follow, and others you haven’t yet had the chance to meet! In an effort to help our readers get to know us and the bloggers behind our group, we conduct monthly interview highlighting one of our members. This month, we have Erin Wanke from Feed Me Greens!
- How did you become a food blogger? What is the theme of your blog/IG?
I’ve always been interested in health and wellness, and worked in clinical research for 8 years. When I had my second child, I switched gears and decided to follow my passion and enroll at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition to become certified as a health coach. I originally started my blog and IG as a way to share health and wellness information with clients and followers – which I still do – but now I also incorporate healthy vegetarian recipes, products, and foods, including some of my favorite spots and items throughout Columbus.
- What is your favorite thing to cook for yourself or others?
I’ve been vegetarian for 20+ years, so I love showing people that eating meat-free isn’t all boring and broccoli and can taste so good! I think that messaging is coming through more these days, but I talk to a lot of people who say they don’t know what they would eat if they had to eat vegetarian all the time. I like to show them meals that taste so good they don’t miss the meat! I have taught cooking classes for the past year and half at Giant Eagle in Upper Arlington, and one of my favorites was a Vegetarian Mexican theme with spicy tofu adobo bowls and roasted sweet potato/black bean tacos.
- What makes the Columbus food scene great? Or what would you change?
I love the Columbus food scene! We have lived in several other cities, including Chicago and Seattle, and when we first moved here, we were really impressed with all that Columbus offers as a smaller city. There’s something for everyone, whether you want juice, toasts, and smoothie bowls (Zest, Native, Alchemy, Trism) or a steakhouse (The Avenue, Hyde Park, or the soon to open Jeff Ruby’s). Between Brassica, Piada, Fusian, and BibiBop, there’s tons of quick “build your own meal” options.
The local emphasis here is impressive, whether you’re visiting a farmer’s market or eating locally sourced food at a restaurant. 1400 Food Lab is a really cool space in Marble Cliff, a commercial kitchen that focuses on helping food related entrepreneurs and food trucks get started and run their businesses. They also host cooking classes and events.
- What restaurant(s) is at the top of your “must try” list?
Third and Hollywood is one of my favorite go-tos. Their black bean and corn veggie burger is one of my favorites in the city, and their garlicky greens and housemade ricotta is enough to convert anyone who thinks they don’t like chard! Add to that their cheddar herb biscuits and amazing margaritas, and I always leave here happy. I also love Basi, Harvest Kitchen in Clintonville (amazing brussels sprouts, good veggie burger, great salad options, and their “Spicy Yuma” pizza – without chorizo – is my fave!), and Tasi in the Short North for brunch (love their poached eggs and black bean cake and the Greek scrambled eggs).
For quick food, what Eden Burger is doing with their vegan fast food concept is so good (and tastes great!).
- What’s (and where) the most memorable meal/dish you had recently?
We ate at Martini in the Short North recently, and I had forgotten how much I love their butternut squash tortelloni! The parmesan cream and marcona almonds are perfect with it.
Also, Nada in the Arena District has the world’s best queso dip with black bean puree, and balsamic grilled mushroom tacos.
- Give us the inside scoop — what’s your favorite happy hour, hole in the wall, or hidden gem in Columbus?
Of course I have to give a shout out to a plant-based place! Portia’s Café is a yummy vegan restaurant on Indianola. Also, LaTavola is a small Italian space in Grandview with amazing pasta. And finally, for wine lovers, House Wine in Worthington is a cozy spot with a knowledgeable staff who make wine buying easy.
- What is your favorite locally made food product?
I love to check out North Market spices!
- Some of us are not full-time food bloggers. If you are not, what is your “real” job?
I work as a health coach, seeing clients and teaching cooking classes, and also as a mom to three little ones who help with kitchen mess-making and taste testing.
- Tell us an interesting fact about yourself!
I love yoga and am hoping to become certified as an instructor – some day when I can find a program that works out schedule-wise!
Erin, the Spiffy Cookie