Goody Boy Diner offers a new look after spring renovations and maintains the traditional menu

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New lounge and installation at the Goody Boy Diner in the Short North Arts District in Columbus, Ohio. Credit: Courtesy of Allix Newport

Michael’s Goody Boy Diner retired its black-and-white checkered restaurant style and reopened in spring 2022 with a modern look after renovations in March.

As one of the oldest culinary destinations in the Short North Arts District, Goody Boy will mix its traditional cuisine with an updated neighborhood bar and lounge atmosphere, Justin Kintz, executive director of One Hospitality – an organization that consists of ten restaurants and bars in Central Ohio – said.

“Goody Boy will always carry on the tradition of its original restaurant style in one way or another. That’s what makes it so special,” Kintz said.

Although the interior and patio have been renovated, Goody Boy’s traditional restaurant vibe is retained in the food and drink menus, Kintz said.

“Goody Boy still has the same tasty burgers and fries, with milkshakes and everything we used to offer,” Kintz said. “We are really trying to mix this old tradition with a new feel and design as we didn’t want the same black and white checkered restaurant feel anymore.”

One Hospitality took ownership of what was originally Michael’s Goody Boy in 2019, Kintz said. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the company was forced to review Goody Boy’s position in the neighborhood.

Kintz said the restaurant has always sought to be inclusive since it was opened by Micheal Pappas in the 1940s.

“As Goody Boy never really targeted a specific audience, the new setup is really meant to keep everyone involved in the community,” Kintz said. “Whether they’re just coming in for lunch or dinner, stopping in to watch a game or even just lounging around and having a few drinks, Goody Boy’s new setup doesn’t cater to just one agenda.”

Kintz said that while Columbus continues to gain new business, the atmosphere at Goody Boy is unmatched.

“There are a lot of large-scale destinations coming into the Short North,” Kintz said. “It really helps Goody Boy stand out because it’s continued to serve the same tradition in the same neighborhood for about 80 years, and people can’t really get that with these up-and-coming new restaurants and bars.”

Zac Ignatious, head bartender at Goody Boy, said the bar scene focuses on local craft beers around Columbus and the rest of Ohio, such as Land grant Lemon Glow, Brewdog Elvis Juice and North High 7- 0 API. Working with these breweries keeps Goody Boy connected to the community, Ignatious said. However, the restaurant offers more than just beer.

Ignatious said craft drinks help create the fun and style that Goody Boy has shaped over the past few decades. He said there was a wide variety of people who came daily to experience the traditions of Goody Boy since it reopened.

“Each block in a neighborhood has its own age groups, nationalities, interests, professions, etc.,” Ignatious said. “I saw Goody Boy as this awesome melting pot that brings all kinds of people together.”

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