Columbia City has a petite new dining destination with Off Alley now open and serving market cuisine.
It’s the brainchild of chef Evan Leichtling, who started meaty nose-to-tail pop-up Fowl and Offal in summer 2019; Leichtling also brings prior experience from Lark, Harvest Vine, and three-Michelin starred restaurant Akelarre in San Sebastian, Spain.
Off Alley takes over the space that previously housed Senegalese restaurant La Teranga — due to the small space and social distancing requirements, it can currently seat just six diners at a time, with no more than four at a table, and all guests in each group must be from the same household. To economize, there are two seatings daily from Wednesday to Sunday: 5:30 p.m. and 8 p.m., with diners taking a five-course tasting menu priced between $45 and $55, pre-tax, with drinks not included. Reservations are required, and the restaurant is in a soft-opening stage, so service may be subject to change.
Those menus will change regularly based on market availability, and won’t necessarily be as meaty as Fowl and Offal — one from last weekend included lamb tongue with a farro and gem lettuce salad, but also a chilled tomato soup with grilled padron peppers.
A very limited number of standing-only places are available at Off Alley, too — those guests can order small plates (for example rillettes, anchovies on toast) and wines, with sommelier Meghna Prakash focusing on low-intervention options.