We may not be able to travel to exotic places by air right now, but you can still take a quick getaway to a culturally enriching and internationally adventurous destination – right here in Columbus.
I’m talking about Saraga International Market, which I’ve heard about for years but never actually visited until today. It blew my mind!
Located in a former Toys-R-Us on Morse Road, and now in additional locations across Columbus, Saraga is a culinary United Nations. It is an international grocery store plus so much more, with multiple food vendors and mini-restaurants located around the outsides of the store making food that smells out of this world.
We entered and immediately fell head over heels with the Mexican bakery, or panaderia. The smells and sight of all their fresh breads, pastries and cakes were a feast for the senses! I made a note to pick up some baked goods on our way out after shopping.
Grocery aisles are organized by continent and region, with rows marked for Asian, Hispanic, Middle Eastern, African, European and American foods. On our visit today, I was in a time crunch so I was only able to make it through four or five of the long, fully stocked aisles.
I saw countless products I’ve never seen before – I was fascinated! I could easily have spent hours at Saraga looking at packages and reading labels. I purchased some mochi and a couple of fun snacks for my daughter, but next time I go back I’d like to do even more culinary adventuring.
One of my life-long passions is sweets from other parts of the world – and Saraga is loaded with them! I think it would be really fun to set a family budget – maybe $5 or so per person – and then cut loose in Saraga to see who can find the most unique international snacks for family movie night.
If you’ve been to and enjoyed Jungle Jim’s in Cincinnati, or if you enjoy perusing the international aisle at your local grocery store, then I think you owe it to yourself to strap that mask on (as you would at any grocery store, I hope!) and head down to Saraga on Morse Road.
Have you been to Saraga for lunch, dinner or international grocery shopping – and if so, what did you think? I’d love to hear your stories in the comments below or over on Facebook!