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What's good to eat in Cincinnati?


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#1 jsmeeker

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 03:37 PM

Work is taking me to Cincinnati next week and more than likely many trips after next year through a lot of 2012. I'll be staying in/near the University of Cincinnati. That seems like it's "downtown"/central city. What's GOOD to eat in Cincinnati? I hoping for something better than Skyline Chili. Chili in spaghetti is just all sorts of wrong to this Texas resident. :D

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#2 MSRadell

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Posted 02 January 2012 - 09:09 PM

Hope you found something good during your trip! Not only is Skyline Chili different because it has spaghetti but it also tastes terrible to anyone who is actually used to having chili! It has no heat it all to it and overall is just plain nasty. First time I ever tried it I had no idea what to expect and when they asked about three way, five way and whatever I had no idea what they were talking about.

If you're going to be in that area for any length of time you want to take a quick run down here to Louisville, it's about an hour and 1/2 drive. We have an extremely vibrant local restaurant scene! You could read a lot about it here: Louisville Hotbytes
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#3 valereee

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 05:34 AM

The thing about Cincinnati chili is that you have to ignore the name. It's not chili. It's a greek-inspired meat and pasta dish. And, yes, it's an acquired taste. :) I wouldn't recommend Skyline (or any chain.) Try the little mom-and-pop chili shops.

Hope you found something good during your trip! Not only is Skyline Chili different because it has spaghetti but it also tastes terrible to anyone who is actually used to having chili! It has no heat it all to it and overall is just plain nasty. First time I ever tried it I had no idea what to expect and when they asked about three way, five way and whatever I had no idea what they were talking about.



#4 valereee

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 06:12 AM

Work is taking me to Cincinnati next week and more than likely many trips after next year through a lot of 2012. I'll be staying in/near the University of Cincinnati. That seems like it's "downtown"/central city. What's GOOD to eat in Cincinnati? I hoping for something better than Skyline Chili. Chili in spaghetti is just all sorts of wrong to this Texas resident. :D


Okay, staying near UC...fortunately Cincinnati's a pretty easy city to get around, so as long as you have a car you can reach most of the best restaurants in town within a fifteen-minute drive from the UC area. What kinds of things do you like?

Val

#5 jsmeeker

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Posted 09 March 2012 - 09:00 PM

Quick little update here...

Still going to Cincinnati. Been going every single week since the first week of December, save the week between Christmas and New Years. I DID get to Skyline. That stuff is just, well, just wrong. Everyone that tells me that they shouldn't call it chili is right. They shouldn't. But even trying to look past that and treating it as a pasta dish with meat sauce, it's still crappy.


Traveling on business is tough. Especially when there are several other people with you and you don't control the transportation directly. That said, I have found some decent places. A good Indian place (Ambar) not far from the hotel, on Ludlow near Clifton. Nice thing about that place is that there is a Graeter's a few doors down. Now THAT is something Cincinnati should be proud of. Also had a decent meal at Cactus Pear, in the same area. One night, a bunch of us had a really nice dinner at Jeff Ruby's Steakhouse in Downtown.. Of course, a place like that can't be a regular thing.

Most dinners are at the hotel, but we try to get out at least once per week. But usually, that means a Cheesecake Factory or P.F. Chang's or Maggianos. Or back into Kentucky and some place at Newport on the Levee.

So, still looking for good places. I know there are quite a few "hole in the wall" places Ludlow. I just don't know which are good. Some good Chinese would be nice. Doesn't even have to be truly authentic. Well done Americanized Chinese can still be satisfying. So would good pizza. Anyone know how Dewey's is? It's right behind Skyline. Seems like a local place.

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#6 shadow

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 08:55 AM

If you are downtown you should venture into the Over the Rhine area--some good new restaurants there that are "trendy" but interesting.

#7 LurkerLoo

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Posted 13 August 2012 - 04:42 PM

Jeff, I don't know if you're still taking trips to Cincinnati, but here's some of my favorites:

Across the river in Bellevue, there's Virgil's Cafe, which was featured on Guy Fieri's "Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives." The neighborhood is a historic area that's been renovated. In fact, I'm not sure why this place was featured on Triple D, since it's not a diner, drive-in, nor dive. I had a tasty shrimp and tomato bisque and etouffee there just a few months ago.

Another place featured on Triple D is Terry's Turf Club in the Linwood area on the eastern side of town; their specialty is burgers with unusual toppings (4618 Eastern Ave., (513) 533-4222). Go early, as there's nearly always a line.

If you don't mind driving a bit, one special place is Amma's Kitchen in the suburb of Roselawn (7633 Reading Road, (513) 821-2021). This is a vegetarian Indian restaurant specializing in South Indian cuisine. Wonderful flavors--this is not the usual greasy Indian joint. Lunch buffet is justly popular.

Even further out (near the airport in Hebron, Kentucky) is a Japanese place called Jo-An; they have sushi and good tempura.

You asked about Dewey's Pizza--it is indeed a local chain, and it's certainly better than the usual fast-food pies.

The Hyde Park neighborhood has several restaurants around the square (including a Graeter's), and a good farmer's market on Sunday from 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. There are also a bunch of interesting bars and eateries on Mount Adams.

Hope these suggestions are helpful! Please share any other discoveries you make.

#8 jsmeeker

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Posted 14 August 2012 - 12:46 PM

I am still making trips up to Cincinnati. In fact, I am here now. Been here every week this year. Except one.

We have been to Hyde park. We like the burgers at Arthur's. And of course, we have checked out the Graeter's location there as well. Been to many different Graeters locations. :)

We did get up to a place in Mount Adams. Can't recall the name of it, though. Maybe Mount Adams Bar and Grill?? I dunno.. Anyway, didn't really like what I had there/ A very flavorless patty melt. But it looked like a good place to have a few drinks. Are there some other places you would recommend in Mount Adamns and Hyde Park?

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#9 bigbump

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 09:02 AM

Zips Cafe in Mt Lookout

Terry's Turf Club and Bella Luna on eastern Ave.

I would try to go to one Penn Station for a cheesesteak

Shanghai Mama's on 6th is good chinese

Servati's Pastry on Court St. - try a cream puff there

In mount adams, there's Teak which is good asian, and there's a great italian place that escapes me, but it's near a parking garage.

Those should get you started. Let me know when you want to branch out further.

#10 LurkerLoo

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 05:24 PM

Although I haven't been there, I have to echo BigBump's suggestion of Teak on Mount Adams--it's got an excellent reputation for Thai cuisine.

Speaking of Asian, a good Chinese buffet is Johnny Chan 2, up waaaay north at Harper's Point off of Montgomery Road. The weekday lunch buffet is an excellent deal.

Unfortunately the bad economy has taken a toll on some places I knew in Hyde Park. You can enjoy the novelty of eating in a building that used to be a bank (Teller's), and Indigo has been around for some time, but they're not particularly exciting culinary experiences to my way of thinking.

Bonbonnerie in O'Bryanville (a small neighborhood southwest of Hyde Park) has amazing desserts and cookies; my fave is their opera cake.

Forgot to mention 2 places in Newport, Kentucky: York Street Cafe (sometimes has live music) and NuVo, which has tapas on Wednesday nights for $25 (5 courses).

Edited by LurkerLoo, 15 August 2012 - 05:25 PM.