The other day, I overheard a diner at Pho Lang Thang discussing his ordering dilemma.
“I get a favorite dish, right, and then I always have to order it, even if I want to try something else. If I order the new thing I want to try, then I might not like it and I’ll have missed a chance to eat the thing I know I love.”
Wow, I can relate to that. In fact, at Pho Lang Thang, I first fell in love with the bahn mi sandwiches, and I fell hard. It wasn’t until I saw Mapi, my favorite server, walk by with the most amazing-looking salad one day, and I said, “Bring me that!” that I broke away from the bahn mi, at least for awhile.
Sometimes, you’ve got to shake it up. You’ve got to let go of the sure thing and explore something new or you’ll never broaden your experiences. That’s why we reorganized the 2012 Dining Guide’s restaurant lists here. We’ve regrouped the establishments under new headings to encourage our readers to consider the wide variety of options among Cincinnati’s culinary offerings.
As Chef Daniel Wright, the Midwest’s best new chef, says in this story, “Cincinnati’s culinary scene is so strong.” Truth. For a city our size, we’re remarkably fortunate to have the depth of independent restaurants we have. Ethnic eateries, prime steakhouses, budget-friendly eateries, cutting edge culinary explorations — we’ve got these and more. That’s why you can break out of your comfort zone so easily here and try something new without worrying.
So make your New Dining Year Resolution now. Read through this issue and find a new place you’d like to try, or at least a new dish in your favorite place. Embrace change. There’s no reward without a risk, so shake up your routine and go eat!
— Anne Mitchell, project co-editor