March 06, 2018

Food & Wine names OTR one of the best food scenes in the country

Food & Wine’s Senior Editor David Landsel could have been pandering directly to our outsized Midwestern egos when he named Over-the-Rhine as one of the most promising food scenes in the country.

Not only does he delve into the area’s excellent eats — historic, hip, hidden and all within blocks of each other — he also addresses the complex fall and rise of this gentrifying urban space, calling out the 19th-century Findlay Market as a neighborhood stalwart. Primarily he refers to OTR’s growth as comeback, because it is, and places a lot of that recognition on the Cincinnati food scene. 

As Landsel says, “Cincinnati has always had (a local food scene), and a proper exploration will lead you all over the city, into rustic chili parlors and sparkling downtown dining rooms, out into the hills and across the river to Kentucky, but there is so much going on right here in Over-The-Rhine at the moment, complimenting the market and the other classic spots that held on tight through it all, that a thorough investigation of the neighborhood is all but required.

“With your two feet, the city's Red Bike program and the Bell Connector light rail, a whirlwind day in this fascinating neighborhood is easily accomplished, all without the aid of a car. Here's how you do it.” 

He goes on to list the city's best eats, broken down by coffee and pastry stops, breakfast joints, Findlay Market favorites, lunch cafés, happy hour destinations and hip dinner spaces.

He names Collective Espresso as one of the city’s best modern coffee shops, along with Ferrari Barbershop & Coffee Co., Brown Bear Bakery and, of course, Holtman’s. 

For breakfast, there’s Tucker’s and French Crust. For lunch? Quan Hapa and Panino. Happy hour suggestions include Rhinegeist, Revel OTR and Taft’s Ale House. 

And to crown the evening, Landsel recommends Please, Sartre or Salazar — some of OTR's trendiest dining spots — and Longfellow for late-night pierogies.

Read the full story here.  

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"Tucked into an appealing residential pocket just off of Main Street, Please is a deceptively relaxed, but wholly ambitious restaurant created by Akron native Ryan Santos."
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
"Tucked into an appealing residential pocket just off of Main Street, Please is a deceptively relaxed, but wholly ambitious restaurant created by Akron native Ryan Santos."
"Stop just shy of Central at Ferrari Barbershop & Coffee Co., a family-run institution since the 1950's now operated (and only gently upgraded) by the younger generation. The barbershop is still as it was, but now you'll immediately spot a handsome little La Marzocco machine through the window," Landsel says in his Food & Wine article.
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
"Stop just shy of Central at Ferrari Barbershop & Coffee Co., a family-run institution since the 1950's now operated (and only gently upgraded) by the younger generation. The barbershop is still as it was, but now you'll immediately spot a handsome little La Marzocco machine through the window," Landsel says in his Food & Wine article.
"The first thing to know about Findlay Market is that it's really a neighborhood, with a long shed running down the middle of the central square; what's around the enclosed, operated year-round hall is just as important as what's inside," Landsel says.
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
"The first thing to know about Findlay Market is that it's really a neighborhood, with a long shed running down the middle of the central square; what's around the enclosed, operated year-round hall is just as important as what's inside," Landsel says.
"For something more traditionally glamorous, walk all the way up to the market, where on a prominent corner facing the main hall, you'll find French Crust. Part of a mini-empire belonging to local industry vet Jean-Robert de Cavel, this bright, camera-ready spot is all sparkle, but the menu is pretty much classic."
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
"For something more traditionally glamorous, walk all the way up to the market, where on a prominent corner facing the main hall, you'll find French Crust. Part of a mini-empire belonging to local industry vet Jean-Robert de Cavel, this bright, camera-ready spot is all sparkle, but the menu is pretty much classic."
"Also sort of off to the side here, you'll find The Rhined, which isn't just a good cheese shop, but also a great place for a bite—they do rather imaginative sandwiches, cheese flights, drinks and even a weekly raclette night (Wednesdays, if you're wondering)."
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
"Also sort of off to the side here, you'll find The Rhined, which isn't just a good cheese shop, but also a great place for a bite—they do rather imaginative sandwiches, cheese flights, drinks and even a weekly raclette night (Wednesdays, if you're wondering)."
"What started out as a food truck is now Panino, a destination for cured meat sandwiches by day, and a proper restaurant by night; co-owner Nino Loreto is something of a local salumi celebrity, with a whole operation set up in the basement."
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
"What started out as a food truck is now Panino, a destination for cured meat sandwiches by day, and a proper restaurant by night; co-owner Nino Loreto is something of a local salumi celebrity, with a whole operation set up in the basement."
Landsel mentions Revel OTR in his Food & Wine article
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Landsel mentions Revel OTR in his Food & Wine article
"For something less hushed, there's the lively new Sartre, a brasserie within the Rhinegeist complex that's drawing the dinner crowd further north than ever."
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
"For something less hushed, there's the lively new Sartre, a brasserie within the Rhinegeist complex that's drawing the dinner crowd further north than ever."
"Retreat to Longfellow, a rather civilized drinking den with tall windows, some good wines by the glass, cocktail pros behind the bar and a fun list of tapas-ish bites."
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
"Retreat to Longfellow, a rather civilized drinking den with tall windows, some good wines by the glass, cocktail pros behind the bar and a fun list of tapas-ish bites."