Inside BrewRiver Creole Kitchen, a Taste of New Orleans in Linwood

Hearing a Boogie-Woogie tune on the piano while sipping a craft cocktail on a brightly furnished patio with a magnolia tree in view — you wouldn’t even have to squint to think you were in New Orleans. The atmosphere and cuisine at BrewRiver Creole Kitchen brings the spirit of the Crescent City to Cincinnati in a stately 150-year-old building on Eastern Avenue. From 2011 until 2018, owner Joby Bowman and chef Michael Shields ran BrewRiver GastroPub on nearby Riverside Drive before deciding to branch out in two directions at once: BrewRiver became a taproom food provider at Sonder Brewing in Mason at nearly the same time they made the transition from a smaller gastropub location in the East End to a larger building in Linwood (previously occupied by Bella Luna). The Creole Kitchen location has opened up options for chef Shields to add new items to the menu — broiled oysters, fried green tomatoes with a pecan cornmeal crust and bread pudding for dessert. And the team envisions more and more seasonal and New Orleans-inspired dishes, given the larger kitchen. A few months after opening, BrewRiver Creole Kitchen has begun to settle into its niche: upscale fusion dishes in a historic setting. “We are family-owned, through and through,” Bowman says. “This restaurant is a letter of love, an expression of the passion that we have for what we do.” Read more here.
Photos by Hailey Bollinger
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One example of a Creole-influenced dish is the Pasta Monica; it’s inspired by the wildly popular Crawfish Monica from New Orleans Jazz Fest. The plump shrimp are generously coated in a Creole cream sauce, which manages to pack a major flavor punch without burning one’s tongue off. This spring, Brink Brewing Co. made a limited-run King Cake beer — a good accompaniment to the pasta, served in a glass with a brightly-colored sugar rim.
Hailey Bollinger
One example of a Creole-influenced dish is the Pasta Monica; it’s inspired by the wildly popular Crawfish Monica from New Orleans Jazz Fest. The plump shrimp are generously coated in a Creole cream sauce, which manages to pack a major flavor punch without burning one’s tongue off. This spring, Brink Brewing Co. made a limited-run King Cake beer — a good accompaniment to the pasta, served in a glass with a brightly-colored sugar rim.
The bar
Hailey Bollinger
The bar
The Pasta Monica and bread pudding
Hailey Bollinger
The Pasta Monica and bread pudding
Inside BrewRiver Creole Kitchen, a Taste of New Orleans in Linwood
Hailey Bollinger
Dining room
Hailey Bollinger
Dining room
The patio
Hailey Bollinger
The patio
Bread pudding
Hailey Bollinger
Bread pudding
Inside BrewRiver Creole Kitchen, a Taste of New Orleans in Linwood
Hailey Bollinger
Dining space
Hailey Bollinger
Dining space
The bar
Hailey Bollinger
The bar