What are the signs of civilization? Indoor plumbing, a literate population and a good deli, right? There’s something about a real deli that’s big city and major league. If you’ve never eaten at a genuine deli, how do you understand half the jokes on Seinfeld? The black and white cookie, the marble rye — these are deli things.
Dee Felice Café in Mainstrasse had a waiting list on Saturday night. Why’s that remarkable? Well, because it’s been two weeks since the Jazz club banned smoking and, once upon a time, the cool cats of Jazz would not have gone smoke-free without a fuss. So it was in a spirit of celebration that we sat at the bar on Saturday night, waiting for the music to start.
Chef Clendon Springer has created a dining menu at Final Cut Steakhouse at the Hollywood Casino that’s pretty much a sure bet, with Midwestern-aged, corn-fed beef; free-range Amish chicken from Ohio; bourbon creamed corn; and Indiana goat cheese croquettes as examples of what wants to achieve with local products and dishes.
Mayberry Foodstuffs (203 E. Seventh St., Downtown, 513-621-5555) is billing itself as “Cincinnati’s newest urban grocery store.” It’s definitely that … and more. Foodstuffs is the latest venture from Josh Campbell, chef/owner of Mayberry Restaurant on Vine Street and World Food Bar at Findlay Market.
I am about to reveal my secret favorite Mexican eatery. If you think you can guess it, you can’t. You’ve probably never heard of it. You might have driven past it and never noticed that it’s there. But, believe me, it’s worth a stop. Taqueria Yolandita can’t really be called a taco “truck.” It’s more like a taco trailer.
Last week we covered family-friendly dining suggestions to accompany holiday activities. Date night is a little different. I don't want to be the one to say that Scuba Santa's not sexy — hey, roly poly people in wetsuits might be just the ticket for some. But when you're fueling up for fun under the mistletoe, I think I have some better ideas.
When you’re headed out for holiday activities, there’s no one-size-fits-all restaurant recommendation. If you’re going to Holiday of Lights at the Cincinnati Zoo, you’re probably not going to want the same pre- or post-event dining suggestion as a couple headed to date night under the mistletoe. So here are a few activity-specific, family-friendly recommendations that might help during the holiday happenings ahead.
Nowadays, I'm more likely to make a gift than buy a gift, and I'm twice as likely to dine with my friends than to give them presents. Of course, when I do give gifts, they tend to be food related. So when I sat down to think about a local foodie holiday, I decided to consult with Julie Francis . She's not Santa, but in Cincinnati food circles when you think "local" you think of Julie.
The only smoking I want with my breakfast is the bacon. Maybe the ham, too, but no cigarettes. With the indoor public smoking ban, of course, you Ohio diners have taken smoke-free eating for granted for a few years now. But in Kentucky it's still a big bone of contention. I recommend checking out Fort Wright Family Restaurant, where last year when they remodeled they went smoke-free. They lost some business as a result but gained many new customers like me.