Restaurants in the Cincinnati Metro Area
A local spot — now with multiple locations — specializing in… grilled cheese and tomato soup! But forget the standard grilled cheese: we’re talking about sandwiches loaded with meats, specialty cheese, veggies — even potato chips (local, of course). And check out the dessert: grilled cheese donuts!
Five Guys Burgers and Fries
Rookwood Commons and Newport on the Levee
Mad Mike’s Burgers and Fries
Great burger joint in Florence, KY, and Newport, KY (more locations), offering a wide array of toppings, plus gourmet burgers. Check out the weekly special!
Located just across the river in Covington, AmerAsia is weird. Funky. Small. Cheap(-ish). Tasty. Did we mention weird? The owner’s grandfather serves as chef, has cooked around the world and can claim training by the chef-lineage tracing back to imperial Chinese chefs. Cincinnati Magazine’s food writer loved it. But go at lunch, when the extensive beer list does not unduly influence the climate and when prices are cheaper. And don’t forget to ask about daily specials!
Located near UC in University Heights, King Wok offers reasonable lunch meals, wide variety and good quality. Coupons in Bearcash.
No beauty, this takeout joint in University Heights has cheap, plentiful dishes with good flavors. Coupons in Bearcash.
Lemon Grass Thai Cuisine
Small Thai place near the Rookwood commons
Currently taking recommendations
Stunningly good in an easy-to-drive-past location on Riverside Drive. They now have a location at Findlay Market as well.
5 locations in the metro area.
Covington, Hyde Park
Sugar and Spice
Located on Reading Road.
Located in Hyde Park.
Taste of Belgium
Four locations in the Cincinnati area including Findlay Market and Rookwood area.
The Hyde Park (a “house”) location sells various muffins, scones, etc. and they have good beverages. Very cool places to sit outside, outback, and even upstairs if you don’t mind sitting rather close to others, often college kids studying at the tables.
Just over the river in Bellevue, KY.
Sleepy Bee Cafe
Two locations – Oakley and Blue Ash.
For the uninitiated, Cincinnati chili may seem odd. The dish combines pasta, beanless chili and cheddar cheese (kidney beans and onions may be added). Having its origins in Greek food, the chili tastes essentially nothing like “Tex-Mex” chili — instead, think chocolate, cinnamon, cumin. The basic three-way chili is pasta, chili and cheese. A four-way adds beans or onions, a five-way adds both. Variations abound, such as Blue Ash Chili’s six-way (adding deep-fried jalapeno slices). And chili parlors also tend to offer double-decker sandwiches — hey, you might even find Cincinnati’s own sausage, goetta, on the menu!
The original Cinci chili… now located, ironically, in Kentucky.
Once-local chain now owned by an out-of-state entity.
While Cincinnati of course includes plenty of coffee chains — Starbucks, Dunkin’ Donuts — it also has local coffee shops and even roasters.
Multiple area locations, roasting their own coffee downtown — not unusual to spot the mayor, a member of city council or some other notable in the Over-the-Rhine location
Coffee shop and coffee roaster
“Coffee and Compassion in Tandem”
Fast Food Nearby
95 Carothers Rd, Newport, KY 41071
57 Carothers Rd, Newport, KY 41071
Several locations nearby including
2507 W. Clifton Ave, Cincinnati, OH 45219 and
93 Carothers Rd, Newport, KY 41071
A trend in other cities arrived in full force in Cinci around 2010. Food trucks park and operate various places around town, with some downtown spots just minutes from the GBSC campus.
New Orleans to Go Po’ Boys and More
Stunningly good New Orleans food, prepared by a woman who came to Cinci with her husband and kids after Hurricane Katrina
Red Sesame Food Truck
Authentic Venezuelan street food
Sandwiches and franks
Looking for something new? Check out the Street Food Finder.
Ice Cream, Frozen Yogurt, Popsicles
Cincinnati’s own premium ice cream. Probably best known for their huge chocolate chips which somehow (black magic?) remain soft in the freezer.
Another local spot, UDF is part of the Lindner family’s businesses. UDF always has specials, changing fairly frequently and generally running $0.99 to $2.99.
Started as a gourmet popsicle cart in local markets, Streetpops now has a storefront in Over-the-Rhine. Watch for them at local festivals as well.
The youngest of the local dairy-dessert purveyors, Yagoot is owned by the Busken family. Be sure to join the Yagoot email club to get special offers!
Deep India/ Adeep India
Deep has a small seating area, so may work better for takeout. The menu includes dishes not widely available at other Indian restaurants in Cinci, prices run slightly lower than competitors, flavors are vibrant and fresh.
Coupons in Bearcash.
Right across from Cincinnati State in a converted house, Dusmesh offers more variety than many Indian lunch buffets. (No dinner buffet is available.) Coupons in Bearcash.
A bit further away from campus, Royal Taj has some of the best flavors in the city. A lunch buffet is small but of good quality. Setting is pleasant.
Near Eastgate, Indian Bistro offers a varied menu at a reasonable price: Lunch buffet $7.99 per person. Delicious food with some harder-to-find dishes.
Shaan Indian CuisineOffering a lunch buffet in addition to their regular menu items and coupons on their website, Shaan is a tasty option in Hyde Park Plaza.
Owned by the former owners of Dusmesh, Swad is a bit farther away from campus in North College Hill (map). Great buffet.
In the Hyde Park/Oakley area.
Mediterranean & Mid-Eastern
Andy’s Mediterranean Grill
Local spot featuring $8 lunch specials. Try the labneh and shawarma wrap.
Marrakech Morrocan Cafe & Grill
“Snug Moroccan restaurant serving traditional dishes & tea in an informal, brightly–painted interior.” Located in downtown Clifton. Delicious!
Baladi Restaurant & Bakery
Arabic and Syrian flavors near downtown Clifton.
Authentic Mexican food at multiple locations in the metro area — the nearest just across from the Main Library. Lunch specials offer affordable introductions to authentic flavor.
Small, unique decor, authentic menu, salsa bar, delicious! Some outdoor seating also available.
Local “pizza-parlor” pizza, but offering salads, pasta, etc., as well.
Based on southern Indiana, Dewey’s features more “gourmet” pizza. Calzones are notable options as well. Coupons in Bearcash.
2723 Vine St, Cincinnati (513) 961-7272
2901 Vine St, Cincinnati (513) 751-6262