Does the year 1298 of the Gregorian (aka solar) calendar mean anything to you?  If you are from the Middle East, cheek by jowl to Eastern Europe in the area that is modern-day Turkey, probably the date would resonate more.  In that year, Osman I is purported to have founded the Ottoman Empir…

Does the year 1298 of the Gregorian (aka solar) calendar mean anything to you?  If you are from the Middle East, cheek by jowl to Eastern Europe in the area that is modern-day Turkey, probably the date would resonate more.  In that year, Osman I is purported to have founded the Ottoman Empir…

Scholars of antiquity are unclear whether the “staff of life” is bread, or the wheat from which it has been made for millennia.  Clearer is that bread has been a more important, sought-after staple around here since March, when the pandemic took hold of our lives with a vengeance. Ward Bahlm…

News flash! Izzy’s five locations are performing better in 2020 than those same locations did in 2019! This, according to owner John Geisen, who said: “Sales are up over last year, so we can’t complain. Our stores are limited to 25 percent (capacity), so it seems busy from that standpoint. B…

Johnny Chan 2, the venerable Chinese restaurant that has won accolades as one of the best 100 of its type in these United States, is open for carryout business and curbside pick-up. Frank Shi,   the owner/operator and sometimes these days, chef, of Johnny Chan 2,  has put the emphasis on the…

Nobody can escape coronavirus realities these days.  So, what to do?  Sacred Beast’s Jeromy Lieb has as good an answer as we have come by in making the Restaurant Rounds these past six months (that’s right: a full half year already!).   “We have to stay positive with it; it’s the only thing …

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Want to take part in a naming contest and win a gift certificate to Marx Hot Bagels?  YY Davis and wife Rena of Marx Hot Bagels are searching for a good name to give their new cinnamon roll.  The roll is a coiled confection, but unlike your typical cinnamon roll, this one bakes up in the sha…

“We the people…” is a phrase that most American citizens have seen or heard in the classroom. It is, after all, the entrée to the preamble of the remarkable Constitution of the United States of America.  At the same time, those three words can be a stand-alone preamble that calls people to a…

Remember the parking lot at China Gourmet, behind the building and forming an apron to the entrance at the lower level?  Now, picture that space remade into an outdoor dining area.  Can you imagine it?  Al fresco dining at China Gourmet?  Tables dotting the space, walled on three sides? A su…

Just when you thought the New Normal had taken over every nook and cranny of your life, Rhino’s comes charging out of the world we knew before COVID-19 with a healthy serving of “Old” Normal.  Amazing as it may seem in today’s masked and distanced environment, Rhino’s kosher frozen yogurt op…

How is it possible to place an order direct to the kitchen of Kinneret Grill, with nary a word to anyone?  Assume you are a passenger in a car tooling down the highway, thinking what would be good for supper. Or you find yourself getting a bit peckish while walking in a woodland park Or mayb…

When life doles out lemons, the resourceful among us make lemonade.  Taking that maxim to heart is an excellent strategy for the COVID-19 miasma in which we find ourselves today.  Why excellent strategy?  The lemonade analogy likely is good for one’s emotional health, especially since you an…

If maintaining your health is top of mind for you recently, due to the omnipresent pandemic, now may be an opportune time to think more broadly about health as a lifestyle.  Many aspects of life contribute to human health, often based on the choices a person makes.  In the category of food, …

Sugar n’ Spice has opened new digs located at 1203 Sycamore Street in OTR, in an existing classic diner setting.  The Mayerson Group, owner of the original location, has opened the second location after renovating the space to coordinate with the ambiance at its original Reading Road locatio…

If ever there were a time to question everything of a social nature one thinks about doing, this is that time.  On the restaurant scene, the words are different from one eatery to the next, but most places must deal with the angst their patrons may feel in planning to dine out.  The folks at…

Andy Hajjar is an iconic figure on the Greater Cincinnati restaurant scene.  His newest venture, named Kabobske, is located on Short Vine in Corryville.  Kabobske is an anomaly—fast food that is healthy, fresh, made-to-order, and relatively inexpensive.  “We make everything fresh here, every…

What will you find when you enter the dining area of Amma’s Kitchen on Reading Road in Roselawn?  Masked servers wielding menus in a highly sanitized, socially distanced dining room, according to Mr. Raj, the general manager of the eatery.  “Yes, masked—everybody (who works there).  We are s…

“We have been really lucky!” is a phrase Breadsmith’s owner Ward Bahlman used at least a half-dozen times during a recent phone conversation about doing business in the throes of a devastating pandemic.  Being a “food” store in the vein of supermarkets and other retail food sellers, Breadsmi…

“Culture shock is the feeling of uncertainty, confusion or anxiety that people experience when visiting, doing business in or living in a society that is different from their own,” according to Troy Segal, writing about the business world in general.  He goes on to say: “Social norms can var…

Assuming COVID-19 does not slip us a mickey somehow, when diners-out read this article they will be able to dine in when dining out at Brown Dog Café. The preceding sentence is not gobbledygook, nor obfuscation or convoluted syntax—it is fact! The State of Ohio, according to Governor Mike De…

With William Shakespeare, it was: “To be, or not to be?  That is the question." With restaurant GMs, the question has become: “To open, or not to open?” For Rainbow, the single-named GM at Asian Paradise, that is the question with which she has grappled.  “I not sure what to do—to open when …

From sources such as Woody Allen movies and Buddy Hackett appearances on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, we learn many things.  One such enlightenment is the ubiquity of Chinese take-out among Jewish diners, and, more generally, in the wider world of American eateries. In this time of t…

Izzy’s backstory reads like a modified Horatio Alger adventure, replete with pull-yourself-up-by-your-own-bootstraps, rags-to-riches elements. After all, Izzy Kadetz’ father, David, came to Cincinnati to escape oppression in czarist Russia. When he arrived in this city, he was the typical pe…

No, I cannot go pick up a carryout meal from Red Feather in Oakley.  Brad Bernstein chose to “refrain from carryout sales in favor of proactively keeping our guest(s) and staff safe by encouraging social distancing.”  That according to the Red Feather website.  Bernstein’s site followed that…

Of course, restaurant dining rooms are closed.  When they may reopen is anybody’s guess, since COVID-19 is writing the script for all of that.  So, rather than consider only food and other attributes of this or that restaurant, as best we can, we’ll look to the heart of hearts of those leadi…

When this article was planned, the world was a different place.  All was right with the dining-out scene here in the Queen City.  Now Jewish diners-out are faced with new realities, and Artemis Mediterranean Bistro is doing what it can to help you and itself get through all this. 

Rugelach may be the yardstick against which all Jewish sweet pastries are measured. Ergo, they need to be good if you want to play in the Big Leagues of Jewish bakeries in the US of A.  This is the sentiment of YY Davis of Marx Hot Bagels, more or less.  

There is a lot going on at Sacred Beast these days, all of it centered around great eats in a great setting, according to Jeromy Lieb, owner along with wife Bridget, of the restaurant in OTR. “I want the Jewish community to know about the food, because the food is the reason people come to a…

If you are fishing for something new in the world of dining out, Café Mediterranean may be just the spot for you.  Fahri Ozdil, owner-operator of this venerable Turkish-inspired eatery now has on his bill of fare a Mediterranean or European sea bass that is delivered fresh to his door.  He g…

Gastronomy lessons are where you find them, unless you are in the CIA (no, not that CIA—the Culinary Institute of America) or perhaps the world-renown Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, France. Schools such as those are where people go to learn exquisitely fine-dine cooking.

Question: When one thinks of upscale, fine-dine events, what meal comes to mind?  If you answered: “The evening meal, of course,” you and I share that response.  Karen Chriqui, who owns Kinneret Grill along with husband Avner, wants to adjust our thought processes for a trial period, she say…

Good, high-quality yogurt, ice cream and gelato at a gas station—with a gazillion toppings?  If you think that’s a shocker, try this on for size: it’s almost all certified kosher by a rabbi!  This according to Josh Miller, who watches over the self-serve operation inside his dad’s Blue Ash S…

“House-made” nearly is passé in today’s restaurant biz, especially at the diner level.  That is why we were surprised at a revelation made by Adam Mayerson on a recent visit to Sugar n’ Spice.  The Mayerson Group, you’ll recall, is new owner of Sugar n’ Spice, now a handful of months into op…

Here we are on the cusp of February already, so the 14th of the coming month is a scant 15 days away.  Time to plan!  Time to reserve a spot on the busiest restaurant night of the year.  Red Feather wants to make this crazy-busy night easy and stress-free for you.  Make a reservation now!  T…

Each new year in the Chinese cultural tradition can be a lucky time if one eats right, so it’s claimed. In fact, there are seven lucky foods that are encouraged during the 15-day celebration of the new year.  This year—2020—is the Year of the Rat, and Happy New Year will be the watchwords on…

Eastern North America has had a taste for codfish that predates by centuries the arrival of the pilgrims and Jamestown colonists in the early 1600s.  You can be part of that long history by stopping at Izzy’s and ordering The Cod-father, a sandwich that is “too good” to be called fish, accor…

Amma’s Kitchen has received a rabbinical endorsement of sorts, along with an evident Jewish following among its patrons. On a recent visit to Amma’s we encountered Rabbi Moshe Smolkin having lunch with another Jewish gentleman. Graciously he allowed me to interrupt his meal, agreeing that I …

If one would cross a fine-dine restaurant with a neighborhood eatery, what would be the result? The answer is Stone Creek Dining Company in Montgomery, according to Andrew Schrier, general manager at the long-time dining spot. 

Recently, Walt’s Hitching Post received a Worth the Wait award from Cincinnati City Beat. This award is given to restaurants that are popular with the dining-out crowd of Greater Cincinnati. The award is based on several factors, but the key one is the quality and consistency of the offering.