10 Must-Try Restaurants In Cincinnati, Ohio

Photo of Vittoria Caron
9 February 2017

From warm Mediterranean flavors and superb French cuisine to modern American fare,Cincinnati is rich in culinary adventure. Here a selection of the top 10 dining venues in the Ohio city .

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Orchids at Palm Court

Restaurant, American, Vegetarian, Vegan
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Located in the National Historic Landmark Hilton Cincinnati Netherland Plaza, Orchids at Palm Court is one of the finest and most chic dining restaurants in Cincinnati. Winner of several awards, the restaurant combines modern American food with French cooking techniques. It uses only local and organic products and the freshest and highest quality ingredients based on the seasonal availability. The location is French art deco-style, and the appointments have been thought out down to the smallest detail, from the Romanesque murals to the sconces to the 1930 original Rookwood pottery fountain. Food is delicious and mouth-watering, and a must-try is the Maine lobster salad with organic egg, crème fraiche and caviar cream.

The Rookwood

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Housed in the former studio and manufacturing facility of the world-renowned Rookwood Pottery Company, The Rookwood has been one of Cincy’s outstanding restaurants since 2008. It still preserves the feel of the factory with brick walls, kilns and potteries, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The restaurant specializes in traditional cuisine, which is defined by its focus on fresh and seasonal ingredients and its hand-crafted cocktails. With its black walls and its rustic atmosphere, this place has a cool vibe, featuring the old pub-style location and food, such as great burgers, bruschetta, exquisite cold cuts and the tastiest beer.

Jean-Robert’s Table

Restaurant, French, Contemporary, Vegetarian, $$$
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Opened in 2010, Jean Robert’s Table is a casual elegant restaurant located in downtown Cincinnati. It reflects centuries of French culinary tradition, but with the contemporary touch of French Master Chef Jean-Robert de Cavel. Recognized as one of the best Cincinnati restaurants, Jean-Robert’s Table features classics like foie gras torchon with fava beans, rhubarb and honey balsamic, the Jonah crab salad with avocado, carrots and lemon dressing, and the lobster vol au vent with peas, mushrooms and brandy cream sauce. They are all prepared in a modern and original way. Among the sandwiches, the must-try are the French château burger and the timeless croque monsieur, made with sautéed chicken liver, vinaigrette and fried egg.

Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse

Restaurant, Steakhouse, American, Gluten-free, $$$
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Courtesy of Jeff Ruby's Steakhouse
Courtesy of Jeff Ruby's Steakhouse
Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse is the right place to find dry-aged steaks. The restaurant is modeled after the 1940s-era French art deco steakhouses of New York City. The period artwork and lighting make the venue one of the most exclusive ones in town. Impeccable attention to detail and top-notch service make sure that dining here is an absolutely fantastic experience. The welcoming lobby, complete with fireplace, is ideal for cocktails. Nightly live entertainment is also provided. The menu itself is wonderful, featuring its finest signature dishes as well as a to-die-for meat selection. Great dishes include the Jeff Ruby’s jewel, chili rubbed bone-in rib with onions and peppers; the Jeff Ruby’s Gem centre cut filet; or the must-try cowboy dry-aged bone-in strip steak.

Abigail Street

Bar, Mediterranean, Vegetarian, Vegan, $$$
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In the heart of the business district there is a little bit of heaven — Abigail Street. A tapas bar featuring Mediterranean cuisine with a contemporary twist, Abigail’s serves mouthwatering food with excellent service andan impressive location. The wine and beer selection is also great. The dishes are full of variety, and each one is bursting with flavor and originality. Grilled octopus, and their ricotta and honey on toasted bread are must tries. Other good dishes to pick are the beef salad with hazelnuts, and the mussels charmoula and the duck confit. With its original and tasty food, its lively ambience and knowledgeable staff, Abigail Street is a real Cincinnati gem.


Restaurant, Italian, Vegetarian, Vegan, $$$
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Considered the best Italian restaurant in Cincinnati, Primavista combines great food and a stunning location. In fact, dining at Primavista doesn’t only represent a delicious culinary experience, but is also the right choice for an elegant and chic night out. This is because the restaurant provides a breathtaking view of Cincinnati skyline and Ohio River. Its signature dish is pollo ai funghi, angel hair pasta with sautéed chicken breast and mushrooms. Traditional Italian entrées are perfectly accompanied with a bottle of wine from the outstanding list. To finish the dinner with a flourish, tiramisu is a must. Thanks to its excellent service, careful staff and its fine dining, Primavista remains one of the top restaurants in Cincinnati.


If you fancy a spicy dinner out, Bakersfield is the right choice. Considered one of the best Mexican restaurants in Cincinnati, Bakersfield features a great selections of Central America specialities. Its tacos are the best in town; the signature version is the crispy mahi with tabasco lime sauce and citrus slaw. Delicious guacamole, fresh, warm and nicely salted chips, homemade tortillas and tasty Margaritas give this Tex-Mex a fantastic vibe. Thanks to its great food, its friendly staff and its young and cheerful atmosphere, this venue is an essential stop on a trip to the city.

Bakersfield, 1213 Vine Street, Cincinnati, OH, USA, +1 513 579 0446

The Precinct

Bar, Restaurant, Steakhouse, $$$
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Located in a 1901 Romanesque-style former police headquarters building, The Precinct is owned by one of Cincy’s most beloved restaurateurs, Jeff Ruby. This award-winning restaurant features American and continental cuisine but it is also a great steakhouse, with large portions and outstanding cuts of beef. A fine wine list accompanies the exceptional menu that includes fresh seafood and delicious sides, in addition to gorgeous steaks. The Precinct is frequently recognized as having Cincinnati’s best steaks, seafood and service. This consistently high level of quality has endeared The Precinct to celebrities and business people as well as to families and loyal diners.

Palace Restaurant

Restaurant, American, Contemporary, $$$
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Housed in the 113-year-old exclusive Cincinnatian Hotel, Palace Restaurant represents the finest choice in town for a fancy meal out. The restaurant features contemporary American cuisine and serves four-star traditional dishes such as foie gras, along with exotic menu items like seared branzino with caramel soy. Its menu is updated in accordance with the season, and features only the freshest ingredients. The Palace provides the perfect setting for a business lunch as well as an intimate quiet meal. Its elegant dining room, its innovative menu and its classic service create a one-of-a-kind dining experience in Cincinnati.


Located just north of Downtown in Over the Rhine, the hip and historic Cincinatian neighborhood, Nicola’s is one of the outstanding Italian restaurants in town. It features delicious contemporary Northern Italian cuisine prepared in the finest way, and its signature dish must be the veal-stuffed cannelloni topped with Bolognese sauce. Desserts are sublime, and a 1200-bottle wine list is more than adequate for even the most choosy oenophiles. The location is homely yet sophisticated, with a modern setting that showcases exposed brickwork and vaulted ceilings. Its long-standing reputation for being warmly hospitable and accommodating as well as for its excellent menu selection make Nicola’s a favorite on the list of top restaurants in the city.

Nicola’s, 1420 Sycamore Street, Cincinnati, OH, USA, +1 513 721 6200

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