New spots in town to eat and drink outside
Cincinnati is such a picturesque city- and with fall right around the corner, the idea of dining and drinking outside is a perfect backdrop for any occasion. I am sure you all have your old stand-byes for patio dining but there are quite a few new spots all over Cincinnati to enjoy dinner under the stars.
You’d think that summer would be the time to sit on a patio outside a restaurant or bar, having a salad and a drink and enjoying the sunshine.
But in reality, we all know that at the height of summer, it’s just too hot. As much as we’d like to get out into the fresh air, 90 percent humidity and temperatures over 90 degrees aren’t exactly fresh.
When the weather is just right, though, it’s truly lovely. And in Cincinnati, the days that are most likely to be perfect are in these late summer-into-fall days (and spring, before the heat arrives).
So how about some new options in outdoor seating? These are newer restaurants and bars with patios or decks or terraces, and some older ones that have added them. From a true wonder on the West Side (a gorgeous patio in Price Hill. Yes, Price Hill!) to a rooftop deck where you can take in views of Over-the-Rhine, there are lots of new places to check out. We’re pretty sure they all serve iced drinks.
Somm Wine Bar
You’d never guess that this newer wine bar in East Price Hill hides a drop-dead gorgeous patio: well landscaped, comfortable couches (and tables, for those inclined to grab a bite to eat) and a water feature. (We’re hesitant to use the word “oasis,” but if the cliche fits …) With the same owner as the nearby Incline House, Somm is wine-focused but also has a full bar, with cocktails and craft beer. There are appetizers, salads and sandwiches, too. We’re told escargots have been a hit so far. 3105 Price Ave., East Price Hill, 513-244-5843, www.sommwinebarcincinnati.com.
We Olive and Bru Burger
The huge patio with firepits that lined Sixth Street in front of the former Cadillac Ranch and El Coyote has been split in two. One side is the flower-lined patio outside Bru Burger, where diners can try one of the many creative burgers on their menu. The other is We Olive, a gourmet olive oil and vinegar store that showcases their products in light lunch dishes like salads and paninis. Enjoy them on the sidewalk cafe under a canopy, people watching and trying little tastes of olive oil. We Olive: 33 E. Sixth St., Downtown, 513-954-8875, http://weolive.com/cincinnati. Bru Burger: 41 E. Sixth St., Downtown, 513-463-6003, www.bruburgerbar.com/cincinnati.
It’s tiny, but rich in atmosphere. The little patio wedged into the neighborhood next to this OTR coffee shop/wine bar/restaurant is lit with strings of lights, which give it a poignant, sentimental feel as the sun sets. Depending on the time of day, sip coffee or something from their list of natural wine. And there are simple, modern entrees and snacks. 118 W 15th St., Over-the-Rhine, 513-381-1969, www.pleasantryotr.com.
The new Dutch steakhouse in the Covington building that used to be Chez Nora has revived that building’s rooftop bar. It’s a stellar place to be above it all. 530 Main St., Covington, 859-360-7008, www.lisse.restaurant.com.
The Overlook Lodge
The bar with an interior inspired by “The Shining” think ’70s rustic lodge also has a small outdoor patio. It’s a nice place to sip one of the bar’s excellent craft cocktails some even having “Shining”-esque names, if you want to stick with the theme. 6083 Montgomery Road, Pleasant Ridge, 513-351-0035, www.theoverlooklodgecincinnati.com.
The new Walnut Hills location of this barbecue joint has a big patio behind a tall fence where you can eat their smoky, tender ribs and pulled pork. 975 E. McMillan St., Walnut Hills, 513-386-4848, www.justqin.com. (The original location has just a picnic table outside, 6901 Valley Ave., Newtown, 513-271-6555.)
Is your dog a part of the family? On a leash and well-behaved, they’re welcome at the patio at Meritage. The restaurant just moved from its original location on Springfield Pike into the old Iron Horse building on Glendale Village Square. You can order the full menu. 40 Village Square, Glendale, 513-376-8134, www.meritagecincy.com
The patio outside this Pan-Asian restaurant, which took over Pacific Moon’s space, is especially nice because it’s set back from any street or parking lot. The full pan-Asian menu is available, and it’s a good place to sip a lychee mojito or a Pacific mule. 8300 Market Place Lane, Montgomery, 513-898-1833. www.thepacific.kitchen.com.
Just a few chairs, but a fun see-and-be-seen spot on Edwards Road. Have a cocktail, sushi, a ramen bowl or tacos, and watch the world go by. You might have to wait, though patio tables are not reservable. 3520 Edwards Road, Hyde Park, 513-832-1023, www.eokitchen.com.
O Pie O
Such a sweet little hideaway in East Walnut Hills where you can eat pie in a small, walled-in patio. There are pies both savory and sweet pocket pies, pot pies, quiche, peach-paprika pie, apple-rosemary pie, honey pie, pie a la mode. 1527 Madison Road, 513-274-3238, www.opieo.com.
Even Quatman’s, the traditional neighborhood bar with the burgers in Norwood, has a place outside now. You can enjoy a cheeseburger and some mock turtle soup outside with a beer, of course. The Mason location has a patio, too. 2434 Quatman Ave., Norwood, 513-731-4370. 224 W. Main Street, Mason, 513-229-0222. http://quatmancafe.com
One of the area’s newest breweries, Darkness Brewing has picnic tables out front, and a garage door (on the building that was originally a car lot) creates an indoor-outdoor feel on nice days. Grab one of the brewery’s house-brewed beers and watch the cars go by on Fairfield Avenue. 224 Fairfield Ave., Bellevue, www.facebook.com/darknessbrewing.
Over-the-Rhine doesn’t have a lot of outdoor dining, but there’s a sweet patio tucked behind Che!, an Argentinian empanadas and pizza bar. Do the tango if you’re moved. 1342 Walnut Street, Over-the-Rhine, 513-978-1706, www.checincinnati.com.
There’s now a patio across the front of this Wyoming restaurant, on Springfield Pike. Half is dining, half dedicated to cocktails. Graze on a charcuterie board or a salad with a craft cocktail, or get serious with one of their hearty flavorful meals. Umbrellas block the evening sun. 1212 Springfield Pike, 513-821-8352, www.telabarandkitchen.com.
Caitlin Steininger and Kelly Trush of Cooking with Caitlin are working on a restaurant in Wyoming. While it’s being built, they’re serving summer comfort food from a food truck on weekends. It’s parked in the future restaurant’s parking lot, with picnic tables under tents to eat on. 1517 Springfield Pike, Wyoming, www.cwctherestaurant.com. (Open 6-9 p.m. Friday and Saturday and for brunch 9 a.m.-noon Sunday.)
Sleepy Bee in Blue Ash
Breakfast outside is nice, too! Plenty of tables are on the patio behind this lunch/breakfast spot, and they are right on Blue Ash Towne Square Park. Egg dishes, lots of vegetarian, gluten-free and healthy options. 9514 Kenwood Road, Blue Ash, 513-241-2339, www.sleepybeecafe.com.
The Over-the-Rhine brewery added a big (as in 4,500 square feet), beautiful roof deck along the building’s Elm Street side. That means you can take in views of the Over-the-Rhine, Downtown and the brand-new streetcar’s Elm Street stop. There is lots of Rhinegeist beer, of course, but there are also nice cocktails. 1910 Elm St., Over-the-Rhine, 513-381-1367, www.rhinegeist.com.
Coming soon: Queen City Radio
Housed in what was once a 1929 filling station, this new Over-the-Rhine bar and beer garden will open next Friday, Sept. 16. Boozie slushies” will be on the menu alongside the craft beer, wine, cocktails and ballpark-style food: burgers, chili dogs, milkshakes, French fries, pork rinds and hush puppies. 222 W. 12th St., Over-the-Rhine, www.qcrbar.com.Return to Blog