Best Restaurants

Out of all the restaurants in a city, 10Best narrows the options to those places with the most appeal and the best reputations. We offer carefully vetted selections to let you explore Cincinnati dining on your own. If time is really tight, though, and you don't have the leisure to look through all our offerings, we present our Cincinnati Best Restaurants list. Here, we distill the best businesses down to a special selection of ten. These places promise a stellar experience and a taste of the city that you just can't miss.

10 Skyline Chili
A visit to Cincinnati wouldn't be complete without partaking of its renowned chili! Skyline was rated "Cincinnati's Finest" by the Cincinnati Magazine. Served almost any way you can think of � over spaghetti or with black beans, onions, cheese, sour cream or peppers. This recipe has been handed down for generations! Be sure to get plenty of napkins. Casual dress. (513-221-2142)

9 Celestial Steakhouse
The name of this dining heaven couldn't be more appropriate. Located high atop Mount Adams, this spot affords the best view of Cincinnati. Discreet service, pristine linens and dark, paneled wood make for an overall formal experience. Specialties include Kobe beef steaks, sesame-orange crusted sea bass, and desserts such as chilled lime souffle. (513-241-4455)

8 Soho
Located in nearby Westchester, this authentic Japanese restaurant has a calming decor that beckons you to linger over plates of sushi or grilled dishes from the hibachi menu prepared by expert chefs right before your eyes. Noodle dishes, seafood, chicken, beef and vegetable offerings can all be found on the menu. A tatami room, traditional Japanese style eating on the floor and sans shoes, is available by appointment. (513-759-6870)

7 The Rookwood Bar & Restaurant
Just because most of us can't afford a piece of antique Rookwood pottery doesn't mean we can't snuggle into one of the original kilns over a crazy cocktail - maybe a Corpse Reviver. Cincinnatians love this great old building, once the studio and manufacturing plant for Rookwood Pottery. Maria Longworth Nichols Storer started the country's first female-owned manufacturing company in 1880, and the price of Rookwood pottery skyrockets today. The finest Rookwood pieces easily fetch five and six figures on the auction block. Duck into Maria's old kilns for a hanky panky's starter: beef and goetta, a local pork-and-oats breakfast sausage, plus jalapeno cheese and giardinara on Jewish rye. Fire things up with Rookwood chili, rich with roasted poblanos, beans, onions and white cheddar. Or try a tamer roasted chicken with red wine risotto, wild mushrooms and cippolini onions. (513-421-5555)

6 Boca
A trendy, rather upscale place with a vibe all its own, this Italian eatery has won rave reviews for its contemporary take on the classics. A world traveler who's worked in some of the country's best kitchens, the chef has a passion for Italian cuisine and demonstrates that in every meal that exits his kitchen. An outstanding wine list stands ready to accompany each menu selection. (513-542-2022)

5 Jeff Ruby's Steakhouse
This award-winning downtown steakhouse serves savory portions of sizzling steaks accompanied by delicious side dishes. Helpings are oversized, perfect for large appetites in the mood for top quality beef. The beef is aged in the restaurant's "exhibition" room visible from Walnut Street, so you know you're getting the real deal. The welcoming lobby, complete with fireplace, is ideal for cocktails. (513-784-1200)

4 Jeff Ruby's Precinct
The name for this award-winning steakhouse fits perfectly because it's located in a former police headquarters building built in 1901. Big portions, outstanding cuts of beef and solicitous service are the order of the day at this restaurant, owned by one of Cincy's most beloved restaurateurs, Jeff Ruby. A fine wine list accompanies the exceptional menu that includes fresh seafood and plenty of sides in addition to great steaks. To really feel at home, guys should don jackets and ties and gals should break out the hose and heels. (513-321-5454)

3 Nicola's Ristorante
An artsy, modern setting showcases elements like exposed brickwork and vaulted ceilings, tying everything together with 6-foot wide clock faces. Attentive service and tasty northern Italian eats make time fly at Nicola's; sample the antipasto eggplant flan for a savory starter, and then indulge in hearty veal-stuffed cannelloni topped with Alfredo and Bolognese sauces. Desserts are appropriately decadent, and a 1200-bottle wine list is more than adequate for choosy oenophiles. Reservations are suggested -- theater crowds often fill the patio on warm evenings. (513-721-6200)

2 Palace Restaurant
Austere paneling and the formal waitstaff are punctuated by bursts of freshly cut flowers and the reflections of silver serving trays. Just adjacent to the lobby of the 113-year old Cincinnatian Hotel, the Palace serves four-star traditional cuisine along with exotic menu items such as tempura quail, tuna medallion pyramids and breast of chicken with pesto couscous. Dining with companions is the way to go here, especially with the traditional "synchronized lifting" of the serving domes. (513-381-3000, 800-942-9000)

1 Primavista
Order up a steaming dish of Pollo ai Funghi, angel hair pasta with saut??éed chicken breast and mushrooms. Accompany this or any of the other traditional Italian entrees with a bottle of wine from the outstanding list. To finish off with a flourish, order tiramisu. The location provides a stunning view of the Cincy skyline and the Ohio River. (513-251-6467)


From Our Partners

Lists
Articles

Maps and Directions

1
Skyline Chili 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American
Dining Options: Family Friendly, Group Friendly, Non-Smoking, Take Out
Neighborhood: CLIFTON
COST: $
2
Celestial Steakhouse 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Steakhouse
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Bar Dining, Group Friendly, Live Music, Non-Smoking, Parties / Private Rooms, Wine Cellar
Neighborhood: Mount Adams
COST: $$$
3
Soho 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Asian, Japanese
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Bar Dining, Counter Seating, Disabled Accessible, Family Friendly, Group Friendly, Non-Smoking, Parties / Private Rooms
Neighborhood: MASON
COST: $$
4
The Rookwood Bar & Restaurant 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Bar Dining, Non-Smoking, Parties / Private Rooms, Take Out
Neighborhood: Mount Adams
COST: $$$
5
Boca 10Best List Arrow
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Bar Dining, Group Friendly, Non-Smoking, Parties / Private Rooms
Cuisine: European, French, Italian
Neighborhood: DOWNTOWN
COST: $$$
6
Jeff Ruby's Steakhouse 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Steakhouse
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Bar Dining, Disabled Accessible, Group Friendly, Live Music, Non-Smoking, Parties / Private Rooms
Neighborhood: DOWNTOWN
COST: $$$
7
Jeff Ruby's Precinct 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Continental, Steakhouse
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Bar Dining, Disabled Accessible, Group Friendly, Non-Smoking, Parties / Private Rooms
COST: $$$
8
Nicola's Ristorante 10Best List Arrow
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Family Friendly, Group Friendly, Parties / Private Rooms, Smoking, Take Out, Wine Cellar
Cuisine: European, Italian
Neighborhood: OVER-THE-RHINE
COST: $$$
9
Palace Restaurant 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Catering, Non-Smoking, Parties / Private Rooms
Neighborhood: FOUNTAIN SQUARE PLAZA
COST: $$$
10
Primavista 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: European, Italian
Dining Options: Group Friendly, Non-Smoking, Parties / Private Rooms, Take Out
Neighborhood: Queensgate
COST: $$
Lists
Articles

RELATED ARTICLES