Last weekend, Cassie and I traveled to Cincinnati, Ohio to see the one and only Beyoncé and her man Jay. To say we were excited would be an understatement. We headed out to the city on Friday since her cousin lives nearby. I’d never been to Cincinnati before, and I didn’t really know what to think. I’ve heard rave reviews about the place since I went to school with crazy Cincinnati residents, but I’ve also heard that the city wasn’t so safe.
I’m happy to report that I adored Cincinnati and all it had to offer. The vibe I got actually reminded me a lot of Pittsburgh – low-key but also quietly really cool. I felt right at home, and if that wasn’t enough, the food would surely get me to come back for a return visit.
Friday night Cassie, her cousin, Jaimie, and I went out to dinner, first stopping at Senate for a drink while we waited for our table. All three of us ordered the rosé. I would definitely come back to Senate for meal. It was a small restaurant but packed a punch with modern décor, and it smelled GREAT.
After our drink, the three of us got our table at Abigail Street. I’ve only been to a tapas restaurant one other time in my life, but this meal solidified my love for tapas. Wow. The restaurant itself was so cute. It’s a sister to Senate, so the décor was similar – dim but inviting with white exposed brick and little modern and rustic details. But the food… ohhh the food. Some of the best I’ve had in a while.
We started with their special of the day, a balsamic tomato salad over feta. I’m a tomato freak so this was perfect. I need to make this at home for lunch sometime.
We decided to each pick one other dish for the table, but I think we would have ended up with the same things if we’d chosen together. My choice was the Beets, which came with hazelnuts, golden and red beets and a brown butter vinaigrette. It was good but not the best out of the bunch.
Cassie chose the Borek, which was a phyllo dough filled with roasted peppers, onions, eggplant, feta and mint. This was to.die.for.
We ended the meal with lamb sliders. They were phenomenal: slightly spicy, a little tangy and savory.
The next morning hit us a little hard after finishing our night at The Drinkery, but it was well worth the fun. I had a little bowl of oatmeal to start the day while Cassie was out for her run. We find a great little make-your-own salad bar called Ingredients for lunch, but I completely forgot to take a picture of it! We were so hungry by that point that pictures were not on my radar.
The concert on Saturday was at Great American Ballpark. Much to our groups chagrin, every single business around the park was packed with over an hour wait. I was getting extremely hangry and cranky (thanks for putting up with me, guys), so I suggested heading a few blocks into the city instead of staying by the area. We ended up at a place called Local 127. The feel reminded me a lot of dinner from Friday. Cassie and I shared a chicken and wheatberry dish and a salad.
Weird story: Cassie’s cousin was talking about taking the Moscow Mule copper mug that she got from the restaurant, and the bartender said to go ahead and take it. We were floored, but then the bartender said that the business was closing! I could not believe it. The meal we had was really great, but I think that the location, which was outside of the new hip area of Cincy, was the problem.
And now: the concert. All I can say is HOLY CRAP. It was outstanding – three hours! I’ve never seen a more deliberately planned and executed, exciting, and talent-filled show. Even the back-up dancers were awe-inspiring.
On Sunday we woke up a little later than I expected but got out and about pretty quickly. We started at Findlay Market, which reminded me a lot of St. Lawrence Market in Toronto and North Market in Columbus. After strolling through the vendors, we drove over to Melt for brunch. For anyone following a veggie or vegan diet, this is the place to go. Even though I don’t follow those diets, I had a vegan meal of tofu scramble, red potato hash and fruit. It was a little spicy, which I don’t usually go for, but I loved it. Highly recommend this place (which actually was recommended to us by Cassie’s friend Emily!).
After brunch it was time to hit the road. I had a wonderful time during my first visit to Cincinnati, and I know I’ll be back!
Thanks to Cassie for taking me on the trip & most of these pics, and Jaimie for letting us crash with her!
WIAW is hosted by Jenn at Peas & Crayons.
Questions of the Day:
>> Do you have any outdoor/indoor stationary markets near you?
>> Have you had tapas before? Where?!
>> Any trips on your docket?