Date Archives: April 2017

Denise Evans Blog Home

Subscribe and receive email notifications of new blog posts.




rss logo RSS Feed
Explore Ohio | 73 Posts
LoLo Gifts | 27 Posts
Northeast Ohio | 183 Posts
Real Estate | 69 Posts
Uncategorized | 1 Posts
Cutler Real Estate | Home Maintenance | Home Safety | Homeownership | Cutler Real Estate Agents | Cutler Realtor | Decor | Northeast Ohio | Ohio Real Estate | Real Estate Trends | Realtor | Cutler Real Estate News | Ohio Association of Realtors | Home Selling Tips | House Hunting | Real Estate | Sell a Home | Selling Your Home with a Realtor | Staging | Local Attractions | Things to Do | Relocation | First-time homebuyer tips | Columbus OH | Buy a home | Community | Holiday Home Selling Tips | Holidays | Find a Home | Cincinnati OH | Things to do in Cincinnati | Restaurants | Akron OH | Canton OH | Cleveland OH | Things to do in Northeast Ohio | Akron | Business | Cleveland Real Estate | Cincinnati Real Estate | Columbus Real Estate | Columbus | Columbus Restaurants | Thanksgiving | Akron Real Estate | Canton Real Estate | Best of Cincinnati | Best of Cleveland | Traveling | Stark County | Columbus Events | Best of Ohio | Cincinnati Events | Cuyahoga Valley National Park | Akron Events | Canton Events | Things to do in Columbus | Dublin OH | Best of Columbus | Cleveland Events | Canton | Cincinnati | Family-Friendly Activities | Brunch | Homes for Sale | Apple Orchards | Corn Mazes | Fall | Fall Events | Pumpkin Patches | Events | Columbus Bars | Ohio State | Sports | Sports Bars | Halloween | Local Events | Local | Bloggers | Ohio Bloggers | Recipes | Dining | Gluten-Free | Home Decor | Home Inspiration | Ohio | Downtown Canton | Bars and Restaurants | Cuyahoga Falls | Kent OH | Mantua OH | Silver Lake OH | Stow OH | Tallmadge OH | Photography | Christmas | Holiday | Chanukah | Holiday Events | Santa | Boutique | Shop Local | Shopping | Holiday Shopping | A Christmas Story House | New Year's Eve | Fitness | Healthy | New Year | Paleo | Vegan | Winter | Lunch | Record Shops | Fireplaces | Bookstores | Farmers Markets | Coffee | Coffee Shops | Valentine's Day | Bars | Beer | Breweries | Cincinnati Bars & Restaurants | Newport | Downtown Cleveland | Neighborhood Guide | St. Patrick's Day | Copley OH | Irish | Massillon OH | Medina OH | Findlay Market | Architecture | Spring | Easter | Pets | North Canton OH | Charities | Giving Back | Karma Keg | Strongsville | Cocktails | Happy Hours | Eco-Friendly | Sustainability | Festivals | Summer | Roadtrips | Moving Tips | Memorial Day | Cabins | Camping | Glamping | Summer Events | Kids | Gardening | Home Improvement | Landscaping | Fourth of July | Fishing | Hiking | Outdoors | Skiing | Food Trucks | Nonprofits | Small Businesses | Lake Erie | Put-in-Bay | Affordable Homes | Over-the-Rhine OH | Luxury | Hyde Park OH | Alliance OH | Hartville OH | Instagram | Instagrammers | Podcasts | Wooster OH | Specialty Foods | Museums | Virtual Tours | Farms | Dessert | Wineries | Augusta, KY | Carrollton OH | Malvern OH | Lake Mohawk OH | Beachwood OH | Bedford OH | Brecksville OH | Independence OH | Mayfield Heights OH | Middleburg Heights OH | Ohio City OH | Pepper Pike OH | Rocky River OH | Seven Hills OH | Tremont OH | Westlake OH | Avon OH | Elyria OH | Amherst OH | Brunswick OH | Wadsworth OH | Aurora OH | Garrettsville OH | Streetsboro OH | Ravenna OH | Canal Fulton OH | East Sparta OH | Jackson Township OH | Louisville OH | Magnolia OH | Navarre OH | Perry Township OH | Plain Township OH | Sandyville OH | Uniontown OH | Waynesburg OH | Barberton OH | Cuyahoga Falls OH | Fairlawn OH | Green OH | Hudson OH | Munroe Falls OH | Bolivar OH | Dover OH | New Philadelphia OH | Bexley OH | Delaware OH | Downtown Columbus OH | Galena OH | German Village OH | Lewis Center OH | Ostrander OH | Powell OH | Short North OH | Sunbury OH | Westerville OH | Lancaster OH | Fayette County OH | Blacklick OH | Canal Winchester OH | Clintonville OH | Gahanna OH | Grandview Heights OH | Grove City OH | Groveport OH | Hilliard OH | New Albany OH | Obetz OH | Reynoldsburg OH | Upper Arlington OH | Whitehall OH | Worthington OH | Granville OH | Johnstown OH | Pataskala OH | London OH | Mount Sterling OH | West Jefferson OH | Pickaway County OH | Marysville OH | Florence KY | Union KY | Walton KY | Burlington KY | Western Hills OH | West Chester OH | Union County OH | Carroll County OH | Delaware County OH | Fairfield County OH | Franklin County OH | Hamilton County OH | Licking County OH | Lorain County OH | Madison County OH | Portage County OH | Summit County OH | Tuscarawas County OH | Wayne County OH | New Philadelphia | Parks | Wedding Venues | Local Businesses | Theater
April
28

Things to do in Cleveland and on Lake Erie Over Memorial Day Weekend

Memorial Day is nearly upon us. This time to remember and pay respect to our country's fallen soldiers warrants a day off from school and work (and rightfully so), and many also consider it the beginning of summer. If the warm weather and beach-goers haven't convinced you to get outside and celebrate, we're sure we can tempt you with some of the summery events happening over the weekend in Cleveland and on the shores of Lake Erie. We've rounded up some of our favorites below, so don your white pants and your swimsuit, and get ready to make this the best Memorial Day yet.  

Blossom Time Festival

May 25-28

Photo courtesy of Blossom Time Festival 

Celebrate the beginning of summer with one of the most colorful parties in the area. The annual Blossom Time Festival takes place in downtown Chagrin Falls, and includes carnival rides, a hot air balloon glow, a pie-eating contest, and plenty of other family-friendly activities. Additionally, guests are invited to get a taste of Chagrin, with more than 20 food trucks and local vendors serving up bites and sips throughout the weekend.

Berea's National Rib Cook-off

May 26-29

Photo courtesy of Berea's National Rib Cook-off 

For the 19th year in a row, barbecue connoisseurs, meat lovers and ribbing experts will come together to celebrate the carnivore's favorite entrée: ribs. Meander through the fairgrounds at Berea's National Rib Cook-off, snacking on a tasty morsel from tens of local vendors while enjoying live music and family-friendly games and activities. There's no doubt about it — this event is finger lickin' good.

Tremont Greek Festival

May 26-29 While you don't have to be Greek to enjoy the Tremont Greek Festival, you do have to enjoy Greek food, Greek bevvies and Greek dancing. Somehow, we don't think that will be a problem! Visit Cleveland's historic Tremont neighborhood for a taste of all the above, and enjoy a variety of Greek performances and shopping from local vendors. Can you say "Opa?"

Memorial Day Weekend at Put-in-Bay

May 26-29 Memorial Day Weekend is one of the most popular weekends at Put-in-Bay, welcoming visitors from all over the Great Lakes region. Whether you hop on the ferry for a day trip or reserve a hotel for the weekend, there are plenty of activities to take part in — especially on Saturday!  While you're not basking in the sun and taking in all this island has to offer, enjoy performances from popular entertainers, a gorgeous Memorial Day service at Perry's Victory, and a grand parade on monday featuring antique cars.  

Main Street Port Clinton Walleye Festival

May 25-29

Photo courtesy of the Main Street Port Clinton Walleye Festival

The annual Main Street Port Clinton Walleye Festival is one of the most anticipated events in the area, and it's easy to see why! For its 37th year, the event will invite locals and visitors alike (including over 100 vendors from around the nation) to take part in an array of free live concerts, tasty food and beverages, and outdoor activities on the picturesque shores of Lake Erie. Highlights will include a kids fishing derby, a grand parade and the Walleye 5K race.

Ohio Bike Week at Sandusky

May 26-June 4 Memorial Day weekend also marks the beginning of Sandusky's Ohio Bike Week. Even if thundering motorcycles aren't really your thing, you'll enjoy marveling at the displays of gleaming metal and impressive beards that will set Sandusky apart during the week. There will also be exciting live performances, a great selection of activities, and plenty of food to keep you entertained.

Cedar Point Shores Opening Weekend

May 26-28 This lakeside amusement park is known as the roller coaster capital of the world, but it also has one heck of a water park. Cedar Point Shores will open on Memorial Day Weekend, offering a swimmin' good time to fun-loving Ohioans of all ages, plus four new water attractions! Get a first look at the new waterslides, Point Plummet and the Portside Plunge, or enjoy some family fun at Lemmy's Lagoon and Lakeside Landing. The beginning of summer means it's beach season, so celebrate by taking a dip!  
April
27

Cleveland Restaurants Featured on Diners, Drive ins and Dives

Guy Fieri made a name for himself back in 2007, when he starred in the first episode of Diners, Drive-ins and Dives. Since then he has continued on a career path that can only be defined as a dream job, traveling across the country to sample the greasiest, tastiest, most satisfying cuisine America can offer. If anyone has watched this show while hungry, you know what a mistake that can be. Luckily, we're here to satisfy those cravings. Cleveland is home to more than a few spots that were deemed worthy by Fieri himself, including a grilled cheese mecca, a farm-to-table breakfast joint offering legendary biscuits and gravy, and a chic modern Mexican cafe with six guacamoles. We've gathered them here for you so you can get a true taste of Cleveland comfort food. Enjoy!

Melt Bar & Grilled

(Aired 2/08/2010) Craving a grilled cheese? Of course you are. Look no further than Cleveland's Melt Bar & Grilled, which serves everything from a gooey, crispy classic grilled cheese to the Wake & Bacon (with an egg and hickory bacon), and the Mighty Macaroni (with creamy, homemade macaroni battered and deep fried). Hankering for something with a bit more substance? Opt for the Korean War Big, with Korean BBQ pulled pork, seared pork belly, kimchi slaw, pear onion cilantro relish, and muenster cheese. Regardless of your choice, we're sure your sandwich will leave you cheesin' with joy. Melt Bar & Grilled also chooses a different charity to donate to each month — and what's better than eating for charity? The beloved grilled cheese joint in Cleveland was featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives on February 8, 2010, and has since expanded to include 12 locations across Ohio. Look for a new location in Cedar Point opening this Memorial Day Weekend!

Lucky's Cafe

(Aired 10/12/2009)

Photos courtesy of Lucky's Cafe

This coffee shop turned restaurant in Tremont has truly redefined the meaning of "cooking from scratch." Here, you'll find the epitome of comfort food, including fluffy cheddar scallion biscuits topped with sausage gravy and a classic reuben with house-brined corned beef. The beloved cafe sources as much as it can from local farmers and vendors, grows its veggies in the garden out back, and makes all of the breads and pastries in house. Can breakfast get any better than that? We think not.   Bonus: Lucky's Cafe was featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives in October, 2009, but soon after, Iron Chef's Michael Simon stopped in to try the biscuits and gravy, which he deemed "soul-satisfying."

Parkview Nite Club

(Aired 10/26/2009) This self-proclaimed "cool place for shady people" is steeped in history. The now nightclub was actually established in 1898 as L. Schlater Brewing Company, and went on to become a speakeasy in the '20s, and a working man's bar in the 50's before it found its current owners in 1993. Parkview is popular for lunch, during which it serves up home-style entrées like the honey chipotle pork tacos, or the ever-satisfying smoked salmon BLT. Swing by on a crowded weekend evening, you'll be treated to energetic live performances from local and national acts. There's no doubt about it  — Parkview is the spot for a laid-back good time with great food.

Geraci's Restaurant

(Aired 1/16/2009)

Photo courtesy of Geraci's Restaurant

This old-school pizza joint has been family-owned for more than 60 years, perfecting age-old recipes that have been passed from generation to generation. The daughters of the original owners still run the place, and you'll find them meandering the dining room, making conversation with loyal customers. Locals flock for mainstays like the no-frills pepperoni pizza, assembled with dough that's made fresh several times a day. The meatballs are nothing to scoff at either, made from a recipe developed in Sicily that has been unchanged since. Regardless of what you choose, you'll be able to taste the history and the love that went into the menu. Make sure to bring cash — credit cards are a no-go here.

Sterle's Slovenian Country House

(Aired 1/11/2010)

Photo courtesy of Alex Pogrebinsky via Sterle's Slovenian Country House 

It's not just the amazing food that makes Sterle's Slovenian Country House stand out — the friendly atmosphere and family-style dining experience make every visit to this beloved standby memorable. A meal is $24 per person, and it'll come with heaping portions of pickles and pretzels, pork schnitzel, beer-braised sausage, pierogies and much more cooked up by acclaimed chef Natasha Pogrebinsky. Additionally, you'll be treated to some of the best brews around in Szemerszky's Bier Garden, and lively performances from accordian-bearing polka bands several nights a week.

Momocho

(Aired 3/22/2010)

Photos courtesy of Momocho

Guy Fieri stopped by this small, modern Mexican cafe for the guacamole served six ways (goat cheese, crab, pineapple, pecorino, smoked trout, etc.), but there's so much more to Momocho than the beloved appetizer. The small dining room means the chefs can make everything fresh to order, doing away with the freezers and heat lamps that accompany so many other Mexican restaurants. Stand out items include the Dos Equis-braised beef short rib tamales with red & green mole sauces and crema, or the crab and smoked trout tostadas with tomatillo verde, black beans, queso mixto and a fried egg to top it all off. You really can't go wrong here, as long as you're willing to chase down your choice with a house-made margarita (or a sampler of three flavors).

Bon Appetît!

Now, please excuse us as we eat ourselves into a stupor.
April
20

11 Columbus Date Night Ideas that Don't Involve Going to a Restaurant

The weekend has finally arrived, so it's time to plan date night! While there is no shortage of fantastic restaurants in the Columbus area, maybe the time has come to shake up your traditional dinner and a movie routine. Whether you're on a first date or going out on the town with your sweetheart of 20 years, there are plenty of fun activities in our beloved town that are sure to provide a good time and even better memories. We've rounded up some of our best date night ideas, from letting your inner child soar at a bounce park, to romantic sunset picnics. All you have to do is choose what to try first!

Fly High at Sky Zone

Love is in the air (literally) at Sky Zone. While trampoline parks are now common, Sky Zone in Columbus was the first indoor bounce park in the nation, and is filled from wall-to-wall with massive floor trampolines. Flit and fly across the floor, and then flip into a foam pit filled with 10,000 cubes. If you're feeling competitive, position yourself across from your date on the trampoline dodgeball court. It's a workout like you've never experienced, and your inner child will be grateful for the gigglin' good time.

Catch a Concert at EXPRESS LIVE!

Located in the Arena District, EXPRESS LIVE! is Columbus's most desirable venue for nationally renowned acts, offering both indoor and outdoor accommodations as well as state-of-the-art acoustics. There are more than 100 events to choose from every year, so check out the schedule and pick a night to experience the sound with your beloved! There's sure to be an artist you both love on the agenda.

Picnic in Schiller Park

Pack your picnic basket with the essentials (wine and cheese, of course), and head out to Schiller Park to catch sunset. There's nothing quite as romantic as sharing a picnic on a blanket in a beautiful park. Schiller, nestled in the famed German Village, is certainly one of the prettiest around, but also has an interesting history. The 23.5-acre park was established in 1857, originally dubbed Stewart's Grove. In 1891 however, the park was renamed for the famous German poet, Friedrich Von Schiller, who is forever commemorated by his statue in the center of the park. In World War I, when American sentiment was anti-German, the park was named after Washington (along with several nearby streets), but luckily the change didn't last long. Due to the poetic nature of this Columbus gem, it is only fitting it is named after an artist! Enjoy your packed meal here among the trees and beautiful scenery, and hit a nearby pub for cocktails in the German Village afterward.

Cheer on The Columbus Clippers

Photo courtesy of Joe Santry via the Columbus Clippers

When the weather gets warmer, buy yourself some peanuts and cracker jacks and take yourself out to the ballgame! The Columbus Clippers play on summer evenings at Huntington Park, which has been named the best ballpark in the nation. Root, root, root for the home team alongside your sweetheart. This is a great opportunity to see where his or her loyalties truly lie. Go Clippers!

Go Rock Climbing at Vertical Adventures

Photo courtesy of Cooper Fenske Photography via  Vertical Adventures

Rock climbing is a fun and challenging way to work your mind and your body at the same time, and it's even more fun when you take your honey along with you! Whether you're belaying or bouldering (no ropes), you will work together to help each other complete problems and reach the top. And bringing a plus one means you'll always have a partner to hold the ropes. Just don't tick them off while you're on the wall — your life is in their hands. On your first visit to Vertical Adventures, you have the option to start bouldering right away, or take Rope 101: Intro to Climbing. This class is $39 a person, but includes your lesson, equipment, and a two week trial at the gym.

Watch a Blue Jackets Game at Arena District

No list would be complete without Columbus's beloved Blue Jackets, which play during the winter months in the Arena District. Don your red, white and blue apparel, and get ready to hoot and holler along to what is bound to be a thrilling game — the Blue Jackets always put on a show for their fans.

Bowl in Style at Star Lanes Polaris

Photo courtesy of Star Lanes Polaris

We see you rolling your eyes — bowling is nothing new. But when you reserve a lane at Star Lanes Polaris, you can count on a party. It's bowling like you've never seen it before. Grab a bite and cocktails at the Point Bar & Grill before hitting the pins. Far from typical bowling food, the cuisine here is contemporary, made fresh to order, and delicious as heck. Then grab your shoes, pick out a ball, and aim for the pins in a black-lit setting with private suites and quirky decor.

See a Drive-in Movie

Make movie night a bit more interesting by hitting the drive-in theatre. You'll be able to catch the latest hits from the comfort of your own car, enjoying a picnic dinner and your choice of bevvie in the front seats or from a blanket. If you have the time, you can stay and enjoy two movies for just over $9 a person — well worth it for a fun and cozy night out with your plus one.

Go Wine Tasting at Wine on High

Photo courtesy of Wine on High

Ready to wind down with a glass or two of your favorite label? Or looking to try something new? This locally-owned shop is home to more than 300 varieties of wine, all of which are available to enjoy by the glass, in a tasting, or in a bottle that you can take home with you. Kick back with your sweetheart and take in the upscale atmosphere while you sip and savor to your heart's content. We recommend pairing your choice with a charcuterie board, filled with artisan cheeses and meats.

Create a Work of Art at Wine & Canvas

What's better than drinking a glass of wine with your sweetheart? Sipping that wine while creating an awesome work of art to hang in your lovely home! At Wine & Canvas, you'll find all of your supplies waiting for you before you sit down, and learn to paint the featured piece while an instructor patiently guides your strokes. You'll have some liquid courage from the wine, so go ahead — paint the town red!

Catch a Performance at Shadowbox Live

Photo courtesy of Tommy Fiesel Shadowbox Live

The Shadowbox Live troupe produces a wide variety of theatrical shows each year, ranging from rock operas and traditional musicals to contemporary dances and comedy shows. Currently Columbus residents can catch the popular sketch comedy, the Lunchbox on select Fridays, Evolutionaries (the stories of Prince and Bowie) through June 22, and so much more.

Have a Great Date!

April
20

The 15 Best Places to Go Camping in Ohio

The summer months are finally upon us, bringing with them a break from school and the opportunity to bring the family together for a weekend under the stars — that's right, it's camping time. May through September are the best months for pitching a tent and enjoying the beautiful sunshine in Ohio, and with so little time and so many stunning places across the state, it can be tough to land on a location. Whether you're into a luxe cabin retreat, a simple tent excursion, a dog-friendly spot or an RV trip, we've compiled a list of our favorite camping spots in Ohio to get you started. Break out the marshmallows and the graham crackers, because these gorgeous campgrounds will leave you wanting s'more time off from work.

Hocking Hills

Photo courtesy of Hocking Hills

The Hocking Hills region, with its beautiful scenery and entertaining attractions, is a popular spot to visit year-round. But in the warmer months, the campgrounds are bustling with Ohio locals and travelers alike, anxious to soak in all that the area has to offer. Choose to stay in a traditional Sioux-style tipi (perfect for a romantic weekend) or settle down at a spot near the famed Old Man's Cave and hike around the stunning waterfalls and sandstone formations by day.  

Alum Creek State Park

Located just minutes from Ohio's capital city, Alum Creek State Park offers endless opportunities for fun under the sun — be it horseback riding, hiking, bicycling, fishing, boating or water skiing. The recreational area spans more than 4,630 acres in addition to the large lake, and there are 286 campsites at the main campground, each with electricity, water, and even WiFi (but we doubt you'll need that when you're surrounded by such beautiful scenery). There are also eight cabins to rent within the park, and a number of primitive campgrounds for those who like to rough it.  

Lake Loramie State Park

This 407-acre state park north of Dayton offers a quiet retreat in rural Ohio. Stay the night in a shady campsite by the lake, and enjoy swimming or boating in the lazy waters of Loramie Lake all weekend long. The park is dog-friendly, so bring man's best friend along for the ride.  

Wolf Creek Park

Photo courtesy of Sandusky Park District County

Wolf Creek Park is nestled along the scenic Sandusky River just south of Fremont, and provides a natural oasis for locals looking for a weekend away from the hustle and bustle of it all. The Buckeye Trail (a renowned statewide trail) runs straight through the park, but campers can also enjoy canoeing or fishing on the river, and cooking dinner on the community grills.  

Tappan Lake Park

With beautiful scenery, live music on the weekends, basketball and volleyball courts, and endless activities on and off the water, it's not tough to see why this park is so popular. The 200 camping sites go quickly during the summer, so make sure to reserve your spot in advance.  

Kelleys Island State Park

Photo courtesy of the Ohio Division of State Parks and Watercraft

Kelleys Island is the most popular camping destination of the Erie Islands, known as the "Emerald Isle." It's a great retreat for nature enthusiasts, offering access to unique geological, ecological and archaeological features. Enjoy the stunning scenery and views of the great lake while engaging in activities such as swimming, hiking, boating and fishing. Plus, the ferry ride from Marblehead to get there is an adventure in itself!  

Leith Run Campground, Wayne National Forest

Photo courtesy of Recreation.gov

Grassy, shaded campsites and picnic areas are the name of the game at this quiet, picturesque retreat on the Ohio River. Hike a short distance from the site on the Camping Bridge Scenic Byway, which will take you over four historic covered bridges and offer romantic views of the surrounding countryside. Don't forget to make a wish as you cross each bridge — it's tradition.  

Hueston Woods State Park

This gigantic state park spans nearly 3,000 acres of land, and surrounds the picturesque Acton Lake. With campsites, cabins for rent, and even a luxurious resort lodge, the opportunities for enjoying this little slice of heaven are endless. Activities include horseback riding, swimming, picnicking in the shade, hiking, miniature golf and so much more.  

John Bryan State Park

Photo courtesy of the Ohio Division of State Parks and Watercraft

Arguably the prettiest park in western Ohio, this 752-acre park attracts visitors from all across the state. Its claim to fame is the stunning limestone gorge cut by the Little Miami River, part of which is designated as a national landmark. Bring the whole family (even the dog) to take in the beauty and enjoy the countless activities the park has to offer.

Shawnee State Park

Photo courtesy of the Ohio Division of State Parks and Watercraft

Nestled in Shawnee State Forest and along the banks of the Ohio River is the picturesque Shawnee State Park Campground. This area was once the hunting grounds of the Shawnee Indians, but now offers a secluded retreat for campers. Enjoy boating, hiking, fishing (the works), or just sit back and admire the beautiful carved valleys and wooded hills that are famously known as "The Little Smokies."  

Mohican State Park

Photo courtesy of the Ohio Division of State Parks and Watercraft

25 cabins and 118 campsites dot the rugged but beautiful landscape of Mohican State Park. Take your pick of lodging options (make sure to make a reservation) and get ready for a weekend of fun on the Mohican River, which is known as one of the finest kayaking locations in Ohio. If biking is more your thing, the Mohican mountain biking trail traverses 24.5 miles and has been named the #1 mountain bike trail in Ohio according to Mountain Bike Action Magazine.  

Indian Lake State Park

Photo courtesy of the Ohio Division of State Parks and Watercraft

This gem in southwestern Ohio offers a beachside camping experience. Enjoy eating s'mores with the family under the shade of the large trees, letting the kids play at one of the playgrounds, and renting paddle boats.  

Five Rivers MetroParks

Photo courtesy of Five Rivers MetroParks

What better spot to enjoy nature than at your local MetroPark? These places feel like a different world, but are conveniently located just minutes from your door. There are four metroparks that welcome camping and are popular across the state, including Possum Creek, Twin Creek, Englewood and Germantown. Take your pick and pitch your tent for a weekend under the stars!  

William H. Harsha Lake

Located on the East Fork of the Little Miami River and 22 miles from Cincinnati, William H. Harsha Lake is a fantastic location for all outdoor recreation activities. The park is protected by the Army Corps of Engineers, and is the site of two abandoned gold mines (although we don't think you'll find much of the rare metal lying around). Enjoy the 40 miles of shoreline, and settle down at one of the many surrounding campsites.  

Mosquito Lake State Park

Photo courtesy of Reserve America

Don't let the name scare you away — there are no more mosquitos at this lake than at any other campground in Ohio. Instead, you'll find families, couples and solo adventurers alike enjoying the summertime activities lakeside. It's not the best spot for swimming, but fishing and boating is rumored to be spectacular. Plus, your furry friend is invited to join in the festivities!  

Regardless of where you choose to pitch your tent, make sure to be a happy camper!

April
14

The 7 Best Spots to Get a Margarita in Cincinnati

When happy hour rolls around, there's one drink that stands above the rest. Made with freshly squeezed lime juice, tequila and the orange liqueur of your choice, the margarita offers a refreshing and flavorful end to any work day, be it frozen, on the rocks or strawberry. And while these popular bevvies come in all shapes and sizes, creating the perfect one, with the ideal tequila to flavor ratio, is certainly an art. We've put together a list of some of our favorites in Cincinnati — because we believe these limey, salt-rimmed sippers deserve to be celebrated every day of the week.

Cactus Pear

Photo courtesy of The Cactus Pear

The Cactus Pear takes the cake when it comes to options, offering 18 different variations on the margarita. Indulge in whatever flavor captures your fancy, from sangria and piña rita to chipotle and prickly pear. If you want to keep it classic, opt for the house margarita, which comes frozen, on the rocks or half and half (for those of you who just can't choose). Come on a Monday and enjoy the margarita of your choice for just $4 a pop.

Nada

Photo courtesy of Nada

This swanky, local chain offers upscale Mexican street food in a colorful atmosphere. Settle down at a comfortable table, order a few tacos (Baja fish, crispy pork belly, grilled salmon, oh my!), and chase them down with a refreshing margarita. Our favorites are the Nadarita, made with tequila, triple sec, lime juice and honey, or the spicy yet satisfying chile mango, made with habanero pepper, mango and pineapple and finished with a chile-salted rim.

Mazunte

Photo courtesy of Mazunte

Patrons line up at Mazunte for the no-frills, authentic Mexican cuisine that is hard to find anywhere else. Anything you order here, be it tacos, rellenos or enchiladas, will fill you to the brim and still have you coming back for more. The margarita comes one way — on the rocks — and at just $6.95, it's one of the best in town. Good things take time, so be prepared to wait a bit for a table.

Django Western Tacos

It's not often we find a virgin margarita listed proudly on the menu, but Django has mastered its flavor combination, so the lack of tequila doesn't phase us. If you're looking for something with a little more bite, the house margarita, made with fresh jalapeño, is boozy without being overpowering. Order a pitcher for just $24!

Bakersfield  

Photo courtesy of the Thunderdome Restaurant Group via Bakersfield

This trendy hot spot on Vine Street is nearly always busy, but weathering the crowds will be rewarded with savory tortas, flavorful tacos, a great atmosphere and tasty margaritas. There's always a seasonal option that pulls us in (currently a number with fresh clementine and hibiscus syrup), but you can't go wrong with the classic Bakersfield margarita. If you're looking for something more luxe, spend a few more dollars for the premium margarita with el Arco Blanco tequila and a Grand Marnier floater.

El Jinete Restaurant

Cincinnati locals flock to El Jinete for the no-frills atmosphere, the large and satisfying plates of food, fresh guacamole, and incredible margaritas (of course). The popular bevvies are as big as your face (if you order a large), so the price increase here is definitely worth it. Opt for a gold margarita on the rocks — you won't be sorry.

El Toro

El Toro Cincinnati

Photo courtesy of El Toro

El Toro serves up large and delicious Mexican dishes with a side of charm and good service. Regardless of what you order to eat, you had better be sipping on a Coronarita. This fishbowl-sized marg comes frozen with a mini bottle or Corona dumped upside down. The flavor changes the longer you drink, which we find simply delightful (and also kind of fun).
April
14

10 Things to do in Cincinnati over Memorial Day Weekend

Looking for events going on during Memorial Day weekend 2019? Check out our latest guide: 15 Things to Do This Memorial Day Weekend in the Cincinnati Area

  Memorial Day is the day we celebrate lives lost in service to our country. It has been an important holiday in our country since 1868, warranting business closures and a day off of school — and rightfully so. Many also consider this day the beginning of summer, and the first day you're allowed to wear white pants (if you believe in that sort of thing). There is so much to celebrate over this hallowed three-day weekend — and with everything from parades and shows to amusement park openings, there are plenty of opportunities to do so! Here are some of the Cincinnati Memorial Day Weekend events we are most looking forward to.

Spring Grove Activities

May 25-29 The Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum will host a number of ceremonial events throughout the weekend, starting on Thursday at 5 p.m. with the local cub scouts' flag planting ceremony. Monday is the busiest day, and includes a memorial event from the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War joined by the 6th Ohio Volunteer Infantry. We hear that President Lincoln himself (or at least someone who looks a lot like him) will also be making an appearance. Click here for the full event schedule.

Nowhere Else Festival

May 27-28 This funky, low-key music festival is just a short road trip away in Clinton County. Enjoy the wide open spaces while listening to jams from the iconic local band, Over the Rhine, and other great bluegrass acts both local and national. Dance in the shadow of a 140-year-old barn that has been transformed into a performing arts center, and enjoy bites and sips from local vendors while you're at it. This weekend, there's nowhere else you'd rather be.

Taste of Cincinnati

May 27-29

Photo courtesy of Brian Douglas the Taste of Cincinnati Festival

Everyone's favorite foodie festival is back for its 39th year! Meander through downtown Cincinnati while partaking in more than 100 delectable treats from top Cincinnati chefs. Come hungry and with a plan to avoid being overwhelmed. While you're digesting, don't miss the live performances at six stages along Fifth Street, and when you're ready for more, make sure to check out the West Sixth Food Truck Alley on Broadway.

Opening Day for Hamilton County's Wet Playgrounds

May 27 The Great Parks of Hamilton County includes lots of playground options for the whole family including outdoor, indoor and splash! The fun, water-centric play area will open for the season on Memorial Day Weekend, welcoming kiddos ages 2-12 for summer fun. Don't forget the sunscreen!

Soak City at Kings Island Opening Weekend

May 27 'Tis the season for amusement parks and swimming! Combine the fun at the opening celebration of Kings Island's Premier Water Park. Be one of the first to enjoy the 2017 season, and make sure to enjoy the new ride, Mystic Timbers. Soak City is included in the price of admission.

City of North College Hill Memorial Day Parade

May 27 The annual City of North College Hill Memorial Day Parade will kick off in the Ross Department Store lot at 10. The parade certainly has a low-key, community feel compared to other events in the area, which makes it even more fun in our opinion. Come partake in the festivities, and celebrate the lives of those who fought for our freedom.

Coney Island Opening Day

May 27

Photo courtesy of Coney Island

Coney Island invites you to kick the summer off with family-fun, cannonballs, laughs and the new renovations at Sunlite Water Adventure. Come see the new bath house, relax at Island Oasis, the full-service tiki bar, and get splashed at Typhoon Tower, the largest erupting hydro-storm in the world. With waterslides, an in-pool slide, Cincinnati favorite foods and tons of water fun, you are bound to have a great time! 

Cincinnati Warbirds WWII Swing Dance and USO Show

May 27 After partaking in the Coney Island opening day festivities, mosey over to Moonlite Pavilion for the annual Big Band USO Show honoring local veterans. This year features Tom Daugherty Orchestra's "Swing Canteen". Come in your best swing era-inspired getup (there will be prizes for best dressed) and dance the night away! Tickets are $17 in advance and $20 at the door, and a table of 10 may be reserved with the advanced purchase of 10 tickets.

The Blue Ash Memorial Day Parade

May 29 The Blue Ash Memorial Day Parade is one of Cincinnati's longest standing traditions, and will celebrate its 65th year in 2017. The parade will begin at 10:15 a.m. at the intersection of the Reed Hartman Highway and Cooper Road and will proceed for 1.6 miles, ending at the Veterans' Memorial on Towne Square. The festivities will conclude with a special ceremony at the memorial at 11:30 a.m.

Memorial Day at the Krohn Conservatory

May 29

Photo courtesy of the Cincinnati Park Board

The Krohn Conservatory was built in 1933 at the height of the art deco era, and offers a glimpse into life in the rainforest. Memorial Day falls during the seasonal butterfly show, in which thousands of butterflies fly free through the exhibit. If that isn't reason enough to celebrate here, you can enjoy $1 hot dogs and water sold by the Cincinnati Fire Department, explore the fire truck, and take a walk through the smoke house. All active military personnel and veterans get free admission.  
April
14

Where to Take Your Mom for Mother's Day in Cleveland

Moms are great, and after all they've done for us, they certainly deserve more than just one day to celebrate them. Even so, their day — Mother's Day — is coming up on Sunday, May 14, and we are determined to make this one of the best mom celebrations yet. Luckily, there are plenty of events in Cleveland to make it one for the books, from a Bavarian Buffet at a beer garden to elegant tea parties. Planning the perfect day for mom can be challenging, so we've compiled an ideal itinerary for you, beginning with brunch (of course) and concluding with some of our favorite Cleveland activities. All moms are different, so peruse the list below and figure out the perfect way to say, "thanks, Mom," in a way she'll truly appreciate.

Enjoy Sunday Brunch

There's no doubt about it — brunch is a must for Mother's Day. Start mom's day off right with a mimosa and some of her favorite breakfast treats, and we guarantee she'll enjoy the rest of the day's festivities even more. You can make your own or take her out to a nearby restaurant. Here are some of our favorite Mother's Day Brunches in the area. Tartine Bistro   Take a short drive to Rocky River and treat your mom to a taste of France! Le Cordon Bleu-trained chef, Michael Grieve, will cook up something to satisfy all of your mom's cravings at Tartine Bistro's Mother's Day Brunch. Options include deviled eggs, baked oysters with roasted garlic, seafood cassoulet, brioche French toast and a croque madame, to name just a few. Geneva on the Lake From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., the iconic Geneva on the Lake will be hosting a lavish Mother's Day Brunch. Mom will enjoy beautiful views of Lake Erie (and your company, of course) while she picks out tasty entrées from an expansive buffet. Options include a carving station with oven-roasted prime rib, a customizable omelet station, and brunch classics like sausage, bacon, and assorted pastries. Afterward, maybe take her on a tour of some of the nearby wineries! Cleveland Hofbrauhaus   Pretzels, schnitzel, wurst, oh my! The Cleveland Hofbrauhaus is certainly the place to be this Mother's Day if you're looking for a lively, beer-filled celebration. Sip on authentic, German brewskis and nibble items from a Bavarian Brunch buffet while enjoying live polka music in a beer hall modeled after the 400-year-old original in Munich, Germany. The buffet is all-you-can-eat and the beer will be flowing all day, so lift a stein to your fantastic mother! She deserves it. Punch Bowl Social   Punch Bowl Social in Cleveland offers one of the more entertaining Mother's Day brunches we've ever seen. Make sure your mom does her stretches before going, because she'll be greeted with a free mimosa and then have one chance to bowl a strike and win free brunch! If there are a few pins left standing at the end, fear not. You'll still be able to treat her to an incredible meal — Bloody Mary bar included.  

Attend a Tea Party

While we believe it's always tea time (as the Mad Hatter would say), we also think that Mother's Day is the perfect excuse to enjoy it. Tea adds a bit more elegance to an already elegant day, and mom will enjoy being catered to in a gorgeous setting while sipping a comforting bevvie. Here are a couple of tea parties in the area we recommend. Hower House On May 13 This Mother's Day brunch tea is as elegant as it is tasty. Settle down into the gorgeous tea room at Hower House and sip on delicious teas accompanied by sweet and savory snacks. Afterward, enjoy a free tour through the Hower House Museum, a visit to the Carriage House, and a little shopping at the Cellar Door Store. This event is great for moms, mothers-in-law and grandmothers alike. Book quickly — the deadline for reservations is May 8. The Culinary Vegetable Institute at the Chef's Garden This gorgeous haven in nearby Milan invites all moms, daughters, aunts and the like to partake in a lovely afternoon tea party. The springtime decor and blossoms will surround you and your family as you sip a steaming cup of tea and enjoy a lavish spread of sweet and savory delicacies. This event begins at 2 p.m. (just after brunch time) and is certainly worth the short drive.  

Take Advantage of Free Admission

The best things in life are free, and that certainly rings true on Mother's Day! There are so many businesses in Cleveland offering free admission or items to celebrate all our moms do for us, so take her out on the town and enjoy the day — without spending a dime. Meander Around the Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens This stunning estate is a joy to visit at any time of year, but on Mother's Day, moms receive a complimentary pass. Take her to enjoy the beautifully landscaped gardens and grounds and take a self-guided tour of the Manor House, the Corbin Conservatory, the Gate Lodge and the Playgarden. Afterward, stop by the next door café to enjoy a coffee and a mid-day snack. Monkey Around at the Zoo Visiting the zoo is such a perfect family activity, and on Mother's Day, moms get in free with the purchase of a child's admission. There are so many interesting critters to see, so it'll be easy to spend the whole day there. Luckily, the Primate Picnic Canopy is the perfect spot to enjoy that nice packed lunch you made to celebrate the occasion. Football Hall of Fame Is your mom the kind who would rather be throwing the ol' pigskin around or watching the Bobcats sweep up the field? Maybe take her to the Football Hall of Fame. She'll get free entry with the purchase of another child or adult ticket. Just Keep Swimmin' Around the Aquarium Along with offering incredible events such as Adult Swim with Wine, the Greater Cleveland Aquarium is very appreciative of moms, offering them free admission all day long. Spend the afternoon walking around more than 50 exhibits and learning about the incredible marine life that lives there. Get there by 3 p.m. to see the stingray feed! Cleveland Art Museum's Second Sunday Admission to the Cleveland Art Museum is always free, but it is especially worth your while to visit on the second Sunday of every month. On Second Sundays, the museum welcomes families from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. to engage in a variety of fun, hands-on projects and activities.  Fortunately, Mother's Day falls on the second Sunday of May, and the museum will be hosting a special portrait-making event for moms and their families entitled What's Your Story? It's the perfect way to commemorate the special day.

Soak up the Sunshine

April showers bring May flowers, and May brings some of the best weather Ohio experiences all year! Celebrate the sunshine (and Mother Nature) this Mother's Day by getting outside to enjoy it. Decorate a Flower Pot for Mom at the Cleveland Metroparks Children ages 6-12 are invited to come and decorate a special flower pot for their mom at the Buttermilk Falls Parkway Entrance. After painting the pot with love, plant a seed native to the Cleveland Metroparks, and watch it grow. Registration ends on May 8. Walk Amongst the Wildflowers There are countless trails and opportunities to get outside in the Cleveland Metroparks, but one of our favorites is the wildflower walk at the Monarch Bluff Picnic Area. This easy, one-mile stroll is the perfect opportunity to see Ohio's wildflowers in full bloom, and challenge yourself by trying to identify them. It's the perfect alternative to buying flowers!  

Happy Mother's Day, moms!

April
7

The 12 Best Tacos in Columbus

There's no doubt about it — tacos are at the top of everyone's list when it comes to favorite meals. From seafood tacos to veggie alternatives and even flavorful asian fusion, there's something for everyone, and somehow, they never go out of style. We love tacos just as much as the next person, so we've compiled a list of our favorites in Columbus. Next time the lunch spot is up for debate, or next time Tuesday rolls around, check these out. Regardless of your craving, you'll definitely have something to taco 'bout.

Condado Tacos

1227 North High Street

Photo courtesy of Condado Taco

The possibilities are endless at Condado Taco, where patrons are given the opportunity to order tacos exactly the way they like them. The sushi-like menu gives you options to choose a tortilla, then meat (double if you wish), cheese, and salsa. Finally, top it with a sauce — options range from mild cilantro lime aioli, medium chipotle honey, or the infernal ghost pepper sauce (experts only).

Los Guachos

5221 Godown Road

Photos courtesy of Los Guachos

This local hot spot has made it on many a list for best tacos, including the Food Network's and Rachael Ray's. The taco al pastor, Los Guachos' specialty dish, may be the reason for all that fame. The slow-cooked, marinated pork is carved fresh and served on two warm corn tortillas with onions, cilantro and pineapple — simple, yet satisfying. Get more bang for your buck and enjoy two-for-one al pastor tacos every Wednesday.

Bakersfield Short North

733 N. High Street

Photo courtesy of Thunderdome Restaurant Group via Bakersfield Short North

This trendy spot offers up strong margaritas, a hoppin' atmosphere and mouthwatering tacos. While you really can't go wrong with any of them, our favorites are the short rib (with queso fresco, crema, white onion, radish and cilantro) and the huitlacoche (corn truffles with roasted poblano, corn, onion, cotija and cilantro). Chase your choice with a shared pitcher of rosé sangria or a mason jar margarita.  

Hass Tacos, Burritos & Mås

7370 Sawmill Road

Photos courtesy of Hass Tacos, Burritos & Mass

For just under $3, you can order one of the most delectable shrimp tacos in all of Columbus. Hass serves up buttery, seasoned shrimp on a mayo-brushed, warm corn tortilla with cabbage, carrot salad and a bit of salsa "sonora". Is your mouth watering yet?

Taco Loco

5467 Bethel Sawmill Center

Photo courtesy of Taco Loco

Don't let the name scare you — the only crazy thing about Taco Loco is how crazy good the tacos are! For $8.49, you'll get three authentic street-style tacos. You can be classic and opt for the grilled steak, carnitas or chicken, or you can go loco and get the tacos de lengua (grilled cow tongue) — sounds gross, tastes amazing.

El Arepazo Latin Grill

47 N. Pearl Street

Photo courtesy of Kelly Rauch with Local Anywhere, via El Arepazo Latin Grill

This lunch spot in downtown Columbus serves up authentic Latin-American fare in a colorful setting. The fish tacos are nothing to scoff at — one order comes with three gigantic flour tortillas piled high with buttery fried cod, lettuce, corn, avocado and mojito and chipotle sauce. Try an order of fried plantains on the side.

Cuco's Taqueria

2162 Henderson Road

Photo courtesy of Cuco's Taqueria

When you settle down at a table at Cuco's Taqueria, you'll get more than great tacos — the margarita here packs a serious punch, the atmosphere is friendly, and the salsa bar is an incredible way to start any meal. The fish taco here is certainly the way to go, and it might not hurt to order some queso for the table. Also look out for the Cuco's food truck, which will start serving this summer.

Fado Irish Pub

4022 Townsfair Way

Photo courtesy of Fado

While an Irish pub might be the last place you'd expect to find a decent taco, Fado will surprise you. The harp battered fish tacos are second to none, with perfect portions of shredded cabbage, pico de gallo, and spicy red chili aioli. We think these go great with any beverage, but go ahead and order a Guinness, just for kicks.

Nada

220 W. Nationwide Boulevard

Photo courtesy of Nada

What's wrong with this swanky spot? Nada. Come by for brunch, lunch or dinner for great food in a fantastic, upscale atmosphere. Opt for the grilled salmon taco with chipotle crema, jalapeño corn pico and cilantro, or the fried avocado taco with chipotle bean purée, pickled cabbage and red onion, maple and pepitas. There are several options when it comes to picking an accompanying margarita, but our favorite is the classic "Nadarita" with tequila, lime juice, triple sec and honey with a salted rim.

Chile Verde Cafe

4852 Sawmill Road

Photo courtesy of Chile Verde 

Chile Verde offers up a true taste of the southwest with authentic New Mexican cuisine (and lots of green chile to go with it). We go wild over the Navajo Taco — a hand-rolled flatbread fried baked with your choice of green chile pork, chorizo, chicken or beef, and then topped with black olives, lettuce, pico de gallo, cheese and special sauce. It comes with a side of green chile and sour cream, so yes, one taco is enough for a meal.

Park Street Cantina

491 N. Park Street

Photo courtesy of Park Street Cantina

Park Street Cantina is truly the place to be if you're looking for a party. With an outdoor patio, a plate of three tacos for less than $10, more than 89 brands of tequila, and live music on the weekends, it's a one stop shop for those looking for good food and a good time. Make it by happy hour (4-7 p.m. on weekdays) and get yourself a 32-ounce pitcher for just five dollars.

Mad Mex

1542 N. High Street

Photo courtesy of Mad Mex

If you're a veggie-lover, tacos can be a bit trickier to find. Not so at Mad Mex. The shiitake and asparagus tacos are loved by vegetarians and meat-lovers alike, and come in a trio with marinated mushroom caps, freshly grilled asparagus, goat cheese, cilantro cream and pea tendrils. The margarita specials are also notable, including strange but delightful flavors like strawberry banana and pear.
April
7

A Guide to Cincinnati-Style Chili and 13 Places to Find It

Cincinnati locals and visitors alike know that our town is home to the greatest percentage of "chili heads" per capita. We just can't get enough of the steamy dish! The mediterranean-spiced meat sauce can be eaten straight out of the bowl, or used as a topping for hot dogs or pasta. Then finish it off with any combination of cheddar cheese (lots of it), onions, oyster crackers and several varieties of beans. Different topping choices are dubbed, "ways," the most elaborate usually being chili five ways. Regardless of how you choose to consume the dish, you can count on it being hella delicious. While Texans might scoff at the "strange" recipe, locals will tell you that there's nothing strange about it — the only crazy thing would be to try and find a good option outside of Cincinnati. With so many chili parlors around town, it can certainly be tough to decide where to grab a classic chili-topped spaghetti or a coney. These are our personal favorites.

Empress

Three locations

Photos courtesy of Empress Chili

This shop seems like a good way to begin this list, as it's the parlor that started it all. The "coney" (a hot dog topped with chili) originated from immigrant restaurateurs, Tom and John Kirajieff, who were trying to expand their customer base by melding ethnic styles of cuisine with American classics. The brothers served their first coney in 1922 outside of a burlesque theatre named the Empress. Now, the shop is thriving in three different locations. The parlors still serve up the original recipe, so come by and sample a bit of history.

Price Hill Chili

4920 Glenway Avenue, Cincinnati
Whether you're stopping by for breakfast on the patio, a late dinner, or to catch the game with some friends in the Golden Fleece Lounge, Price Hill has it all. Serving the west side of Cincinnati since 1962, the family-owned spot has gained a reputation for its stellar cuisine, regularly drawing patrons from as far as Kentucky and Indiana. While everything on the menu is incredible (and under $10), rumor has it the chili cheese omelet is the way to go.

Blue Ash Chili

Three Locations

Photos courtesy of Blue Ash Chili

There is something for everyone at Blue Ash Chili — even non chili fans (if they exist). Enjoy a burger, barbecue, or the signature dish served up three, four, five or even six ways. Once you've tried 'em all, maybe step it up a notch with the "No Freakin' Way Challenge", which includes two and a half pounds of steaming spaghetti topped with two and a half pounds of chili, finished with two pounds of shredded cheddar cheese and a pound of fried jalapeño caps. Finish your plate in 60 minutes and you won't pay a cent. You also might never eat chili again… nahhh.

Dixie Chili & Deli

733 Monmouth Street, Newport
Located just over the border in Newport, Kentucky, Dixie Chili holds its own when it comes to Cincinnati-style chili. The checkered floors and diner-like atmosphere remind you of days gone by as you dig into some of the best darn chili you've ever tasted in your life. Enjoy the stuff one, two, three, four, five or even six ways. Regardless of your choice, you can eat easy knowing that the recipe is the original 1929 formula from founder Nicholas D. Sarakatsannis, fresh from the kettle every day. (Not in the area? You can order canned Dixie Chili online, although we do recommend you try it in person.)

Gourmet Chili

843 Monmouth Street, Newport
This spot might be newer than the rest, but it doesn't slack when it comes to offering up amazing chili. You'll enjoy a friendly, neighborhood diner-vibe while slurping a hearty serving of the stuff. We hear the gyros are pretty great too if you're still hungry. Don't forget to bring cash!

Camp Washington Chili

3005 Colerain Avenue, Camp Washington
In the heart of Cincinnati's Camp Washington neighborhood, you'll find one of the town's most prized gems. The namesake dish at Camp Washington Chili certainly speaks for itself, and has been satisfying hungry locals and visitors alike since 1940. With a James Beard Award in its pocket for being an "American Regional Classic" and some of the best chili in the country, it is no wonder this place has been successful for so many years. Stop in 6 days a week, 24 hours a day for a taste of what makes our beloved city truly unique.

Pleasant Ridge Chili

6032 Montgomery Road, Cincinnati
The tried-and-true family recipes at Pleasant Ridge Chili are made from scratch daily using fresh ingredients, which gives the chili a bit of an edge. The restaurant has been family-owned since 1964, and is currently helmed by the third generation of the Sideris family. Step into the diner for American favorites — the award-winning gravy cheese fries are some of the best around — or classic chili dishes made with love.

Skyline Chili at the Great American Ball Park

100 Joe Nuxhall Way, Cincinnati

Photo courtesy of the Great American Ball Park

Fans of the Cincinnati Reds know that America's favorite past time is never truly complete without a smothered coney from Skyline Chili. While there are nearly 10 locations of this renowned chili hotspot throughout the state (and even in Kentucky), grabbing a bite here during the big game might be one of the most Cincinnati-esque things to do. We're for it. Find it at sections 103, 116, 130, 518 and 533.

Chili Time Restaurant

4727 Vine Street, St. Bernard
This cozy cafe in St. Bernard emanates a friendly atmosphere that invites you in to stay awhile. You'll feel like a member of the family as you're ushered to a window-side table and served with a hot, steaming plate of chili fries, a coney, or whatever chili-smothered entrée your heart desires — even a chili salad if you'd like to go with a healthier option. Some have tried it and sworn off of other chili parlors as a result. We wonder what the secret is...

Gold Star Chili

2231 Beechmont Ave, Cincinnati
We're sure you've heard of this infamous chili chain, but we don't believe any list would be complete without it. The original restaurant was established in the Mount Washington neighborhood in 1965, but has grown to include 82 locations across Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio. The no-frills shop serves chili three, four or five ways. Feeding a family (or just really hungry)? Maybe grab the 10-piece coney crate to go.

Blue Jay Restaurant

4154 Hamilton Avenue, Cincinnati  

Photos courtesy of Blue Jay

Wife and husband duo Danny and Tina Petropoulos opened this restaurant in 1967. Since then, not much has changed — thankfully. The mouthwatering family recipes, comforting interior and old-school atmosphere set Blue Jay apart. Start your day off with a Jacob Special (hash browns loaded with chili and cheese). The flavorful, chunky and juicy chili is sure to carry you through the day.  

The Silver Ladle

580 Walnut Street, Cincinnati
This downtown hotspot (with a second location in Anderson) might get you your food fast, but it also invites you to sit on the patio and enjoy it for as long as you please. Pick your base first (spaghetti, greens, fries, a burrito or chips), then pick a chili style (beef, chicken or bean), and top it with any combination of cheese, onions, jalapeños, beans or sour cream to create a dish that meets your preferences exactly — mmm mmm good!  

Zip's Cafe

1036 Delta Avenue, Cincinnati
This restaurant is actually well-known for its burgers, but don't let that scare you off. The chili is some of the best in town. Grab a cup or a bowl to enjoy in house, or indulge in a ½ gallon serving to take home and share with the family.

Enjoy!

What are your favorite chili stops in Cincinnati? Let us know in the comments!

Login to My Homefinder

Login to My Homefinder