We'll be the first to admit it that we're pretty lucky. We spent 2017 driving around, eating the best things we could find and filming it. So what better way to cap off the year than by picking our top ten (in no particular order) dishes of the year. Hope you're hungry.
The Aebleskivers at Please
Having been open now for a little over a year, more and more people are understanding just how amazing the food of chef Ryan Santos is at his restaurant Please in Over-the-Rhine. Our first taste was back in January with the immensely popular Aebleskivers: Danish pancake balls stuffed with apple butter, served on a base of maple-caramel and topped with that buttery, fudge-like Scandinavian cheese, Gjetost. Chef Santos is always trying something new and seeing how the menu at Please has bloomed over the course of 2017 has been one of the best things to watch in our local food scene.
Please, 1405 Clay St, Over-the-Rhine.
The "Apizza" from Taft's Brewpourium
Nowadays, with so many options, the chances of trying a pizza that instantly becomes your new favorite… are slim. Having said that, Taft’s Brewpourium is making a serious case in our book. It’s authentic “apizza,” New Haven style (Taft’s college town) which means it’s like a cross between Neapolitan and New York style. Try “the Roebling”, pairing all the best meats they’ve got with that amazingly fresh mozzarella, with a pint of Gavel Banger and you’ve got another solid combo.
Taft’s Brewpourium, 4831 Spring Grove Ave, Spring Grove Village.
The steak tacos at Mazunte
We went into our shoot at Mazunte with a simple goal of showing how their tacos are made. We left with a much bigger understanding of good food, Mexican history, what it means to be authentic (if it’s even possible) and how the personal experiences of owner Josh Wamsley translates into the food. Now, when we eat the steak tacos complete with goat cheese and one of the many fresh salsas, we can’t help but think about how it all came to be. These tacos never disappoint.
Mazunte, 5207 Madison Road, Madisonville.
"The Paella Valenciana" from Mita's
Our feature on beloved Cincy chef Jose Salazar was probably the most ambitious video we’ve ever done. In the process we learned a few things: Chef Jose is one of the best people around, his food is prepared with major precision and basically everything at Mita’s is delicious. This is especially true of the paella, a beautifully crafted show-stopper of a dish that’s heaven on earth for seafood fans.
Mita’s, 501 Race St, Downtown.
All of the crepes from LeCreParis
A good crepe can be hard to find on this side of the Atlantic. Luckily, we met Wilfrid who runs LeCreParis, a tiny food truck dishing out some of the most authentic crepes you’ll find in town. With both sweet and savory options, there’s something for everyone here. You can often find them outside a local brewery, which means you can drink a beer while eating a strawberry-Nutella crepe, and that’s just a great thing.
The charcuterie at Panino
Full disclosure: we nerded out hard when we got to tour Nino Loreto’s “meat cave” underneath Panino in OTR. Sopressata, chorizo, ‘ndjua and so much more, all made and aged in house by the owner himself. If you haven’t tried a charcuterie plate here, correct that soon. You’ll get a plate of meat and cheese, perfectly paired, that will have you wanting to buy your own sausage making kit at home.
Panino, 1313 Vine Street, Over-the-Rhine.
The Sushi at Ando
People talk about Ando in Blue Ash like they talk about Game of Thrones. “You know it’s the best thing ever, right?” Right. The sushi is impeccably prepared by hand with only the freshest ingredients they can find. We saw that firsthand as we filmed them preparing fresh rolls from start to finish. The fish is fresh, the rice is perfectly sticky and the people are friendly. What more could you ask for?
Ando, 5889 Pfeiffer Rd, Blue Ash.
The Filet at The Precinct
Our piece on how the steaks are prepared at Jeff Ruby restaurants was our most viewed video of 2017. When you’ve got pictures of a perfectly cooked filet like that, it’s easy to understand why. During the filming, we were lucky enough to try that filet and reaffirm Cincy’s widespread belief that a Jeff Ruby steak is a notch above the rest. Certified black angus, a super secret seasoning and a broiler. That’s all we need.
The Precinct, 311 Delta Ave, Columbia Tusculum.
"The Bonfire" from Buzzed Bull Creamery
Buzzed Bull definitely brought the buzz with them this year (sorry for the pun) when they opened up shop on Main Street in OTR. We stopped by about a week before they opened to see how they infuse alcohol into ice cream (crazy visual liquid nitrogen) and we sampled one of their flagship offerings, “The Bonfire.” It’s everything you love about campfire s’mores channeled into velvety ice cream with a kick of Fireball. With dishes like this, it’s easy to see why they’ve blown up.
Buzzed Bull Creamery, 1408 Main St, Over-the-Rhine.
The Honey-Vinegar pie from OPieO
Odds are, we’re not the first people to tell you how good the pies at OPieO in East Walnut Hills are. In shooting our feature, we sampled their most popular offering, the Honey-Vinegar. With a deep, buttery crust and filling that seriously rivals a classic Pumpkin pie, we’ll definitely be coming back for one soon. Pair it with a beer on a cold Friday night in their cozy dining room and you’ve got a solid winner.
OPieO, 1527 Madison Rd, East Walnut Hills.