Cincinnati isn't a bad town after all. I had been growing to hate it with every fiber of my being but that was largely due to a culturally imposed, illogical and unneccesary migratory pattern in the dead of winter, otherwise known as going home for Christmas. But that tradition is cooked and served.
Since I will be sitting by the beach, climbing volcanoes and sailing through treetops on a thin wire during the holidays this year, I did Christmas in September with my sister and her family in Cincinnati. Sister's girls were thrilled with their present, a Wii. We spent about 4 hours making Mii's and I was pretty impressed with my niecelettes ability to kick ass on Wii boxing.
Since it was also my birthday there were a few birthday treats.
50 E Freedom Way
Cincinnati, OH 45202
I'm not going to say go to Cincinnati to see this museum but if you are in the area, definitely make an effort. The building design and layout combined with very interesting and innovative multimedia content make the Underground Railroad Freedom Center one of the best single-focus museums I've seen.
600 Walnut St
Downtown Cincinnati is kinda happening. I didn't see that the last time I stayed downtown because it was winter; a season during which noone should be further north of Houston. Nada is a new entry into the downtown arena. I'm not sure about the food, since we only stopped for drinks, but the drinks were well-done. Definitely opt for the Passion Fruit Caipirihna, which will no doubt be delivered by an impossibly cute server.
631 Walnut Street
Cincinnati, OH 45202
Ever wonder what happened to the king of late 70's, early 80's funk? Bootsy Collins apparently took his collection of crazy sunglasses and music awards back to his hometown and opened a restaurant. A Spanish-laced restaurant with a fun, hi-vis, lounge-esque feel. I dont know why this happened but despite the tacky advertisement clad exterior and an interior requiring a pair of polarizing sunglasses, the food here is mostly excellent. Applause for Patatas Bravas and Ceviche. Total walkout on Paella, it was uninspired.
You have to love a Home Depot sized liquor store that has wine tastings on Sunday. It was Argentinian wines at this tasting. Frankly I have not had good luck with wines from Argentina. Apparently I just needed to try the right wines, thanks to Party City's wine expert, Danny Gold, I found them. I was impressed with this wine tasting. 8 wines and a delicious collection of high brow nibbles for $15. Danny was personable and informative; you could immediately tell he absolutely loved his job. If you are wondering how Party City could put on a wine tasting like that for $15, I will tell you that I spent $100 in the store afterwards and sister spent close to $400. Clever, very clever.
3014 Madison Rd
Cincinnati, OH 45209
You simply can't visit Cincinnati without a stop to the indigenous pizza parlor. Get over the small, crowded conditions and get ready for pizza that rivals NYC's most authentic. Thin crust, numerous vegetarian options, friendly staff and a mind boggling array of microbrews make Deweys an entry into my pizza favorties.
Lastly, I wanted to mention that sister has a new addition to the family, Rex. This is the world's largest puppy. He's 105 pounds but only a year old, another 50-60 pounds to go. Despite his appearance, he has the friendliest personality, which is good since he outweighs both of my nieces significantly.