a ride through the city

We post this on Twitter and Facebook the other day, but I figured I'd post it here for anyone who missed it. Another experiment with our GoPro camera, this time mounted to the roof of the car while we made a pad thai run up to Teak.

Casino construction

While I was out on my bike Saturday I rode along the edge of the new casino site and took a few pictures on my phone. They're certainly moving along with excavation and the removal of buildings.

Still unsure what I think about the casino project in general, but its well underway so I'll just hope it brings something positive to the area.

Taste of Belgium (in the Freedom Center)

Holy smokes!

On the hunt for something new, I suggested we hit Taste of Belgium for lunch. I've had crêpes and the like from Taste of Belgium in Findlay Market, but in January they opened a new branch inside the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, right on the river.

What a fantastic call that turned out to be.

When we first walked in, we were a little turned around-- you can take your order to go (as many of the construction workers for the Banks have been doing), but the restaurant is actually full-service. We were kindly led to a table and talked through the menu.

So much sounded great, but I decided on the "waffle sandwich" (exactly what you'd imagine) with turkey, and my coworker had the shrimp and grits waffle. He didn't take much convincing.

You have to understand that a Taste of Belgium waffle is unlike any other waffle you've ever had. It's sweet but not saccharine, and thoroughly delicious. Slap some turkey in there and it's lunch, apparently.

My coworker loved his shrimp and grits, and was actually just as impressed with the side salad served with it. The lemon poppyseed dressing was apparently a great complement to his lunch.

This location is a little odd because they aren't fully situated yet-- there were four laminated menus, three salt shakers and a handful of ketchup packets to share among the patrons-- but they're working toward a remodel and other upgrades (flatware?). I think they're doing exactly the right thing: getting the food right first. There's time to keep moving toward perfect so long as you keep cranking out freaking delicious lunches like these!

One other small weird thing: they seemed caught off-guard when a group of 40 Mennonites paraded in after a tour of the Freedom Center. As a museum café, I'd think you'd be expecting these kinds of onslaughts! The waitstaff handled it quickly and politely, so no harm done, but I hope they're able to scale in the way they'll need to when this Taste of Belgium location picks up the popularity it deserves.

Taste of Belgium's website: http://authenticwaffle.com/
Freedom Center's website: http://www.freedomcenter.org/
This location on Yelp: http://www.yelp.com/biz/taste-of-belgium-cincinnati-2

Views from a Commute, part 2

Hi Mike!

When parading around with my camera, Mike made the mistake of leaving the door to Mica 12/v propped open. :) (He permitted me to take a photo, fear not.) I love this guy, and I love walking by his and his wife's gorgeous shop in OTR!

Do I need to tell you how anxious I am for more of this photo-friendly weather?

Views from a Commute, part 1

Remember when the weather was startlingly gorgeous? Lasted about 15 minutes? Well, I managed to grab the camera during that infinitesimal window and snap a few pictures of my walk around OTR.

Look for a few more tomorrow, to tide us over until the sun pops out for a bit longer.

Flying Pig #14: Bethesda North

An awesome reader named Don sent us a new pig photo with full deets. This piggy, "A Fly in the Ointment," sits out front of the Bethesda North Hospital in Montgomery. The artist is Sarah Thompson.

Don writes his own awesome blog about Cincinnati, which I hope you're following: Queen City Tour!

Bockfest 2011

This weekend was Bockfest in OTR, a yearly event that celebrates the brewing heritage of OTR and (hopefully) the beginnings of Spring. From the sounds of it the celebration of the brewing heritage was in full swing, but the weather wasn't so kind.

We had a rather jam packed weekend so we didn't make it to much of Bockfest, however we did make it for the parade and managed to take a few shots on my phone (wasn't about to drag our DSLR out in the pouring rain).

Greater Cincinnati Independent Restaurants Week

...Well that's a mouthful. (Food pun?)

I have never attended Restaurant Week. Something has always come up! This year, I've made three reservations through Open Table, for eateries that I'm embarrassed to say I've not visited:
Daveed's (menu)
View (menu)
Vito's Cafe (menu)

If you're not familiar, these local gems create prix fixe menus ($26.11) for three course meals. A great steal and an opportunity to try some of the best restaurants in Cincinnati. Which ones are you hitting up this year?

Restaurant Week website: http://www.eatlocalcincy.com/