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Jul 20, 2007 07:15 PM

French Restaurants in Cincinnati?

Hi all. I will be visiting Cincinatti on August (am from Toronto area) and am travelling with a couple of friends. One wishes to know if there are any decent French restaurants in Cincinatti. I have done some research and have come up with an establishment called Palamino Euro Bistro. Any good? Any other suggestions as far as French restaurants are concerned? Price is not a real concern, but don't want to blow our trip budget on one restaurant either, nor are we willing to wait an hour to be seated. Also, any other oustanding Cinci restaurants we should know about, such as steakhouses or restaurants with a variety of options? We are going primarily to watch the Reds play (we are staying at the Radisson in Covington). Thanks for any help, and if anyone wants advice on Toronto restaurants, drop me a line.


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  1. One of Cincinnati's most famous - and best - chefs is known for french cuisine and he has several restaurants that are variations on the theme. I've eaten at Jean-Robert's at Pigall's and at PhoParis (before it moved). Both were very good but different. Have heard good things about the bistro too. Here's a link to check out.
    Have also eaten at Palamino years ago and it was good - someone posted recently that they liked it as well. But I don't remember it being particularly French.

    3 Replies
    1. re: AMFM

      FYI--Palomino is part of a chain--they have them in about 8-9 cities, including San Francisco and Minneapolis and such. There are numerous posts about it on the chains board if you want to read more:


      1. re: The Dairy Queen

        hhmmm... didn't know. wonder if it was about 5 years ago when i ate there. don't think it was a "euro bistro" then.

        1. re: AMFM

          It's a pretty old chain--close to 15 years, I'd guess.


    2. Take a look at Daveed's-it's one of the more creative restaurants in Cincy, with an owner/chef who seems to care about what he's doing...great wine list as well. The space is nice, and it's in an interesting area- Mt Adams, as opposed to the somewhat sterile downtown area (think Cabbagetown v Bay and Wellington).

      5 Replies
      1. re: David W

        another good one that i wouldn't have thought of as french per the original request but really yummy.

        1. re: AMFM

          The OP also asked for "other outstanding" restaurants...although I think Daveed's is French-style with Asian/American fusion elements. Of course, I'm not really sure what "French" means anymore-so much of the world is influenced by other styles and flavors, I think there are very few "pure" spots left.
          The Jean-Robert web-site refers to their cuisine as "French-American." Maybe we could get a grant to study the issue...

          1. re: David W

            i'd love to take part in that study! wasn't meaning offense - just explaining why i was fairly specific in my response. those restaurants seem to be the best considered french ones in cincy. but i could've named a lot of other great restaurants. :) daveed's is good for the other category - plus i last ate there a couple years ago since i only visit family in cincy and don't live there any more so i could be off in my sense that it wasn't that french. definitely agree that if they're dowtown for the reds they should check out mt. adams or covington for more interesting vibes! or other neighborhoods - but they might be more of a drive.

            1. re: AMFM

              Ah, no offense taken...
              It's true that you can walk to downtown Cincy from Covington, but I think Mt Adams is worth the drive. And just to be clear, I don't live there, either-we're there sometimes when visiting family in Indiana.

              1. re: David W

                I second the suggetion of Jean-Robert at Pigall, I ate there once and it was excellent. the food and service is "fine dining" but the dining room isn't stiff and formal, which is nice.

      2. Since Maisonette closed, "French" is limited.

        La Petite France is just north of Cincinnati~

        4 Replies
        1. re: soozycue520

          i've been there (years ago) and it was nice. could be a drive though depending on where they're staying.
          also likely a drive is la petite pierre a charming tiny little place in madeira where the menu changes daily. they do a lot of local take-out. i'd forgotten about it. that's out near where my parents live and it's a cute area to walk around. frieda's is a fabulous bakery and coffee please is a little local coffee bar run by one of my old friends. and there is GREAT boutique and specialty shopping so it could be fun for a bit. but a drive from downtown. near kenwood off the 71 north.

          1. re: AMFM

            replying to myself, ugh. :) forgot to mention - the sisters who run la petite pierre are the daughters of the former maisonette chef and it's been named in the top 25 restaurants in cincy. if you haven't checked it out you should! definitely a chowhound type hidden gem imho.

            1. re: AMFM

              I heard awhile back from a friend who lives in Madeira that La Petite Pierre is no longer operating as a restaurant and they are doing catering only. I just sent them an email via the website for confirmation, and if I receive a reply, I'll let you know.

              Meanwhile, in response to the OP, who is staying in NKY, I heartily endorse Jean-Robert at Pigall's or the less expensive Jean-Robert Bistro, both in downtown Cincinnati, or one of Jean-Robert's other restaurants in NKY.

              1. re: intuitive eggplant

                interesting. thanks. i really like the to JR restaurants i've eaten at.