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Matt Bergantino


The Emperors of Ice Cream

Imagine an Indiana farm boy stirring milk, cream, and sugar in a metal pail, battling a summer's day in Over-the-Rhine. The year is 1870. His concoction—ice cream—lives for just an instant. His name? Louis Charles Graeter.

VanZandt Restaurant & Tavern

VanZandt Restaurant & Tavern in North College Hill is surrounded by mom and pop establishments. Within eight blocks there are several diners (Junior’s, Skally’s), a gun shop, a butcher shop, and no less than six hair salons. Most mornings around 7:30, VanZandt owner and head chef Chris Hoeweler and his dad, a retired chemical worker, meet at the Tavern to make bread from scratch.


Politicians often feel the need to wax poetic about a mythical “Main Street USA.” What they’re really talking about is Milford’s Main Street, a sleepy, winding road that takes visitors past a variety of mom-and-pop enterprises, like the Milford Gun Shop, an ancient vacuum cleaner repair store, a corner store, and, surprisingly, two of the best restaurants in town—20 Brix and Padrino.

Yat Ka Mein

For five years, Yat Ka Mein, an inconspicuous noodle house sandwiched between Penn Station and Aveda Frederic’s Institute in a Hyde Park strip mall, has catered to our inner Chinese peasant.

Bellevue Bistro

Everything about Bellevue Bistro made me feel like we had come to the wrong place. From the chalkboard menu to the Star Wars figurines hidden like Easter eggs throughout the tiny sandwich shop, BB looks like, well, a bistro.