There’s no denying Cincinnati’s upward trajectory these days. The New York Times named Cincinnati number 8 on its list of “52 Places to Go in 2018.” The only destinations ahead of us? New Orleans, Colombia, southern Italy, the Caribbean, Switzerland, Chile’s Patagonia region, and the Winter Olympics area of South Korea. Kind of mind-boggling, to be honest, but we’ll take it.
The city’s expanding restaurant scene plays a huge part in how travelers interact with and evaluate Cincinnati and how we explore it ourselves. Visitors and residents alike get to know a city or a neighborhood better by eating out, sampling local food, and meeting others over a shared drink or dining experience. Trying new restaurants truly is a joy.
Cincinnati Magazine’s annual Best Restaurants issue focuses on our 10 favorite new spots. This year we bring attention to the new chef-driven restaurants that have emerged, in our view, as the ones you’ll want to try next. While four of the top 10 are in Over-the-Rhine and downtown, the rest are spread around the area, from Covington to Milford—a sign that having all eyes on Cincinnati benefits the entire region.
In that light, it’s disappointing that Cincinnati didn’t make the final cut for Amazon’s second headquarters. The city’s pitch to Amazon, though, brought together government and corporate leaders on both sides of the river, and that team effort can likely attract other national attention and investment, including Major League Soccer. The collaboration itself is a step forward for the city, presenting a united front to the outside world.
Mayor John Cranley says the city’s good vibes are contagious, telling Cincinnati Magazine he feels “optimism is pervasive” both internally and externally. He’s hoping to channel that optimism into action on high-profile targets like the Western Hills Viaduct, an Apple headquarters, and a new stadium for FC Cincinnati. The next four new MLS franchises will debut in Los Angeles, Miami, Nashville, and…Cincinnati? That’s another good list to be on.