What makes an icon? Take a closer look at exactly what comprises three classic Cincinnati dishes.
Five-Way Chili Spaghetti
1 – No matter where you go, spaghetti is the bedrock of this quintessential Queen City meal.
2 – A generous ladleful of Cincinnati chili goes next, made with a special blend of cinnamon, cocoa, and other spices depending on your preferred chili parlor.
3 – Beans offer a hearty boost to the five-way, whether they’re kidney or black-beans-and-rice mix at Skyline, red beans at Gold Star, or red kidney beans at Empress.
4 – Diced onions add a bit of freshness.
5 – A heaping mound of shredded cheese completes any five-way, but you can go the extra mile with oyster crackers (6), fried jalapeño caps at Blue Ash Chili, or fresh chopped garlic at Dixie Chili.
Zip’s Café Double Zip Burger
1 – Like many great sandwiches, it’s hard to start with anything but a fresh Klosterman bun.
2 – Zip’s uses a no-nonsense blend of local beef from Avril-Bleh Meats, with cheddar cheese melted right on.
3 – Bacon makes everything better, and that goes double for this double cheeseburger.
4 – Finish it off with all the fixin’s: fresh lettuce, tomato, sliced onion, pickles, and mayo.
5 – Top with a bun, tuck a napkin into your shirt collar, and dig in.
LaRosa’s Buddy Deluxe
1 – It all starts with the crust: your choice of traditional thin, hand tossed, or deep dish pan.
2 – The family chain has used Aunt Dena’s pizza sauce recipe for nearly 70 years.
3 – Pepperoni always goes under the cheese on a LaRosa’s pie to give it more flavor from the sweet and savory sauce during the bake. Buddy LaRosa has been doing it that way since 1954.
4 – Speaking of cheese, LaRosa’s uses 40 tons of fresh provolone each week—or 1,920 tons annually. It seems like a lot until you figure LaRosa’s serves more than 7 million pizzas a year.
5 – This pie piles up some serious Italian meats with capocollo ham and sausage.
6 – Zesty banana peppers add a tangy kick to this deluxe pie.