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Party Size
For 2
Date
Today
Time
7:00 PM
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Booked 49 times today

Nicola's Ristorante

4.6
2319 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Italian
Top Tags:
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for Anniversaries
  • Good for a Date
Located just north of Downtown in Over-the-Rhine, Cincinnati’s hip and historic neighborhood, Nicola’s Ristorante Italiano has long been a fine dining staple of the city during its 20+ years of operation. Owners Nicola and Maureen Pietoso pride their restaurant not only for its highly acclaimed contemporary Italian menu, extensive wine list and variety of unique dining spaces, but most especially for their restaurant’s long-standing reputation for being warmly hospitable and accommodating.
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Private dining
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Cuisines
Italian
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Hours of operation
Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:30pm - 10:00pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:30pm - 11:00pm
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Phone number
(513) 721-6200
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Payment options
AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Business Casual
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Executive chef
Aaron Owen
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Catering
Nicola's Ristorante offers catering to diners' homes; 5-8 courses with wine parings, minimum 10 people, no Saturdays or Sundays, starting at $90.00 a person.
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
Liberty Street
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Parking details
Street parking and valet parking Monday through Saturday.
Additional
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Fireplace, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Private Dining

Our award-winning food, wine, unique private & semi-private dining spaces, and professional service combine to create truly memorable experiences for business meetings, social celebrations, weddings, and rehearsal dinners. We can tailor the event to your individual needs.

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What 2319 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.5
service
4.6
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
92% of people would recommend it to a friend
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4.0Dined 8 hours ago

We went for the Monday night Bolognese special.
What a deal!
Our server was Dan and he did a great job .There were 8 of us.
Bread basket is to die for----salads, entree and desserts-- all very good and well done.
Cocktails and wines excellent too !

Thank you Nick for a great Restaurant!

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3.0Dined 2 days ago

For the price, everything should be impeccable. Dessert was underwhelming, as were the drenched salads.

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4.0Dined 2 days ago

Graduation celebration

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5.0Dined 2 days ago

Wonderful place

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5.0Dined 3 days ago

Amazing that they are at this level after all of these years. This is a TOP restaurant in any city.

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3.0Dined on May 15, 2018

The meal and service were good. My only complaint was we were celebrating our first wedding anniversary. This was acknowledged by the hostess but our server seemed to be completely unaware. In the past, we were greeted with 2 glasses of sparkling wine. Not sure why this visit would be different.

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4.0Dined on May 12, 2018

We found the Resturant to be quite nice. The food and service was excellent. The interior was interesting.

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5.0Dined on May 11, 2018

Great place to celebrate. Food was delicious, esp bolognese pasta. Great service too!

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3.0Dined on May 7, 2018

The last time my wife and I were at Nicola's was in the late nineties (1997-98?). The restaurant was still new and, as fate would have it, we showed up on a week-night during a blizzard. We were two of six people having dinner. Talk about hands on service! That was one of our best dining experiences. The food and service were impeccable. Glad to see you're doing so well! When it comes to restaurants, we love privately owned establishments and always wish them the best.

That being said, our experience was just OK once we were moved from the table directly next to the service bar to an upstairs table. Some of the food was excellent, some not. The Hunter's Chicken was fantastic. The tortelloni appetizer portion was incredibly small for $18. I asked the server to describe it for me and he couldn't. If he could I wouldn't have ordered it. Our salads were OK.

Overall, I'd give our experience a B-. We'll try you again, sooner than twenty years from now. Congratulations on your success.

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5.0Dined on May 7, 2018

we have frequently eaten at Nicola's on Monday evenings because of the bolognese special.
As always it was as delicious as ever; perfectly complemented by Nicola's Caesar Salad.

Thank you always

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5.0Dined on May 7, 2018

Was looking forward to enjoying another Nicola's "Bolo Monday" but the evening was even better than anticipated. Weather cooperated so were able to sit outside and Nicola's is the best for dining in the open air. The grilled pear salad was fantastic. Then we received a complimentary serving of classic foie gras which was tremendous. The bolognese as per the usual rocked. Michelle's service was exactly what you want when dining. Attentive without being intrusive. Just a great time all around

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5.0Dined on May 6, 2018

Parents in town. Great dinner and service

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5.0Dined on May 5, 2018

This was a special treat! We wish we were locals so we could go here all the time. Food was great. Menu was small which made our choices easy. If you are looking for Olive Garden this is not it.

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3.0Dined on May 5, 2018

We had dinner here with an out of town guest. We had the homemade pasta dishes and thought the food was good but not exceptional. Also, the service was good but not great.

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5.0Dined on May 4, 2018

Phenomenal experience. Great service. Don’t overlook how full you can get on the amazing bread basket! The cheese gnocchi was unbelievable.

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5.0Dined on May 1, 2018

We recently had dinner at Nicola's to celebrate our anniversary and everything about the evening was wonderful. We chose to sit in their outdoor courtyard and found it to be cozy and charming on a nice weather evening. Our meal started with complimentary sparkling wine - a nice surprise. Their wine list is extensive with many nice choices. My husband and I each had a salad and both were delicious and creative. He had the risotto and I had the scallops for our main courses. Both were expertly prepared. For dessert we shared a chocolate, caramel, and hazelnut creation that was a great way to top off the meal. Their pastry chef does an amazing job! Finally, the waiter was helpful and pleasant. The timing was perfect, allowing for a leisurely dinner with just the right amount of time between courses. We will definitely go back!

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4.0Dined on April 28, 2018

Beet salad was delicious! Bread basket is a must--I wish we could eat all of it. Excellent value. Pappardelle with mushroom ragu was very good but potato gnocchi is even better! Portions for medium size pasta are generous. Wine was delicious but I wish there was more of a range of prices for wine. It's hard to find one under $50 in all categories.

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3.0Dined on April 28, 2018

Felt stuffy, staff was well trained but did not seem happy. Food portions were way too small. My wife and I ordered calamari and it was literally one bite and gone. No hurry to go back.

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2.0Dined on April 27, 2018

I came with several girlfriends to celebrate a birthday. We had reservation at 6:15. After ordering a full meal with drinks, dessert and coffee, it was 8:30 and the hostess came to our table and informed us that they needed our table now for a group with a reservation that was waiting. CAN YOU BELIEVE THIS?

The only other time this has happened to me was at Via Vite, the sister restaurant to Nicolas. We were flabbergasted then too! We left feeling like cattle in a processing line. We did not feel like dinner guests in a nice restaurant. This incident left a dark cloud over the rest of the evening. Be sure to plan your time wisely at Nicolas so you won't be asked to leave before you are finished enjoying your evening.

The food was lovely and the bread is good. However, when you are treated poorly in a restaurant like this, it leaves a bad taste in your mouth.

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5.0Dined on April 27, 2018

All good! Food and Service excellent! First visit ! We will be back! Arrived 20 mins before they opened!! They opened early and let us sit at the bar and bait a drink!! Very classy!

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5.0Dined on April 22, 2018

great place for a dinner date, the scallops were amazing! quite enough for a pleasant conversation, waiter was attentive friendly knowledgeable. Will be a repeat customer.

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5.0Dined on April 21, 2018

excellent service and food. rare to be able to talk and be heard at our table and not by our neighbors. will definitely consider returning. ---------------------------------------------------------- ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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4.0Dined on April 21, 2018

My first time being disappointed here. Used to be consistently top 3 spots in Cincinnati but the service was just not good. Wicked slow at the bar. 3 of the 6 things we got we're disappointing. The other 3 were WOW! Perhaps just a missed night

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5.0Dined on April 20, 2018

Everything we ordered was fabulous! The menu seemed to still be in the winter phase. Looking forward to returning in June to try their summer offerings. Great wine selections too.

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3.0Dined on April 20, 2018

The service was exemplary. The gnocchi was rather bland. The tagliatelle was tasty but not remarkable. The bread basket was a highlight.

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5.0Dined on April 19, 2018

Nicola's never fails to impress! Our birthday celebration was wonderful, the food and service exceptional. We will be back again and again.

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5.0Dined on April 16, 2018

Exceptional service and food. Server was more than gracious, recommended a spot-on wine that paired very well with the delicious bolognese. We celebrated a birthday on the "Bolognese Monday" (reduced price and a salad). Despite the reduced price, the service was impeccable, and the bread basket was amazing. One of Cincinnati's gems.

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3.0Dined on April 14, 2018

We ordered Poached bass and a few squiggly things called veggies. The bass flavor and consistentcy was less than satisfactory. This was plopped on a blob of eggplant purée that had a horrible burnt flavor. The salad was nothing but chopped cabbage. The bread, for which we were charged, was excellent. We will never return to Nicola’s!

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2.0Dined on April 14, 2018

First date...wanted to make a good impression. So did not. I should have figured something out when a bourbon and ice comes out with apiece of ice the size of a dime.

The calamari was a small slab of fish with so much anchovy paste that it was nothing but salt.

An hour later the Risotto came out crunchy. I did not know that Risotto is supposed to be crunchy. The grilled carrots were very tasty.

They did offer to replace it but we had had enough and just wanted to leave.

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5.0Dined on April 13, 2018

Jennifer was a wonderful waitress. We are seniors and grateful that we could share a meal. thanks for honoring my husband's birthday! We'll come back!

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5.0Dined on April 13, 2018

It was delicious as always! Great gnocchi and the scallop dish was fabulous. Great service, such a solidly, good restaurant and experience!

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3.0Dined on April 9, 2018

The food came out very slowly with long waits between courses.

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5.0Dined on April 9, 2018

We had a party of 12 and it was great! Everyone that attended enjoyed their dinner and atmosphere

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4.0Dined on April 8, 2018

Very good overall. Reserved table was not ready and wait was chaotic.

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5.0Dined on April 7, 2018

Great food, great service (Bradley), great ambiance, great experience and worth the investment.

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5.0Dined on April 7, 2018

Dinner was tremendous. The wife tried the lumberjack cocktail and loved it. As she shared a worthy replacement to the Ginger Old Fashioned. Both tried two of the new pasta courses and both were outstanding. I typically stick with the classic bolo but tried the risotto which was excellent. Both our entrees were great. The service was perfect and kudos to the suggestion on the house wine of the night. We like to check out different flavor profiles and the wine was both unique and a great value. Just an outstanding evening.

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5.0Dined on April 7, 2018

Nicola's is a favorite with us. Whether the occasion is birthdays, anniversaries, or getting the family together, Nicola's impresses with the quality of the food and the friendliness of it well- trained staff.

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5.0Dined on April 6, 2018

Excellent as always. Great staff that I’ve seen there for several years. Perfect place for a date!

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5.0Dined on April 6, 2018

Exceptionally creative cuisine! Everything was well crafted and delicious. Angolati pasta dish was unique in every way! Outstanding service and incredible tasting food! Loved my experience.

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5.0Dined on April 2, 2018

Anniversary

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