Nearby points of interest

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  1. Distance: 0.15mi
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  3. Distance: 0.18mi
  4. Distance: 0.30mi

Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.15mi
  2. Distance: 0.16mi
  3. Distance: 0.18mi
  4. Distance: 0.30mi
  1. Distance: 0.15mi
  2. Distance: 0.16mi
  3. Distance: 0.18mi
  4. Distance: 0.30mi

About Nicola's Ristorante

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 18 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.

1420 Sycamore Street
Cincinnati, OH 45202
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Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Italian

Hours of Operation:
Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:30pm - 10:00pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:30pm - 11:00pm

Cross Street:
Liberty Street

Dress Code:
Business Casual

Price Range:
$31 to $50

Payment Options
AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(513) 721-6200

Website:
http://www.nicolasotr.com/

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.

Parking Details:
Street parking and valet parking Monday through Saturday.

Executive Chef:
Joel Molloy

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.

Nicola's Ristorante Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.7

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.6

service

4.7

ambience

4.6

value

4.2

noise

Moderate

93% would recommend it to a friend

Good for a Date (64)
Special Occasion (57)
Romantic (52)
See All
Good for Anniversaries (50)
Notable Wine List (41)
Fit for Foodies (40)
Creative Cuisine (38)
Authentic (35)
Neighborhood Gem (33)
Quiet Conversation (32)
Good for Birthdays (28)
Worth the Drive (24)
Cozy (18)
Historic (18)
Private Room (16)
Business Meals (14)
Tasting Menu (13)
Pre/post Theatre (13)
Comfort Food (12)
Handcrafted Cocktails (11)
Seasonal (11)
Good for Groups (11)
Good Vegetarian Options (9)
Bar Seating (8)
Fun (7)
Hot Spot (6)
Outstanding Value (6)
Local Ingredients (5)
Vibrant Bar Scene (5)
Casual (5)
Family Style (3)
Molecular Gastronomy (3)
Great for Outdoor Dining (3)
Happy Hour (2)
Sunday Lunch (2)
Healthy (1)
Late-night Find (1)
Tapas (1)
Modern Decor (1)
People Watching (1)
Vegan (1)
Paleo Friendly (1)
Great for Lunch (1)
Spicy (1)
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2003 reviews
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vip
 (Cincinnati)·Dined 6 days ago

Nicola's is not just the sum of its parts. Each part of Nicola's is by itself an 'A' player. You want a bartender who can handle the classics yet be creative? Done. You want great service that reaches the balance of being attentive while not being intrusive? Done. You want a menu that can satisfy just about any taste, mood, dietary preference? Done. Nicola's is old school without being stodgy and incorporates some cutting edge culinary approaches. This would be hyperbole if not for being completely accurate.

Tags: Bar Seating, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for a Date, Fit for Foodies, Seasonal, Notable Wine List, Authentic, Vibrant Bar Scene, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Handcrafted Cocktails
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 19, 2017

We've previously had good experiences at Nicola's but hadn't had a meal here in several years. This time the experience was very disappointing, all the way around. Food quality was just okay, not aligned at all with the high prices ($250+ for two people) and way below expectations. Service was fair though it got better as the night went on. Restaurant was extremely loud, chaotic, too much hustle and bustle, and negative energy. For some reason there was a youth soccer team running around the restaurant--not appropriate for a place that claims to be a fine dining experience. I've read other similar reviews from recent experiences. The restaurant seems to have lost its mojo. I would not recommend it to a friend or colleague.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food2
ambience1
service3
value2

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on March 19, 2017

We went to Nicola's to celebrate two birthdays and a 45th wedding anniversary. We enjoyed the food, The ambience, the service and the wine. The food is cooked to perfection and it is eventful and creative. Long after dinner was complete we stayed and talked and never felt rushed.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Creative Cuisine, Vibrant Bar Scene, Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies, Good Vegetarian Options, Casual, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays, Fun
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 18, 2017

It was a perfect evening celebrating my wife's birthday. We had wonderful service and our food was delicious ! It is a special place that continues to be at the top of it's game.

Tags: Historic, Bar Seating, Private Room, Handcrafted Cocktails, Vibrant Bar Scene, Good for a Date, Good for Birthdays, Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Notable Wine List, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 18, 2017

Always one of my favorites! Never disappointed with the food quality.

Tags: Good for Groups
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 18, 2017

Nicola's is among the top fine dining restaurants in Cincinnati. It delivers on the promise of creative recipes, fresh ingredients, a great wine selection.
Special moments, for just because... it doesn't let you down.

Tags: Special Occasion, Worth the Drive
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 18, 2017

This restaurant is fantastic! Wait staff was friendly and accommodating from the get go, good wine selection, and the food is amazing! They encourage splitting plates and serve partial servings on individual plates rather than typical family style. Melon salad and steak stood out to me, although everything our table ordered was outstanding. Can't wait to go back again!

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Romantic, Pre/post Theatre
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 16, 2017

The service was wonderful. Obviously well trained. The food was fantastic. Great wine.

Tags: Romantic, Fit for Foodies, Pre/post Theatre, Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 11, 2017

One of my top 3 restaurants in all of Cincinnati. Every meal there has been amazing and I adore the personal service we get when trying to pair wines to our meal.

Tags: Outstanding Value, Local Ingredients, Business Meals, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Birthdays, Fit for Foodies, Good for Anniversaries, Seasonal, Good Vegetarian Options, Notable Wine List, Good for a Date, Romantic, Private Room, Good for Groups, Tasting Menu, Fun, Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 7, 2017

This was a birthday dinner with a friend; great food, service, and ambiance. Glad we had reservations... for a Tuesday evening, it was very busy.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Quiet Conversation, Business Meals, Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date, Fit for Foodies, Private Room, Worth the Drive, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 5, 2017

We had a wonderful dining experience at Nicola's. The food was delicious and our waitress was extremely knowledgeable, pleasant and helpful.

Tags: Good for Groups, Cozy, Pre/post Theatre, Casual, Special Occasion, Good for a Date, Good for Anniversaries, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 5, 2017

Nicola's is fantastic!!! My boyfriend and I were celebrating our 2 year anniversary and I'm thrilled that we chose this restaurant. It is expensive, but worth it for the great food and atmosphere. The bread basket was to die for!

Tags: Authentic, Romantic, Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 4, 2017

Great food .Table was located near kitchen door .Two diners had to watch traffic during dinner . Very annoying.Great bread .Beet salad was short on beets . Service a bit slow ...no time for dessert .

Tags: Good for a Date, Good Vegetarian Options, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience2
service3
value4

vip
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 4, 2017

I have dined at Nicola's several times over the past 15 or so years and it has always been great. It was my friends first visit and she loved it. I will return more frequently.

Tags: Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 4, 2017

Great food and service. Every bite of everything we ate was incredible.

Tags: Historic, Local Ingredients, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 4, 2017

Enjoyable as always. If it's your first time you owe it to yourself to try the Gnudi. It is out of this world. Lovely atmosphere, decent prices, and pleasant wine selection. Perfect for the old date night.

Tags: Comfort Food, Fit for Foodies, Notable Wine List, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on March 2, 2017

Hit all the marks. Wonderful service, amazing food, we had a memorable meal. I have been raving about it since to everyone that asks.

Tags: Romantic, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 28, 2017

We got the agnolotti and it didn't have any flavor at all. The gnudi appetizer was really good, which made the entree that much more frustrating. I would give them another shot with a different entree

Tags: Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 27, 2017

I heard great things about the restaurant and everything was true. We all enjoyed the "Monday Special" and the bread was fabulous. Will definitely be back.

Tags: Romantic, Good for a Date, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 25, 2017

My fiancé and I have been coming here for years and it is our favorite restaurant in the Cincinnati area. We are never disappointed with the fabulous food or wine. The wait staff is wonderful- they make everything on the menu sound delicious, and their recommendations never disappoint.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Notable Wine List, Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion, Authentic, Good for Anniversaries, Seasonal, Romantic, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 18, 2017

For this price, you expect the food to be perfect. Just not up to the same standards it was a few years ago.

Tags: Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience5
service4
value3

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 17, 2017

We absolutely loved Nicola's! It was our first time there, and the tasting menu was unavailable which wasn't an issue at all, our server recommended an excellent way to navigate the menu and therefore try several different dishes. We split a hot appetizer, the gnudi, and it was fantastic. The kitchen will split everything in half for you which is really nice! We also split a bread basket, a salad (with the goat cheese base-amazing!), and split a half portion of the gnocchi (another great thing- you can order the pasta dishes in half portions), and then we split a main entree. The half portion of the gnocchi was by no means small, we were stuffed before our main entree came out! We were glad that we split each and got to try a lot of the menu, and we can't wait to come back and do it again! The service was excellent as well, our server was fantastic and even gave us puppy training tips after we told him we were getting a puppy soon, he was fun and personable!

Tags: Notable Wine List, Worth the Drive, Local Ingredients, Quiet Conversation, Special Occasion, Comfort Food, Pre/post Theatre, Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Private Room, Romantic, Tasting Menu, Neighborhood Gem, Business Meals, Authentic, Cozy, Fit for Foodies, Good for Anniversaries, Handcrafted Cocktails
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 17, 2017

Very disappointed! I specifically saved this restaurant for a survival date but everything feel flat except for the service. To decor seemed very uninspiring not up to date and I hate to say it, it just felt "old". But that is something I can overlook if the food is good. And that is my biggest complaint, they might as well put a SALT block on the table. Other than the salad everything they brought out was not slightly salty but extremely salty, I got the bolognese and could only eat a few bites and my girlfriend could only eat a little of her for cheese gnocchi(sp?). The restaurant was busy, apparently a lot of people like it but I will recommend other Italian places throughout the city before hear, especially considering the price.

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food1
ambience3
service4
value1

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 16, 2017

I have dined at Nicola's many times and I have always been satisfied. I was very disappointed this time. I ordered bistecca that had no flavor. The meal quality was well below what I have come to expect at Nicola's.

Tags: Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food1
ambience3
service3
value2

vip
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 15, 2017

Once again, outstanding meal this evening. The risotto, gnocchi, duck and short rib dishes were out of this world. Our other dishes were delicious as well, however these were superior. I love the changes to the menu throughout the year. It shows off the talent of Nicola's chef, Aaron Owen and his kitchen staff. Thank you.

Tags: Bar Seating, Special Occasion, Historic, Good for Birthdays, Worth the Drive
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 14, 2017

The food was fabulous. I highly recommend the gnocchi. The atmosphere was relaxing, quiet, comfortable, tasteful, and rich. The staff were very attentive and friendly, but not overly friendly. I got the impression that they know who and when to approach. I think they are very experienced. Our server, I wish I remembered her name, was excellent.

Tags: Seasonal, Healthy, Authentic, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays, Worth the Drive, Creative Cuisine, Good for Anniversaries, Romantic, Pre/post Theatre, Quiet Conversation, Good for a Date, Cozy, Historic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 13, 2017

Very nice with interesting food choices

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 13, 2017

The menu is not cheap, but I quickly decided the excellent food and service justified the price. A bread basket even costs, but instead of a few slices of white bread, it comes packed with a dozen different specialities like focaccia in different flavors, well worth the $1.33! We had the boucheron goat cheese salad, delicious and ample. Before that the chef sent us a gift of stuzzichino. Our main course was four cheese gnocchi, delicious. Christina served us well, knowledgeable and personable. Great evening!

Tags: Authentic, Cozy, Good Vegetarian Options, Special Occasion, Creative Cuisine, Good for Anniversaries, Seasonal, Fit for Foodies, Good for a Date, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 13, 2017

Salad and Bolognese night on Mondays is a great value!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 12, 2017

Phenomenal meal! The potato gnocchi is the best, also highly recommend the pear dessert.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Special Occasion, Good Vegetarian Options, Good for a Date, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 11, 2017

Creative and focused menu, outstanding food, great service

Tags: Special Occasion, Notable Wine List, Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on February 11, 2017

Excellent house made pasta and their carpaccio is divine!

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 11, 2017

Food and wine pairing was excellent, we sat upstairs this time which was a nice change of pace from the main dining room. A bit quieter and warmer up stairs. Great option is to share plates, we ended up getting a few small plates with two entrees and it was perfect. The super Tuscan wine was a great pairing with lobster pasta and the beef.

Tags: Bar Seating, Notable Wine List, Special Occasion, Seasonal, Good for Anniversaries, Historic
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 10, 2017

Service was extremely poor. I ordered a house salad. Too much dressing. When I noted the problem for the server I received no accommodation. Very disappointing. Usually this is one of my favorite restaurants. Tonight it was one of my least favorite.

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food2
ambience2
service1
value2

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on February 9, 2017

Charming atmosphere and decor. Food and wine top quality. Staff was professional

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on February 7, 2017

Nicola's remains one of the premier restaurants in Cincinnati. Great chef , great menu, great, wine list, great service. The bistecca, beef tenderloin dish was perfect as was my wife's striped bass. Nicola's has become our go to restaurant for special nights out; birthdays, anniversary, Valentine's, etc.. We recommend Nicola's as our first choice in Cincinnati dining.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Good for a Date, Romantic, Business Meals
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 7, 2017

Qui si mangia sempre bene! The tasting menu is my favorite; it never disappoints.

Tags: Business Meals, Creative Cuisine, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 5, 2017

Probably the best food we've had since we moved to Cinci.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on February 5, 2017

Good freshly made pasta dishes. A little too heavy on the butter for me but unique foods with great flavor. Bread basket recommended.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Quiet Conversation, Romantic, Bar Seating, Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion, Good for Groups, Good for a Date, Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 5, 2017

Always one of our fav places. We are never disappointed. The host was fabulous. Our server excellent and even good-naturedly put up with my jokes and tricks. We will be back!!

Tags: Hot Spot, Creative Cuisine, Special Occasion, Molecular Gastronomy, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Birthdays, Neighborhood Gem, Notable Wine List, Handcrafted Cocktails
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

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