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.
Hours of Operation:
Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:30pm - 10:00pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:30pm - 11:00pm
$31 to $50
AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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.
Street parking and valet parking Monday through Saturday.
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Fireplace, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine
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
An incredible meal at an incredible rest ...
An incredible meal at an incredible restaurant. Get the bread basket for certain. The new lamb shank and the steady Bolognese were fantastic. My wife had the gnocchi and that was perfection. Save some room for the Panna Cotta for a vast array of flavors.
What surprised us was that , while the s ...
What surprised us was that , while the selections on offer were similar to those we have enjoyed at Nicolas' in the past, the tastes were surprisingly and interestingly different. All the pieces fit together perfectly.
Amazing food and an unbelievable value w ...
Amazing food and an unbelievable value with the Monday "$15 bolognese and salad" special. We normally save Nicola's for special occasions (it's our anniversary spot) but by coming on a Monday night, it's more accessible as a nice date-night instead. We will be back!
The food was excellent and the waitress ...
The food was excellent and the waitress was very knowledgeable about the food and the wine. It was a real treat to be able to get together with my family, enjoy good food and conversation where we could hear each other. Sometimes restaurants are so noisy that it is impossible to have a conversation. The bread was to die for. That's primarily the reason we chose Nicola's Restaurant, because I wanted some good hot bread with my meal. We had spent the entire holiday weekend in Cincinnati and had never been served good bread.
Another spectacular meal at Nicolas. We ...
Another spectacular meal at Nicolas. We had family in town for the holidays and we chose to bring them to the best Italian restaurant in the city. The restaurant was able to accommodate my wife's vegetarian requests. I had the lamb shank which was spectacuar. The wine list is one of the best for Italian options.
We will return.
First time we had eaten upstairs, not su ...
First time we had eaten upstairs, not sure if I remembered there was an upstairs it had been so long since we had been there. The food was as good as I had remembered and it was romantic! Nice way to spend my husband's birthday celebration!
Steven was great-professional, knowledge ...
Steven was great-professional, knowledgeable and friendly. The atmosphere was perfect-dimly lit, noise level low. Chef Aaron came out to say hello which was very nice. The duck and melon with prosciutto were amazing. Portions are sizable enough where you can share them enabling you to try more dishes. Would definitely recommend.
Our seating location was very cramped an ...
Our seating location was very cramped and void of privacy. One of our guests encountered a shoulder injury from a waiter removing plates, re injured a shoulder problem. As they were removing dishes from the table, they yanked our guest arm back.
Great staff, great service, great venue, ...
Great staff, great service, great venue, and great food. What else is there to say?
My girlfriend and I dined here for our anniversary. Had a great experience and the food was fantastic. We had the risotto, beat salad, gnocchi, and the stripped bass. I also had an amazing beer from North Coast Brewery, my girlfriend enjoyed a wonderful glass of red wine that was recommended by our server.
We were there for our 21st wedding anniv ...
We were there for our 21st wedding anniversary. My wife ordered wine and it we served in a dirty glass. She mentioned such to our waiter and was given a replacement. Glass #2 was dirty = another replacement. I had a nice Cabernet until the last sips when the waiter noticed me examining the bottom of my glass= a nickel sized layer on sediment at the bottom of the glass. Other tables received a full explanation of the menu items. We were simply asked what we wanted and had to ask many questions. It was very clear the waiter was not engaged with his job (or at least our table)
We went for a special celebration. The w ...
We went for a special celebration. The waitress could not have been more knowledgeable about the menu and even offered some tailoring to suit our table. The dessert course was delivered with a hand written chocolate "congratulations" on the plate. The waiters bring your dishes to the table for a simultaneous presentation-- nice touch! The quality and presentation of the food was outstanding--awesome work of the chief and his staff!!!! Great attention to detail in all of our dining experience-- from cocktails to dessert. Cants wait to go back for a special occasion.
Still our go to restaurant in Cincinnati ...
Still our go to restaurant in Cincinnati for special occasions. Quality of food and service continue to be consistently outstanding. Steven was great server. Octopus appetizer was different and quite good. Steelhead trout, Lamb shank and Striped bass each met parties high standards.
Hadn't been for awhile but not disappoin ...
Hadn't been for awhile but not disappointed. The menu had just been changed and there were some great options. The building is a converted carriage barn and is neat inside. There is a small bar area where they make great cocktails. The restaurant has many different seating options, tables for 4, booth seating, balconettes etc. They offer a small menu but everything is prepared perfectly, tastes fantastic and looks beautiful. The pasta is made in house and fresh as is the bread. Service was impeccable. Truly a special experience from start to finish.
My friend and I have been frequent custo ...
My friend and I have been frequent customers at Nicola's and have always loved it, so we arranged dinner there when we and another couple were going to a special concert. We were frankly disappointed. Nicola's seems to have gone rather "over the top" with their menu. The waiter was very enthusiastic about the fact that everything is cooked using sous vide, but if that's what sous vide cooking does, I'm not a fan. The food lacked flavor and character. I got a duck appetizer that came drowned in foam but without the wonderful rich duck flavor. The lobster pasta dish had hardly any lobster and it was overcooked for my taste. I had a glass of chianti classico which turned out to be mediocre. Also Nicola's has started charging $1.33 per person for the wonderful bread basket. I think that's silly and even gauche!
This was my first visit to Nicola's and ...
This was my first visit to Nicola's and I was extremely impressed! The service was phenomenal and the food was absolutely fantastic! I brought a client from out of town here and they were blown away. I will definitely be back!
We had an amazing meal last Saturday. Ou ...
We had an amazing meal last Saturday. Our server Beth did a very nice job and talked through the menu and offered suggestions as to what we might like. The new duck appetizer and tortellini soup were out of this world. The entrees were creative and flavorful. The pumpkin cheesecake and chocolate dessert were to die for. The atmosphere was energetic and we had a wonderful evening. Just go. Theres no reason not to enjoy a meal like we just experienced!
The gnocchi and the bread basket was a g ...
The gnocchi and the bread basket was a great find. We were sat under the stairs in a fairly busy area which was not romantic. It was my anniversary and we got treated like two kids out to eat for prom. Our waiter was more concerned about his party room than our table. He would rush off and barely checked on us. I loved the food the the rest was sub par.
Redemption! We have dined at Nicola's m ...
Redemption! We have dined at Nicola's many times. Our previous visit was marred by problems on many fronts. We were a little concerned about this visit. Clearly, the previous problems were just a bad night all the way around. We enjoyed the excellent staff, wonderful food, attention to allergies that we had come to expect from this restaurant. I can freely recommend it again!!
Had a delicious meal at Nicola's. If yo ...
Had a delicious meal at Nicola's. If you go on Monday night they have a special on their beef bolognese with a salad. All three of us got one. Our waiter was not very good thus the service score. We were seated upstairs and would recommend the downstairs if you have a choice for ambiance.
My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed our ann ...
My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed our anniversary experience at Nicola's. We are not frequent guests, but this is our go-to place for special occasions.
The interior is very quaint and comfortable. Offering romantic seating or larger tables for more guests.
We enjoyed the duck appetizer and absolutely love the gnocchi antipasto! We enjoyed the steak and steelhead trout for main dishes. The trout was great.
We had a great time and will be back for our next occasion to celebrate.
We had such an amazing experience at Nic ...
We had such an amazing experience at Nicola's. Our biggest challenge was choosing which items to pick as they all look so fantastic. Due to a spill (caused by us) we had a bit of a mess to clean up and the staff was so quick, discrete and attentive to the situation. They surprised us with a small plate of our absolute favorite dish as a way to "reset the tone of the night" which helped us in choosing some new and equally fantastic items to enjoy! It is our favorite special place to go and have marked many of our special moments here!
Wedding anniversary dinner. We found wha ...
Wedding anniversary dinner. We found what appeared to be the last parking spot near the restaurant, but the meter only accepted change. We asked the host to exchange paper money so we could fill the meter up, but they didn't have a coin in the building because "they round up to the nearest dollar" (?!?). We worked it out with help from others at the bar, but that was frustrating. After drinks were delivered to the table I told the server we were ready to order, but he walked away and it took him 5 minutes to come back and take the oder. The bread basket was pretty but didn't knock my socks off. Our meals took a very long time to come out,and my entree was EXTREMELY SALTY (a previous Yelp review warned of this). I ate 25% of it and set it aside. The waiter was very good about it and offered to bring another dish, but I kindly refused and ate another piece of bread instead. When we presented our gift card for payment ($100 from a few years back but no expiration date) we were politely told they were not going to accept it because it had another restaurant's name on it as well as Nicola's name and they have severed their relationship since the card was issued. We broke out a credit card and left immediately. My tongue is still suffering from the salt, my cocktail wasn't that great come to think of it, it was way too difficult to find a few coins to help us out, we couldn't use our gift card, and I was so frustrated that we didn't stay for dessert. Even though our waiter was personable, accurate and accommodating and the atmosphere was nice, the chef was not paying attention to what left his kitchen, and the overall experience was not special for the price we paid.
Great food and great service! I took my ...
Great food and great service! I took my dad and wife out to eat here on a whim and the food and service were as expected for a fine dining restaurant. The food was perfectly prepared and the service was great. The room was a little loud. However, this is not unexpected for restaurants in Cincinnati.
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