The toughest part about being a food photographer isn’t finding the right lighting or setting up your shot. The toughest part about being a food photographer is fighting the urge to ditch your camera and dig into the magical cuisine that’s placed before you. It’s The Marshmallow Test on steroids. Except these marshmallows are comprised of fresh-baked focaccia bread, roasted veggies, and garlic yogurt. Ya know, among other things.
And that brings me to a recent photo shoot at The Wheel. Chrissy Antenucci is the culinary mind behind this operation. She studied at the French Culinary Institute in New York, then spent years in San Francisco working for Michael Tusk at Quince, a three-star Michelin restaurant. But with Cincinnati as her hometown, she felt the pull to return to her roots to start The Wheel.
Located in Oakley, it operates as two distinct operations: 1) as the site of her “pop up” dinner parties, which we cataloged back in October and typically sell out within eight minutes of the invites being sent, and 2) as a neighborhood takeout option.
It’s the latter that required attention during our latest visit. Antenucci has a select menu of offerings, from sandwiches to pane to re-heatable entrees, all of which could work as either an ambitiously delectable lunch or a wonderful carryout option for dinner. If you happen upon one of her hearty sandwiches, be prepared to endure the green eye of envy from your office mates. The mortadella (fennel salami, pepperonata, provolone, dijon aioli) is especially mouthwatering—and substantial. Honestly, you could eat one half today and save the other for tomorrow.
I walked out with so much food (at the gracious hands of Antenucci) that I had to find friends & family to pawn some off to. Suffice to say, they were happy to be on the receiving end of such goodness.
Do yourself a favor and head to The Wheel next time you’re in need of lunch or, better yet, in desperate need of a break from cooking dinner. Your stomach won’t regret it. Rather, midway through that first bite you’ll start mentally planning your food for carryout order number two.
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The Wheel is located at 3805 Brotherton Road (45209) in Oakley.
Hours of operation: Tuesday through Friday from 11am to 6pm