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Pi Pizzeria's "The Delmar" (mozzarella, cheddar, Pappy’s BBQ Sauce, roasted chicken, red pepper, green pepper, red onion, and cilantro) // Image: Phil Armstrong, Cincinnati Refined // Published: 1.3.17

The Best Way To Taste The Queen City Is On A Streetcar Food Tour

Tours are great for:

  • Entertaining out-of-towners
  • Locals who don’t know where cool stuff is
  • People who enjoy letting someone else drive their afternoon for once

And this may be just me, but tours are even better when you don’t have to drive at all. Thankfully, there’s a tour that hungry, anti-car people like myself will surely enjoy.

Introducing: the Cincinnati Streetcar Food Tour.

It’s led by the folks behind Riverside Food Tours. Locals Laura & Mike Noyes will shuttle you around town on the Cincinnati Bell Connector (the streetcar), and you’ll hit up five restaurants & two museums along the way.

The whole thing is designed to be squeezed into a 1 PM to 4 PM timeslot, so urban office dwellers can bunk off for the day at noon and gorge themselves on food and history lessons simultaneously.

Sounds pretty nifty, eh? Here’s the basic timeline of how it goes:

  • BOARD THE CONNECTOR
    At the Banks and ride to 6th and Main
  • STOP #1
    Restaurant: Pi Pizzeria
    Tasting: a slice of their Delmar pizza
    Bonus: a brief history of the restaurant and the surrounding historic buildings on the block.
  • STOP #2
    Restaurant: Izzy’s
    Tasting: Famous Reuben + potato pancake
    Bonus: a brief history of the restaurant and its appearances in pop culture
  • DETOUR
    You head to the Contemporary Art Museum & 21C Museum Hotels for a quick introduction to both. You stay for about ten minutes between both.
  • STOP #3
    Restaurant: Nicholson’s Tavern & Pub
    Tasting: Belhaven Scottish Ale + Fish & Chips
    Bonus: a near-complete history of the restaurant and its European-influenced dining room.
  • RE-BOARD THE CONNECTOR
    At 6th and Main and ride to 8th and Main
  • STOP #4
    Restaurant: Arnold’s Bar & Grill
    Tasting: Fried Green Tomatoes
    Bonus: a history lesson on the long life of the bar and background on Peanut Jim Shelton & Jim Tarbell
  • RE-BOARD THE CONNECTOR
    At 8th and Main and ride to 12th and Vine
  • STOP #5
    Restaurant: Lachey’s
    Tasting: French toast
    Bonus: a short lesson on Over-the-Rhine’s namesake, history as a diverse neighborhood, and present-day status

After the last stop, you’re free to go wherever you’d like. Simple as that!

Five restaurants, five solid menu choices, one full stomach by the end of it. Seriously, I had to waddle home and nap after the whole thing because it was so filling...

...and I ended up dreaming about that Delmar pizza from Pi Pizzeria. That thing was so good.

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Fancy doing this tour yourself? You’re a smart one. Hit up Riverside Food Tours’ website for more information.

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