Last night 3 of us went to the new( opened Dec 7) wine bar and light fare "Unwind", 3435 Michigan Ave Cincinnati 45208 ( just around the corner and up the block from the Fire House on Hyde Park Square) phone 321-9463. It was terrific.
The place, which formerly housed a garage, has been transformed into a very welcoming wine bar and lounge. Tables and comfortable chairs are mixed with sofas and easy chairs. A large fireplace, (with flame) and a bar with extensive selections dominate the main room. It is a more home like treatment than I have seen elsewhere. We settled for a table as we intended to sample several of the "small plates".
Our friend, a wine merchant, started with a 6 oz pour of Syrah, wine is offered in either a 3 oz pour, a 6 oz or by the bottle. There are also soft drinks and a limited selection of "spirits", I began with a Gruner Vetliner( 3 oz) while Marilyn had a diet Coke. Later in the evening our friend switched to Malbec and I to Barberra.
Our food selections were an order each of the flat bread presentations, Margharita and Pesto, both were excellent. Cooked perfectly with a very thin crust and toppings well flavored. We also enjoyed a presentation of Camembert( medium soft) served with thick, poached pear slices, and an Arugula Salad with Pistachio's and Blueberries. A beautiful presentation and quite pleasing. The Parmesan/ Artichoke dip came steaming hot, as it should, accompanied with French bread toast. To my taste it was on the salty side( I try to restrict salt intake, mostly unsuccessfully) but quite enjoyable. Lastly we had an order of Roasted Red Pepper Humus served with warmed Pita triangles.
The evening was pleasant, relaxing and calls for a return visit.
So what else have we done, since last posting. Friday night it was off to "downtown" and "Jean Robert's Table" 713 Vine Street (513) 621-4777. Full but not overflowing. We probably should go more than we do as the food is uniformly interesting and well prepared while the atmosphere remains an informal, up scale Bistro. Greeted by Lu we were seated promptly and served well, even though we arrived just after a group of 45 had been seated. I almost always start with a "Bombay on the rocks" and that evening was no exception. My "Shrimp Salad" turned out to be mostly marinated red cabbage and other vegetables, shredded, and topped with a sliced Shrimp and dressing. Not what I expected but very good. My main course was Salmon( medium rare, done but juicy) topping a mixturee of Brussels Sprouts, Mushrooms layered with a cheese and breadcrumb dressing. Beurre Blanc Sauce topped the whole. The fish, done perfectly, and the base made a wonderful combination. The other man and I split a bottle of Gruner Vetliner, I'm in a narrow white wine channel, at the moment. The table split a Sticky Pudding dessert to end an eventful evening.
One additional note: We went to a retirement party last week at "deSha's" 11320 Montgomery Rd. Cincinnati 45249 (513) 247-9930. I was pleasantly surprised with the menu and the service. Marilyn and I split the lettuce Wedge, a generous portion for each. I followed with Shrimp and Cheese Grits, plenty of shrimp and likewise cheese in the grits. Marilyn had Buttermilk fried chicken which she reported was very satisfactory. It's a long drive but for a neighborhood place, part of a group of management owned restaurants and I'm happy to report they are doing a very nice job.