National Exemplar

4.7
1378 Reviews
$30 and under
American
The National Exemplar, located on the first floor of the Mariemont Inn, is a popular neighborhood restaurant. It offers American-style cuisine in its spacious dining room or relaxing outdoor patio. Open daily for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, the National Exemplar offers an outstanding experience.

Southerby’s Pub, located off the lobby, offers dining as well as a cozy place to have a drink and features oversized chairs overlooking one of the original 1920’s fireplaces. In the evening settle down in an over-stuffed sofa and savor a drink with the locals in this intimate lobby pub.

In April of 1983, The National Exemplar began operation in the Mariemont, Ohio landmark, the Mariemont Inn. The Inn was constructed in the mid-1920's as a small piece of the very unique Mariemont community, founded by Mary Emery. The National Exemplar Restaurant was named after learning that Mary Emery once referred to her developing community as the National Exemplar, meaning national model community.
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What 1378 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.7
service
4.7
ambience
4.5
value
Noise · Moderate
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LT
vipLaTraviata
Cincinnati
216 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience3

We love NE. As usual the food was excellent and a great value. As we do each year we purchased many gift cards for friends and self. The other downside to this visit was it was to chilly in the bar area. Women in the area all kept their jackets on, men mostly had on heavy sweaters. I don't know if this was also true for the main dining room.

National Exemplar
Responded 20 hours ago

Thank you for bringing this to our attention. As a neighborhood restaurant and pub, we take these comments to heart and use them to better the experience for guests. We're glad to hear you enjoyed your meal and appreciate you choosing to dine with us!

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A
vipAlesu
Cincinnati
113 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall5food4service5ambience3

I have to rate service as 5. Our young server Andrew was just perfect in my view.as soon as we sat on our table, there is no more welcome sight than my pot of hot tea with lemon and honey on the side. This is all done w/o my having to order them. Granted, we are returning customers, and Andrew knew I like my hot tea, but we are returning customers in several other Cincinnati restaurants, but none of them seemed to remember the kind of tea I like or hardly ever checked if I needed more hot water for my tea. We also appreciated being sat at a table near the fireplace, when just coming in from the cold. This is our favorite restaurant. Dining here always feels welcome. The foods are always tasty too.

National Exemplar
Responded 20 hours ago

Thank you for continuing to dine with us and sharing your feedback! You are a pleasure to serve and a beloved returning guest. We're thankful for your continued support and happy to have you be a part of the National Exemplar Family! We hope to see you in again soon - The National Exemplar

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LT
vipLaTraviata
Cincinnati
217 reviews
Dined on November 22, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

How can you beat $1 dollar oysters with a nice bottle of bubbly, the best Hungarian Mushroom soup you've every had and a perfectly cooked fish. A regular haunt for reasonably priced very good comfort food.

National Exemplar
Responded on November 24, 2021

Thank you for stopping in for $1 oyster Monday! We're so glad to hear you enjoyed your experience. We can't wait to serve you again soon!

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BP
BobP
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on November 19, 2021
Overall3food4service3ambience4

Have always liked National Exempler. For l8 yes! Last night was okay. My filet was cooke a little to much for mid rare. The server was okay but I never received a second glass of wine. Sat at the two person table next to the back exit- again! Would like to enjoy the ambiance a little more next time, away from the back exit. TX b

National Exemplar
Responded on November 22, 2021

Bob, as a longstanding neighborhood restaurant we take these comments to heart. We will use your words to help better the experience for others. Thank you for bringing this to our attention and we hope to see you back in soon!

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OT
OpenTable Diner
Kansas City
1 review
Dined on November 19, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were early for our reservation so we waited at the bar. Priscilla took good care of us.

National Exemplar
Responded on November 22, 2021

Thanks for stopping in, we are glad to hear you enjoyed your experience!

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LJ
LoveJazz
Cincinnati
31 reviews
Dined on November 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always a good experience at The Exemplar.

National Exemplar
Responded on November 19, 2021

We are so glad to hear you enjoyed your experience with us! We can't wait to serve you again soon!

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B
vipBobby
Cincinnati
279 reviews
Dined on November 14, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We come here often. We order the same items every time. Why? Because they’re awesome. Prime Rib, mushroom soup, mushroom pasta, bacon wrapped dates to kill for. The Manhattan is really special.

National Exemplar
Responded on November 17, 2021

Bobby, thank you for sharing your feedback! It's always our pleasure serving you!

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D
Dave
Cincinnati
7 reviews
Dined on November 13, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It had been awhile since I had eaten at this restaurant but wanted to take my significant other there for our anniversary since she had never been there. It turned out my choice was a good one. Everything about our experience was positive. And our server Megan as well as other staff were extremely friendly and kind. If you haven't gone before, I would certainly encourage you to do so.

DJ
DaranJ
Louisville
17 reviews
Dined on November 6, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wanted to find a place close to the Mariemont Players and wow, what a find. Nice pace and great service from Julia! Will definitely go again!

National Exemplar
Responded on November 8, 2021

Daran, thanks again!

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BR
BillR
Cincinnati
16 reviews
Dined on November 5, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our Son was in town, he had the Prime Rib & he said was tender and flavorful.
I had the French Dip that I’ve had several times! It was the best I’ve ever had!!
The Server was attentive and brought our check in a perfect time!

National Exemplar
Responded on November 8, 2021

Bill, thanks so much for stopping in and sharing your feedback! We're so glad to hear you enjoyed your experience. We hope to see you again soon!

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d
detroitbug
Cincinnati
2 reviews
Dined on November 5, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Traditional as it comes. Food was excellent, service was even better.

National Exemplar
Responded on November 8, 2021

Thank you for dining with us! We are pleased to hear your experience was great! See you again soon!

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T
Teri
Cincinnati
4 reviews
Dined on November 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We have come here the last 3 years for our anniversary and We love the prime rib dinner and warm carrot cake with cream cheese icing. The cocktails are excellent and my husband is a fan of the Queen City Manhattan.
Excellent meal and excellent service!

National Exemplar
Responded on November 8, 2021

Teri, thank you so much for choosing to celebrate such a special occasion with us! We're so glad to hear you enjoyed your meal and experience. We hope to celebrate next year with you too!

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OT
OpenTable Diner
Cincinnati
7 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had great food last night . The shrimp tacos and wedge salad were excellent! The service was also exceptional and we were not rushed. It was a very relaxed and enjoyable night.

National Exemplar
Responded on November 4, 2021

We're so glad to hear you enjoyed your experience with us! We hope to see you back soon!

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E
Ellen
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on November 1, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

I love their Hungarian Mushroom Soup. The waiter was friendly and efficient. It's a comfortable place to eat with a friend.

National Exemplar
Responded on November 3, 2021

Ellen, thanks for stopping in and sharing your feedback! We look forward to serving you again in the future!

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WB
WendyB
Los Angeles
14 reviews
Dined on October 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Good meal, nicely served. Like that it is quiet.

National Exemplar
Responded on October 30, 2021

Thanks for stopping in, Wendy! We are so glad to hear you enjoyed your experience. We hope to see you in again soon!

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OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on October 26, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Good steak, good sides.

National Exemplar
Responded on October 30, 2021

Thank you!

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LT
vipLaTraviata
Cincinnati
217 reviews
Dined on October 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

We were there on a Monday night which is $1 Oyster Night - a value which, if you like oysters - is virtually impossible to pass up. The oysters this night were great. Our entries were excellent, desserts were enormous. I have been to N.E. many, many times and written many reviews over 20 years; it never disappoints.

National Exemplar
Responded on October 27, 2021

Thank you for stopping in for Oyster Night! We source only the best quality for our guests and we are humbled to hear that we never disappoint. See you in again soon!

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MK
MarkK
Cincinnati
5 reviews
Dined on October 23, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Great restaurant for a special occasion; lots of charm and character; nice variety on menu

National Exemplar
Responded on October 24, 2021

Mark, we're glad to hear you enjoyed your experience; we hope to see you in again soon!

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t
trio
Cincinnati
4 reviews
Dined on October 21, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Birthday dinner for my wife great prime rib and salmon

National Exemplar
Responded on October 22, 2021

Thank you for stopping in to celebrate with us! Happy birthday to your wife!

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O
Onesimus
1 review
Dined on October 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My wife and I eat here a few times a year. Food and service are consistently great; Hungarian Mushroom Soup is a must try; steaks are always perfect; and I can’t even believe how good their carrot cake is!

National Exemplar
Responded on October 18, 2021

Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback! We are so pleased to hear you enjoyed your dining experience. We look forward to serving you again!

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KH
KatH
1 review
Dined on October 16, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were staying at the Mariemont Inn so having this amazing restaurant downstairs was a treat. When I reserved the table ahead of time I told them it was my daughter's birthday, and when we were sat at the table there was a sign wishing her a happy birthday! The wait staff was very friendly and helpful, and the food was amazing. The drinks from the bar were all very good. We would absolutely eat here again, I highly recommend.

National Exemplar
Responded on October 18, 2021

Thank you visiting our village! It was such a pleasure serving you and we can't wait to see you back in, in the future!

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TT
vipTomT
Cincinnati
9 reviews
Dined on October 15, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent service. Excellent prime rib dinner. Very nice light lemon tart.

National Exemplar
Responded on October 17, 2021

Tom, thanks so much for stopping in. It was our pleasure serving you!

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CP
CarlP
Charleston
3 reviews
Dined on October 15, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great meal in great setting.

National Exemplar
Responded on October 17, 2021

We are so glad to hear you enjoyed your experience, Carl! We hope to serve you again soon!

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OT
OpenTable Diner
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on October 12, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

National Exemplar really took care of us on our 6th anniversary. Truly made it special for me and my wife. Definitely would recommend to anyone for a special occasion or just a date night!

National Exemplar
Responded on October 27, 2021

Thank you for stopping in! Happy 6th anniversary, we are so happy we could celebrate with you! See us again soon!

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OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Cincinnati
25 reviews
Dined on October 12, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Love Taco Tuesday!
Shrimp tacos were amazing !

National Exemplar
Responded on October 13, 2021

Thanks for choosing to dine with us! We are so glad to hear you enjoyed Taco Tuesday!

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TG
TerriG
Cincinnati
3 reviews
Dined on October 10, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful experience! Our waitress was thoughtful, personable & made it fun. She offered suggestions in a good way & followed up to see if we liked her suggestions. My son asked for potatoe with No sour cream & they mistakenly brought it with sour cream. Waitress quickly replaced it. Took birthday photo & made for a special birthday dinner celebration for our daughter in law!

National Exemplar
Responded on October 12, 2021

Thank you for coming in, Terri! We are so glad to hear you enjoyed your experience. Happy birthday to your daughter-in-law, we so glad we could celebrate with you!

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B
vipBobby
Cincinnati
279 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We invited two out of town guests to dinner. Where to go? National Exemplar of course!

They loved our choice. Everything is so good. Bacon wrapped dates, shrimp cocktail, Hungarian soup are absolutely delicious.

Prime rib to kill for, short rib and truffle mushroom pastas to die for. Really amazing.

National Exemplar
Responded on October 12, 2021

Bobby, thanks for stopping in and sharing your feedback! It was our pleasure serving you and your two guests. We're so glad to hear you enjoyed your food and experience; we hope to see you back soon!

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A
vipAdventure0077
Cincinnati
35 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Grilled scallops and pot roast were wonderful as well as vegetables but would have liked more of the vegetables. Overall, a great meal with great service!

National Exemplar
Responded on October 14, 2021

Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback! We're glad to hear you enjoyed your overall experience.

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J
Juls
Cincinnati
3 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were there to celebrate my friend's birthday. The food was great, and they even presented us with complimentary glasses of champagne. I plan to return soon.

National Exemplar
Responded on October 10, 2021

Thank you so much for choosing the Exemplar to celebrate your friend's birthday! It was our pleasure making the celebration all the more special. We can't wait to serve you again soon!

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CS
CarolynS
Cincinnati
4 reviews
Dined on October 8, 2021
Overall3food4service2ambience3

Slow service.

National Exemplar
Responded on October 9, 2021

Carolyn, we're sorry to hear your experience was not ideal. We use these comments to better ourselves for the future; thank you for taking the time to share your feedback.

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A
vipAlesu
Cincinnati
114 reviews
Dined on October 4, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience3

We were At Examplar on Monday for their Oyster Special. The oysters were sweet and briny, medium sized. Very tasty. As usual, Lisa (Manager) came to check several times, making sure everything is as should be. We want to make special mention of Ben, our young server. He is new (only 3 weeks on the job. He was excellent, knew the kind of tea I like, and even check on my hot water. Hardly anyone bother checking my hot water. Most servers are concerned in refilling my husbands Coke. So, I am most impressed. We certainly love the Examplar. I also love introducing them to our friends. Their foods and services are always good and consistent.

National Exemplar
Responded on October 6, 2021

We are so glad to hear your experience was up to our usual standards. We take great pride in our excellent food and service and are so happy to hear you were once again impressed! We can't wait to serve you again soon!

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OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Cincinnati
39 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were celebrating my father’s 92nd birthday and the folks at NE couldn’t have made it more special! The food and service were excellent, as always, but they made Dad feel wonderful with their extra touches! N

National Exemplar
Responded on September 27, 2021

Thanks for choosing the Exemplar for such a special occasion! We are so glad to hear we could make your dad's birthday all the more special. We hope to see you back in again soon!

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RH
vipRickH
Cincinnati
102 reviews
Dined on September 24, 2021
Overall4food5service4ambience4

Examplar is always an excellent choice, even at the last minute. You can normally get reservations most nights. Daily specials are great along with their normal menu choices. Food is high quality and well prepared. The draft beer list currently is a little off, and only have two taps. But the can/bottle options are good and their wine choices are very broad. Seafood pasta was perfect, small size is plenty with a salad.

National Exemplar
Responded on September 27, 2021

Rick, thank you for stopping by, it was our pleasure serving you. We are so glad to hear you enjoyed your visit and meal. We hope to see you back with us soon!

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KS
vipKevinS
Cincinnati
40 reviews
Dined on September 24, 2021
Overall4food4service3ambience4

We had another good meal at the Exemplar. The patio was very nice and relaxing. We always enjoy the menu and can find 2-3 things we like. The service was good and we were happy with the overall value.

National Exemplar
Responded on September 27, 2021

Thank you, Kevin, for taking the time to provide feedback. We are so glad to hear you enjoyed your visit with us! See you again soon!

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OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Cincinnati
25 reviews
Dined on September 21, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Delicious , creative tacos!
Another great Taco Tuesday!

National Exemplar
Responded on September 22, 2021

Thank you for stopping by to enjoy Taco Tuesday! We hope to see you in again soon!

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j
vipjake
Cincinnati
23 reviews
Dined on September 20, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

great service very cordial wonderful food...the ambience is historic with great charm

National Exemplar
Responded on September 21, 2021

Thanks for taking the time to share your experience, Jake! We hope to see you in again soon!

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A
vipAlesu
Cincinnati
114 reviews
Dined on September 20, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience4

It was my husband’s birthday. We went to Examplar to enjoy the yummy oysters as our usual oysters treat on a Monday, plus to celebrate the birthday. I order something that I had not ordered before. It was their Scallops. It was delicious! Love the mushrooms arugula. To top it all, he was given a luge Carrot Cake with a candle to celebrate. Food is always good, and service is always excellent. Examplar is one of the all around best restaurants in Cincinnati. We love dinning there.

National Exemplar
Responded on September 22, 2021

Thank you for choosing to celebrate your husband's birthday with us! We are so glad to hear that your experience was enjoyable. We can't wait to serve you again soon!

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OT
OpenTable Diner
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This was our first time eating here!! Service was great and the meal tasted like a warm home cooked meal!! The drinks were amazingly!!! The pricing of our meal was reasonable. Will definitely be back!!!

National Exemplar
Responded on September 20, 2021

Thank you so much for stopping in! It was our pleasure serving you--hope to see you in again soon!

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LK
LeslieK
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall4food3service5ambience4

Service was excellent and ambience good until music was inexplicably turned up so we could barely hear each other. Everyone was happy with their meal except for me. The noodles in the short rib dish were so underdone that it was difficult to cut them with a fork or chew them. Portion of short rib meat was very small. Probably won’t go back for dinner soon.

National Exemplar
Responded on September 21, 2021

Hello Leslie, we are sorry to hear that your experience did not live up to our usual expectations. If you'd like to share your thoughts with a listening ear feel free to give us a call at 513-271-2103 and ask for Lisa. Thank you.

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J
Jlarter
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on September 14, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great! Always love National Exemplar!

National Exemplar
Responded on September 17, 2021

Thank you!

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FAQs

National Exemplar does offer delivery in partnership with Uber Eats. National Exemplar also offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (513) 271-2103.

National Exemplar is rated 4.7 stars by 1378 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.

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