Nicola's Ristorante

4.8
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2930 Reviews
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$31 to $50
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Italian
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 20+ 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.
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What 2930 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.8based on recent ratings
4.8
food
4.7
service
4.7
ambience
4.5
value
Noise · Quiet
98% of people would recommend it to a friend
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MS
Cincinnati
61 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Favorite restaurant in town. Dinner for 4 Saturday night, brought some out of town guests. Service was a little slower than usual. The restaurant was packed, a special that evening for Blink, we ordered off the regular menu. Everyone raved about the food, service was the only downside but not overly concerning.

RW
Cincinnati
3 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Always good with 20 years of being a loyal customer

CB
Pittsburgh
14 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Enjoyed Blink weekend tasting menu. All dishes were delicious

C
Cincinnati
2 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

An utterly amazing dining experience. Blink Cincinnati weekend. We lucked out in finding this gem. The price fix menu offerings were incredible. I thought it would be your typical, maybe more upscale, Italian dining experience. Quite the contrary. It was a delicious and memorable experience for our girl’s night out.

DP
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 4

Great service but the food was disappointing for the price. The gnocchi was extremely oversalted. I would strongly prefer Sotto or primavista for other Italian options.

GM
Cincinnati
6 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a wonderful meal and experience as always.

CC
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful food and great service! I would highly recommend.

OT
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We thoroughly enjoyed the evening before heading out to Blink. We especially appreciated the special 3 course meal for $40. Plenty of delicious food and a reasonable price. Our waiter was wonderful. Thank you!

T
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fantastic venue for a celebration. We are already looking forward to our next visit.

OT
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Really nice restaurant. Food was really good but a bit overpriced. Service excellent.

v
Cincinnati
10 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Where to begin? Well the bread basket was the most beautiful bread basket we have ever seen and totally worth the extra charge. And it tasted as good as it looked! We enjoyed the special Blink 3 course dinners. Our server was very attentive to us and provided very good recommendations and descriptions of the food. We want to go back and experience more of the amazing pastas and entrees. We will definitely be back to Nicola's!

OT
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

i adore nicola’s, always have. last time i was there my dining companion was delayed and the waiters were so attentive to me. our food was beautiful and delicious - all split by the kitchen for us - and we chose our own pace for a leisurely special meal.

AB
Cincinnati
4 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 2ambience 4

The food is good and consistent. If you go on a Monday night, do not expect good, if any service.

a
Cincinnati
3 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

First time here. Was our anniversary, we both completely enjoyed it. Very impressed. Food and service we're outstanding. Highly recommend it.

BG
1 review
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was perfect. Came in for my girlfriends birthday and couldn't have been happier. Had the scallop, the tempura shrimp and the veal to start and it felt like after every bite we were awkwardly leaning back moaning about how good it was. Our server Steven made great wine recommendations and turned us on to the potato gnocchi which is one of the best dishes I've ever had.
I went into the place with high expectations and they completely blew me away.

j
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on October 4, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 3

Great food but when making reservation I mentioned 35th anniversary and our table was next to busing station. Would have thought we would have had a better table.

G
New York Area
11 reviews
Dined on October 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Server, Megan, was exceptional. We had complex order of sharing several items and she handled all of it with good humor and professionalism. Couple this with one of best kitchens in the city and we had wonderful celebration with friends.

JC
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on October 3, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

Most everything was very nice. Service very good, nice place to relax and enjoy a fine meal. The entire meal was great but when the pork loin arrived it looked and tasted like a bbq rib overcooked. I ate two or three bites.
I mentioned my disappointment but no response.
Certainly disappointed with the pork loin with no resolution.

I didn’t want the tip to reflect. I sensed the waiter had his hands tied.

DS
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on October 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

What a great place. Every aspect of the experience was excellent. This felt like stepping into a Chicago or New York Italian restaurant because of the ambiance, the staff, the menu and the quality. This was our first time but it won’t be our last.

OT
Cincinnati
2 reviews
Dined on September 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a wonderful time! I’m a celiac diner and they were easily able to accommodate me and explain what would be safe for me and what wasn’t. Can’t wait to come back again! Everything was phenomenal!

j
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A wonderful evening! Fabulous dinner!! Chef Jack, you did it again! Service was Amazing!

SN
Cincinnati
258 reviews
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Brad served us extremely well and the food was excellent!

RM
Columbus
1 review
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Neither the food nor service was as memorable as previous visits

ET
San Francisco
13 reviews
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was exceptional. The gnocchi is a must have. John and his fellow bartender were very nice and accommodating.

e
Cincinnati
8 reviews
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Exellent food!!! love this place

OT
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

Delicious meal once again!

D
Cincinnati
12 reviews
Dined on September 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fixed price Restaurant Week combined great food with good value

R
Cincinnati
9 reviews
Dined on September 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

We went to Nicola's for restaurant week and their menu was fabulous. We tried one of everything and we love that the three courses did not include dessert but rather a lovely salad course, pasta course and entree. We will definitely be back!

A
Cincinnati
5 reviews
Dined on September 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

As always, the gnocchi was sublime. Actually the entire meal was perfectly prepared, served and enjoyed. Going during restaurant week made it even more delightful. This is a wonderful, reliably excellent restaurant.

OT
Cincinnati
3 reviews
Dined on September 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food and excellent service. It’s a must try!

S
Detroit
22 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 2

My steak was burned. Our server was so scattered. I had to ask him for my drink numerous times. Food was ok. Nothing special
Bread was cold
My husbands red snapper had no taste.

GE
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on September 25, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Our servers were very attentive. We thoroughly enjoyed sharing our experience with our friends on the patio. It was nice to be able to talk without excessive noise.

f
Cincinnati
41 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Nicolas is one of those restaurants that you know the cuisine will always be superb whether you order your past favorites or try something new. Service staff is also always excellent with well informed and personable individuals. We love the atmosphere and the location as even though we've patronized Nicolas since they opened, it always feels like our own intimate haven.
Nicolas is a true consistent gem.

OT
Indiana
1 review
Dined on September 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous... excellent waiter that moved us to some more adventurous choices.

DM
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on September 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

always enjoy dining with you, we appreciate the solid consistancy.

OT
Cincinnati
7 reviews
Dined on September 23, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

The restaurant week menu was amazing! I loved the crispy potato gnocchi and the Tagliatelle alla Bolognese! Yum!!

SK
1 review
Dined on September 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous dinner! We will definitely return. The food, the ambiance, the service - all were fantastic.
Each course was excellent. The only complaint - the servings were too large. Each course could be 20 - 30% smaller and be every bit as satisfying. I feel compelled to eat what I am presented with and feel guilty if I leave anything - which is why Restaurant week is awesome - you typically get a tasting. Nicola's gave us a feast! I have eaten a lot of sorbet - Nicola's was some of the best!
It is refreshing to go to a restaurant and actually be able to hear my wife. There are a number of nice bars I will never go to again due t the noise level - I want to talk with my guests.

OT
Cincinnati
2 reviews
Dined on September 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Went for Cincinnati Restaurant Week! That was my first time joining in the Restaurant Week festivities and it was so worth it. Food on the pre-fix menu was fantastic, and the bread basket was to die for.

B
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on September 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a wonderful evening celebrating my sister’s birthday. We took advantage of the Restaurant Week menu and enjoyed every course. Sarahi took excellent care of us!!! She was very knowledgeable of the menu and made recommendations as well. We will be back soon because I’m already craving the bread basket and gnocchi!

M
Cincinnati
8 reviews
Dined on September 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food and Service was amazing as always. The staff goes out of their way to ensure an excellent dining experience.

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