Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Restaurant Week at Metropole & 21C

August 5-11 is Downtown Cincinnati Restaurant Week. You can find a list of participating establishments by clicking here.
Rooftop Bar @ 21C
We decided to try the new rooftop bar at 21C Hotel and then partake of the special menu at Metropole, the hotel's excellent restaurant. It had been a while since we'd fit Metropole into our dining schedule, and we were reminded that it's really one of our favorites.
We started the evening at the cocktail bar on the 11th floor, which was far less crowded than it usually is, according to the staff and what I've heard about the popularity of the spot. We hit it on a Tuesday at about 6:30-7:30, which was a nice time to go.
Downstairs at Metropole, our Restaurant Week menu choices were limited to either of two appetizers -- a simple green salad or seared octopus -- we selected the latter, pictured here.
Seared Octopus with Garnishes
 Main course selections are Chickpea Panisse (hard to describe -- vegetarian, with summer veggies and an olive puree); Seared Monkfish (with tomatoes, gnocchi and fennel) or Braised Pork Shoulder (with polenta and zucchini). We avoided the meat and each had one of the other entrees; both were good.
For dessert, no choice -- just the Dark Chocolate Tart, which was an interesting combination of flavors (it included sea salt, olive oil, white chocolate ice cream and candied olive -- very unusual!). I also enjoyed some of their French press coffee with the tart.
While Restaurant Week is a great way to get people in the door,  I think it's best viewed as an introduction to (or reminder about) some of the city's best offerings. Once you see the regular menu -- at least at Metropole -- you'll likely want to come back and have a chance to partake of the whole range of intriguing choices. This works at any of the participating eateries, of course, but I think you'll be especially interested in what Metropole is dishing out.
We'll definitely return!

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