Thursday, March 15, 2012

Cincy's on Sixth

If you read the news, work downtown, are an IRS agent, or like overpriced mediocre food, you're certainly familiar with Cadillac Ranch. Well, the Ranch is no more. The restaurant has a new owner now, and changes are  underway at the new Cincy's on Sixth. The kitsch, the car, and the bull are all gone now.

I was wandering around downtown with a coworker and found that Cincy's was open for business. This is a soft open, with a grand opening coming soon. We figured we'd overlook our history with Cadillac Ranch and give Cincy's a try.

We made our way into a nearly empty restaurant. We're early lunchers, so not terribly surprising. We were greeted and seated promptly. Our server stopped by to say hi, and we got a smile and hello out of who I assume to be a manager.

I took a quick look around and observed that the changes to the place were pretty targeted. No wholesale makeover here, but the important stuff was handled. Most of the junk "memorabilia" is gone. The bars seem to have been classed up a bit. Perhaps the most telling change is replacement of the mechanical bull with a private dining area. Don't worry, all the good stuff is still there: the stage, the big doors that open to the patio, the patio. I also noticed new tap towers on the bars allowing for a greater draft selection than the previous establishment at this location. It was fairly obvious there was still some minor work left before the grand opening.

Turning to the menu, I found a nice assortment of lunch options - Sandwiches, burgers, pizzas, salads. I hate to keep comparing to the old place, but any one of these menu items sounded better than anything on that menu. While I was looking it over, our server stopped by again to let us know that there is a complimentary soup bar during lunch. Beef vegetable that day. Nice touch, but I immediately assumed it was not exactly gourmet soup if they were giving it away. I ask the server for a recommendation, as I often do, and she suggested the Open-faced Yankee pot roast. Both of us locked that in and headed for the soup. What a surprise! The soup was very good, with real chunks of tender beef and veggies. I would have been happy paying for that soup.

The half-eaten pot roast

When my pot roast came, I was again pleasantly surprised. It was a generous serving of what looked more like beef medallions than pot roast. That was placed over a heap of skin-on mashed potatoes and then, hidden below that, was a thick piece of sourdough bread. The standard side for my dish was green beans, which were nicely seasoned and cooked. Crisp and delicious. Good stuff!

While we were there a few more tables were seated, so it seems word is getting out (the banners on Sixth Street don't hurt), but I bet things pick up after grand opening. I hope to see the folks at Cincy's do well there, in spite of the dumb name.  If they can live up to the promise they've shown here in their earliest days, they might just have a winner. Oh, and they'll have to pay their taxes and rent, too. That helps.

If you go:

Cincy's on Sixth
41 East 6th (between Walnut and Vine)
Cincinnati OH

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