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Cincinnati Restaurant Reviews

Cincinnati cuisine is so much more than chili. There are great restaurants in town that will provide you with exceptional food in a wonderful atmosphere. This blog is a collection of reviews and personal observations from the current Cincinnati dining scene.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Pho-Paris Moving to Covington

Pho-Paris, Jean-Robert de Cavel's French-Vietnamese fusion restaurant, is moving to the building that housed the old Continental Lounge in Covington. Having never eaten at Pho-Paris, I can't say too much about it, but I can say this is a good thing for the restaurant.

It's old location was on Madison Avenue in Oakley, right across the street from where Boca is currently. While that sounds like it would be a good location, near what many consider the best restaurant in the city, it wasn't. Pho-Paris was located in what can best be described as a strip mall, with a large parking lot separating the front door from Madison Avenue. Hard to get excited for your dining experience when that is your first impression of the place.

I have a friend whose a banker and he told me that his bank was approached to help finance the restaurant but were so unimpressed that they turned it down. This seemed crazy to me. I would have thought Jean-Robert was a sure bet. He pointed out that there was nothing in that area but houses. While I think the area is changing, especially with Boca right there, my friend obviously was right.

This article in the Enquirer points out two very interesting things. First is that Jean-Robert's restaurants are now geographically closer together, so he'll be able to spend more time at all of them. Second, is that restaurant-goers felt Pho-Paris was more of a formal dining experience than he intended. Hopefully, that impression will change, though I know I had certainly felt that way.

I'll take this opportunity to say good night to the Continental Lounge. I had been there a couple times, and I can't say you'll be missed. Exclusivity doesn't seem to go over big in this city.

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