Brewing a good cup is an art form, and Mrs. Teapots has some of the best leaf-steepers in Northern Kentucky. Try sweet or fruity teas such as Bavarian chocolate crème, Forever Yours almond amaretto, and peach apricot, or sip a simple Earl Grey. High-strung leaf drinkers can mellow out with decaf offerings or try whatever unusual brews were just added to Mrs. Teapots carefully curated selection of domestic and imported leaves. One of Mrs. Teapots' friendly servers can help you choose an electrifyingly tranquil tea that dances upon your tongue and steams down your throat to warm you from core to crust.
Roxx Electrocafe, located near the UC campus, boasts three 42-inch televisions and a massive 73-inch-wide screen that display heated bouts of digital competition across the café's spacious interior. Fourteen powerful gaming computers ($4/hour) enable activities such as cooperative robotic testing in the depths of Portal 2 or competitive right-clicking contests on the battlefields of League of Legends or Heroes of Newerth. Late-night hours yield to marathon console-gaming sessions of Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Halo 3, and Rock Band ($4/hour)—all fueled by iced coffees ($2.50) and smoothies ($4), which ensure proper hydration and appropriate glottal lubrication. As the café's four Xbox 360s, four Wiis, and PlayStation 3 enchant eyes and coordinate drill teams of button-pressing thumbs, comfortable chairs and modern décor invite board games or study sessions.
Pearls are often prized for their exquisite appearance and oystery aroma, but Boba Cha values a different sort of pearl?bubble tea's chewy spheres of tapioca. This cozy shop in downtown Cincinnati specializes in creamy concoctions that combine sweet flavors with the tapioca pearls' satisfying chewiness. Aside from the signature bubble teas?which can be prepared hot or cold and with or without milk?the shop whips up frozen snow treats flavored with fruit and yogurt.
Founders of Huntergreengrass Edward and Barb ousted meat from their diets more than three decades ago. Their conversion to vegetarianism launched them on a journey to wellness with many pit stops: they opened a health-food store and helmed a vegan catering company, and Edward penned a vegetarian cookbook. But the defining moment of their foray into health and understanding of compound words was when Barb began training under Dr. Ann Wigmore, a pioneer in the wheatgrass movement. As Barb learned about healthy living and the wheatgrass diet and began to adhere to it, she and Edward had their freshest idea yet: Huntergreengrass. Recently named Best Wheatgrass Fix by Cincinnati CityBeat, Huntergreengrass brings to Findlay Market a menu of juices, smoothies, soups, and vegetarian fare more health-focused than a multivitamin wrapped in kale and stuffed in a carrot. The flavorful beverages and noshes hail from Edward and Barb's organic, nutrient-fortified soil, where wheat berries flourish until they ripen to the peak of nutrition and sweetness at 6–10 inches. Then the couple snips all the stalks from one tray and stows them in the refrigerator for up to 10 days. The healthful shots brim with vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and digestion-aiding enzymes. Shots can be swirled into sweet juices of antioxidant-rich fruits and veggies such as carrots, apples, beets, and oranges.
Setting up shop in a formerly run-down launderette, Lavomatic Cafe provides an opportunity to dine on hearty fare without attracting uncomfortable leers from surrounding shirt-folders. Charming exposed pipes and soft tones accentuate Lavomatic’s décor, which creates a perfect setting for sampling the establishment’s well-stocked wine bar. The menu offers a modest yet satisfying selection of comforting classics with a twist, like when grandma gets tipsy and mixes acids with bases. Start with small bites such as chicken lollipops with honey mustard, bourbon barbecue sauce, and spicy garlic sauce ($8.95) or tater tots with truffle, chive, bacon, and cheddar ($7.49). Warm up with tomato bisque and grilled cheese ($7.49) or a fish sandwich with fennel apple straw on rye ($11.49). Refresh the palate with a fusion of flavors thanks to the meatloaf cupcake with country green beans and mashed potatoes ($12.95) or a pork chop with mushroom hash and red-wine caramel ($18.95). Sharable sides such as cornbread ($3.25) and mac 'n' cheese ($6.95) are also available.