Eyes swoon and stomachs growl when ogling the scrumptious delicacies in Loveland Sweets' old-fashioned candy shop. Give way to nostalgia's misty grip by sampling the store's collection of vintage sweets such as peppermint lumps, rock candy, or chocolate-covered sunflower seeds ($5.99+/lb.). A sumptuous array of truffles and soft marshmallow clouds makes mouthwatering surprises for sugar lovers, and caramel-filled chocolates ($16.95/lb.) trap sweet teeth on cloud nine. Chocolate-covered peanuts and raisins mask their healthy interiors with rich, milky skin ($8.99/lb.), and predatory gummy bears infiltrate sugary herds by donning an edible chocolate skin. On summer days, homemade ice cream ($2.95–$3.95) gives panting tongues a break from constantly licking the freezer to cool off.
Blue Chip Cookies’ delectables have sated the toothsome taste buds of dessert-deprived sugar mongers for more than 25 years. The handmade chewy rounds are concocted with real butter, premium Guittard and Ghiradelli chocolate, and pure cane sugar. Blue Chip's recipes contain no artificial preservatives or trans fats. Sink teeth into a variety of the shop’s signature cookies ($7.50 for a half-dozen; $13 for a dozen), including chocolate chip, peanut butter, oatmeal raisin, and Blue Chip joy, a tasty trifecta of coconut, almonds, and chocolate chips—all mingling, networking, and schmoozing to be the cookie’s number-one ingredient. Pint-sized confections can be paired with a sip from Blue Chip Cookies’ drinkable menu, featuring steaming cups of gourmet coffee ($1.85 for a large) made from freshly roasted coffee beans ($14 for a one-pound bag) and fruit-packed smoothies ($2.75 for a medium), perfect for cooling off scorching mouth pipes or recently-branded tongues recovering from your knitting group's controversial initiation ritual.
Applying time-tested French techniques to a menu of American cuisine, Chef David Cook turns out seasonal-influenced new-American plates that are dictated by the freshest local ingredients. Inside the vibrantly colored and chic interior of Daveed's NEXT, diners take a culinary journey through the mind of a chef, sampling small, shareable plates, or even learning to cook for themselves.
Melodie's Coffee Café sates grumbling tummies with a menu brimming with traditional and specialty beverages, baked pastry treats, and daily lunch specials. Caffeinate sleepy souls with the italian cappuccino ($2.30 for a 6 oz.), coat throats with an iced chai tea ($3.30 for 12 oz.), or indulge in the sweet stylings of a Milky Way constructed from espresso, steamed milk, and a caramel galaxy swimming with 400 billion chocolate stars ($3.80 for 12 oz.). Inner food processors howling for heavier dishes can fuel up with one of Melodie's specialty dishes including hot paninis, soups, salads, and belgian waffles (only on Saturday and Sundays). For a sweeter treat, bite into a cinnamon roll ($2.75) or lick away a cake-cone-swaddling soft-serve ice cream ($1.60–$1.90).
A Cincinnati favorite, Mio?s has been baking up their signature pizzas for adoring clientele since 1975. Their original, buttery crust is a canvas for splotches of pizza sauce, which peek through a smattering of cheese and various toppings such as sausage, banana peppers, and black olives. Before deciding on an original or stuffed pizza, guests can whet palates with an order of garlic bread or hot wings. For those who prefer personal servings, calzones and hoagies are stuffed with enough juicy meats and veggies to feed an accomplished linebacker.
Bucks Tavern combines the atmosphere of a cozy neighborhood sports bar with the menu of a locally minded gastropub. Start with an order of crispy potato skins—stuffed with cheese, bacon, and scallions, and served with sour cream ($9)—or a bowl of Bucks' homemade beef chili ($5) before tempting your taste buds into swimming up-tongue with a grilled-salmon salad (baby spinach, provolone, tomatoes, candied walnuts, and hard-boiled egg, topped with Atlantic salmon, $13). A hand-breaded, all-natural whitefish sandwich ($8.50) will satisfy lunchtime customers who suspiciously resemble a flock of seagulls in a trench coat. Even pub staples are delivered with an upscale twist. The grilled cheese showcases creamy havarti, tomato, fresh basil, and a drop of honey on a pedestal of wheatberry toast ($7), and Dan's burger tops a hand-sculpted beef patty with pepper jack, bacon, fried-onion straws, and a drizzle of barbecue sauce ($8). All sandwiches come with a side of Bucks’ slaw or seasoned fries—the raffish, fast-living, smooth-talking brother of waffle fries. A children's menu, meanwhile, delights toy-humans with favorites such as sliders, chicken fingers, and mac ‘n’ cheese, all served with a side of fries.