ALL/ EAT (out)

New Places to Eat in Cincinnati Part 5: Karrikin Spirit Company

A relatively new craft distillery and restaurant opened in Fairfax and I’m so thankful it’s only a fifteen-minute drive from my house because this place is pretty special.  The craft brew scene in Cincinnati has been exploding for a while now, but a spirits distillery brings something new.  It’s a distillery, yes, but it’s also an incredible restaurant.  Airy, open, warm, cozy, and full of character, Karrikin Spirit Company has plenty of seating spread over two large rooms.  You can either have drinks with a large group or have an intimate dinner with a sweet someone.

Karrikin has a rotating drink menu featuring spirits, hard sodas, and craft cocktails.  And if you’re not a drinker, check out the soft sodas.  I ordered a flight of the homemade soft sodas because I needed to try them all and the flight made me feel more sophisticated.  While I enjoyed each,  I think the grapefruit was my favorite.  I also appreciate the whimsy mocktails like the Blood Orange Shrub.  So many drinks, so little time.  My husband was especially fond of the housemade gin and brandy!  The drinks list is pretty extensive.

But Karrikin is far more than drinks; the food is incredible.  The menu, which is all about sharing, includes warm, rich, traditional dishes with a few fun twists.   We chose to sit at the Chef’s Table which essentially is an elevated bar overlooking the chefs preparing food.  I would absolutely recommend it.

Rather than describing each dish, I’m going to let the pictures speak for themselves.

Shaved Apple Slaw

Vinegared Fries

Baked Urban Stead Cheese Curds with Sixteen Bricks Sourdough Bread

Grilled Chuck Roast

We enjoyed every single bite of every single dish that we shared!  But, if you want super standouts, don’t miss the Vinegared Fries and the Baked Urban Stead Cheese Curds. The fries are crispy and then, salty with the perfect hint of vinegar.  And those “cheese curds” are the stuff foodies dream about.  We were scraping the pan trying to get all the cheese out.  So much goodness!  I haven’t been for brunch yet, but it’s on my to-do list.  I have several friends who have gone for brunch and they each sing its praises.  I look forward to working my through the menu!

GO THERE (Karrikin Spirits)! TRY THAT (Urban Stead Cheese Curds, Vinegard fries, spirits)! 

ALL/ EXPERIENCE

Cool Classes to Cure the Winter Blues (and a giveaway)

February and March can be tough months!  If you’re like me, you’re getting tired of the cold and the grey.  Some of us might be heading into hermit territory.  In fact, most week days I come home from work and desire nothing more than to put my pajamas on and cozy up with a blanket.  Luckily, if you are feeling those winter blues, there are all kinds of opportunities, inside, to learn something new, explore your artistic side, and burn off some energy.  Here is a quick overview of a few I’ve explored recently and highly recommend.  Plus, I’ve got a giveaway to help get you out of the house so be sure to read until the end.

Uptown Art in Anderson:

Uptown Art on Beechmont Ave. in Anderson Township is a paint studio that provides the perfect casual learning environment with step-by-step instructions from super nice experts.  This one is the perfect girls night out.  I went recently with some of my best girls and we had a blast.  While we all painted the same picture, each one turned out differently.  As our instructor kept reminding us, it’s “wine art, not fine art” so let the OCD go.  I love that their calendar is up at least one month in advance so you can pick the perfect painting for you.  Uptown Art is a big, bright, open space and they have a bar so you really can sip that wine with one hand while exercising your creative muscles with the other.  Feel free to bring in snacks or grab those at the bar as well.  One of my friends picked up some sushi and another made some homemade treats.  It was lovely.  I’ve also been to Uptown Art when they offered cookie decorating classes. Another relaxing time out with friends.    

Something for everyone.

Perfect night out with friends!

Finished paintings.

Queen City Clay in Hyde Park:

Queen City Clay is a pretty special place.  As I mentioned in an earlier post, I’ve always wanted to try my hand at the wheel and the instructors at Queen City are the perfect teachers for brand new beginners and experts alike.  You can learn how to use the pottery wheel in a small group, single session Open Wheel class, or if you want to really get good, take an 8-week class.  Even with the single session, I walked away with a beautiful bowl that I made myself.  There’s a great sense of pride in that.  Offering a variety of classes from drawing, sculpting, and cartooning, Queen City is a great learning space for kids.  They offer art classes and summer camps for the young, blooming artisans out there.  What I didn’t realize until my most recent visit is that Queen City also has a walk-in painting studio.  It’s a great space.  Pick a piece of pottery and paint away.  If you love pottery like I do, bring your wallet because local artisans have studios inside Queen City and you can purchase some beautiful handmade items in the gallery.  

Open wheel sessions.

Classes for all skill levels.

Painting pottery studio.

Gallery to purchase art by local artisans.

Class Axe Throwing in West Chester:

OK.  I’ve been seeing this axe throwing thing on social media for a couple months and I’ve been so intrigued.  For Valentine’s Day, I took my husband to Class Axe Throwing in West Chester.  I needed to find out what all the hype was about.  I’m so glad I did.  At Class Axe you will spend 1.5 hours learning, throwing, and competing in a safe environment.  Trust me when I say you don’t have to be good at sports to be good at axe throwing.  I barely speak sports and I hit my share of bullseyes!  I felt pretty bad axe if I do say so myself (I’ve been using that joke since Valentine’s Day)!  Class Axe is BYOB; I suggest scheduling a couple lanes with a group of friends and making a night of it.  If you really get into it, there are axe throwing leagues at Class Axe, too.  And, don’t think you will just mindlessly be throwing axes for over an hour.  You’ll play several different games (like darts)– each round with a different goal.  While you’re up there, if you’ve never done an Escape Room, you can do that at Class Axe as well.  I’m definitely a fan and look forward to going back soon.  

The range.

Feeling pretty “bad axe” hitting that bullseye.

Great team building activity!

Now that’s funny!

GIVEAWAY: If you’d like to try your hand at throwing axes, I have tickets for four to Class Axe in West Chester!  All you have to do is comment on this post by telling me something new you’ve tried in the last year or so. As always, social media shares are appreciated.

GO THERE (Uptown Art, Queen City Clay, Class Axe Throwing)!  TRY THAT (Learning a new skill)!