Monday, December 10, 2012

$20 Date Night: Bakersfield and Washington Park

Over-the-Rhine's Gateway Quarter is definitely the trendiest the neighborhood in Cincinnati. I love all the eclectic restaurants and boutiques located within walking distance of each other as well as Washington Park just a block away. A great and inexpensive date includes an early dinner at one of my favorite restaurants in the city, Bakersfield, then enjoying caroling at the Bandstand in Washington Park.

  • Bakersfield OTR
    • Though this place has only been around for less than a year, they have already established themselves as the best place to get a taco in Cincinnati. With unique and fresh flavors coupled with an impressive selection of spirits, you can guarantee Bakersfield will be on a long wait when the weekend rolls in. I recommend trying to beat the rush and getting there sometime before 5:30. I have to say, though, if I was over 21, then I would be staying for the great late night crowd. Nevertheless, drinks still run second to food when it comes to this joint. Their queso and guacamole tastes fresh and delicious, the perfect starter for the tacos. The tacos range from $3 to $4 with 2-3 being the average meal for one person. When I visited here, I ordered the Short Rib and Rajas Tacos. The short rib was tender and flavorful with just the right amount of spice. The Rajas was made up of portobello, poblano, and onions that tasted fresh and perfectly cooked. For four tacos and an order of queso, my boyfriend and I's meal ran up just under $20. I'm sure drinks could very well double that, but this bill was definitely on the lower end for the quality of food we ate. The atmosphere is pretty loud, but not more than expected. If you do happen to come during a long wait, either grab a seat at the spacious bar or give the hostess your cell number and explore some more of the district. I think Bakersfield is a great restaurant to go to for a variety of events and serves as a mainstay in the Gateway Quarter Dining District. 
Bakersfield OTR on Urbanspoon

  • Washington Park 
    • Whenever I see this park, I become so proud of the changes being made by 3CDC in Cincinnati. Washington Park has been turned into the center of a rich and vibrant community that is growing its wings back. Since reopening in July of this year, a myriad of cultural, musical, and family events have taken place in it. Throughout the summer, Date Night movies played on the lawn, the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra performed, and the Midpoint Musical Festival all occurred in the revitalized park. A great event to attend this season is the Caroling held in the Bandstand now until the 22nd. After an amazing dinner, bundle up in your hats and gloves and walk a block west to listen to some tunes that will get you in the holiday spirit. Hot chocolate will also be sold to warm you up in the (hopefully!) winter weather.  Caroling occurs every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday until the 22nd. Be sure to check out the many decorations that have been put up around the district. If you still haven't been able to get yourself in the holiday mood, this will be sure to do it!

    • Additional Tip
      • You can try to park in the lot on the corner of 12th and Vine, though this one usually fills up first on weekend nights. If this occurs, park in the Washington Park garage which is inexpensive and within walking distance. 
Photos Courtesy:
The Atlantic Cities

1 comment:

  1. Well, it seems like an ideal place to take my girlfriend on a casual date. Just the right budget and atmosphere. Yeah, I'll definitely bookmark this.