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“Quality Italian in Fountain Square” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Via Vite

Via Vite
520 Vine Street, Cincinnati, OH 45202 (Central Business District)
+1 513-721-8483
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Ranked #41 of 1,673 Restaurants in Cincinnati
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $15 - $50
Cuisines: Italian, Pizza
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Bar scene, Large groups
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Late Night, Breakfast, Brunch, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Neighborhood: Central Business District
Cross street: On Fountain Square, Fifth & Vine Streets
Beijing, China
Level Contributor
155 reviews
70 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 102 helpful votes
“Quality Italian in Fountain Square”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 10, 2013

Overall, i had a pleasant meal. The starter was diver scallops with a brown butter truffle vinaigrette and parmesan shavings. The vinaigrette was perfectly executed, and the scallops were perfectly seared, crispy on the outside. The main was a creative take on gnocchi, pan fried to a crispy texture with four cheese sauce and shaved truffle. Here the four cheese sauce lacked a bit the pungent flavor of gorgonzola or ricotta, but still a pleasant dish. To finish, sorbets- salt caramel, which was delicious; chocolate orange, lacking a bit on the orange; and amarena. The menu has a series of starters including bruschetta, wood fired pizzas, a number of salads, pastas including classic ragu bolognese and cinghaile pappardelle, and a number of mains including lamb shank and seared tuna. The wine list includes many Italian classics and wines by the glass, and there are plenty of cocktail and beer options. In all, an enjoyable meal. A 3 course meal with wine runs between $80-100 per head.

  • Visited May 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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314 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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    121
    32
    11
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Dalton, Georgia
Level Contributor
26 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Good. Not great”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 9, 2013

Great location or this Italian inspired food. it is not your average pasta house. In fact, very few of the items were pasta based. but the food was good and the service was average. we sat outside and the host/owner bounced all over the place - a younger guy in his late 30's with a nice smile and 1/2 of the time spoke with an Italian accent, the other like a mid-westerner. We were expecting a little more. the Pizzas were good, but the whole meal was just ok and very uninspired.

  • Visited May 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“It is what it is”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2013

Service was slightly slow. The Chef introduced himself and seemed especially pleasant. Had the tagliatelle and mussels and was a little disappointed. Sauce was too much and too vineragerry...I'm sure it would satisfy the basics but it certainly won't go down in the books as the most memorable of restaurants. If you have a car, try Virgil's in Bellvue instead.

  • Visited May 2013
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cincinnati, Ohio
Level Contributor
89 reviews
48 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“Fabulous food & service in bright, casual atmosphere”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2013

We just went with friends to Via Vite on a Saturday night (when you positively NEED reservations - the place was jammed). This was probably our eighth trip or so, sometimes for dinner, sometimes for lunch. Always a great experience, which is why we keep going back.

The food is just fabulous. This particular trip, we had the herb-crusted tuna, a special of gnocchi in vodka sauce, special appetizers of a red pepper with a fish filling and tuna with watermelon and a special vinegar, and the flatbread pizza plus a Caesar salad (that comes as one hunk of Romaine, so request that it be chopped if you don't want to cut it yourself). Note that I mention several specials - that makes the experience different every time, even for frequent visitors, because the menu gets updated now and then and there are always specials, so you can get something you have had before or try something new. One constant: Always delicious.

The service is also fabulous. I don't usually mention servers by name in these reviews, but we had Max on Saturday evening and he went "above and beyond." He knew exactly how every dish, on the menu or special, was prepared and what kinds of tastes it melded. And once we had decided on the type of wine we wanted, he steered us to one that was just perfect, and was one of the cheapest on the wine list. The list itself, by the way, is pretty extensive, although I am no wine critic, so I am sure there are "snootier" places with better wine lists.

Bringing us to prices. You could easily spend $40 and up at other restaurants on each of the entrees that you get at Via Vite, given the level of sophistication and preparation involved. But if you leave off the wine and after-dinner coffee, our four meals cost a little over $100 before tip.

Atmosphere: I have seen reviews where people say they felt "underdressed". Unless you are in ripped jeans and rugby shirt, I cannot imagine why. I have eaten there in just shirt and slacks (like Sat night) far more often than with a jacket, and you will feel comfortable either way. You cannot beat the location - come up the elevator from the Fountain Square garage and walk up a short ramp and you are there, or walk up the ramp from about 20 feet from the fountain if you are already downtown near 5th and Vine. Look at the pictures on the website and you will see that the main dining area is a big, open room with a wall of windows on Fountain Square and a wall of wine on the other side. Bright colors and lots of metal give the place a very modern feel. We had no trouble conducting a conversation with the place jam-packed - it is actually rather quiet when it is half-full, as it has been for some of our lunch visits.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St George
Level Contributor
11 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Amazing”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2013

This place cannot disappoint, walked in expecting much less and ended up leaving really surprised. Their pizza was outstanding. The lamb was even better. We wen't back for a second time and it's was the same level of service and quality. They can put most restaurants to shame.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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