Monday, October 29, 2012

American Horror Story: Asylum ~ Uh Oh, Goodbye Originality

     Last year, American Horror Story had me about wetting my pants and laughing out loud at its shock, surprise, and originality.  It felt like a classic John Carpenter movie (Halloween, The Fog) with a better cast and a broader canvas on which to work its dark magic.  A friend said to me a couple of times that the daughter had to be a ghost and I didn’t

Saturday, October 27, 2012

They're Good to the Bones, Those Burgers

Bones Working the Chuck Wagon
      One might think at first that Bones' Burgers is just another juicy burger, and that's certainly true.  But factor in Bones, the founder and personality behind this mobile chuck wagon and you have a different story.  He's using some of the finest grass-fed beef available to our area and that makes his burgers a step above most.  He's also one of the friendliest guys you'll

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Nashville: It’s Close But . . . and Some Other TV Musical Notes

The Cast of Nashville

      Nashville, produced by writer Callie Khouri (Thelma and Louise), and starring Connie Britton and Hayden Panetierre is both well done and not quite good enough yet.  Nashville follows this year after the okay-but-I-wish-it-was-terrific Smash last year.  Its best element so far is the original music.  Country, pop, and even some rock is worked pretty seamlessly and realistically into the plot line because there

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

When in Wooster, Check out Tulipán Hungarian Pastry and Coffee Shop

The Welcoming Façade
     While walking around downtown Wooster, Thomas said, “Oh, there’s that Hungarian place I’ve always want to go to.”  Hungarian really, how intriguing: the Tulipán Hungarian Pastry and Coffee Shop.  We were up for it so we walked down a short hill and into a historic building that’s been

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Wooster, OH Makes a Picture Postcard College Town

Downtown Wooster and the Wayne County Court House
      Eric and I were first introduced to Wooster, OH when we met Cindy and Will there for dinner at South Street Market in 2006.  It was a memorable meal and in the center of downtown with its Beaux Arts Wayne County Court House.  I also recalled it as the home to a frenemy early in my career, before the term became popular.  I still got some chills when we visited Thomas and Rolland for a weekend there recently.

College of Wooster
      Probably known best as home to the Ohio Light Opera and the College of Wooster, the former is a summer repertory company founded by James Stuart that makes its home at the

Friday, October 19, 2012

Argo: Back to the ‘70s Politically and Culturally

     Argo lives beyond its preview expectations and is both an understated exploration of Western powers’ cooperation in the face of Middle Eastern rage and a crackerjack thriller even though the audience knows the outcome.  CIA agent Tony Mendez worked out a wild plan to get six U.S. diplomats, who’d

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

King Wok: An Extensive Menu at a Stalwart Clifton Destination

King Wok's Typical Chinese Interior
      Looking around at the range of restaurants on McMillan prior to attending a performance at CCM, the two of us, along with Marty and Michael, realized that King Wok was the most amenable of the choices available.  It was football season at UC and most of the bar restaurants were packed.  We wanted

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Two Top Photography Retrospectives: Annie Leibovitz in Columbus, Herb Ritts in Cincinnati

Dexter, 2012

     There are two current major solo photography exhibitions in Ohio.  A retrospective of Annie Leibovitz’s work (over 150 images) from 1970 – 2011 has taken over most of the Wexner Center on Ohio State’s campus.  The Cincinnati Art Museum plays host to 60 representative images from Herb Ritts’

Friday, October 12, 2012

The Village Tavern Is "The" Place

The Village Tavern in Montgomery
      Finding different lunch spots can be a challenge, which is why we were so glad to find The Village Tavern online.  We were familiar with its location and intrigued by the menu items.  A fried stuffed burger? We weren't seeing that offered

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Mrs. Mannerly at ETC: Plan for Extra Performances

The outcome of Dexter's attendance at a school of manners.

     Jeffrey Hatcher’s Mrs. Mannerly, directed by Ed Stern, should be a solid hit for Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati.  It’s a brisk, charming, and startling comedy that is a valentine to a vanished era.  It’s specifically the late ‘60s in Steubenville, Ohio, but it seems more like the late ‘50s in terms of what we generally see in reflections of that period.  As Twain said
about our Queen City, “I want to be in Cincinnati at the end of the world because it’s always ten years behind the times” and that could probably be said about the Midwest in general.  

Monday, October 8, 2012

Tacos Rule at Tacocracy

Entrance to the
Northside International Airport

      The humor that's a part of Tacocracy's charm starts at the front door of the storefront eatery.  Storefront is literal in this case as the latest taco joint in the city takes up the space in front of a store, On the Prowl Vintage, with both located in the fictional Northside International Airport.  It may be all made up, but air travel is the main theme for the décor and menu.  That's a lot to digest as you pass through the front (or back) door.  However, all of the satire soon ends once you

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Primavista: Serving Northern Italian on a Western Hill

The Dining Room and Spectacular View
     It’s been many years since we went to Primavista and I don’t have an excuse. The food was always good and the view is unparalleled in the metro area.  In fact, it’s primo.  Although it’s been updated, the interior still has the look of a restaurant from the ‘60s or ‘70s where middle-class families had special occasion dinners with ‘Continental’ cuisine, i.e. before the big bang of nouvelle French and nuovo Italian created a new American dining scene and a tribe of curious