CityBeat’s Living Out Loud – Cincinnati Blog

{September 17, 2006}   Bella and The Rest of Them


It doesn’t surprise me that Bella, located at Sixth and Walnut Streets downtown, has finally closed their doors. In late July, their liquor license was suspended because of unpaid taxes. They made a partial payment, got it back for a bit, but now they are gone. There’s some talk they will try to reopen later in the fall, but you know how talk goes. The reality is yet another quality restaurant has closed it’s doors downtown.

I always liked the food and the workers there. Apparently, just like Redfish, the workers got little notice. The same thing happened at ZA back in the early summer – you know – treating your restaurant employees like shit.

Not so long ago, back in my college days, I waited tables to earn a buck. It’s damn hard work and while most of the customers appreciated good service, the owners really didn’t. You always kind of got treated like you’re disposable.

Bella was maybe no different than the rest, giving their employees little notice, but I’m sad to see it gone.

Nancy Spurlock


Beth says:

The good was really good, but really overpriced. All these closings look back. What’s going to be next?

numb says:

i’m surprised the gross man isn’t all over this. he loves it when downtown restaurants closed.

Eric says:

What was it – like four years old or something – and it seemed outdated really fast. I stopped going last year.

Karen says:

Does anyone know when the Fountain Square project is going to be completed? That should help keep some restaurants open downtown.

Ben says:


It’s looking now like the end of November for this to be completed. Go down and take a look at the square. It’s like no progress has been made.

Karen says:

Depressing 😦

Ted says:

More downtown closings are on the way. Trust me.

Sharon says:

I agree with Karen. It is depressing when you come downtown at night and can only find a few restaurants open. Maybe getting fountain square done will help, but you have to wonder.

Matt says:

Yep, Bella is gone for good. Another one bites the dust, folks.

Brenda says:

The service was always good, but yes, the food you actually got was overpriced. I can’t say I’ll miss it that much.

artpro says:

I went down to Bella and CAC for those happy hours this summer, and Bella seemed busy. Of course, Donna’s (a restaurant in Covington owned by the same people) seemed busy when I was there, and I really liked it. Some friends and I were there to review Donna’s for CityBeat. I don’t need to list that as a conflict, do I? 😉

I don’t think the Square may be as far behind as people think. Remember, it’s going to be a rolling opening, so not everything coming in will be opening simultaneously. I had to work at Oktoberfest, and it looked like they were placing the roof tiles. I know that the Square people are still pushing October 14, as the rededication date, so that would be the one to watch.

Ben says:


That fountain square opening has been pushed back to November.

artpro says:

Not saying you’re wrong, Ben, but their site still says October 14 at Do you have the revised date or a link to new information?

Ben says:

That’s the word on the street artpro. I was just at Fountain Square. That place doesn’t look near done.

Robin says:

It looks like Bella’s sign is still on and everything is still in place. Maybe they will come back. I always enjoyed going there.

Matt says:

It seems like the trend when it comes to closing restaurants downtown is to close them quickly. Probably no one was around there long enough to even think about turning off their sign.

paul says:

the sign will turn itself off when the power goes out. bella is history.

Mark says:

Just for the record, their phone has now been disconnected.

C.A. MacConnell says:

Update: no worries. They’re using walkie talkies.

Besides, if you ask me, go for Palomino’s tilapia instead. The way to this woman’s heart = expensive fish meal.

ArtPro says:

Let me second C.A.’s comment about Palomino’s. I tend to go for the small, non-chain, local restaurants, but their bread (with relish) is a total pleasure. They had some at the CAC Cool Party the other night, as Palomino’s was catering. Kudos to CAC (or CityBeat) for some outstanding catering.

Sharon says:

Palomino’s is probably the best restaurant in the city.

Mike F. says:

I guess Bella is totally done for?

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