Mecklenburg Gardens

Mecklenburg GardensMecklenburg Gardens
Mecklenburg GardensMecklenburg Gardens
Bar, Eatery

302 E University Ave
Cincinnati, Ohio, 45219-2431
United States

(513) 221-5353 | map

View: Place Reviews
Reviews: 15 | Ratings: 20 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of West_Chester_Ale_Tester
West_Chester_Ale_Tester from Ohio

3.8/5  rDev -8.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4

An old Cincinnati haunt. Don't come here expecting rare and difficult to find German beer. Chances are, if you've dug in to German beer at all, you've already had what they've got. The food is still pretty good and it's not a bad place to down a liter. Just not the mind blowing German experience you might think it is.

Dec 08, 2017
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BeerAndBourbon from Ohio

3.83/5  rDev -7.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5

In my time in Cincinnati I've been here a dozen or so times. It's super close to the medical campus so people often meet up here after exams for food + liter beers. They've got a small beer menu, but they've always god quality german beers.

The food is par for the course. Not great by any means, but you're really coming for the liters of German beer so you shouldn't be expecting too much anyway.

They've got a nice somewhat shaded patio that is great for a summer meeting and an area in the back if you're having a party. I like the place ok and I'm sure I'll be back plenty of times over the next few years.

May 05, 2011
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Urbancaver from Ohio

3.83/5  rDev -7.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3 | food: 3.5

A great German themed bar (obviously) with lots of good beer on tap. Mostly Bell's and other bigger craft breweries and lots of German imports. Sold by the liter and half liter with the option to get das boot ;) The food is not really that great even for German food. Not really any good appetizers sadly which makes it not the best place to stop for a quick beer. They do have good sausage though! And the service is good so its not all a loss! Despite the slightly higher than average costs I still go back here time and time again

Jan 18, 2011
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malloyca from District of Columbia

3.7/5  rDev -10.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3 | food: 3.5

I probably went to Mecklenburg Gardens 20 times before ever ordering any food. It was a great, quiet place to go sit in the bar and order 7 minute pours of Warsteiner while learning about beer (mostly German beer) from whoever is tending bar. The bartenders seem to rotate with the frequency that you would expect at an establishment that is more restaurant than bar, but the management is clearly committed to doing German beer the right way, and whoever the bartender is will usually be well-versed and happy to educate patrons, particularly when it is not too busy.

Jul 09, 2010
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ironarrow42 from Ohio

4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Stopped May 15th (great weather that day in the 'Nati) for a beer in the biergarten; I chose the Franziskaner Hefe-Weissbier Dunkel, but they also had a schwartzbier and Spaten Dunkel among other selections, and Bells Two-Hearted Ale. The decor inside is very German, the biergarten surrounded by grape vines and a wonderful place to kick back and enjoy some food and good beer.

My waiter was attentive and knowledgeable about the beer and menu. I've stopped for lunch before and enjoyed some wurst and spoetzle; on this occasion I tried the Mecklenburg Pie, rich with a pecan-chocolate chip crust and layers of mocha filling. Delicious!

Jun 12, 2009
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marksto from Florida

3.98/5  rDev -3.9%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Made two visits here while in town recently with the NHC. I have to admit that my affinity for all things that are old, German, and beer-related may skew my impressions, but I loved the place.

Mecklenburg Gardens is a classic old time German beer garden, the oldest in a city with a steep German brewing heritage. Although it apparently went through some hard times in the 80's it has now been resurrected and is being run with food and beverage that pay homage to it's German roots. The draft menu features most of the big German classics - Spaten, Weihenstephan, etc.. and were served in proper glassware with the service staff reasonably educated in describing them. The food menu features all the classic German fare such as wurts, kraut, and sauerbraten. I had some wurts on the first visit and sauerbraten sandwich on the second, and thought both were of good quality. A also saw a sign that indicated they have a monthly beer dinner, I'm sure that would be fun.

The biggest attraction for me, however, was the amibiance. Be sure to explore the place if you go - the place just reeks of German history. The front entrance is located adjacent to the "garden" that features a large outdoor seating area under a huge trellis with grape vines growing atop of it. The bases of the grape vines were the size of trees - I was told they are the original vines that have been growing there for many, many years. One of my vists was on a warm summer day for lunch, and enjoying it in the garden was a real treat. The front bar is also not to be missed. It's expansive woodwork is exempletive of the fine craftmanship the Germans are known for. Also scattered throughout the building are some historic photos and other breweriana.

Overall, a highly recommended place to visit when in town, particuarly if you enjoy German beers, food, and history.

Jul 03, 2008
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ErinBrew from Ohio

4.83/5  rDev +16.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

I stopped here for lunch while in town on business. It was a little hard to find and parking was not in abundance, but...I'm glad I took the time.

They had most of the Paulaner and Spaten beers on tap. I had the sauerbraten sandwich with red cabbage and spaetzle on the side, which was excellent. I'd love to stop back for dinner and try the wienerschnitzel and potato pancakes. I did not save room for dessert.

Hey Bier Band, since when are beef stroganoff (Russian)and sauerkraut balls (American) German classics ?

Another cool thing that I'd like to check out is...they have a free shuttle that takes you to the UC basketball games. Anyway, I do love this place, best selection of German food and beer in southern Ohio.

Feb 12, 2008
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mikesgroove from South Carolina

3.93/5  rDev -5.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

What an absolutely wonderful charming old building. I stopped in here to make a visit on my trip; as well you just have to. Being Cincy’s oldest establishment, there is just no other was around it. What a wonderful atmosphere, you feel like your back in Bavaria inside. The staff was very courteous and helpful, pointing out their specials and going over the menu with me in much detail. As others have mentioned I do not think there is any Macro crap in this place. Lots of selections of German and Euro imports as well as locals on tap. Just a really cool place. It was a little chilly to visit outside but I did walk out and take a look and the place must really be cool in the summer. Overall this was a quality establishment that I definitely need to visit again, next will make sure I have some more time to hang out though.

Jan 23, 2008
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becktone from Ohio

3.98/5  rDev -3.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3

This place is great. Went there today for the first time. The atmosphere is outstanding. This is not at all a college bar. Though I visited during the middle of the day, this bar seems to be the type of place that most college type people wouldn't go. For one there is no shit beer there. The interior is very very nice, makes one feel like they're back in old time Germany. Mecklenburg also has a biergarten this is also a great feature of this bar.

Selection of brew is great. As mentioned before this bar does not have any BMC on tap. I'm not even sure if they offer it. It sure didn't look like they did. This is by far the nicest bar within walking distance of UC, sure it might be a hike, but still its well worth the long walk. Didn't get a chance to try the food but it looked and smelled good-I'll give it a neutral score of 3. Overall the prices seemed a bit high. $4.50 for a glass of Pilsner Urquell, though it was served in the proper glassware. I guess its a good trade off. One is probably paying for the beer and the excellent atmosphere.

Mar 30, 2007
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TheBierBand from Ohio

4.68/5  rDev +13%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Mecklenburg Gardens is the HOME BASE for The Bier Band. The Bier Band loves Meck! Tom, Chris, Ann and the whole gang are top notch people. Look for their Bier Dinners. They are wonderfull events filled with fun from top to bottom, back to front.

The Bier Band has dined there several times, usually associated with a Bier Dinner which is served up German Buffet style. They have the German classics like Sauerbraten, Bratwurst, Sauerkraut Balls etc.

The entertainment ranges from Jack Frost's accordion to The Bier Band. And when The Bier Band is there... we rock the whole house!

The beer selection is perfect and leans toward the Spaten offerings as well as many of the local Cincinnati fare.

Mecks is all about the atmosphere and good times. Everyone is always cheerful and smiling. The service is always friendly and helpful.

Oct 10, 2006
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Bierguy5 from Ohio

4.18/5  rDev +1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

This was our second stop on a Cincy pun crawl. This is a great old building right on the edge of the University of Cincinnati campus. The highlight for me is the biergarden which is covered in a vine that is over 100 years old. Perfect amount of shade, while still being outside. The service at our table was very good. Great German beers on tap such as Weinstephaner, Optimator, Franiskaner Dunklweiss, etc. Good list of German bottles, and other imports, as well as American Craft beer. Food is excellen, traditional German fare. Prices were reasonable, especially the lunch menu. Overall, I think this is a must stop if you wany some good German food and beer.

Jun 29, 2006
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mcallister from Ohio

3.7/5  rDev -10.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 2 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Finally went to Mecklenburg Gardens yesterday. This place is very neat and very German in heritage. The restaraunt is over 100 years old and you can tell. After checking out the bar area we decided to sit outside where they have 100 year old grape vines growing over everything. Very neat.

Good selection of draught German beers and bottled beers. Had a Spaten Bock, and Reisdorff Kolsch, the lady friend had a Optimator and Wiehenstephaner Hefe. They had other good bottled beers from other European countries.

We only had appetizers but they were very tasty. The sauerkraut balls were some of the best I've ever had, and a nice bavarian pretzel to devour with the beer.

The only hit on this place was the service was horrid. Was hard to get anyone too wait on us the entire time we were there be it at the bar or at our table. We planned on getting entres but we wanted to hit other places and becuase of the bad service we decided to eat elsewhere.

Regardless of service I will definitely return.

Jun 25, 2006
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mobyfann from Ohio

4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Located about 5 blocks east of UC Campus; MG is a prime establishment in the area.

Situation: I'm part of an international co-op program and we got the pleasure of MG providing us students a German buffet for lunch today, including tax and tip, for only $11!

Even with that the food was near exceptional as it reminded me of fine German cusine from my short stint in Germany. They provided us with about 10-15 items and was capped with German Chocolate Cake... absolutely incredible.

The quality ties well with the food, and the service was pretty prompt for a group of 20, and they also didn't check ID's for the 21+ drinkers, which was kind of nice and trustworthy...

I've seen their menu before and the options are very good. Beer selection I wish was more expansive, but it's still good, as Weihenstepahner Hefe-Weizen is available on tap.

As for the atmosphere, very German and the restaurant has been established at this location for so many years... it's a treasure in this city!

Final Thought: Every Wednesday a group of local Cincinnatians speak only German and I know now to engage in this activity moreso now for the food...

Aug 21, 2004
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Dogbrick from Ohio

4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4.5

Located near Cincinnati's campus area, this establishment is really not located in the best of neighborhoods (as evidenced by some graffiti on the side of the building). They have a tiny side lot and there is a lot of street parking nearby.

Mecklenberg has a nice German look to it, and the exterior keeps with the German theme. The biergarten is covered in foliage and has a nice atmosphere. Inside there is a lot of wood, breweriana (I even saw an old Miami Trail tap!), an old piano, etc. They do a great job with the look and feel of the place.

The beer selection definitely leans toward the German persuasion. They have about 14 draughts and 40+ bottles. On draught you can get German beers like Hacker-Pschorr, Weihenstephaner, Paulaner etc along with domestics and a seasonal Barrel House brew. They have a good selection in bottles as well.

The service was very good, and luckily the restaurant was not too busy on a Sunday night.

The food was every bit as good as I had hoped it would be. The bratwurst was top notch and they make a decent prime rib as well. This place is a must-stop if you are visiting Cincy.

Oct 21, 2003
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AtLagerHeads from Ohio

4.18/5  rDev +1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This is an old, established location in a university district. Mecklenburg is so fifties as to be really camp, but don't let the appearance fool you - this is a top spot. Plenty of tap choices in this smallish bar room and lots of bottle choices as well. Great German dishes to savor whilst having a brew or two. Very top notch staff and service make this an enjoyable stop. Outside garden seating is fun. Shares entertainment talent with the Hofbrauhaus Newport.

Aug 04, 2003
Mecklenburg Gardens in Cincinnati, OH
Place rating: 4.14 out of 5 with 20 ratings