Bakersfield OTR is a new Mexican-influenced restaurant in Cincinnati's Gateway Quarter. Located in a subsection of Over-the-Rhine, it's one of the best up-and-coming neighborhoods of the area for creative cuisine and beverages. Bakersfield itself is a fun Spaghetti-Western themed cantina that specializes in tacos, tequila, and whiskey. And while the tacos (particularly the fish and the short rib) are excellent, I also urge you to order one of their specialty tortas.
The Milanesa torta seems to pull inspiration from a few different cuisines, all coming together for a fantastic sandwich. The juicy, deeply browned chicken breast has lots of crispy edges which, combined with creamy tartness of the avocado lemon mayo, has a similar flavor profile to a perfect chicken schnitzel. Peppery arugula and earthy black beans layered on ciabatta-like bread make this sandwich complete. It's also served with a small cup of refreshing tomatillo and cilantro salsa verde, which is great for dipping and pairs well with one of their fresh margaritas. As with most of the spots in the Gateway Quarter, Bakersfield is pretty popular, so I recommend hitting it for a late lunch on a weekend afternoon.
1213 Vine Street, Cincinnati OH 45202 (map)
About the author: Laura Arnold is a Southern native living in Cincinnati with a weakness for barbecue and a small cheese problem (that there's never enough room in the refrigerator for it all). You can follow her adventures with her husband David on their blog, Cincinnati Nomerati, or on Twitter at @cincynomerati.