It might be because I believe that advanced civilizations first erupted in South America a long time ago that I find the Rodizio at Liberty Center, Ohio so enchanting, but I love the place. It has become a personal refuge for me of late because I love the atmosphere, the enthusiasm, and the food—and I love the location. I previously wrote about a VIP night that I was a part of which can be seen by clicking here. But that was at night where the price per person was $33 dollars for the all you can eat full Rodizio experience—where they bring skewers of meat to your table in a very theatrical way and you eat as much as you want or can. Well, I wanted to try it out for lunch so I brought some people important to me to the place to see if the lunch was as magical as the dinner—and sure enough it was.
The night before I watched the very exciting Battle of Ohio at Paul Brown Stadium where the Bengals continued to have an impressive season. It was Thursday Night Football and the nation was watching. The night was long and the crowd was rowdy, but it was enchanting to watch the game from the Club section with the same demographic type of people who will enjoy the new Liberty Center. However, once the game was over, I shared with tens of thousands of other people a strong desire to get back to our cars and get on the road—which clogged up I-75 all the way back to West Chester. The highway really didn’t begin to move until we moved north passed the I-275 bridge. We were all going home from the Bengal game to the same place. It was well passed midnight and we just wanted to get to our beds. That was a persistent thought that I had all evening during the football game. Take away the Bengals, the Reds, the museum and an occasional theater play and there isn’t much that downtown Cincinnati has to offer. Sure they have nice dinner options, but downtown is such a pain in the neck to travel around. For the people who can afford it, such as the people in the Club section at the Bengal game, once the fun was over, they wanted to get back to their homes—north of Cincinnati in the suburbs of West Chester, Liberty Township and Mason.
For years I have enjoyed going downtown for the exotic experiences that you can have there, but have more than once been dismayed at how trashy it was. For instance, when you’re walking around with your date in front of Fountain Square with the Westin Hotel in the background, you want to enjoy the luxury and options of the setting, but then some dude walks by with his pants half down cursing up a storm looking like he just crawled out of the gutter—which most of the time he has, it tends to alter an otherwise good mood. You may have just spent $400 at Ruby’s Steakhouse and had an otherwise nice time until something like that happens. Cincinnati, because of the environment they’ve allowed to percolate just wasted your money on the experience you were trying to have. At the Bengal game, money flowed better so long as there was a set-up that allowed people who wanted to enjoy the game without a lot of ruckus to do so with a pretty decent guarantee that the exchange would be worth it. Those same people didn’t want to spend much time not getting to their car and were eager to get back to friendlier territory as soon as the drama of the game was done. So much of the imagery shown on the television of the downtown cityscape was an illusion, it wasn’t real. Downtown was dead because the people best able to support it wanted to get as far away as possible once it came down to putting money on the table for a nice evening. Snobby, sure it is and there is nothing wrong with that. People of value enjoy association with other people of value. If other people don’t share those values, then there will be tension, and in this day and age where political correctness is choking off our opinions, people vote with their wallets.
That brings us back to the wonderful Liberty Center downtown that is privately managed by the Steiner group which essentially gives people the Club option of shopping and dining. It has the same appeal as going to an NFL game in the Club and Box seats—it puts everything on a pedestal, keeps the riff raff at bay, and ensures that the money you spend will be worth as much as possible. And so far, I have discovered that the Rodizio is the best value of all those elements. It’s just a top class place—it reminds me of the type of place you’d find in South America without the language barriers, the sweaty hotels with half working air conditioning units, and the modern socialism that is crippling their current economy. When I walk into Rodizio each time, I think of the ancient cultures which seeded planet earth well before any established religion laid claim to history. There is an ancient truth to the place that first appealed to me. Now I find it sustaining to attend their salad bar which is only $12.99 for lunch including all the hot dishes, and pick from some very healthy selections of food prepared by a kitchen staff that really cares. But for lunch at only $19.99 you can have the whole Rodizio experience which is a business lunch bargain. So I had to try it out with those thoughts of the Bengal game fresh on my mind.
Yes Captain Hook was there and he personally cared for our table. We were very happy and the management at the Rodizio made it a very memorable experience. Our waitress, Crystal was exceptionally professional and poured a lot of passion into our experience. I had stated previously that I considered Rodizio a great business lunch option and it has certainly lived up to that assessment. This wasn’t a VIP evening, this was an actual business day in what I consider paradise—a well managed downtown where I don’t have to worry about my car, or nasty people ruining my investment dollars with degradation. To say anything less would be dishonest just for the stylishness of being politically correct. Thus far, I don’t have to worry about wasting money at Liberty Center or Rodizio. If you are taking clients or associates out to lunch to impress them, you need the whole experience, the food, the atmosphere, the people—everything that your senses perceive. It all has to work or really you are just wasting your money.
The Rodizio crew understands that investment which is why I am so glowingly supportive of them. If Liberty Center were the kind of shopping destination that John Galt would have built from the novel Atlas Shrugged, then Rodizio is one of the unique places that would belong on the pages of that classic story for all the right reasons within it. It’s better than reality, which is what I feel each time I visit the Rodizio Grill. They do a good job of caring for their customers with an experience that is better than the reality of the outside world—the world beyond the parking lot of Liberty Center.
It’s not being snobby to enjoy nice things. For me it’s all about the Metaphysics of Quality. I love a quality experience and when variables create mundane results, I often resent whatever investment I’ve put into the endeavor—whether that may by time, money, or emotion. I don’t like to waste resources—so if I do something, I like to see a return on that investment in a quality experience. When I get that I do enjoying talking about it. There is nothing wrong with setting the bar high for yourself. There is nothing wrong with playing above your head, because it can make you a better person. And there is nothing wrong with eating the best food that you can for the best price in the best place. At Rodizio Grill at Liberty Center, quality is what the experience is all about. And with that, I’m pleased to report that they are the real deal, not just a flash in the pan. If you are looking for a good place to grab lunch, they should be at the top of your list.
Rich “Cliffhanger” Hoffman