Opal: Covington’s newest rooftop dining concept open for business

Kenton Hornbeck
Kenton Hornbeck
Kenton is a reporter for LINK nky. Email him at [email protected]

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Covington’s newest restaurant is perched atop one of the city’s oldest buildings.

Opal, the brainchild of local restauranters Bill and Morgan Whitlow, opened to the public on Sept. 29. The Whitlow’s restaurant portfolio includes other Covington establishments like Hangry Omar’s Sliders and Rich’s Proper.

“We are delighted to have another gem in the crown — dare I say an opal — to celebrate this amazing dining community here in The Cov,” said meetNKY CEO Julie Kirkpatrick.

Friday, the Whitlows and Covington city officials gathered in front of the revitalized Republic Bank building at the corner of Madison Avenue and 6th Street to celebrate the restaurant’s grand opening.

“Opal fits neatly within a target sector of our Economic Development Department that we call experience Covington,” Vice Mayor Ron Washington said at the ceremony. “With Opal, you not only experience Covington, but you also see our neighbors. To the north, Cincinnati. To the east, Newport.”

Opal’s exterior. Photo provided | Patrick McNamara

Located on the seventh floor of the Republic Bank building, Opal offers customers an elevated dining experience. The rooftop patio features unimpeded views of downtown Covington and Cincinnati.

‘The past three and a half years were spent planning, building, sweating, bleeding, crying — and now we’re so thankful that we get to open the doors for you all,” Bill Whitlow said.

Opal is described as a casual-fine dining experience. It features an open-fire Grillworks grill, one of the few within a two-hour radius of Cincinnati, as well as an extensive wine menu.

“All of Bill and Morgan’s restaurants are very focused on community and hospitality and we know the menu and service here will reflect that,” Executive Chef Eric Polhamus said in a press release. “The menu will feature dishes made from fresh, local fare and products. Our craft cocktail menu has been perfectly curated to complement the wood-fired dishes and we have a list of excellent wines that pair well with them too. We can’t wait to welcome the community to dine with us.”

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Constructed in 1904, the Republic Bank building was once the tallest building in Covington. Former U.S. Representative Orie Ware lived in the building during a period in his life, Washington said.

Opal officially begins accepting reservations on Tuesday, Oct. 3.

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