Dayton saw lots of restaurants come and go in 2017. As is our tradition each year end, Food Adventures is here to talk about those eateries. Some restaurants were old dinosaurs, others ended up being flash in the pans, and a couple were in between. The Miami Valley’s vibrant food scene saw some exciting additions as well.
Without further delay we give you our annual review of Dayton movers, shakers, and vanishers in 2017, “THE YEAR IN DAYTON AREA FOOD.”
HERE IS THE SKINNY ON PLACES DAYTON LOST IN 2017:
937 GRILL and CAFE:
Barely opened, after Murray’s Place closed, 937 Grill quickly closed as soon as it got started. Rumors of land lord agreements and liquor license problems were mentioned but nothing ever confirmed.
AWESOME YOGURT: Naomi Anderson Fogel opened her yogurt shop in August of 2012, but by March of 2017 she decided that her life and the business had changed and it was time to shut down the Far Hills Ave business.
BAR DUMAINE: Chef Anne Kearney went through a couple of service changes before finally shutting the doors in July of 2017. Lucky for us she’s done a few pop up events so we can still enjoy her amazing cooking.
BOB EVANS – MORAINE: In Oct the chain shuttered their Dorothy Lane location, near the Moraine Wal-Mart.
BRUNING’S WINE CELLAR:
After over 30 years as a clock store, this place added wines and beers. Unfortunately, this location near Fairfield Commons Mall, closed in January, 2017.
CADDY’S TAP HOUSE:
It was in May 2017 when the restaurant abruptly closed, surprising many. The sister restaurant in Beavercreek near the Fairfield Commons Mall remains open.
CARAMELLA’S ITALIAN KITCHEN:
Very short lived Italian restaurant on Wilmington Pike in Kettering. It was formerly Murphys Pub, and Barleycorn’s before that. Elsa’s is debuting a new restaurant in this spot any day now.
THE DAYTON BEER COMPANY on DORTHY LANE:
The smaller, and original location of the Dayton Beer Company locations closed in 2017. This is the spot where the “birth” of the new wave of Breweries started. Owner Pete Hilgeman and his family, purchased a 2nd location near 2nd and Madison. The location is huge and allowed him more brewery area and infinitely more seating. (Editor’s Note- this location will soon open as OinkADoodleMoo)
DISTRICT 6 DONUTS:
Opened by a former Dayton police officer, they stopped operations in December 2017. Long hours and time dedication constraints were cited by the owners for the reason they closed, after 7 short months in business.
EL RANCHO GRANDE – POE AVE
With some popping up and others closing, sometimes this is like a whack a mole game. Probably the location was a problem here, and the opted for a more visible venue.
HAWTHORNE GRILL / SWEET PRINCE DELI:
This upscale eatery on Stroop Rd had a short lived stint as Sweet Prince Deli, before closing for good.
KETTERING GRILL & CAFE:
The building that for years housed BBQ Hut has closed and became Merit Grill. Although they had an extensive menu, Kettering Grill and cafe never gathered a huge following. The food was good when we went there.
MAX n ERMA’s – FAIRFIELD COMMONS MALL:
Oh how the mighty have fallen. In the late 1970’s, Max n Erma’s was one of the most popular restaurants in town, now they have closed 2 sites in the past 2 years. Still holding on to the one on Miller Lane…
MCCORMICK and SCHMICKS:
Abrupt close for this high end restaurant leaving a big vacancy at the Greene. The next closest one is in Cincinnati.
MONTGOMERY COUNTY FAIRGROUNDS:
so much good food has been enjoyed here over the past 100 years at Festivals and County Fairs. The memories and the tastes and smells will live on.
After 2 years, the announcement came that Nibbles was moving to a bigger location and re-branding under the name Watermark. No it didn’t really close, it morphed into something more!
PADDY’S IRISH PUB:
This former Beef O Bradys location in Centerville on State Route 48, just couldn’t get the traction they wanted. We loved the fish and chips, among other menu selections.
PALMITAS TACO SHOP: This small business on 2nd Street in Miamisburg had a short run, but look for their food truck this spring.
STAN THE DONUT MAN- XENIA
After 30 years this spot closed not due to lack of business, but the owners citing “personal reasons.”
TACO LOCO closed, but not really. They changed their name to “Tres Hermanos” and the menu is the same with new owners in the family. this restaurant has some of the cheapest and most authentic Mexican dishes in Dayton.
TGIFRIDAY’S – First Huber Heights, then the Dayton Mall location of this casual franchise chain claimed inability to negotiate favorable leases as the reason for closing down these eateries in Sept 2017.
TIM HORTON’S – CENTERVILLE (725):
This Tim Hortons on 725 in Centerville ws one of the first to open in the Miami Valley. Times and competition had changed the landscape in 2017, and in May they closed the doors.
THE WRIGHT WING – on WILMINGTON PIKE:
A deal was struck and the owners of this eatery on Wilmington Pike was taken over by new owners who immediately changed the name to “The Growler.”
HERE IS THE SKINNY ON PLACES DAYTON GAINED IN 2017:
This spot has a breakfast, lunch and late night menu for the crowds near their East Fifth St. location. Salad, soup of the day and more round out this menu with incredible photos on their webpage.
In Jan of 2017 they opened a 2nd location on Miller Lane, featuring a great buffet featuring soups, fresh baked nan, vegetarian and meat entrees, salad and chutneys.
AU BON PAIN:
Located in JFK Memorial Union hall on the campus of the University of Dayton, it is open to the public as well. French for “with good bread” this shop specializes in healthy sandwiches, soups and salads.
In late summer 2017, Dayton received its first Barry Bagels restaurant in Kettering on Far Hills. This Toledo based, family owned restaurant will fill the void for many left by the Bagel Cafe that operated on the corner of Far Hills and Dorothy Lane. This place is fantastic featuring everything from “must eats” like Matza Ball Soup to Lox n Bagels.
Owner Sean McKown has brought back the popular restaurant in a new location (The old Murray’s Place). We expect his popular gumbos, pies, and inventive entrees to steal the hearts of a whole new following. This a Steelers bar with lots of friendly fans.
CANAL STREET DELI:
Familiar sandwiches you grew to love from the 5th Street Deli, reborn in a new location. Time for a quick bite downtown? Here is your new “go to.”
With over 800 games, this cafe is a fun place ti visit with friends or family. Games range from ages 3 and up, so all ages are welcome. Fro, role playing games, to board games, you are sure to find your favorite indulgence.
This Miamisburg area Pakistani and Indian restaurant used to house India Oven. The food is amazing and the restaurant features a lunch buffet that is one of the area’s best.
CHICK FIL-A -KETTERING
Opened in the busy Town n Country Shopping Center, they somehow squeezed this into an already bustling series of streets and intersections. Good luck !
This chain out of Upstate New York focuses on a completely gluten free menu based on fresh vegetables. Salads, soup,homemade broths and several house made dressings. Quench your thirst with the health based spiced teas and juices.
DEG’S FLAME GRILLED CHICKEN:
A quick serve concept that serves healthy fresh baked chicken and fries opened this summer at The Greene.
DICKEY’S BARBEQUE PIT:
This Dallas, Texas based franchise opened their doors in Springboro in November and have already announced they are looking for additional area locations. They smoke their meat onsite and alway offer free soft serve ice cream for dessert!
DOS LUNAS MEXICAN BAR & GRILL:
This locally owned Mexican restaurant in Tipp City has an extensive menu with a variety of enchiladas, quesadillas, fajitas and burritos.
DOUBLE DEUCE TAVERN:
This restaurant moved to Brandt Pike in Huber Heights. Known for pizza and beer, the friendly staff will make you feel at home.
THE DRAGON GRILL at CLUB EVOLUTION:
Inside the 120 N. Ludlow location, is now open for business. Nothing like good eats at a dance club.
This donut chain has a “top it yourself” theme, as well as pre made available donuts. There are locations all over the USA and Dayton’s first taste is the spot on Brown Street.
EL RANCHO GRANDE – DOROTHY LANE
Another El Rancho in town… This one opens up in the old Applebees restaurant on Dorothy Lane. Look for solid choices as always from this chain. The crunchy beef tacos are second to none.
EL RANCHO GRANDE – OLD TROY PIKE
Yet another El Rancho restaurant opens. This one goes into Huber Heights, and will feature Mexican beers and margaritas. Try the Del Mar Trio dinner. It is amazing.
FUYAO’s TASTE OF THE WORLD RESTAURANT:
What an idea, for a large corporation to open their cafeteria open to the public. This restaurant in Moraine is 8,000 square feet and will feature international food.
GRANDPA JOE’S CANDY SHOP:
Behold a Nostalgic candy store in Miamisburg. Get lost as a kid in this store. We think it was named after the Grandpa in the Willy Wonka movie. We hope you find a golden ticket.
Did someone say they offer $2.50 raw oysters? Sounds like a delicious Food Adventure. Beers too? Lead the way and bring lemons and tobasco !
HEAVIER THAN AIR BREWING:
The Tarkany family is the latest to launch a brewery. This one is the second one in Centerville, the first being Lock 27. Located on 725 not far from Adventure Golf, they are currently working on an experimental Oatmeal Stout and and a Strawberry Farmhouse Ale.
THE HIGHLAND STAG:
Scottish fare and flare from owner Heather Davis and her family. The food is wonderful and the beer selection is unique. This is a fun atmosphere, and the servers are very attentive.
The classic pancake chain dives into Huber Heights. Filled Pancakes and French Toasts, breakfast isn’t breakfast around here if you don’t have whipped cream on top !
East Monument Ave’s newest coffee shop. Expect commuters and downtown workers to take advantage of this locale.
LOCK 27 – DOWNTOWN
In the new development across from the Dragon’s Stadium, Lock 27 has branched into a state of the art facility. With his time tested quality beers and food, the formula for success should work in Dayton as well. Lock 27 has a strong, loyal following in Centerville.
MS. PAM’S OLD DAYTON STYLE GOLDEN FRIED CHICKEN: They barely got the doors open on Wayne Ave before they got a “cease-and-desist” order from Fricker’s and had to abandon their original name –Ms. Pam’s Parkmoor Style Dixie Fried Chicken. We haven’t had a chance to check this place out yet, but it’s on our list.
McALISTER’s DELI – DAYTON MALL
New deli sandwich shoppe that features double deckers. In the mood for some lunchmeat? This chain is your place for some great club an d turkey sandwiches.
A Pizza based grill and pub near the Fairfield Commons Mall. It replaces the closed Max n Erma’s. This chain operates in 9 different states and brings a Tex-Mex feel to a menu filled with burgers, quesadillas, flat breads, pastas and pizzas.
The menu is over the top, rich and sinful. It is all in the name of cheese. Want the craziest grilled cheeses known to man? Come to Melt, a Cleveland creation that is spreading across the mid-west, throw your diet out the window and enjoy !
They took over the spot of the former Kettering Grill. Merit Grill’s menu goes from steaks to pasta to orange chicken. The kitchen has been getting great feedback. Check this restaurant out. It is one of Dayton’s sleepers.
Quick, personal, assembly line Artisan pizzas made in a couple of minutes. Delicious fresh ingredients where you pick the sauces and toppings. The new spot is located in the Cornerstone development.
MIKE’S NASHVILLE HOT:
Damn good stuff, but boy is the Nashville hot sauce hot. Go with a mild sauce, unless you are a hot sauce lover, because this chicken will light you up! Get the banana pudding to seal the deal. Find them at Austin Landing and on 48 in Centerville.
MR. BORO’S TAVERN:
Opened in March 2017, this bar has a huge patio and friendly staff. The pub food is promising and this looks to be a popular place in the future too. Located on 741 in Springboro, it was formerly Bella Vino.
MUDLICK TAP HOUSE – DAYTON:
This restaurant decided to cease operations in Germantown and move to the busier area of E. Second Street in Downtown Dayton. Known for a nice draft beer selection, and a gourmet menu from an in-house chef, this place promises to be a splash hit.
OAKWOOD CANDY SHOPPE:
New candy shop in the heart of Oakwood. We hope this place fits perfectly into the hustle and bustle of the shops on on Far Hills.
The newest spot just opened in Englewood. This eatery will bring spicy, Louisana Style fried chicken to the northern Dayton area. Years ago, Popeye’s closed their location on Wilmington Pike at the Kettering / Bellbrook border.
This Brown Street eatery offers authentic street style tacos for breakfast, lunch and dinner along with margaritas. It is the first Ohio franchise for this Texas based company, run by the same folks that run Milano’s.
RAISING CANE’S CHICKEN:
For weeks the line was a wrap around mess to get into this place. They literally have chicken strips and 2 other menu items, and people come from all over to eat them up. We love being greeted with “Hot Chicken, Hot chicken, what combo you pickin’?”
S & S MEAT HOUSE:
Sommer and Smith’s Meat House is the new 3rd street BBQ spot. Lifelong Daytonians honing their verisons of Kansas City and Texas style barbecque. These guys have some serious rubs going on….
THE GYRO ROOM:
Brown Street got their own greek eatery this summer. It’s a great place to grab a gyro and be sure and try their spanakopita and grape leaves, as well.
TAQUERIA TRES HERMANOS:
The new Taco Loco is no frills. It is authentic Mexican food at its best. This means homemade taco sauces, soft corn tortillas, and specialty items like sopes and huaraches. Try it, you will love this place.
TIM HORTON’S – RIVERSIDE:
A Harshman Rd. location so you an get your fill of this Canadian companies pastries, eh ? Donuts, coffee or pastries, they make it right for you.
VICTOR’S TACO SHOP:
In July Huber Heights got the newest drive-thru by this locally owned chain, making it the area’s 4th spot featuring tacos, enchiladas, burritos.
WAT DA PHO:
A fun play on words to describe this casual Vietnamese eatery. Obviously the meal sized soups are the specialty, but look for other favorites like soft rolls as well. Located next to long standing cigar shop, The Wharf, it is not far from Wright State University or the Fairfield Commons Mall.
The larger, revamped restaurant with the chef/owner Maria Walusis of Nibbles Catering/Restaurant fame. Look for big successes from this charming eatery.
So here is a road map for 2017 Dayton Restaurants, where we have been and where we are going.
That was…The Year in Food.
Try all the new places in town and find some new favorites. As always, please FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK HERE.
Happy New Year from THE BIG RAGU, CHEF HOUSE, and HUNGRY JAX – your Food Adventure Crew !
Check our weekly feature article out right here on Dayton Most Metro.
We leave no plate unturned !
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