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The most romantic restaurants in Dayton

Published: Thursday, February 02, 2017 @ 1:53 PM
Updated: Monday, February 12, 2018 @ 3:56 PM

Have you ever wondered where to go for a romantic meal?'s got a list of the region's best.

Have you ever wondered where to go for a romantic meal? We've got a list of the region's best -- each of these spots has an intimate atmosphere, high-quality food, great service and well-made drinks.

>> 2017 Best of Dayton: Food & Dining Winners

The best part is that you don't have to just do this on Valentine's Day -- you can enjoy a cozy, seductive experience year-round.

>> The 12 best restaurants in Dayton, period

Here's a dozen of some of the most romantic restaurants in the Miami Valley, in alphabetical order. We recommend calling ahead to check availability and make reservations early.

The Caroline

  • Basics: 5 S. Market St., Troy; Call (937) 552-7676
  • Why it rates: Great blend of an intimate atmosphere and well-crafted dishes.
(File Photo)

Coco's Bistro

  • Basics: 250 Warren St., Dayton; Call (937) 228-2626
  • Why it rates: This restaurant has carved a strong reputation with its eclectic menu and inviting atmosphere.
Close-up of a Maple duck dish at Coco’s Bistro.(ALEXIS LARSEN)

Coldwater Café

  • Basics: 19 E. Main St., Tipp City; Call (937) 667-0007
  • Why it rates: This restaurant in downtown Tipp City serves up perfectly executed, creative dishes in a charming atmosphere — and, it won third place in’s 2017 Best of Dayton contest for “Best Place to Take a Date.”
Scallops with butternut squash risotto, fried leeks, balsamic reduction and brown butter, on the menu at Coldwater Cafe & Catering. Photo from Coldwater Cafe Facebook page(Staff Writer)

>> Local restaurant named one of ‘100 Most Romantic’ in U.S.

Jay's Restaurant

  • Basics: 225 E. Sixth St., Dayton's Oregon Historic District; Call (937) 222-2892
  • Why it rates: The antique bar is breathtaking, Jay's has the best wine list in the city, and the decadently rich chocolate mousse is guaranteed to melt a woman's (or man's) heart.
(File Photo)

Lily’s Bistro

  • Basics: 329 E. 5th St., Dayton; Call (937) 723-7637 
  • Why it rates: Lily's captured the most votes in the 2015 "Best of Dayton" designation as "Best Place to Take a Date," and with its romantic atmosphere, numerous nooks and crannies and laid-back attitude, it's easy to see why.
Lily’s Bistro in Dayton served this marsala chicken pasta with local, free-range roasted chicken, egg noodles, spinach, and mushrooms in creamy marsala sauce during a past Restaurant Week. (Submitted)(Contributing Writer)

>> The best restaurant and bar patios in Dayton


  • Basics: 5531 Far Hills Ave., Washington Twp.; Call (937) 434-4750
  • Why it rates: An eclectic but comfortable vibe, inspired cuisine and a well-chosen wine list make this an inviting destination.
Meadowlark’s chopped salad with tofu. Contributed Photo by Alexis Larsen

Melting Pot

  • Basics: 453 Miamisburg-Centerville Road, Washington Twp.; Call (937) 567-8888
  • Why it rates: This fondue restaurant's subdued lighting, glass-walled wine cellar and wine-themed artwork create an undeniably romantic atmosphere. And if you find chocolate an aphrodisiac, save room for dessert.
Enjoy a delicious combination of ruby salad, 40-award-winning cheese fondue and surf and turf, then sip through the decades with The Melting Pot's 3-course dinner menu from now until Nov. 17. (Source: The Melting Pot Facebook page)


  • Basics: 20 S. First St., Miamisburg; call (937) 802-0891 
  • Why it rates: A quiet, intimate atmosphere and an ever-changing, yet consistently fine, menu, enhanced by some creative cocktails. A relative newbie to Dayton’s dining scene, it was recently named “Best Fine Dining” in the 2017 Best of Dayton contest.

>> New restaurant opens in Miamisburg

>> Popular Miamisburg restaurant moving, changing name

Eric and Maria Walusis are preparing to open Watermark restaurant in Miamisburg.(Photo by Amelia Robinson)

Shen's Szechuan & Sushi

  • Basics: 7580 Poe Ave., Vandalia; Call (937) 898-3860
  • Why it rates: The soft lighting and rich woods of this restaurant's interior make it one of the most inviting atmospheres in the Miami Valley.
Shen’s Szechuan & Sushi Miso Sake roll ($12.95) features spicy salmon, cucumber and Japanese mint leaf topped with a seared salmon, hot miso sauce and scallion. Contributed photo by Alexis Larsen

Salar Restaurant & Lounge (currently closed due to fire)

  • Basics: 400 E. Fifth St. , (937) 203-3999
  • Why it rates: A beautifully renovated restaurant, with fine cocktails and creative dishes. (EDITOR’S NOTE: Salar is currently closed due to a fire on Dec. 29, 2017. Chef and owner Margot Blondet states that the restaurant will reopen, though it is uncertain when.)
Salar's Chicken Chicharrone and chicken thigh strips marinated and deep fried, served with a lime, cilantro, yellow Peruvian chili pepper sauce. The dish is little like American fried chicken, but brightened with citrus, herbs and a pepper sauce that commands authority -- be forewarned that those chili peppers are indeed spicy.(Connie Post)

Roost Modern Italian

  • Basics: 524 E Fifth St., (937) 222-3100
  • Why it rates: Cozy atmosphere, upscale Italian cuisine combine to boost the romance quotient.
Roost Modern Italian's Spaghetti e Polpette (Source: Yelp user Darren L.)

Wellington Grille

  • Basics: 2450 Dayton Xenia Road, Beavercreek. Call (937) 426-4600. 
  • Why it rates: With high-backed, comfortable booths and elegant comfort food, it’s got the best of all worlds. The words “extraordinary” and “incredible” have been used by many a diner to describe the dishes here.
Mary Miller has quietly owned and operated Miami Valley restaurants that are very diverse in their concepts and geography: The Barnsider in Harrison Twp., the Wellington Grille in Beavercreek, Harrison’s in Tipp City, and recently became co-founder of an Asian restaurant, Ginger & Spice, on Brown Street near the University of Dayton. This is a woman in her ’70s who tried to retire once and couldn’t do it, choosing to come back and work seven days a week in her restaurants.(Jim Witmer)

Other romantic restaurant options

If none of the options above struck your fancy, give one of these a whirl, or, if your favorite doesn't appear here, suggest it by leaving a comment on the taste blog, because I know I must be missing some good ones:

  • Basil's on Market, Troy
  • Bonefish Grille, Miami Twp.
  • Brio, Beavercreek
  • Carvers, Washington Twp.
  • Greenfire Bistro, Tipp City
  • Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar, Beavercreek
  • J. Alexanders, Washington Twp.
  • Mamma DiSalvo's, Kettering
  • Michael Anthony's at the Inn, Versailles
  • Oakwood Club, Oakwood
  • Pasha Grill, Beavercreek
  • P.F. Chang's, Miami Twp.
  • View 162 Restaurant & Lounge in the Crowne Plaza hotel, Dayton
  • Thai 9, Dayton
  • The Winds, Yellow Springs

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Skyline Chili is going GREEN for St. Patrick’s Day

Published: Wednesday, March 14, 2018 @ 11:28 AM

Skyline Chili Facebook
(Skyline Chili Facebook)

Forget green eggs and ham.

Skyline Chili will be serving their signature noodles piping hot and bright green this St. Patrick’s Day.

>> Your official guide to Dayton St. Patrick’s Day events

Announced on the chili king’s Facebook page earlier this week, Skyline said it will dish out its classic 3-Ways, 4-Ways and 5-Ways with green noodles for one day only on Saturday, March 17. 

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Green chili noodles not calling your name? Regular spaghetti will be available upon request.

>> 9 must-eat sandwiches in Dayton

“Green Ways” will be available at most locations,” according to Skyline Chili. For a full list of their locations in the Dayton-area, visit the website.

>> Troll Pub wants to open by St. Patrick’s Day

(Skyline Chili)

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Sonic Drive-In selling pickle juice slushes

Published: Friday, March 16, 2018 @ 5:26 PM

As we get closer to summer, Sonic Drive-In will have the perfect slush flavor to cool you down: Pickle juice.

>>Miamisburg candy store now selling pickle juice soda

Food and Wine reports the fast food restaurant will roll out Pickle Juice Snow Cone slushes starting in June.

>>GUIDE: The best St. Patrick’s Day events in Dayton 

Taste testers say it's not as bad as you might think.

This is Sonic's new pickle juice slush, debuting this summer.

It's sweet and tangy.

>>The biggest and baddest St. Patrick's Day party in the STATE is held right here in Dayton

It's also a great partner with burgers, hot dogs, and tater tots.

Pickle flavored drinks are a trend in the U.S. There are bars serving the juice in shots and even a pickle juice flavored sports drink on the market.

>>Dayton Dining Classic: The Root Beer Stande is still going strong

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9 must-try sandwiches in Dayton

Published: Wednesday, March 14, 2018 @ 6:00 AM

Must try sandwiches

Few things in life are better than a well-made sandwich. The cheesiness, the meatiness, the crunchiness, the toastiness...the list goes on. 

Luckily for us, there's a slew of sandwiches to try in the region. Here's a list of 9 must-eat sandwiches in the Dayton area. 

>>  The Famous Restaurant is now open - check out the menu

The Ruck 

The Ruck at the Dublin Pub is the No. 1 seller. It features smoked beef brisket, covered in house-made Guinness BBQ sauce, sauteed onions and cheddar cheese on a pretzel roll. Don’t forget a side of cheese fries.

Address: 300 Wayne Ave., Dayton

Hours: Mon-Wed 11 a.m. - 1 a.m., Thurs-Sat 11 a.m. - 2:30 a.m., Sun 11 a.m - 12 a.m.

>> Troll Pub Dayton announces St. Patrick’s Day grand opening

>> PHOTOS: see the construction progress of the Troll Pub in Dayton

The Champ 

The Champ at Canal Street Arcade & Deli is a doozy, stacked with grilled roast beef, corned beef, baby Swiss, horseradish cheddar, sauteed red onion, banana peppers and Thousand Island dressing on hot-pressed bread. They also have fantastic vegetarian options for those less inclined to eating meat.

Address: 308 E. First St., Dayton

Hours: Mon-Thurs 11 a.m. - 9 p.m., Fri-Sat 11 a.m. - 11 p.m., Sun 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. 

>> Canal Street Arcade & Deli’s 5 best sandwiches

Smokey the Bear

Charlie’s Deli & Catering’s sandwich has Lebanon bologna, mesquite smoked turkey, smoked sharp cheese, Woeber’s smoky bacon mayo, and jalapenos on a toasted pretzel roll.

Address: 429 Troy St., Dayton
Hours: Mon-Fri 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.

>> Your guide to Dayton-area food truck events through the spring

Brother Reuben 

With lean top round of corned beef, fresh sauerkraut, Swiss cheese and Thousand Island dressing on light rye bread. “Every bite is a bit of wonderfulness,” says Christopher’s Restaurant & Catering owner Chip Pritchard.

Address: 2318 E. Dorothy Ln., Kettering

Hours: Mon-Sat 7:30 a.m. - 9 p.m.

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El Meson's Cuban sandwich(Source: El Meson)

The Cuban

El Meson’s signature South American flavors make their Cuban a sandwich staple. Choose pork, chicken or fish and top it off with cheese, pickle, mayo and mustard on a Cuban pressed roll.

Address: 903 E. Dixie Dr., Dayton

Hours: Mon-Fri 11 a.m. - 2 p.m., Mon-Thurs 4:30 - 9 p.m., Fri-Sat 4:30 - 10 p.m.

>> 8 things you’ll love about Canal Street Arcade & Deli 

Ladder 11  

The Ladder 11 at Jimmie’s Ladder 11 is the restaurant’s namesake and No. 1 seller. It has hand-cut Romanian pastrami and corned beef, topped with hand-cut coleslaw and homemade Russian dressing on a toasted hoagie bun or rye bread.

Address: 936 Brown St., Dayton

Hours: Mon-Thurs 11 a.m. - 10 p.m., Fri-Sat 11 a.m - 1 a.m., Sun 11 a.m. - 9 p.m.

>> The ultimate guide to Dayton’s best burgers

Slow-Roasted Pulled Pork

Trolly Stop’s dish features pulled pork with their own bourbon BBQ sauce, house-made apple cole slaw, pickles and chipotle mayo on a pretzel bun.

Address: 530 E. 5th St., Dayton

Hours: Daily 11 a.m. - 2 a.m.

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Loose-meat sandwich

Maid-Rite’s one and only — a perfectly seasoned ground beef loose meat sandwich served on a warm bun. 

>> MAID-RITE: The secret behind the little sandwich people will drive hundreds of miles to get

Address: 125 N. Broadway St., Greenville

Hours: Mon-Sat 10 a.m.-10 p.m., Sun 11 a.m.-10 p.m.

>> Your guide to the best Dayton-area pizza

The Italian Grilled Cheese and Tomato Bisque at Coco’s Bistro, located at 250 Warren St. in Dayton. Submitted photo

Italian grilled cheese

Coco’s Bistro makes the list for their panko-breaded sourdough bread with a delicious four-cheese blend between the slices: Provolone, Mozzarella, Fontina and white cheddar. And of course creamy tomato bisque for dipping.

Address: 250 Warren St., Dayton

Hours: Mon-Thurs 11 a.m. - 10 p.m., Fri 11 a.m - 11 p.m., Sat 5 - 11 p.m.

Did we miss one? Tell us which sandwich you’d add to the list in the comments or drop us a line:

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Your guide to local Pi Day deals

Published: Wednesday, March 14, 2018 @ 12:09 PM

The History Of Pi Day

It’s Pi Day, and the deals are piping hot. Here’s how you can celebrate with delicious pies around Dayton. 

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Dorothy Lane Market — $3 off pizza (limit one, applies to 14-inch homemade pizza from the Deli and “Tradizional” Naples-style pizza). $1 off pot pie (limit two, applies to small 12-oz DLM pot pie from the meat department). $4 off cherry pie (limit one, 9-inch whole cherry pie from the bakery). While supplies last. Must use Club DLM card. No coupon necessary. 

>> Big changes in store for downtown Dayton bar and restaurant

(Jessica Uttinger)

Whole Foods — $3.14 off any large bakery pie while supplies last.

>> That ‘other’ fast-bake pizza chain in the region is growing rapidly, too

Blaze Pizza —  Get a pizza for only $3.14 when you dine in.

CiCi’s Pizza —  Buy one adult buffet, get one for $3.14Just show this coupon.

Domino’s Pizza —  Now through March 18, buy one get one free when you order online and pick up in-store.

>> Your guide to St. Patrick’s Day events in Dayton

O’Charley’s —  Every Wednesday, O’Charley’s offers a free slice of pie with any entree purchase. Choose from southern pecan, country apple or ooey gooey caramel.

>> 10 places to grab a slice of pie in Dayton

Papa John’s —  Now through April 1, use code 40MAR to take 40% off your online order of any regular priced pizza

Whole Foods Market —  Select stores are offering $3.14 off large bakery pies. 

>> Your guide to the best Dayton-area pizza

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