Dayton area restaurant offering FREE sandwiches 

Published: Thursday, December 28, 2017 @ 10:41 AM

Olive Mediterranean Grill on Dixie Drive is building us its reputation with great grub. Video by Amelia Robinson

A Facebook share can send your tastebuds on a Mediterranean holiday. 

Olive Mediterranean Grill, the tasty eatery at 6129 N. Dixie Drive in Harrison Twp., is offering a free gyro sandwich to anyone who shares the video it posted on Facebook Dec. 23. 

Here is the post to share:

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>> MORE: This AMAZING lunch platter is just one reason to try Olive Mediterranean Grill

Opened about two years ago, Olive was a Best of 2016 winner. 

Winners of the 2017 awards will be announced on Jan. 17 at the Best of 2017 party.

The festivities will be held 6 to 10 p.m. at Top of the Market Banquet Center, 32 Webster St., Dayton. The celebration is for those ages 21 and up.

Voting for this year’s contest ended Dec. 22. 

>> MORE: How to find out first who won  2017 Best of Dayton 

Olive Mediterranean Grill is across from Hoagie’s Pizza, a Dayton mainstay for more than 45 years. 

>> MORE: This Dayton-famous hoagie is a classic -- have you tried it?

Want to try it?

WHAT: Olive Mediterranean Grill

WHERE: 6129 N. Dixie Drive in Harrison Twp.

INFO: olivedayton.comFacebook | Instagram | Snapchat: olivedayton 

Olive Mediterranean Restaurant's lunch mix platter.(Amelia Robinson)

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NEW SWEET TREATS: Your guide to the newest confections, ice cream in Dayton

Published: Monday, July 16, 2018 @ 8:00 AM

A new bakery is gearing up to open in Dayton called Partial to Pie.

For those of us with a sweet tooth begging to be satisfied, all the new sweet shops in Dayton are sure put a smile on our face. We’ve rounded up all of the newly opened (or soon to be opening) ice cream, bakery and candy spots in and around town. 


>> 3 sweet spots that will give you your cookie dough fix in Dayton

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Jubie's Creamery is a new ice cream shop in Fairborn, opening on July 3, 2018. MARK FISHER/STAFF

Jubie’s Creamery: Features hand-dipped and soft-serve ice cream (all made in-house), sundaes, shakes, concretes, create-your-own-cookie sandwiches, and a variety of cones along with other specialty items.

Location: 471 W. Dayton-Yellow Springs Rd., Fairborn

Hours: Tuesday to Thursday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Sunday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

>> This new, locally-owned ice cream shop is officially open

The Sweet Retreat will replace the former Dairy Queen on Smithville Road in Belmont. MARK FISHER/STAFF(MARK FISHER/STAFF)

The Sweet Retreat: Launching in the next week or two, this shop will offer more than 20 flavors of soft-serve ice cream along with pizza and sandwiches.

Location: 2613 S Smithville Rd., Dayton

Hours: TBA

>> Former Dairy Queen space springs to life as a locally owned, independent ice cream shop

La Puf Sweets currently provides catering, and plans to open a storefront in Kettering in December 2016. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

La Puf Sweets: Here, you’ll find a number of classic confections and bakery goodies. From cotton candy to scratch-made marshmallows, to cupcakes and cookies, you’ll find just about everything you could want here.

Location: 1003 Shroyer Rd., Dayton

Hours: Monday to Friday 12 to 6 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., closed Sunday

>> New bakery and candy shop to host grand opening in the Oakwood area this weekend

A new and independently owned bakery founded by a local father-daughter duo has set an opening date of July 27 near the University of Dayton campus. “Partial to Pie” is gearing up to open at 200 Shroyer Road, at the intersection of Shroyer and Wilmington Pike. STAFF PHOTO / MARK FISHER(Mark Fisher)

Partial to Pie: A first of its kind in Dayton, this bakery specializes in pies exclusively, and will also offer quiche and other sweet treats. The made-fresh sweets will use local ingredients and suppliers, including local milk, cheese and butter.

Location: 200 Shroyer Rd., Dayton
Hours: Tuesday to Friday, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday 7 a.m. to 2 p.m., closed Sunday
>> Opening date set for new Dayton pie shop

Scratch Bakery: Your new destination for petite desserts, this new bakery features beloved recipes from Moore Dessert Please and Sweet by Kristy. There will soon be gluten-free and vegan options.

Location: 29 E. Main St., Tipp City

Hours: Monday to Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., closed Sunday

>> Dayton bakery owner to open second location in Miami County


Spoonful: This full-service cookie dough shop sells dough by the scoop or pint -- or in a cup or a cone. They have multiple toppings to create all the sweet concoctions you can think of.

Location: 36 D South Main St., Miamisburg

Hours: Closed Monday, Tuesday to Thursday, 1 to 7 p.m., Friday and Saturday 1 to 9 p.m., Sunday 1 to 7 p.m.

>> This new cookie dough shop is bringing sweet treats to Miamisburg

Do you know of any new sweet shops coming to Dayton? Let us know!

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Restaurant flashing back, featuring classic “Exotic Burrito” and “Mexican Pizza” for 40th anniversary blowout

Published: Tuesday, June 05, 2018 @ 6:00 AM

El Meson hosted a two-day Cinco De Mayo party on Friday, May 4 and Saturday, May 5, 2018. The eatery featured margaritas, dancing, live music, food trucks, a Cantera Negra Tequila Tasting, and amazing food from the restaurant’s own kitchen and bar. PHOTO / TOM GILLIAM PHOTOGRAPHY
Tom Gilliam
El Meson hosted a two-day Cinco De Mayo party on Friday, May 4 and Saturday, May 5, 2018. The eatery featured margaritas, dancing, live music, food trucks, a Cantera Negra Tequila Tasting, and amazing food from the restaurant’s own kitchen and bar. PHOTO / TOM GILLIAM PHOTOGRAPHY(Tom Gilliam)

It is not every day that a Dayton classic turns the big 4-0. 

It is a good thing the Castro family at El Meson knows how to throw a party that rises to the occasion. 

>> The best soups in Dayton (including El Meson!)

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The restaurant at 903 E. Dixie Drive in West Carollton is planning a two-day weekend blowout to celebrate its 40th anniversary, according to details posted to Eventbrite.   

Herman and Gloria Castro opened the restaurant to the public July 15, 1978, as the Pizza Queen. 

The restaurant morphed into El Meson and now specializes in dishes from Central America, South America and the Caribbean.
Bill Castro, the founders’ son and co-owner, says old favorites will return. 

“In addition to Latin street food and drinks from out of our trucks in the lot, we’re going to have one truck that serving items from the original Pizza Queen restaurant that El Meson began as back in 1978,” Bill Castro said. “Some of our customers may remember favorites like the Exotic Burrito and Mexican Pizza from that menu.”

The parking lot parties set for 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. July 20-21 will feature live music and dancing under tents and street grub from El Meson’s fleet of food trucks. 

Admission is $5 for both days and a limited number of $35 VIP tickets are available for Friday or Saturday patio seating.

>> PHOTOS: Did we spot you celebrating Cinco De Mayo at El Meson?

VIP admission includes admission to a less crowded area, servers and a better view of the yet-to-be announced lineup of bands that includes from Ithika and Nothing But Treble Friday and Saturday from Funky G & The Groove Machine and Nasty Bingo Saturday.

A customer appreciation happy hour is set for 4 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. both days in the restaurant’s “party lot.”

>> Best margaritas in Dayton

It includes free entry and $5 margaritas. 

>> RELATED: The 12 best restaurants in Dayton

The business is now owned and operated by their children and sons and daughters-in-law — Bill, Marie, Scott and Chef Mark Abbott.
>> RELATED:  39 things to know and love about El Meson


What: El Meson’s 40th Anniversary Weekend 

When: 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, July 20 and 21 

Where: El Meson, 903 E. Dixie Drive in West Carrollton

Cost: Admission is $5 for both days and a limited number of $35 VIP tickets are available for Friday or Saturday patio seating.

Tickets: Visit the Eventbrite page for advance VIP tickets

El Meson hosted a two-day Cinco De Mayo party on Friday, May 4 and Saturday, May 5, 2018. The eatery featured margaritas, dancing, live music, food trucks, a Cantera Negra Tequila Tasting, and amazing food from the restaurant’s own kitchen and bar. PHOTO / TOM GILLIAM PHOTOGRAPHY(Tom Gilliam)

El Meson hosted a two-day Cinco De Mayo party on Friday, May 4 and Saturday, May 5, 2018. The eatery featured margaritas, dancing, live music, food trucks, a Cantera Negra Tequila Tasting, and amazing food from the restaurant’s own kitchen and bar. PHOTO / TOM GILLIAM PHOTOGRAPHY(Tom Gilliam)

El Meson hosted a two-day Cinco De Mayo party on Friday, May 4 and Saturday, May 5, 2018. The eatery featured margaritas, dancing, live music, food trucks, a Cantera Negra Tequila Tasting, and amazing food from the restaurant’s own kitchen and bar. PHOTO / TOM GILLIAM PHOTOGRAPHY(Tom Gilliam)

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Mudlick Tap House celebrates one year downtown with a new menu

Published: Monday, July 09, 2018 @ 6:00 AM

Mudlick's bourbon soaked cherries over a Belgian waffle, roasted pecans, salted caramel whip. CONTRIBUTED
Mudlick's bourbon soaked cherries over a Belgian waffle, roasted pecans, salted caramel whip. CONTRIBUTED

Mudlick Tap House relocated from Germantown to downtown Dayton this time one year ago. 

They pride themselves on mindfully sourced food and handcrafted drinks. 

In fact, the only freezer in the entire building is a small reach-in that holds gelato and sorbet. 

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>> 3 Dayton-area breweries snag medals in international beer competition

Mudlick's grilled chicken Cobb salad. CONTRIBUTED

Proprieters Jennifer Dean and Forrest Williams are passionate about the sourcing of Mudlick dishes and working with the kitchen staff to create them from scratch. 

Mac's soon to be famous fried chicken at Mudlick Taphouse. CONTRIBUTED

Dean and Williams have found many exciting ways to create events that compliment the Mudlick Tap House brand including bimonthly guided kayaking tours on the Mad River (happening July 9 and July 30) as well as special dinners. The restaurant is planning a New Holland beer dinner coming up for Dayton Beer Week on Aug. 22 featuring a four-course dinner with limited and season release pairings. 

The restaurant continues to fine tune its offerings with a new summer menu that launched in early June. 

>> DAYTON MYTH BUSTERS: Is Pizza Factory pizza the same as South Park Tavern Pizza?

Mudlick's 1/3lb Grass-fed Blackhawk Farms Beef, Whiskey mushrooms, caramelized onion, cajun spice, gorgonzola on brioche. CONTRIBUTED

New menu items include: 

  • A fresh ahi yellowfin tuna steak, pan seared to medium rare over lemon garlic cauliflower rice, served with sesame ginger green beans and cabbage and finished with a pineapple passionfruit chutney
  • Shrimp and grits with andouille sausage topped with a Cajun red sauce and finished with sautéed asparagus tips
  • Deviled eggs made with New Orleans Blue Plate Mayo, horseradish, dill, dijon and dusted with smoked paprika, garnished with radish on a bed of arugula
  • Burrata grilled cheese stuffed finished with a special spinach-arugula pesto, oven roasted tomato and artichoke to compliment the creamy filling inside. 
Mudlick's poutine. CONTRIBUTED

Appetizers include: 

  • A poutine made with Dragons Milk braised beef brisket, shredded atop a bed of our house cut fries, topped with cheddar cheese curds, porter gravy and chopped tarragon
  • Addictive Buffalo "Boomflower" made with Lord Hobo Boom Sauce IPA battered cauliflower florets fried golden and tossed in buffalo sauce served with gorgonzola or buttermilk ranch dipping sauce. 
Mudlick's Yellowfin tuna. CONTRIBUTED

Happy hours, specials

Special features are constantly in rotation and can be found by visiting the restaurant’s Facebook page. "Happiness hours" happen from 3-6 p.m. Tuesday through Friday featuring half price bottles of wine, $6 cocktail feature and $2 off draft beers as well as half off the pretzel and bier cheese appetizer. 

>>Three local restaurants fighting to reopen after devastating fires

Mudlick's shrimp and grits. CONTRIBUTED

"Much of our menu incorporates liquor and craft beer in the dishes. The flavor profiles take dishes to the next level," said Dean who is looking forward to another great year downtown. 

>> Some of our favorite dishes at Mudlick

Contact this contributing writer at 




What: Mudlick Tap House 

Where: 135 E. 2nd St., Dayton 

More information: 937-895-4066 or

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Get ahead of the foodie game at Wednesday’s sneak peek to Restaurant Week 

Published: Friday, July 13, 2018 @ 8:00 AM

Dayton's Best Restaurants

When summer ushers in warmer weather there are several things in the world of food that you can count on — seasonal produce and dishes being at the top of the list.

A close second is the Miami Valley Restaurant Association’s Summer Restaurant Week promotion, which this year runs July 22-29 offering meals from more than 40 restaurants ranging in price from $20.18-$30.18.

The traditional “sneak peek” that happens before the promotion kicks off will take place on Wednesday, July 18, from 5:30-8:30 p.m. at the Steam Plant.

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»»7 great places to get frozen treats in Dayton

Tickets are $20.18, which covers one drink and tastes from more than a dozen restaurants including Amber Rose, Basil’s, Brio, Bravo’s, Coco’s Bistro, Dewberry 1850, The Dock, El Meson, The Famous Restaurant, JD Legends, Roost, Watermark and Wheat Penny.

The restaurant week promotion was established more than a decade ago as a way to generate traffic to local restaurants and help give diners a chance to explore the menu at a more affordable price point. The kick-off event offers a nice preview of what’s in store at the restaurants that are on hand. Many restaurants do a really nice job of showing off some of those special seasonal flavors that summer ushers in.

Roost is one of the participants in the “sneak peek” event for the Miami Valley Restaurant Association’s Summer Restaurant Week. CONTRIBUTED(Contributing Writer)

“The first restaurant week was in 2005 with about 15 restaurants participating. It has grown over the years to an event that people call and ask when summer restaurant week is so they can plan their vacations around it. Now that’s pretty cool. It’s also just great for the restaurants and the community. People get excited about trying a different restaurant and it’s just fun,” said Amy Zahora, executive director of the Miami Valley Restaurant Association.

»»11 places to grab some amazing fried chicken in Dayton

This year Zahora says Brigid’s Path and the MVRA Scholarship Fund will receive a donation from restaurant week meals that are sold.

Due to the popularity of both, Zahora suggests making reservations in advance and purchasing sneak peek tickets now.

“I think it’s so popular because people get to try new places or places they wouldn’t normally try at a really good price. You can beat $20.18 or $25.18 for a three-course meal,” said Zamora. “Some of these restaurants will do over 400 Summer Restaurant Week meals, which is a huge boost. And this doesn’t include drinks, so it definitely helps the restaurants during the week when it is typically slower.”


The following is a list of the businesses scheduled to participate in the 2018 Miami Valley Restaurant Associations’ Summer Restaurant Week taking place July 22-29.

Please note — this list of participating restaurants is subject to change and reservations may be required from some participating locations. Calling ahead is recommended, for details, hours and reservations. For the most up-to-date list and information visit



Amber Rose, 1400 Valley St., (937) 228-2511

Basil’s on Market, 312, N. Patterson Blvd., (937) 818-4390

Coco’s Bistro, 250 Warren St., (937) 228-2626

Dewberry 1850, Marriott at the University of Dayton, 1414 S. Patterson Blvd., (937) 223-1000

»»9 must-try sandwiches in Dayton

Dublin Pub, 300 Wayne Ave., (937) 224-7822

Franco’s Ristorante Italiano, 824 E. Fifth St., (937) 222-0204

Jay’s Seafood Restaurant, 225 E. Sixth St., (937) 222-2892

Lily’s Bistro, 329 E. Fifth St., (937) 723-7637

Roost Modern Italian, 524 E. 5th St., (937) 222-3100

Wheat Penny, 515 Wayne Ave., (937) 496-5268


Buckhorn Tavern, 8800 Meeker Road, (937) 890-3261


Christopher’s Restaurant, 2318 E. Dorothy Lane, (937) 299-0089

Figlio, 424 E. Stroop Road in the Town & Country shopping center, (937) 534-0494

McGillicutty’s Pub, 1980 E. Whipp Road, (937) 436-0057


Bravo at Dayton Mall, 2770 Miamisburg-Centerville Road, (937) 439-1294

Carvers Steaks & Chops, 1535 Miamisburg-Centerville Road, (937) 433-7099

»»6 of the best places to eat before a Fraze Pavilion show

Chappy’s Social House, 7880 Washington Village Drive, (937) 439-9200

Kabuki, 848 S. Main St., (937) 435-9500

Nelly’s 79 S. Main St., (937) 859-5555

Sweeney’s Seafood Bar and Grill, 28 W. Franklin St., (937) 291-3474


The Chop House, 7727 Washington Village Drive, (937) 291-1661

Meadowlark, 5531 Far Hills Ave., (937) 434-4750

The Melting Pot, 453 Miamisburg-Centerville Road, (937) 567-8888


ele Bistro and Wine Bar, 3680 Rigby Road, (937) 384-2253

Firebirds Wood Fired Grill, 3500 Rigby Road, (937) 865-9355

Watermark Restaurant, 20 S. First St., (937) 802-0891


El Meson, 903 E. Dixie Drive, (937) 859-8229


Bunker’s Sports Bar & Grill, 893 E. National Road, (937) 890-8899

»»Top 10 picks for amazing steak in the Dayton area



Basils on Market, 18 N. Market St., (937) 875-2068

The Caroline, 5 S. Market St., (937) 552-7676

Smith’s Boathouse Restaurant, 439 N. Elm St., (937) 335-3837


Hickory River Smokehouse, 135 S. Garber Drive, (937) 669-2271



Brio Tuscan Grill at The Greene, 4459 Cedar Park Drive, (937) 429-7792

Bravo at Fairfield Mall, 2731 Fairfield Commons, (937) 431-5460

This Bravo location opened at the Mall at Fairfield Commons on Jan. 28, 2016. MARK FISHER/STAFF

Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse, 4432 Walnut St., (937) 320-9548

Pasha Grill, 72 Plum St., The Greene, (937) 429-9000

The Wandering Griffin, 3725 Presidential Drive, (937) 956-5216

Wellington Grille, 2450 Dayton-Xenia Road, (937) 426-4600


Packy’s Sports Bar and Grill, 10823 Chidlaw Road, (937) 879-2696

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Mills Park Hotel, 321 Xenia Ave., (937) 319-0400

Sunrise Cafe, 259 Xenia Ave., (937) 767-7211

The Winds Cafe and Bakery, 215 Xenia Ave., (937) 767-1144


Nick’s Restaurant, 1443 N. Detroit St., (937) 372-3202



The Dock, 250 W. Main St., (937) 864-5011


Season’s Bistro & Grille, 28 S. Limestone St., (937) 521-1200


Here are other upcoming MVRA events that are worth marking on the calendar:

Taste of Austin Landing

2-6 p.m. Aug. 5 at the Park at Austin Landing

Sample from more than a dozen Austin Landing restaurants for just $20 in advance or $25 day of. Includes one drink ticket.

For tickets and more information visit

The Taste of The Greene

5:30-8:30 p.m. Aug. 9

Sample dishes from different restaurants at the Greene including Ace’s Asian Cafe, BD Mongolian’s, Brio, Deg’s, EO Burgers, Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse. Tickets $15 in advance, $20 the day of.

For tickets and more information visit

»»Some of Dayton’s best Mexican eateries you may not know about

Bacon Fest at the Fraze

3-10 p.m. Aug. 18

Free and open to the public, savor the flavor of breakfast’s favorite side item – the greatest food on planet Earth – BACON. Whether you’re in the crispy bacon or chewy bacon camp, you’ll love this summer festival. This year more than 10 restaurants will be participating including Amber Rose, Basil’s, The Dock, El Meson and Sweetum’s.

For more information visit

Beer Fest at The Greene

5-9 p.m. Sept. 15

Live music, food and beer collides with music by The Reaganomics starting at 6 p.m. Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 the day of.

For more information visit


What: Sneak Peek to Summer Restaurant Week

When: 5:30-8:30 p.m. July 18

Where: The Dayton Steam Plant, 617 E. Third St., Dayton

Cost: $20.18 per ticket which includes one drink ticket. Additional drink tickets can be purchased at the event for $3-$4. Sneak Peek tickets can be purchased at

More info: (937) 461-MVRA or


What: Summer Restaurant Week

When: July 22-29

Where: Various locations

Cost: Meals range in price from $20.18-$30.18

More info: (937) 461-MVRA or

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