The Mel-O-Dee Omelette with hashbrowns and biscuits and coffee. Bill Lackey/Staff
Photo: Bill Lackey
Photo: Bill Lackey

BEST OF DAYTON: Diners deliver old-school charm and delicious eats

When you’re in the mood for something old school, Dayton has you covered. 

Whether you’re looking for a hearty breakfast, burgers for lunch or a comforting dinner, these diners are here to serve delicious food and charm at an affordable price.

>> 5 must-try Dayton diners

These are the top three vote-getters from the community for Best Diner in’s Best of Dayton 2019-20 contest:

🥇WINNER: Mel-O-Dee Restaurant 

The Mel-O-Dee Restaurant. Bill Lackey/Staff
Photo: Bill Lackey

Established in 1965, this restaurant has been family-owned and operated for four generations and the food puts the “home” in home cooking. Dive head first into the bread loafs, coleslaw and broaster chops, chicken and fish.

Want to go?

2350 S. Dayton-Lakeview Road, New Carlisle | 937-849-1378 | WebsiteFacebook

>> The best classic restaurants in Dayton

🥈SECOND PLACE: Hasty Tasty Pancake House 

The Hasty Tasty Pancake House is truly a Dayton Classic. (Source: Facebook)

Whether you call it Bunny's or just the Hasty Tasty, this diner is the perfect place to enjoy a big breakfast with your family or a hearty lunch or dinner of homemade favorites. Regulars usually take their hash browns extra crispy and don't mind the waitress sitting down to take their order and chat. The coffee cups are small yet seemingly bottomless and a slice of pie is around a dollar with a meal. It doesn't get more American than that.

Want to go?

3509 Linden Ave., Dayton | 937-254-8431 | Facebook 

🥉THIRD PLACE: George's Family Restaurant 

George's Family Restaurant (216 N Dixie Dr, Dayton) - Spanakopita, Spinach Pie: George’s is my favorite diner in Dayton, and this North Dixie drive spot has a really loyal clientele. Drive by at any time of the day and the parking lot will be filled. George’s does so many things right…their burgers are awesome, their breakfast are great…but the sleeper hit on George’s menu is their Spanakopita. I ordered it one day, randomly, and was bowled over by this hulking slice of savory pie delivered to the table. Filled with feta, onions and spinach and surrounded by crispy phyllo dough, it is a meal unto itself. George’s has a few other Greek items on the menu, as well as a host of other delicious items.

Even if you've never been down this stretch of North Dixie Drive, you've probably heard of George's Family Restaurant. This diner has been part of the fabric of Dayton since 1992 and has won accolades all over Dayton media, including (but not limited to) Dayton's Best Diner in the Best of Dayton poll. With a ton of fans and a full, diverse menu it's no wonder this popular eatery wins award after award. The diner serves American favorites like burgers, breakfast and meatloaf dinners as well as a few Greek specialties like spanikopita and gyros. There’s also Broaster Chicken, Pork Chops and Fish on the menu including an All You Can Eat Broaster Fish Dinner every Friday. Soups and sauces are made by hand and breakfast is served all day.

Want to go?

5216 N. Dixie Drive, Dayton | 937-275-0705 | FacebookWebsite