In 2018, Nick’s added two additional bathrooms near their smaller patio and had to tear it up to run plumbing. This prompted a larger patio expansion. Perkins said before they had their small heated patio, it would normally be around a two hour wait on Fridays and Saturdays. During this time of year, customers can expect no wait.
Nick’s has been a staple in the community since 1949. Perkins said he bought the restaurant from founder Nick Malavazos’ daughter in 2009. He had always wanted to own a restaurant after working on and off in the restaurant industry. Even when he was a full-time engineer for 15 years, he still worked in the restaurant industry part-time because he had a passion and desire to do it.
Perkins is proud of the changes he has made since buying the restaurant like updating its image and bringing in higher quality ingredients.
“Not a whole lot of places have been around that long,” Perkins said. “It stood the test of time, so I’m very proud of that.”
As a Xenia native, when I think of Nick’s I think about their award-winning wings and chips. Their wings are fried twice to make them crispy and the chips are hand-sliced and soaked over night.
Two popular sauces that I love are the Nick’s Famous Sweet Hot Damn and Nick’s Awesome BBQ Sauce.
Other customer favorites include:
- The Sexy Club (sliced ham and turkey stacked with bacon, lettuce, tomato, American and Swiss cheeses all on a pretzel bun)
- Walleye (a pan-fried walleye served on a bed of rice pilaf)
- The Big Nick (a grilled, over half pound, hand-pattied black angus beef, cooked to order and served on a fresh bun)
- Fried Veggies (customer choice of fresh mushrooms (breaded or sautéed), zucchini, cauliflower, pickle spears or onion rings that are hand battered and golden fried)
- Spinach Dip (a hot, creamy and cheesy spinach dip served with house-made pita chips or tortilla chips)
The restaurant also offers specials because they have so many regulars that come in to eat — some eat there six days a week, Perkins said.
“There’s a lot of moving parts in this place because everything we do is scratch-made,” Perkins said. “We have a tremendous amount of prep that gets done every day on a day and night basis.”
He thinks the combination of their atmosphere and the quality of food and service makes them stand out. He said that right now their food is as good as it has ever been because their kitchen staff is solid.
At 58 years old, Perkins said he is no where close to being burnt out.
“This is a lifestyle, it’s not just a job,” Perkins said.
Nick’s Restaurant is located at 1443 N. Detroit Street. For more information, visit www.gotonicks.com or the restaurant’s Facebook page (@justwingitatnicks).